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[HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby chris-audio » Wed Mar 11, 2015 4:17 pm

Hello,

I was connected before 6 months in my 608t a no name usb card and it was recognized as generic audio card and it was working perfectly.

After some time i bought an hdmi av receiver and now i use my hdmi for video and sound.
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby WOODY@AST » Wed Mar 11, 2015 6:52 pm

Storage: AS5104T
USB Speaker: Logitech Z105
Network: BUFFALO WZR-HP-G450H & Netgear R7500
Laptop: Apple MACBOOk AIR: OS X Mountain Lion & Windows 7 64-bit Ultimate
Media Player: ASUSTOR NAS with KODI
Portable: The NEW HTC ONE & Sony Xperia Z3, iPhone 3GS & iPad
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby penyekz » Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:14 pm

Why can't we use Plex as media server? Why doesn't it work via HDMI output?
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby Elrique64 » Thu Apr 02, 2015 10:29 pm

penyekz wrote:Why can't we use Plex as media server? Why doesn't it work via HDMI output?


Plex Media Server is only half of the complete Client Server environment. The other half of the environment is the client portion which is needed to take the video stream sent by the server and then translated to the screen.

So far as I know now there isn't a client portion written for use on Linux headless NAS's. I could well be wrong, but as I don't have an HDMI out on my particular model of NAS I can't even test it.

There is a Plex Home Theater designed to run on Linux. But as I said, I don't have a way to display...
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby penyekz » Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:11 pm

XBMC can be run on the media server via HDMI out but not Plex. Also I read that boxee can also do this but boxee is not available on the AS5140
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby Elrique64 » Fri Apr 03, 2015 12:22 am

I gave a rather lengthy reply in the Plex sub-forum about the why nots for Plex. Look there.
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby Arniceous » Wed Mar 02, 2016 10:19 pm

Simply network your Asustor with any router install UPnp2 from app central and access via DLNA with smart bluray players, TV's Android phones no need for XBMC aka Kodai, that is of course another way but

1) if you don't want a 50 foot HDMI cable plugged into each TV you will run out of HDMI ports if you have 5 TV's I assure you.
2) through the network you see UPnp2 from ANY DLNA device wired or wireless including xBox Sony Play Stations, smart phones, smart TV's smart BR Players, roku devices; use chaneru or roku media server from their app store.
3) once networked you can map HDD's for movie transfers that you may encode handbreak mux etc.. from various torrent, alt.binaries etc..
speeds through mapped HDD's on your network ar exactly your LAN card speed 10/100 mbps I average 89 mbps.
4) Why RAID for a multimedia server? there is no reason to if you have the money to buy external HDD's with exact backup space. so free up 50% more of your HDD's for movies and backup externally and run raid 0.

I'm sure everyone runs a different methode
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby MikeG.6.5 » Thu Mar 03, 2016 9:11 am

Yes, people certainly do, including not using the glitch and problematic uPnP servers known to create problems with very large libraries. I have over 1900 movies and 17,000 TV episodes, and uPnP won't keep track of that many items. I was constantly losing things, as the server bailed, and I would have to keep stopping and starting it over and over again. Not viable for my environment at all....

Plex, with either Roku, RaspPi, Chromecast, or a wealth of other clients work. Either locally or remotely, consistently, every time, on time, at least for me....

I stream to as many as 5 users at a time on my 7004T regularly. And use less than 20-30% resources to do it.

2 years running and the only reason I have to restart Plex, or the NAS for that matter, is if I move the server, or update something. Reliability is something I require. uPnP servers of most any flavor I have tried, just don't have it.
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby Arniceous » Thu Mar 03, 2016 8:47 pm

re-encode because Sony smart bluray players probably the worst choice on the market. we don't own smart TV cause we wanted big screens and we also have projection screen in media room so we are subjected to DLNA and the GUI also Roku is way behind on AAC and AC3 and h264/265 very limited on container types and codecs as all of us have come to find out over the course a decade or more collecting re-encoding etc...
Plex never worked good for me when it came out so I moved off it long ago and deal with UPnp2 but I see all movies you will come to find out that you will have to pass things through mkvtoolnix or somekind of utility or certain MKV/MP4 will not showup period! once you know how to make your players see them I think your perspective of DLNA & NAS will change. The real problem lies with the GUI of smart media devices and the ability to search titles or read imdb or rotten tomato reviews is the main problem for large movie libraries at this time. Anyone can use Kodai and watch from a PC or hard wired HDMI home run from TV to NAS not very practical
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Re: [HOW TO] Using Your NAS as a Home Media Center

Postby MikeG.6.5 » Fri Mar 04, 2016 2:36 am

hehe, Well, I run all of my media through some custom conversion scripts before I hand it to Plex. I don't have any media on my system now that isn't already converted to MP4, H264 with AAC stereo and AC3 or DTS 5.1 if it's available from the source. I no longer have issues with media not getting found by the server, being able to stream it to any Plex client app, anywhere in the world.

I was streaming over 1800 miles to one client while I had another 4 local clients watching other media, WHILE I was watching the same show the one 1800 miles away was streaming.... (And talking to the remote user on the phone while we watched that episode of GoT together, even though we were 1800 miles apart!) uPnP servers required too much 3rd party nonsense to make remote streaming work, and I was never interested in trying to hodge-podge something together when I can get a single app to do what I require.

Converting the media over to the format I outlined above is almost a requirement for some of the smaller NASes out there, because most Plex clients can see that natively. So if the client can play it and the bitrate is less than the client app's max, and there is sufficient bandwidth to support the stream, the client Direct Plays the media with no Real Time conversions required. As Asustor only has one model that can support RT on-demand transcoding of high bitrate 1080p streams, you have to convert for most other models to ensure playback without buffering.

No need for any MKV tools to do those conversions. I use those custom scripts I talk about in the post I link below to do the conversions automatically. I personally hook Roku sticks or Roku 2's up to any of the non-smart TV's I set up for friends or family most of the time, because it's so simple to use and completely bullet proof.

At this point, with my existing and continually growing library, there is absolutely no way I'm going to take what I perceive as two steps backward to try any uPnP or DLNA server. That includes Emby, XMBC, Kodi or any others. Plex works, and is the least problematic system I have ever used with the size of my library. (1900+ movies, and well over 17,000 TV episodes spanning over 300 TV series as of right now.) Some of the movies in my collection are up to 20Mbps, most are at least 8Mbps, and some of the older stuff is in SD. Locally, it doesn't matter what the bitrate is, but remotely I have to contend with a somewhat slow upload, so I make some of the higher bitrate stuff in a lower bitrate for remote users on my system. Plex handles doing that conversion as well, so no biggy. I have 2 copies of the media in that case....

If you haven't looked at this post yet, I suggest you do so: viewtopic.php?f=49&t=7231 This talks about Plex and is a 5 part post I wrote about setting up Plex and using it within an Asustor NAS environment. After the media is converted, installing this app: viewtopic.php?f=42&t=7506 and then you can use most 64-bit models of NAS to stream on your NAS to any TV via the HDMI port on the device itself, eliminating one Roku, if you place the NAS close enough to your TV. (I don't know if the app Philippe made can work on a 60xT model. I might be worth trying, though.)

I had Plex running on a 202T for almost a year, by converting the media, and only Direct Playing the media only. That small box had 5 local streams going at one time, and was completely capable of handling that much, as long as it was Direct Play and not requiring any transcodes at all. Now, the 7004T can handle to odd transcodes I might have to do, but the media still gets converted.

I have 30TB hanging on or in my NAS. Most of that is full of media for Plex. (OK, I have a TB or 2 for other things, but not that much...) With the NAS I have now, the only limits I have running Plex is how much HDD space I have, and throwing another 10-20TB at the box is the only expenses. 3TB externals are under $150 these days, so adding more HDD is trivial, over-all.

If you really want a simple to run, capable media streaming app, take another look at Plex. In the two years I've been running it, a lot has changed. If you follow the steps I outline in the post I linked you to, you can set the whole thing up and have it running in a couple of hours. And be able to watch your media on almost any device, almost anywhere in the world, including at 30,000 feet. If you don't require any of the Plex Pass features, you don't have to pay for Plex Media Server Pass. Just the mobile apps... That means you may already have devices in your home that are Plex Ready that you could use without any costs at all....

You aren't going to sell me on something that I've already dismissed as completely unworkable, long ago, for my library size or needs to remote stream. And I realize I'm not likely to sell you on Plex either. You have to want to try it yourself. Since I wrote that walk-through I've had PM's from at least 5 other users here asking for a bit more info, or access to the conversion scripts. That means people are reading it and their minds are changing just from my constant yammer about how well it works. There is no other media streaming app as capable or with the numbers of clients it can be run on right now. None! Emby is likely the closest, but it has it's own problems... (Not the least of which is the lack of client devices that can use their apps.)

The best part is, the only cost to try it out is your time.
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