Firefox on Fedora: Fix H264 Video Low FPS/ Choppy Video/ Stuttering Or Whatever You’d Like To Call It

UPDATE 27/07/2021: Rather than installing Flatpak versions, you can install media codecs instead.

Fedora Workstation multimedia plugins: https://docs.fedoraproject.org/en-US/quick-docs/assembly_installing-plugins-for-playing-movies-and-music

openSUSE Tumbleweed multimedia codecs: https://opensuse-community.org

Firefox 89.0 on Fedora

Most obvious reason is the video codecs Firefox uses. Firefox is pre-installed in Fedora and it doesn’t do a very good job at playing videos on popular websites. As I’ve seen on a Reddit thread, this is because it’s not using ffmpeg:

Comment from u/jntesteves on r/Fedora [Source 1]:

This happens because by default Firefox uses Cisco’s openh264 decoder for the h264 codec, and that decoder is bad and does a very low FPS for most videos (YouTube uses different codecs by default, but most other sites still use h264). The solution is to install better decoders. As has already been said, for Firefox from Fedora’s repository you can install ffmpeg-libs from RPMFusion. I’m just writing to let people know that this solution doesn’t work for Firefox installed from Flathub.

As u/jntesteves suggested, I installed Flatpak version of Firefox from GNOME Software and put an end to the misery [Source 2].

Received the Firefox 89.0 update. This UI refresh is a welcome change. Firefox is my daily driver because it’s the only browser to support desktop add-ons on Android version too. Chrome is dominating and Chromium based browsers (like the new Microsoft Edge) are thriving, but Firefox must survive as the non-profit browser is honestly respecting user’s privacy regardless of what other browsers boast on their PR/ marketing campaigns.

Source 1: https://www.reddit.com/r/Fedora/comments/k7s9xu/firefox_choppy_video_playback_on_fedora_33_amd_gpu

Source 2: https://flathub.org/apps/details/org.mozilla.firefox

I’m Madhawa Ratnayake and I test drive software.