General PC / Laptop Setup Considerations
The following applies to EMDR Pro and most gaming software as well.
To avoid the screen saver cutting-in during treatment it is wise to switch it off or extend the delay before it activates to e.g. 15 mins. (You should never subject a patient to eye movement for more than a few minutes at a time. This is why the infinite mode has been set to cut-off at a thousand sets).
Display Hardware Acceleration
Click on "Start" / "Control Panel" / "Display" / "Settings" / "Trouble shoot" and ensure that "Hardware acceleration" is "Full".
This helps to ensure smooth movement.
Power Management and Laptops
In your power management settings (depends on the laptop) select a profile that favours "Performance".
When using a laptop try and use mains power whenever possible.
Virus Checkers and other applications
Virus checkers hog a lot of processor capacity and memory. When using EMDR Pro it is wise to disable all virus checkers.
The same applies to having multiple other applications open at the same time. This is because processor time is shared between all of the applications open. Only one application is given access to the processor at any one time. Having many applications running at the same time is in fact an illusion (even if you have a system with dual processors).
Please do check for virus's and ad-ware on a regular basis. Both can slow your system down and this will have an impact on animation (as well as everything else).
Headphones and bilateral beep sounds
Some headphones contain stereo splitting circuits that will effectively prevent bilateral sounds from being generated. A stereo splitter circuit forces sound to both ear pieces and changes the volume levels between the two sides. As a result bilateral sounds will be heard in both ears. Also, some sound cards activate a "Stereo Virtualisation" filter when they detect that headphones are plugged in. This filter has the same effect as a stereo splitter circuit.
If affected you should use a different type of headset and or disable "Stereo Virtualisation" and "Virtual Surround" options (see below): Click here for details...
Additionally on some systems with some headsets it may not be possible to bilaterally pan mono files using the background sound player. Mono files should be converted to stereo files or the large media player should be used instead. This is very rare.
What Affects Tracking Speed / Quality?
Faster processors (CPUs) can handle animation more easily than slower processors. Dual processors have an advantage over other types of processor.
The more memory you have the less your computer will need to use disk memory caching i.e. writing blocks of memory to disk because the compute has run out of physical memory. More memory is generally advantageous.
Display / Graphics Card
Not all displays are the same - some are faster than others and a fast display can be let down by a slow graphics card. Generally speaking a reasonably fast display will generate the smoothest animation.
Some combinations of background colour / tracking object colour generate a better illusion of movement than others. Yellow tracking object on black background generates movement without a comet trail. The reverse generates a long comet trail effect with some displays. Experiment and find a combination that you like.
Background images / "Quality" setting
Large / high quality background images at 100% quality will slow animation down considerably. By setting the quality at eg 40% the speed of movement will increase greatly without reducing image quality too much. (The "100%" quality setting will skip automatic compression and load the file from disk as-is without any compression / standardisation).
Unless you need to try and keep the "Quality" setting for background images as low as possible. The "Quality" setting is saved when you save settings to file so you can apply different "Quality" settings to different files.
Short background audio loops playing in the large media player
When the large media player gets to the end of the file that it is currently playing it reloads the file from disk. With very short loops this disk-accessing can slow animation down or generate a stagger effect. You should play short loops using the loop player provided. The loop player loads the short audio loop into memory and replays from memory rather than streaming from disk.
Time since last reboot / restart / shutdown
The longer your PC is "on" the more fragmented and corrupted memory becomes. So it is generally a good idea to restart e.g. once a day.
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