I think the stutter may be a video configuration issue or something. I can't recall how I had it before but I'll probably figure it out.
But I am glad to say that I figured out the freezing of the NUC. I "believe" my "network antenna" (HDHomerun) was flooding my system with too much traffic. I stumbled across a post from the Synology website where someone was having the same issue and he discovered when he powered off his Network Antenna and rebooted his nas the problem disappeared. I did the same thing, and haven't had a problem since.
We had a power outage and it seemed shortly after that this whole thing started. It must have sent the HDR into a tailspin.
Are the video settings stored in the ./Userdata/ anywhere? I did copy that stuff. Perhaps I can harvest the settings from there...?