Plex

Discuss the world of file sharing, from philosophy to help with applications.

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Layzie Bone
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Does anyone use Plex on here? Thoughts?
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battye
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I haven't used Plex before - I did try Boxee for a while, but ultimately settled on the WD TV. :)
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Layzie Bone
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Boxee looks interesting. Not sure off the top of my head if WD TV lets you add in apps like a FireStick does but I know Plex has apps ported to just about every platform. Over the years I have collected so much stuff, it is nice being able to organize everything .
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battye
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A few years have passed, but I have started using Plex now and I have a couple of thoughts about it:
  1. It's extremely modern, the interface and the ease-of-use is brilliant. Especially the way it can find metadata, subtitles, etc automatically
  2. I'm using it with a Synology NAS and the transcoding capabilities are very good. I was pretty concerned that my NAS/my TV wouldn't be able to play MKV HEVC files but this isn't an issue at all. 1080p HEVC buffers a little bit, but everything else is good. And the older formats like avi play just fine too. In fact I don't think there's been a file it can't play yet, whereas my old WD TV was getting less and less reliable at playing things.
  3. The downside of Plex is I think you need to pay a subscription if you want to stream to your mobile or tablet, it seems like out of the box it just works for televisions (or Chromecast). I haven't done this yet because having it on the TV is good enough I think.
Have you tried Plex yet Layzie?
CricketMX.com in 2022: Still the home of bat's, rat's and other farmyard animals!

"OK, life [as you chose to define it] repeats until there are no more lessons to be learned." - nrnoble (June 12, 2005)
"the new forum looks awesome, it's getting bigger & better" - p2p-sharing-rules (11 Jan, 2008)
"Looks like CMX is not only getting bigger...but, also getting better!!" - moongirl (14 Dec, 2007)
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Grinch
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I've been running Plex for a few years. I like it, have friends and family that use it regularly to stream movies and TV shows. I did pay for it a long time ago and it was pretty cheap when I did it, not sure what they are charging now.
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nesman
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I've been thinking about getting Plex set up. It's a pain when that movie you want to watch isn't on any of the dozen streaming services you pay for. It would be a lot easier if I could just source the video (from somewhere legal and totes legit, of course) and then stream it elsewhere in the house.
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battye
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Grinch wrote: Wed May 11, 2022 6:36 pm I've been running Plex for a few years. I like it, have friends and family that use it regularly to stream movies and TV shows. I did pay for it a long time ago and it was pretty cheap when I did it, not sure what they are charging now.
The Plex Pass? I've been tossing up whether to get that or not, I saw it would enable streaming to a mobile device which could be handy. Are there any other good new features it would open up?
nesman wrote: Sun May 15, 2022 2:32 pm I've been thinking about getting Plex set up. It's a pain when that movie you want to watch isn't on any of the dozen streaming services you pay for. It would be a lot easier if I could just source the video (from somewhere legal and totes legit, of course) and then stream it elsewhere in the house.
It's definitely worth setting it up I think. Running it on a NAS to a smart TV/Chromecast is just such a clean way to do things. I totally agree about the streaming services too, it was great when Netflix was the major player and had pretty much everything you were looking for. But now the streaming industry is so fragmented it's back to square one again, a renaissance of the legal and totes legit services you're referring to will be on the cards for sure :P
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"OK, life [as you chose to define it] repeats until there are no more lessons to be learned." - nrnoble (June 12, 2005)
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Grinch
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I've had it for so long I couldn't tell you what features are available with the Plex Pass. I can watch it on my TV, Desktop, Laptop, Phone and even from work through a web browser. That took a bit of work since government networks typically don't allow you to hit a server running through commercial cable provider IP but setting up a reverse proxy solved that issue.
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nesman
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I'm going to give it a shot. I think I've got Roku on every tv in the house, so it should be painless for everyone else to connect.

I've been looking for an excuse to set up a "backup" server instead of just some spare drives in my desktop.
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battye
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nesman wrote: Wed May 18, 2022 12:07 pm I'm going to give it a shot. I think I've got Roku on every tv in the house, so it should be painless for everyone else to connect.

I've been looking for an excuse to set up a "backup" server instead of just some spare drives in my desktop.
Definitely worth doing!

The way I did it was to buy a Synology DS218play NAS - https://www.synology.com/en-au/products/DS218play
It was about $350-400 USD and basically acts as a mini-server. I've only got Plex on there but they've got an App Store which lets you do pretty much anything, I think you could even install PHP and Apache and turn it into a web server :P

This model has only got 1GB of RAM so I don't know how it would fare transcoding 4K videos. The highest quality I have is a few 1080p HEVC and it can read them alright.

I bought a 6TB WD Red hard drive to go in it. And there's a spare bay so if I ever need to double it I can buy another HD (could be used to set up RAID as well but I figure there's not huge upside if the files are already backed up elsewhere anyway).

I've got ethernet cabling in the walls between the NAS/router/television so it always runs pretty quickly, and it's such a clean solution because it's all self contained. I'm sure a similar setup with Roku (is that wireless like Chromecast?) would be work almost exactly the same way. The few times I've tried it on wifi with a Chromecast it's been fine, maybe fractionally longer buffering time.
CricketMX.com in 2022: Still the home of bat's, rat's and other farmyard animals!

"OK, life [as you chose to define it] repeats until there are no more lessons to be learned." - nrnoble (June 12, 2005)
"the new forum looks awesome, it's getting bigger & better" - p2p-sharing-rules (11 Jan, 2008)
"Looks like CMX is not only getting bigger...but, also getting better!!" - moongirl (14 Dec, 2007)
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nesman
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I got Plex installed, and it was super easy. Tested streaming (Roku TV app) and that was also super easy. I guess it's time to set up a server. That Synology looks like a good deal. I don't know if I could beat the price by much just by cobbling together a new computer. This is a good excuse to get a backup server for the house, though.

Edit: This thing is stupid easy, but ripping DVDs is a little more work than I remember. Makes me miss the old days where I'd just queue up a few copies on WinMX and see which one started first. I bought a Steam streaming box for $5 several years ago, and that's been our "dvd player." Just run the dvd on my pc and then stream it to the tv. This will make the job easier as long as I have 20 minutes to prep the dvd ahead of time.
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nesman wrote: Wed May 18, 2022 12:07 pm I think I've got Roku on every tv in the house...
Wow! :shock:
I have one tv in two houses and often think that's too much. :lol:
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nesman
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If it helps, there are more people than tvs in the house. (It was a close one. I had to count to be sure.)
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battye
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nesman wrote: Thu May 19, 2022 6:58 pmMakes me miss the old days where I'd just queue up a few copies on WinMX and see which one started first.
Maybe we should organise some kind of P2P session like in the old days? This post gave me an idea for the CMX Reunion topic in OT Forum: viewtopic.php?t=6794
CricketMX.com in 2022: Still the home of bat's, rat's and other farmyard animals!

"OK, life [as you chose to define it] repeats until there are no more lessons to be learned." - nrnoble (June 12, 2005)
"the new forum looks awesome, it's getting bigger & better" - p2p-sharing-rules (11 Jan, 2008)
"Looks like CMX is not only getting bigger...but, also getting better!!" - moongirl (14 Dec, 2007)
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Grinch
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I run Plex on a Synology as well. Locally, it handles 4k pretty well but not so good for my external users. I have people in Illinois and Arizona (I live in WV) who use me as their Netflix from time to time and they run into buffering problems with 4k video. So I just get 1080 versions and all is well.
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