Plex, XMBC or iTunes?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Mark09, Oct 7, 2011.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #1
    My set up first:

    3TB Time capsule
    4TB WD NAS

    3x ATV2 (all jail broken)
    Samsung Smart TV

    MBpro 2011 8gb ram
    Mac mini 2.7 ghz 8 gb ram

    Intend to use the MAC Mini as server.

    I have ripped all my dvd and blu's using MKV then iVI to convert into iTunes compatible keeping both formats until i decide which platform to use around the house. All ripped in 1080p so i want to stream HD.
    I do like iTunes, as very easy to transfer movies to iPhones (esp for the imminent arrival of my IP4s 64gb) and iPads for the kids and in the car etc

    but i am thinking in can select & keep the iTunes compatible movies on my MBpro hard drive!!

    Itunes?
    Plex?
    XMBC?

    i have installed plex on my Samsung Smart TV
    and installed plex and XMBC on the ATV2's

    give me some advise guys which platform to use?
     
  2. macrumors 65816

    Airforcekid

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2008
    Location:
    United States of America
    #2
    I would use XBMC for the addons however I have never gotten 1080p to play on my apple tv. I never liked plex and iTunes would restrict you somewhat unless you buy all your content through them.
     
  3. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #3
    I was an avid XBMC fan, used it for years, and by years I mean many from with my original modded xbox. However I have to say I am all about plex, I love having one place that keeps my play count and everything, plus plex on the atv2 running at 7Mb streams my MKV's perfectly, they look really good and my i5 2.5 mini can handle the trans-coding perfectly. I have a MBP with plex on it as well (mini is the server) and it works great too, as does my iphone/ipad.
     
  4. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    #4
    For me, personally, i plan on using a Mac Mini running Plex as the dedicated server in my home theater in progress, not my iMac in my office. But for my aTV's throughout the house i use XBMC because of the transcoding. Picture quality just seems better than when i tried using Plex. Plan on buying a Drobo to hook up to my router.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #5
    so iTunes does not play 1080?

    i don't see how i am limited with iTunes, as using the app iVI places the movie in iTunes perfect and the picture appears in HD.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #6
    plex is looking the likely platform - would it be best to stream from time capsule or NAS? any issues?

    i can place music on one and movies on another if suits.
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    Location:
    Far East
    #7
  8. macrumors 6502

    obsidian1200

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM
    #8
    I guess I'm alone in using iTunes as my media solution :p I tried Plex, XMBC, and Boxee, but I really dislike how the programs insist on fetching metadata, even if it's already written into the file. With iTunes, I can just give it files that I've already written metadata to using iDentify and be happy with it. It's not the best solution if you plan on using iTunes from a distance, unless you have an iPhone or iPod touch to use the remote app with.

    I really wanted to use Plex, XMBC, or Boxee. But I like the metadata as it is and don't need another entity thinking it needs to do the job again (and frequently incorrectly).
     
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #9
    I set up plex last night and not to impressed!

    The 1080 movies stutter and some of the MKVs are in 4:3 mode..maybe am doing something wrong during ripping, but if I covert the MKV file in iVI everything is perfect via iTunes.

    I will keep playing round with plex see if I can get used to it.

    Although the news of new XMBC release is interesting!!
     
  10. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    #10
    I went through them all. Jailbroke my ATV2 and everything. Ihe most easy to use and un buggy program I found was..... iTunes. If you use iVI Pro or iDentify there is no reason not to use iTunes. The iTunes interface on the ATV is a little lacking but when you add a iOS device as a remote it pushes it over the top of all of solutions.
    Hope This Helps :apple:
     
  11. macrumors 68000

    DustinT

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    #11
    ^ This

    I'm a huge fan of the ATV 2, iTunes and iOS remote solution running the latest OEM firmware. Its reliable, performant, easy to setup, easy to use and simple for all the family members.

    I use two systems to get content into iTunes. The first is the iTunes store which works, well, perfectly.

    The second system I use is whatever I can find. So, I'll bring whatever video content I want in through iFlicks. It will seamlessly lookup the metadata, reencode it for iTunes\ATV 2 and the perform any other actions I want, like making a backup copy of the original file, deleting, moving, etc... It's a really low cost program and I'm a fan. It just works!
     
  12. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #12
    Much difference between iVI and iDentify?

    Do you import dvd direct Using either program or use MKV first?
     
  13. mffl04, Oct 8, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2011

    macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    #13
    iVI will make non Apple formats into mp4 and add the Meta Data. Where iDentify just adds data to Apple formats already.

    iVI also imports DVD's and does the same magical things to them.
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    Bye Bye Baby

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2004
    Location:
    i(am in the)cloud
    #14
    I nave a similar setup. I can absolutely recommend plex.

    I tried iTunes like you but found artwork and metadata to be a problem.

    Plex is great also for streaming video to atv,iPod, iPhone and iPad.
     
  15. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2011
    #15
    I tired atv2 flash. It uses the ATV interface so I find it easier to use then xbmc and it plays all my mkv, avi and even m2ts using my wd live nas without any stuttering, no need to transcode, and no Mac needed like plex.
    So far I am very happy with the performance.

    I kept xmbc for the addons and icefilms but have not really used it for anything else.
     
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Location:
    This is the place
    #16
    Sorry for resurrecting an older thread, but perhaps someone has the answer. While I can appreciate Plex scanning my content and automatically finding metadata, how can I modify this process? I see that I can make small changes to the metadata, and Plex will rescan, but what if I want to make larger changes? Such as a "movie" file to a 'TV show'? Or how about stacking or batching a season's worth of TV shows together when Plex sees each as a separate "movie"?

    Try as I might, I can't seem to effect Plex's reasoning. Right click, drag and drop, menu bar ... all lead nowhere or virtually nowhere.

    Is the Plex Media Manager strictly for Plex to manage my media? Cannot I not manipulate the outcome to any appreciable extent?
     
  17. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #17
    You need to have separate folders for tvshows vs movies, and when you create the section in plex you tell it that it's a tvshow folder not a movie folder.
     
  18. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Location:
    This is the place
    #18
    Thanks. I was afraid of that and was hoping to be able to make small changes on the fly without recreating entire folders.
     
  19. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #19
    It's a pretty simple task that's worth the effort. Simply just need to create Movie and TV Show folders and dump your respected media into them. Once you setup the locations in Plex Media Manager, it does all the work for you. Also, when you get your near media, just direct the download or file to the respected TV or Movie folder.

    I'll admit that I'm a big fan of Plex and have been using it for years so I might be a bit biased, but it's totally worth the effort to set it up.
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #20
    Agreed fiddle.
     
  21. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Location:
    This is the place
    #21
    I guess your right. Another question....

    based on rips, some of my [example] "Weeds Season 5" shows up bundled nicely as a partial set with correct art, etc. But half the season shows up as independent offereings not connected to the rest of the season. This is where I was hoping to drag and drop to associate files together. Is there a trick here or do I have to ensure all episodes have the same naming sequence?
     
  22. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #22

    Best way for plex is this Weeds\Season 5\"name"s0xe0x.x

    They do support other naming conventions but this method works 99% of the time.
     
  23. macrumors 6502

    Crazy Badger

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2008
    Location:
    Scotland
    #23
    Worth the effort to get all your media nicely organised into folders with seasons and consistent names. Plex will then deal with it perfectly. I have about 2TBs of films and 1.5TB of TV shows on my ReadyNAS and can watch any of it from my iMac, MBA, aTV, iPhone or iPad from any Internet connection anywhere!
     
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Location:
    This is the place
    #24
    Super thanks. Not what I wanted to hear, but I honestly believe the "one time pain" will be worth it in the long haul.

    Cheers.
     
  25. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #25
    If you are doing this from a mac I used this app to rename files quickly http://www.mrrsoftware.com/MRRSoftware/NameChanger.html
     

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