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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2019, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
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PLEX server/NAS

I'm planning on building a PLEX server/NAS, preferably in a 2U or 4U case so I can rackmount it. I'm going to try and find a second hand case or worst case I could buy a discounted SuperMicro case through my work.

Anyway what I need help with is the hardware, I am going to buy all the hardware new and I was wondering if Ryzen is the way to go, MOAR CORES seems appropriate for a PLEX server, thing is I know hardware accelerated streaming only works with gpu's and intel cpu's, so am I making a mistake here or is a Ryzen still best bang for buck.

PLEX server is going to stream a single 4K HDR stream max.

For the NAS I was going to use unraid so that means this server will be running 2 VM's one for PLEX one for Unraid.

I welcome tips on all hardware, I obviously want to keep it somewhat cheap in hardware cost and electricity cost, also has to be kinda quiet.

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2019, 02:05 PM
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I am considering upgrading to next Ryzen 7nm myself as well. 4 cores are more than enough. Energy usage will be low. Currently, I don't use Plex, as I use nfs and gigabit ethernet cable to connect my NAS to my tv box (CoreELEC running Kodi 18). Normally, I just play 4K Remux. Streaming 4k HDR is never a problem. If your tv box/pc/whatever is capable of playing the original video file formats, there is not much reason to re-encode.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2019, 02:47 PM
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I'm a little confused by your post...

Unraid wouldn't be in a VM, Unraid would be the hypervisor that your VMs run in.

Like mumford mentioned if your TV/device already supports it then you have no need to re-encode it and can pretty much be taken care of by any semi-modern CPU. If you need to re-encode them then that's a different question but with HDR you really don't want to be re-encoding them, you may want to remux the files if you can't stream the files directly.

Either way, best bang for the buck is going to be dependent on what else you would like to virtualize, if it's just plex you can get back with less than a new ryzen setup, an R710/720/730 would be a bunch of power for a 2u Plex box.

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2019, 03:15 PM
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Will add in my experience here as well. Ryzen works nicely with Plex and my 4 core/4 thread 2200G was more than powerful enough for transcoding two 1080p streams at the same time. 4k content wasn't a struggle either.

Seems like you will run into network bottlenecks before a modern CPU becomes a weak point.


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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 12:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by deafboy View Post
I'm a little confused by your post...

Unraid wouldn't be in a VM, Unraid would be the hypervisor that your VMs run in.

Like mumford mentioned if your TV/device already supports it then you have no need to re-encode it and can pretty much be taken care of by any semi-modern CPU. If you need to re-encode them then that's a different question but with HDR you really don't want to be re-encoding them, you may want to remux the files if you can't stream the files directly.

Either way, best bang for the buck is going to be dependent on what else you would like to virtualize, if it's just plex you can get back with less than a new ryzen setup, an R710/720/730 would be a bunch of power for a 2u Plex box.
My bad, not familiar with Unraid, had a colleague telling me the days of hardware raid are over. I would then indeed only run PLEX in Unraid. The htpc at my 4K tv is a most recent gen NUC with an i3-8109U, i'm now running MPC-HC and MadVR on it. Its just enough to playback a 50GB 10bit UHD rip.
Anyway I heard viewing the content with subtitles made PLEX re-encode them.

Also I assume I have to have my HTPC connect to my network at 60+Mbit to stream the high quality rips without remuxing?

Edit:// Shame that R7xx PowerEdges only do 2.5" disks, quite cheap refurbed though. I'm a bit afraid of the noise the stock cooling will make... I'll do some more research on them, thx a bunch

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Last edited by CiBi; 02-05-2019 at 01:03 AM.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 08:56 AM
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I never play my movies with subtitles so I can't speak on that, I would think there should be an option though since you're just streaming the original content that as long as you have the subtitle files you should be just fine, that nuc should be plenty capable.

I know the R710 has a 6x3.5" drive variant, can't speak for the R720/730

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 09:12 AM
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So unraid will be the kvm vm host, and the raid is just a software layer on top of unraid. I ran it for probably 6 or 8 years but recently swapped over to esxi due to needed a real home lab, you'll probably love it, works great, make sure you get an SSD as a cache drive (or 2 for redundancy). If you write directly to an unraid array the performancy is horrible, so they use a cache drive method then a data mover service runs once or twice a day if i remember correctly that moves the data from the cache drive to the array. Also, you will most likely want to run PLEX in a docker container as opposed to a full blown VM, will be much easier to manage, just map your share through and you are good to go. For hardware, ryzen is definitely the way to go, unless you want to do what a lot of peeps do and run an ES high core xeon on the cheap from flea bay (guilty as charged). Get plenty of ram in case you end up wanting to run multiple vm's at once in the future.


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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 09:36 AM
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I do watch many films with subtitles. In fact, I can highly recommend both Roma and Cold War. Like audio and video, subtitles are just additional streams embedded within the file. There is no reason to re-encode.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 01:44 PM
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Plex doesn't need anywhere near the power people think it does. My plex Server is a Dell R410 with (2) e5620's and 16gb of RAM, PERC6/i controller and SATAII Disks, running Proxmox. I've pulled up to five simultanious streams from it before, all around ~12mbps with very minimal resource usage. Instead of building something, why not buy a used server? I bought two R410's last week for $63/ea.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 01:59 PM
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12mbps? Ok...

I'll just leave this here

https://forums.plex.tv/t/plex-4k-tra...k-a-faq/378203



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