OpenMAX IL is an asynchronous media player. The key to getting good performance is to ensure the audio and video fifo have sufficient data to withstand any processing spikes by the ARM.
Ideally the fifos would allow the arm to crash, and video and audio playback to continue smoothly for a couple of seconds.
I've examined the fifo behaviour, and found the video fifo is always almost empty. (The audio fifo is full).
It turns out that the PlayerVideo task (which submits video frames to GPU fifo) blocks until the presentation time has arrived before calling FlipPage (in order to keep subtitles etc. synced).
This is very bad. We generally only one frame of video data in the GPU fifo. This means a spike in ARM workload (e.g. bringing up OSD, or a peak in bitrate) causes the fifo to empty and video to stutter.
The patch here avoids blocking, and lets the FlipPage happen on a later packet.
I've found with this patch, my test clip (1080p with software DTS audio decode) I can play without stuttering at 700MHz. Without this patch it fails to play even at 1000MHz.