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Plex fans: why do you use Plex?

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poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
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while at the same time I really can't imagine having to install XBMC on 8-9 or so of our household's mobile devices. That sounds like a nightmare.
It really isn't that bad. Put the Retouched skin on and XBMC works pretty well on a mobile device. It is nice if you have a synced MySQL library because then your tablets/phones approximate something like the Wii U's Off-TV Play feature.

I agree with your general premise though, XBMC/Kodi shines on a big screen. Any mobile devices running it (or remote apps like Yatse) are simply about improving that livingroom/TV experience, not replacing it. It comes down to: What is a priority to you, and what are your consumption patterns?

For someone like my sister, who does 90% of her video consumption on mobile devices, XBMC is pretty much useless to her while Plex is a great fit (and can fill in the 10% of time she wants it on the tv). For someone like my wife who does 95% of her consumption via TV, XBMC provides the easiest (and prettiest) GUI for picking through such a huge library. She hasn't hit my Plex server in years.
 

tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,363
641
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I'm late to this discussion, but after reading the whole silly back and forth (you should all just listen to poofyhairguy, he knows this stuff!), I looked back to the OP and reading the bolded, if the argument is really just about *that*, then the answer is:

No, I probably won't use Plex for strictly 'streaming media to a TV'. I do have Plex server running at home, but not for that.

Personally, I have both, because surprise surprise, they have different use cases. They do have the same library source (although not surprisingly they don't share markers). XBMC's are for the TVs, while at the same time I really can't imagine having to install XBMC on 8-9 or so of our household's mobile devices. That sounds like a nightmare. And yes, I did try installing several different XBMC flavor on my tablet/phone. I uninstalled them almost right away after I tried them. XBMC really isn't meant for that.
Then you didn't set it up well/correctly or use the correct skins for it. But that's no surprise given the ineptitude of even reading comprehension in this thread.

Again, this is where Plex shines. It ensures you can't make a mistake.
 

cronos

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2001
9,380
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It really isn't that bad. Put the Retouched skin on and XBMC works pretty well on a mobile device. It is nice if you have a synced MySQL library because then your tablets/phones approximate something like the Wii U's Off-TV Play feature.
I'm going to have to try that Retouched skin, and maybe try to setup the mysql library again (I think it was you who pointed us out to the guide once). The database server is still running on my computer but I never got it working (didn't seriously tried) and never bothered to uninstall it.
 

smitbret

Diamond Member
Jul 27, 2006
3,388
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Right above your post. His name is tential.
I just reread it and I still don't see where he said XBMC was a better server than Plex.

He said Plex was a great server for people with mobile devices but it had little value to him. If he has HTPCs running XBMC at all of his TVS then that would be a true statement. He probably doesn't run any server software at all because he can just use SMB or NFS shares.

I'm concerned about your reading comprehension skills, my friend.
 
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poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
14,613
315
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I'm going to have to try that Retouched skin, and maybe try to setup the mysql library again (I think it was you who pointed us out to the guide once). The database server is still running on my computer but I never got it working (didn't seriously tried) and never bothered to uninstall it.
It is seriously easy to setup MySQL for Xbmc as long as your library is moderate. If it is huge (say over 1200 movies and 300+ TV shows) you will need some tweaks so hit me up.
 

cronos

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2001
9,380
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I just reread it and I still don't see where he said XBMC was a better server than Plex.

He said Plex was a great server for people with mobile devices but it had little value to him. If he has HTPCs running XBMC at all of his TVS then that would be a true statement. He probably doesn't run any server software at all because he can just use SMB or NFS shares.

I'm concerned about your reading comprehension skills, my friend.
Your question was: "who said that Plex wasn't a better server?"

The answer is right from tential post (and yours above, really), by saying that "Plex isn't a better server for people who..."

So who's having a problem with reading comprehension now? I think it's pretty clear that he *doesn't* think that Plex is a better server than XBMC.

But to make things absolutely clear, let's not assume anything and have tential himself answer the following, extremely simple, yes/no question. "Is Plex a better server than XBMC?".

If he answers with 'yes', then you're right, but if he answers with 'no', then I'm right. How about that?
 
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tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,363
641
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I just reread it and I still don't see where he said XBMC was a better server than Plex.

He said Plex was a great server for people with mobile devices but it had little value to him. If he has HTPCs running XBMC at all of his TVS then that would be a true statement. He probably doesn't run any server software at all because he can just use SMB or NFS shares.

I'm concerned about your reading comprehension skills, my friend.
People are so defensive of their choice they don't even read the full post. They just think they're being attacked.

People say I said something, yet they don't quote/bold it.
Or they only partial quote it to disrupt the meaning.

Says I said something, doesn't quote it.
#PhantomQuoted

If you're going to say I said something, find my post and QUOTE IT. If you can't do that, I'm going to assume (and RIGHTFULLY SO) that you simply state things without regard for whether it's true or false.
Don't worry about your reading comprehension smitbret(I know you aren't), people will continue to not use the quote feature because by doing so, it would mean they would actually have to respond to the content of my posts rather than just make up their idea of what I've stated.
 
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tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
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Your question was: "who said that Plex wasn't a better server?"

The answer is right from tential post (and yours above, really), by saying that "Plex isn't a better server for people who..."

So who's having a problem with reading comprehension now? I think it's pretty clear that he *doesn't* think that Plex is a better server than XBMC.

But to make things absolutely clear, let's not assume anything and have tential himself answer the following, extremely simple, yes/no question. "Is Plex a better server than XBMC?".

If he answers with 'yes', then you're right, but if he answers with 'no', then I'm right. How about that?
What Cronos claims I said.

What I actually said:
Lol... you're the one trying to convince me Plex is a better server...

Why I don't know, I already said Plex is great for mobile devices as a server. It's great for people who use roku, and other devices and need transcoding.

For me personally? I don't use Plex. It's not useful for me at all. It adds no benefit for me so why would I use it?
Notice how his bolded comment on what he claims I said isn't in the post. Why doesn't he quote my posts? Because then he wouldn't be able to lie about the content of my posts.
 

cronos

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2001
9,380
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So are you going to answer my question above, tential, or are you just going to not answer it while writing three paragraphs full of statement of how wrong I am?

I honestly don't mind if I'm proven to be wrong. I'm a big boy, I can take it. So if you're going to prove me wrong, please do. No need to quote battle now, just answer my question above straight up, yes or no. If you say yes, then I'll admit I'm wrong, but if you say no then I'm right, that you do think that Plex isn't a better server than XBMC, and according to smitbret you're going to have to eat your foot, or something like that :)

Your turn.

Edit: oh and I am actually a little confused at why you seemed to be angry at me. It's smitbret who wanted you to eat your foot for your opinion (that Plex *isn't* a better server than XBMC in some cases). I was just pointing you out to him. As you can easily just read my post above, I have no beef in this silly discussion, I use both, and understand clearly that both apps have their specialties. No need to convince me.
 
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tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
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So are you going to answer my question above, tential, or are you just going to not answer it while writing three paragraphs full of statement of how wrong I am?

I honestly don't mind if I'm proven to be wrong. I'm a big boy, I can take it. So if you're going to prove me wrong, please do. No need to quote battle now, just answer my question above straight up, yes or no. If you say yes, then I'll admit I'm wrong, but if you say no then I'm right, that you do think that Plex isn't a better server than XBMC, and according to smitbret you're going to have to eat your foot, or something like that :)

Your turn.

Edit: oh and I am actually a little confused at why you seemed to be angry at me. It's smitbret who wanted you to eat your foot for your opinion (that Plex *isn't* a better server than XBMC in some cases). I was just pointing you out to him. As you can easily just read my post above, I have no beef in this silly discussion, I use both, and understand clearly that both apps have their specialties. No need to convince me.
You've made claims about what I've said, read through this thread, and quote them. If you can't do that, then retract those claims.

End of story.

-----------------------------
At your bolded comment.

What Smitbret said about eating their own foot(Not directed at me by the way that's just your own wild accusation)
Who said that it wasn't a better server?

Whoever said that should eat their own foot.
You believe this to be directed at me?
Oh well here we have smitbret clearing that up for you:
I just reread it and I still don't see where he said XBMC was a better server than Plex.

He said Plex was a great server for people with mobile devices but it had little value to him. If he has HTPCs running XBMC at all of his TVS then that would be a true statement. He probably doesn't run any server software at all because he can just use SMB or NFS shares.

I'm concerned about your reading comprehension skills, my friend.
But even better, you can ASK HIM YOURSELF if you want if that comment was directed at me. Since you love asking users direct questions so much ask him.

What I posted before that (2 posts directing people READ Smitbret's post since they weren't able to understand my explanation at all and maybe they may understand smitbret's wording!)
Yes... They do have different demands of their software. Something I've said like so many times in the thread already.
I really don't think you're fully comprehending posts.

You think I am trying to convince you xbmc is better... You're not even following the thread smitbret already said they serve 2 different purposes.....
You're fixated on better and not that plex does something different than xbmc.
Go read smitbret's post again you're not getting it from me clearly.

I just assumed that most people jumped on Plex because they needed something to organize their media and stream it to different devices that had different codec requirements, something that WMC lacked. Plex takes care of all of that automatically.... Oh Yeah and it is/was a great piece of software that is free.

The evolution of Plex with Client Plug-ins, the ability to stream media out of home and just shear momentum has kept it on top.

There seem to be some alternatives that are gaining some traction out there right now. Mediabrowser is really starting to catch on in the enthusiast community. Mezzmo and Serviio have some pretty loyal followings, too.

I giggle a little when people compare Plex and XBMC. They are similar in that they organize your library and collect the metadata and artwork, but that's about where it ends. Plex is intended to be used as a server platform and XBMC is intended to be a 10-foot client platform. XBMC does include the ability to stream via UPnP but it lacks a lot of things that Plex has, the least of which is the transcoding ability.
There, now you can read what happened in one small post without attempting to put words in my mouth.
 
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cronos

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2001
9,380
24
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You've made claims about what I've said, read through this thread, and quote them. If you can't do that, then retract those claims.

End of story.

-----------------------------
Whoa easy. Like I said, I don't mind to be proven wrong. If you think I misrepresented your view that you don't think Plex is a better server, then I apologize.

Hereby I retract my claim that you think that Plex isn't a better server.

Peace?
 

cronos

Diamond Member
Nov 7, 2001
9,380
24
91
At your bolded comment.

What Smitbret said about eating their own foot(Not directed at me by the way that's just your own wild accusation)

You believe this to be directed at me?
I didn't wildly accuse anyone. smitbret asked who here thinks that Plex isn't a better server, and said that whoever think that should eat their own foot. I had no idea who it was directed to, and I didn't really care.

I was reading through the posts in this thread, saw your post, and then his post asking this, so I simply replied to him, answering his simple question with what I think was the right answer.

Now, apparently I have found out that I misunderstood your view, and it turns out that you do think that Plex is a better server. So these are what happens next:

1. I retracted my claim and apologize
2. smitbret doesn't think that you have to eat your own foot
3. We can all live happily ever after
 

smithkt

Member
Oct 29, 2007
176
1
81
Wow. I asked a simple question one page back which has been either ignored or lost among this protracted argument.

Does anyone who uses Plex know how they handle watched flags in a multi-user household?
 

tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,363
641
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Wow. I asked a simple question one page back which has been either ignored or lost among this protracted argument.

Does anyone who uses Plex know how they handle watched flags in a multi-user household?
I didn't ignore ya buddy I just didn't know the answer to your question. Im sure one of the Plex experts in this thread could have helped you.
But if you do a quick Google search of "multi user watched flags plex" you'll find its a user for Plex pass holders only.
 

TheCrackLing

Junior Member
Feb 11, 2013
22
0
0
Wow. I asked a simple question one page back which has been either ignored or lost among this protracted argument.

Does anyone who uses Plex know how they handle watched flags in a multi-user household?
Everyone gets an account, everyone has their own watch flags. The Plex HTPC app has also recently added multi-user support.
 

tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,363
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Your Plex Media Server keeps track of what you're watching, what you've watched already, and what you're partway through. The Server does this automatically but sometimes you might like to set the viewstate manually. The viewstate tracks if a show is:

Watched
Partially watched and how far you are into the item
Watched
For users with a Plex Pass subscription, the Multi-User feature will also track viewstates for all users (without a subscription, viewstates are tracked only for the owner).
https://support.plex.tv/hc/en-us/articles/201018487-Mark-as-Watched-or-Unwatched

I could be wrong though but seems you definitely need Plex Pass to use this feature.
 

Aikouka

Lifer
Nov 27, 2001
29,788
522
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Plex vs. ____ is like iOS vs. Android. They all work fairly well, but one of them (Plex, iOS) tries to handle a lot of the monotonous, menial tasks for you. In some cases, this is welcome, but in others, it can hamper customization.

Personally, I like Plex. I'm a PlexPass Lifetime subscriber, and I use it on all of my TVs and mobile devices. The latter is one of the areas where Plex really shines as it handles any transcoding without the user's intervention. This isn't a big deal if you're just using HTPCs, but if you're using a smart TV, video game console, or a smartphone, your media may not be directly playable on those devices. I used to use XBMC with a MySQL server that handled the library state. It wasn't terribly hard to do, but would I ever suggest a non-techie to do it? Ehh... probably not. Things can go wrong really fast if you make one minor mistake. One time, I realized that I added a location incorrectly as I used a Windows-mounted network share (e.g. M:\) vs. the direct path (e.g. \\server\Movies\). The prior isn't support for shared libraries in XBMC, and I had to remove the library and re-add it. Unfortunately, that screwed up my library as I now had two entries for everything. I had to go into the SQL server (via phpMyAdmin) and prune the database using SQL commands. I really would not want to explain to a layman how to do that.

I think my only complaint may be that Plex doesn't play nice when weird issues arise in videos. For example, I had this one anime episode that had a weird issue at one specific part. Whenever you hit that point in Plex, it just simply crashed. I went to that point with Media Player Classic - Home Cinema, and it ran into problems too, but it didn't crash. As a software developer, having your program crash without any indication to the user is a really bad thing.

I've also been having some small issues lately since they added the new Plex Home (the multiple users thing) feature. The issue is mostly related to skins as the skins must be updated to support Plex Home. Plex Aeon, which is probably the best looking skin for Plex, has been modified to function with the latest changes, but last I checked, it isn't 100%.
 
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Feb 25, 2011
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I use PLEX because it was a plugin for FreeNAS. Now I run it in an Ubuntu VM, because I was used to it and I spent $5 on the App.

It works for what I want it to do. I try not to overthink it beyond that.
 

Homerboy

Lifer
Mar 1, 2000
29,292
3,019
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FWIW, I've run all sorts of media servers (Plex, WMS, XBMC, BeyondTV with BeyondMedia, etc) and I guarantee that I have probably forgotten more about servers than most people on this forum know. I run Plex. Why?

1. The idea of manually configuring scripts, ini/config files, etc. and hacking around doesn't appeal to me any longer. I do stuff like that for a living and I don't want to deal with it at home. I want something that won't take too long to configure and works well and Plex fits the bill nicely. My home network is bigger than many small/medium business networks at this stage and hacking around with media servers is very low on my priority list since we have good options available today. Back when I built my first media server in 2002 or 2003, those options weren't there and it involved lots of scripting, hacking, and tying different software pieces together.

2. We watch videos on LOTS of devices in my house -- Rokus, iPads, Android tablets -- it is a decent experience across all platforms. My media solution has to serve non-technical folks as well as myself so it needs to be clean, decent looking, and easy to use.

3. Simply sharing a folder and clicking through it on some sort of media box isn't a good solution IMO. It's ugly, doesn't provide useful information, and doesn't work across multiple platforms. And before someone chimes in with "Well you just need to load x, y, or z software," that's what Plex is for.

If I am not mistaken, Plex was originally just a different fork in the development of XBMC and eventually removed some features while adding others.



YOU could, but try explaining that to a wife, kids, in-laws, guests, etc.

Admittedly, I'm not a typical user because I have a massive network at home. Plex has had issues over the years but is much improved since the early versions and is a great server.

This sums up my history and feelings as well.
I've been messing with streaming audio players before there were video players. Then different video players by the boatload. XBMC will always be near and dear to my heart, but video is played and consumed on just too many devices in my house now.

Plex supports ALL of them with ONE server. I can even stream my at-home content to phone and tablets (and even other PCs) while away from home.

Plex has limitations in its customization compared to XBMC... but the easy and universalness of it outweighs that 100 fold.
 

Homerboy

Lifer
Mar 1, 2000
29,292
3,019
126
*for the record too, I simply use the Plex app on our mobile devices and sling everything to Chromecast on the chosen TV(s)
 

TType85

Junior Member
Oct 28, 2013
3
0
0
For me I went from HTPC + WMC and/or XMBC to Roku(s) + Plex for one HUGE reason. WAF (wife acceptance factor).

I hate getting calls that this or that "broke" or doesn't work (which seems to only happen when I am gone). Time Warner puts an app out on Roku so we don't need a set-top box or cable card tuner (we don't DVR shows). Netflix and Plex work without any fiddling or tweaking.

I still switch over to the HTPC when I want to watch a movie in the best quality with TrueHD or DTS-HD sound.
 

Turkish

Lifer
May 26, 2003
15,549
1
81
Do you guys think I should get the lifetime subscription to plex pass? I am not sure if Plex will still be relevant in 2-3 years as cheaper/free options with plex pass capabilities may come along soon. What do you think? Is it worth $150?
 

WelshBloke

Lifer
Jan 12, 2005
27,214
4,271
126
Do you guys think I should get the lifetime subscription to plex pass? I am not sure if Plex will still be relevant in 2-3 years as cheaper/free options with plex pass capabilities may come along soon. What do you think? Is it worth $150?
Depends on how much you use the stuff the Plex pass gives you and how long you think you'll use it for.
 

tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,363
641
121
Do you guys think I should get the lifetime subscription to plex pass? I am not sure if Plex will still be relevant in 2-3 years as cheaper/free options with plex pass capabilities may come along soon. What do you think? Is it worth $150?
Even as Plex Pass options become free there will be new options that are behind the Plex Pass paywall.

Plex won't destroy the value of their paid membership. Splitting off from XBMC, then killing off their profit model would be incredibly stupid. IMO, you'll see value in the Plex Pass for a LONG time if you use it. However, it depends if you use those extra features of course.
 

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