Plex vs. Infuse

Discussion in 'Apple TV Apps' started by downingp, Nov 17, 2016.

  1. downingp macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 26, 2006
    #1
    I have been a long time Plex user, although have, more recently, been using Infuse solely on the fact of the dolby sound licensing. Just the other day, though, I went back to Plex and instantly saw a dramatic improvement in picture quality compared to Infuse. I searched within the Infuse app settings, looking for a video quality setting, but didn't see anything. Has anyone else noticed the Plex app providing better picture quality compared to Infuse?

    Thanks. I look forward to reading your responses.
     
  2. benjitek macrumors 6502a

    benjitek

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    Sep 23, 2012
    #2
    I use both, and find both to have excellent picture quality.
     
  3. downingp thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    I agree, I think both apps provide good picture quality, but find Plex to be even better.
     
  4. firecore macrumors 6502a

    firecore

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    #4
    Hmm, we'd love to learn a little bit more about the kinds of files you're playing and the types of issues you are seeing. If you have a chance to drop us a quick note with a few more details we'd really appreciate it. https://firecore.com/contact

    FWIW, since Infuse handles all the decoding on the Apple TV itself, it will always play videos at their full quality.

    Thanks for sharing your feedback. :)
     
  5. downingp thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I was wondering if the video quality had anything to do with the mac mini (plex server) encoding the file vs. the appletv doing the work.
     
  6. benjitek macrumors 6502a

    benjitek

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    #6
    If anything, it would be worse as the Mini would be re-encoding the file when Plex plays it.
     
  7. Rigby macrumors 601

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    San Jose, CA
    #7
    Lossy transcoding (which is what Plex does with formats that the ATV can't play natively) can never improve the image quality. Exactly what kind of difference did you see between the players? Perhaps the transcoding reduced grain or artificially sharpened the video, which can subjectively look "better" even though in fact information was lost.
     
  8. downingp thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Actually, Rigby I think you are exactly right. When watching on Plex the video does seem to be sharpened.
     
  9. Lappen71 macrumors regular

    Lappen71

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    Nov 16, 2012
    #9
    It can't improve the quality but that doesn't mean it make it worse.
    If Plex remux the files the quality is the same,if you transcode to same resolution and same bitrate the quality is the same.

    My impression is that Plex plays more file format smoothly, and Plex is for people with many different hardware to watch content, and like how there media is presented.

    Infuse is just a straight forward media player that does it job very well.
     
  10. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #10
    You are right when it just remuxes. But when transcoding, the quality is almost certainly worse even at the same or higher bitrate. For one, on-the-fly encoding normally has to use lower quality codec settings (while for pre-encoded video you can use higher quality settings and multi-pass encoding because it doesn't have to run in real time). Second, there is a phenomenon called tandem losses where encoding artifacts can be amplified if you run a video stream through multiple rounds of lossy encoding. Of course, whether the degradation is visible or not under normal viewing conditions is another question.
     
  11. xsmett macrumors regular

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    Nov 1, 2015
    #11
    Well, Plex uses the ATV native video player and infuse uses its own. I think that already makes the difference, because the native Player is really good with a sharp and pretty smooth picture. I just need 24p support.

    Also compared to other devices like Fire Tv or Nividia Shield for example, the native ATV video player produces a great and in my opinion better picture.
     
  12. Lappen71 macrumors regular

    Lappen71

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    #12
    It totally depend on how powerful hardware you are using for transcoding.
     
  13. Polaroid macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    Plex is way better as you have more control and a much nicer interface... just annoying relying on a server...

    But I prefer Plex.
     
  14. normanfox macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 9, 2014
    #14
    I used Infuse for a while before trying out Plex and no longer use Infuse.

    Infuse is a good streaming player, specially when you don't have a dedicated server. but if you have a dedicated server, Plex is a better app. Here is why.

    Infuse builds movie libary and its meta locally on each ATV. it is slow to load the library every time you use it. if you have multiple rooms, this load time is slow for each ATV.

    Plex builds movie library on a server, and each ATV shares this library. Hence ATV loads movie library very fast and smooth. Plex client UI is much more advanced.

    One thing I like about infuse is that you can download subtitle during playing a movie, like Kodi. you can also customize the subtitle to your liking. You can't do this with Plex. you have to exit plex player to set subtitle.

    overall, Plex is a much better package.
     
  15. ZeRoLiMiT macrumors 6502a

    ZeRoLiMiT

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    #15
    I use both and tend to use Infuse for DTS movies due to Plex not supporting DTS on the devices i use. Infuse just released Infuse 5 with minor fixes and with a new price tag! Nothing that would wow you to get the new program. I am now sticking with Plex ONLY!
     
  16. downingp thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    Wow!! Didn't realize Infuse came out with an update. $12.99 for minimal upgrades/update, no thanks. I may stick with Plex, as I don't expect the makers of Infuse will be providing any more updates to Infuse 4.
    Would be nice to at least provide a minimal upgrade fee to get the latest app. Oh well I suppose.
     
  17. ZeRoLiMiT macrumors 6502a

    ZeRoLiMiT

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    #17
    I agree would update if we received a discount.
     
  18. Rigby macrumors 601

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    #18
    Actually syncing metadata over iCloud could be a big deal assuming it's implemented well.

    For me, Plex is not an option. I have a lot of movies with VC-1 encoded video (most of them ripped from my HD-DVD collection when the format died, but some Blu-rays use VC-1 too). Plex on Apple TV cannot play these files without transcoding on the server, which requires more computing power than my NAS has (and would degrade the image quality even if it did). Infuse plays them just fine.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 23, 2016 ---
    There is subscription pricing for $7 per year. I'm not a fan of subscription software either, but that's the price of a Big Mac meal for an enitire year. Honestly, I think it's ridiculously cheap considering what the app can do.
     
  19. ZeRoLiMiT macrumors 6502a

    ZeRoLiMiT

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    #19
    I have Amazon Cloud Drive and unfortunately its not compatible. Infuse 4 works great with VC-1 Encoding. This would be a nice upgrade. To charge people more for minor improvements is not cool
     
  20. firecore macrumors 6502a

    firecore

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    #20
    To be fair, Infuse 5 is much more than 'minor fixes'. The official announcement can be found here and full release notes here.
     
  21. downingp thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 26, 2006
    #21
    Firecore,
    Was there ever any discussions regarding offering a discount to current Infuse 4 users?
     
  22. firecore, Nov 23, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2016

    firecore macrumors 6502a

    firecore

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    #22
    A discount is something we would have liked to offer, though it simply wasn't possible to do within the confines of the App Store.

    A bit more info on this can be found here. https://firecore.com/forum/topic/16168
     
  23. gregs826, Dec 20, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016

    gregs826 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2013
    #23
    I like Plex for it's library management, channels (Tablo!), and remote access. However, the player doesn't come close to Infuse on my iPad and iPhone. What I love about Infuse: On the fly subtitles, on the fly volume boost, swipe up/down on left side of screen while watching to adjust brightness, swipe up/down on right side of screen while watching to adjust volume, 2-finger tap for pause/play, swipe left/right on screen while watching to move backwards or forwards, auto play the next episode (for tv shows), and of course it plays anything you give it. The Plex player is very basic compared to Infuse. I'm way too spoiled with Infuse and find myself constantly swiping the screen with Plex and nothing happens. Any chance Plex and Infuse could join forces - would be amazing!
     
  24. EmPPgamer macrumors newbie

    EmPPgamer

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    Apr 13, 2014
    #24
    The one thing I REALLY disliked about Infuse 4 is the scatter gun approach you get to its content where it lists each and every shared folder you have. So instead of seeing all Movies or all TV Shows like Plex you see Shows Drive 1, Shows Drive 2 etc etc. PITA. Infuse does have a library view on ATV4 but TBH I found this to be a real PITA when I switched to it with missing content and REALLY screwed up metadata. For IOS there is still no library view for IOS devices so it's down to you to remember what drive the file might be on.

    It might have changed with the latest release of v5 but I'm not prepared to buy it with it's current pricing model only to find it's no better. Until they get the dog's breakfast of a library view sorted Infuse is a no go for me.
     
  25. Rigby macrumors 601

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    Aug 5, 2008
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    #25
    The library view works very well for me both in Infuse 4 and 5. Of course you need to make sure that Infuse's scraper can find the title by either naming the file correctly like in the TVDB or MovieDB (take a look at Filebot to automate this), or adding .nfo files. But this is no different when building a library in Plex or Kodi. You also need to give Infuse some time to scan your files and fetch the metadata from the Internet when you first use the library view.

    One thing I'd like to see in Infuse is having an option to put the library front and center, since I never use the folder views. I have 7 shares for historical reason, and every time I start Infuse from the top level I have to scroll to get to the library view, which is a bit annoying.
     

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