Plex + Fire Stick = no transcoding?

    • OMV 2.x
    • Resolved
    • Plex + Fire Stick = no transcoding?

      Hello

      I would like to know if somebody in the forum is using the Plex plugin to stream to a Fire Stick. The reason is, I am currently using a Chromecast as Plex client, and in order to work, Plex has to transcode almost everything. My library is basically .mkv in 720p - 1080p with AC3 audio, but Chromecast does not like AC3. Subtitles are also an issue since the Chromecast does not support subtitles. My OMV runs on a Atom 330 (nice, small, power efficient and silent. See the signature), and it certainly does not have the muscle to transcode. I was thinking about upgrading to a Fire Stick. The Fire Stick specification page says that it should support AC3 audio. That should imply no transcoding in the server side, but I would like to corroborate before buying it.

      Perhaps my question is out of the reach of this forum (and I apologize for that, feel free to delete the thread if necessary), but I would like to know the experience of other forum members using such a device constellation (OMV with plex + Fire Stick).

      Thanks for the help!
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • subzero79 wrote:

      if you want to avoid transcoding use kodi in the stick...works very well IMO.

      I was a long-term user from XBMC/Kodi with a Raspi. I am familiar with it and know from first hand good it works. Perhaps if I load Plexbmc I can get more or less what I want. But correct me if I am wrong, if Kodi runs without the need of transcoding, shouldn't Plex also run without transcoding? The hardware decoder is there, so shouldn't it be available for both Plex and Kodi?
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • Thanks for the specs @deecon. It seems like the Fire Stick should do the trick.

      I just found this comparison between the Fire Stick and the new Chromecast 2. Specs-wise, the Chromecast 2 should be in the same ballpark (at least regarding supported formats). Mmm... decisions, decisions, decisions! The two of them cost 39€ here in Germany. I am thinking about getting both, test them, and send back the one that requires transcoding.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • You said it, Plex is Plex!

      I ended up ordering the Fire Stick. I'll give it a shot with both Kodi and Plex and see how it works.

      I know many would recommend to replace my Atom based server. The problem is that I really like it, and it was dirt cheap. It cost me less than 25€ a year in electricity. So, the longer I can keep it, the better.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • So, the Firestick came. Plugged it and went straight to Plex. The good thing: I can configure it for direct play, meaning that it will reproduce all my files without any issue and no transcoding. However, I have no audio. It plays only AAC (both stereo and 5.1) but no AC3 (which is, unfortunately, the majority of my videos). Strangely, I set Plex on the Firestick to direct play AC3 (based on the specs, it should be able to play it) but I get no audio in my speakers.

      In the other hand, I find the app a little buggy. I find the Chromecast implementation better (well, the CC is a receiver in the purest sense of the word. It has no interface). Let's see how it plays with Kodi + Plexbmc skin.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • I have both plex on OMV and a fire stick. I too use Plexbmc on kodi, and I just use the plex app on the fire stick for testing. The free version only allows you to use one minute of playback anyway.

      You can set both to display an overlay telling you if it is transcoding or not, and why if so. Unfortunately for me, pretty much all my files are in the MKV container, which is unsupported by Plex, resulting in transcoding pretty much everything. My OMV runs on an AMD sempron 3850, which I think is up to the task. I'm actually trying to check the plex logs to see what's going on, but the last modify date on all the logs is almost 8 months ago, so something is wrong (I will start another thread about that).

      I hope this helps!
    • I started getting this annoying message about "activate Plex", which is a bug because I already bought the Plex app. I installed it on 2 devices more, but only the Fire Stick asks for activation.

      I'll try the PleXBMC way, but I am having issues to install it. Overall i am happy with the performance of the Fire Stick, but the Plex app is just too buggy.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • I loaded PleXBMC on the Fire Stick and couldn't be happier. It decodes everything I throw at it, and the audio quality is superb (far better than the Chromecast). It certainly is the best of two worlds!

      Thanks for the help and the comments!

      [IMG:https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/c0/44/9e/c0449e1a8ff71f2e52ac0361fd33e71f.jpg]
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • In Plex it is relatively fast, but from time to time it hangs. Depending on the video, Plex will start transcoding (although it shouldn't), meaning that skipping video back and forth takes quite long. That does not happen in PleXBMC. It does take 1 or 2 seconds when opening the music library (but that is kind of understandable, there are circa 60 GB of music). But generally, PleXBMC is faster and more responsive than Plex.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz