Best Device to playback 4K MKV full rips with current tech ie Dolby Vision/HDR/HDR+/DTS-HD/Atmos etc ?

Ancient333

Novice Member
transcoding, when required, is always done at the server end, regardless where the server is
I understand...but Does the Shield Pro use software / cpu intensive for transcode?
Or hardware gpu?

ie when playing back on phones/ tablets etc
 

chopples

Distinguished Member
I understand...but Does the Shield Pro use software / cpu intensive for transcode?
Or hardware gpu?
it uses hardware, but transcoding is only relevant if you are playing back on a device other than the shield. If using the Plex player on the shield itself then it should Direct Play ALL files, no transcoding required
 

chenks

Well-known Member
You shouldn't require transcoding if using the shield for playback

it depends.
if you are playing a 4k source file on a shield connected to a 1080p TV, then it'll be transcoding the video.

the server said it was transcoding that last time i tested that scenario
 

Ancient333

Novice Member
transcoding, when required, is always done at the server end, regardless where the server is

plex on a shield should be able to direct play almost everything you can throw at it.
when it will need to transcode is if you are playing a 4k source file on a non 4k TV. the server will have to transcode the file down to to suit the TV. and that's when you need the correct CPU in the server (be it a NAS or a PC or whatever). underpowered CPU and you'll get stuttering playback as it isn't capable of transcoding on-the-fly quick enough.

this thread about 4k content and plex is a good read

but essentially, if you can't direct play 4k content then you shouldn't have 4k content.
I understand, but does the Shield Pro do the transcode using software which is cpu intensive or Hardware /gpu?
 

chenks

Well-known Member
I understand, but does the Shield Pro do the transcode using software which is cpu intensive or Hardware /gpu?

that's already been answered.
come on, do us all favour here and read posts before asking the same questions over and over again.

one caveat, to enable hardware accelerated transcoding at the server end you need Plex Pass (which will cost you money to buy).
 

Ancient333

Novice Member
that's already been answered.
come on, do us all favour here and read posts before asking the same questions over and over again.

one caveat, to enable hardware accelerated transcoding at the server end you need Plex Pass (which will cost you money to buy).
Sorry, I didn't see the post as didn't realise it was on page 2...on a separate note, I can't see an option to delete a post.

Thank you for the confirmation chopples...exactly what I was after, appreciated.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Sorry Chenks, kinda crossed topics...lets stick with this one.
Yes I know the Shield Pro can run the Plex Server...hence the confusion on dante's post / on his part.

Does the the transcoding get done via Hardware on the Shield Pro?
Also when/if you are transcoding on yours, have there been any issues?
When would it start to struggle ie when x amount of devices are being fed?

I do understand the difference....but The Shield Pro can serve as the Server and the player.


As already said, you'd not need any transcoding. The Shield would play almost anything you throw at it without the beed to convert it. The same is true of the Zidoo player. Transcoding is only required if needing to convert content from something the player cannot play to something it can play.

Transcoding is a digital-to-digital conversion of one type of encoded data (video or audio) to another, often because the target device that will be used to display the content requires a smaller file size. Think about watching a feature film on a smartphone and you'll get the idea.


Plex is a drain on the CPU and memory regardless of whether you are using it to transcode or not.
 
Last edited:

chopples

Distinguished Member
it depends.
if you are playing a 4k source file on a shield connected to a 1080p TV, then it'll be transcoding the video.

the server said it was transcoding that last time i tested that scenario
Well yes that's true for HDR files, resolution isn't relevant

you can disable it here in the transcoder options

Screenshot 2021-08-27 at 16.32.50.png


Nvidia did add their own tone mapping feature in 8.2 so I would have thought this is no longer required?? not sure though tbh as for the last few years mine has only been to 4k HDR displays.
 

chenks

Well-known Member
As already said, you'd not need any transcoding.

as mentioned previously.
if you are playing 4k content on the shield (which it can happily direct play) but the shield is connected to a non-4k TV, then transcoding (both video and audio) will be required.

connect the same shield to a 4K TV and no video transcoding will be required. audio may need to be transcoded depending on what device is playing the audio and what format the audio is.

IMG_0438.PNG
 

Ancient333

Novice Member
As already said, you'd not need any transcoding. The Shield would play almost anything you throw at it without the beed to convert it. The same is true of the Zidoo player. Transcoding is only required if needing to convert content from something the player cannot play to something it can play.

Plex is a drain on the CPU and memory regardless of whether you are using it to transcode or note.
Thanks dante...I should have made it clearer, apologies my error.....
I understand that...and was asking for when the Shield Pro was transcoding to a lower capable device ie phone / tablet etc.

Thank you all for help.
 

chenks

Well-known Member
Well yes that's true for HDR files, resolution isn't relevant

you can disable it here in the transcoder options

View attachment 1561400

Nvidia did add their own tone mapping feature in 8.2 so I would have thought this is no longer required?? not sure though tbh as for the last few years mine has only been to 4k HDR displays.

yes the Enable HDR tone mapping option isn't required for the shield as it has its own tone mapping, and i believe that settings is not even supported for Synology NAS servers anyway. i'm sure Chuck on the plex forum posted something about that.
 

chopples

Distinguished Member
yes the Enable HDR tone mapping option isn't required for the shield as it has its own tone mapping, and i believe that settings is not even supported for Synology NAS servers anyway. i'm sure Chuck on the plex forum posted something about that.

It is supported on synology ;)
 

chenks

Well-known Member
It is supported on synology ;)

Maybe it’s changed since I last checked, but I’m sure the synology plex dev said it wasn’t at the time.

regardless, for a shield it’s not required, but I suppose it’s down to which one does the mapping better, the shield or the plex server
 

chopples

Distinguished Member
Maybe it’s changed since I last checked, but I’m sure the synology plex dev said it wasn’t at the time.

regardless, for a shield it’s not required, but I suppose it’s down to which one does the mapping better, the shield or the plex server

Perhaps, but lets move on

I have just tried the shield set to 1080p rec709 plugged direct into a TV and interestingly this happens:-
Screenshot 2021-08-27 at 17.05.23.png


Funnily enough when I select the DD soundtrack (which can be decoded by the TV), this happens
Screenshot 2021-08-27 at 17.05.38.png


Perhaps that could be the reason you get transcoding when connected to your set?
 

chenks

Well-known Member
Interesting, why would an audio transcode also result in a video transcode.

i shall test with the same file but with the ac3 5.1 audio track selected and see what happens

the 1080p TV is on the bedroom so I tend not to watch this content there anyway. I would get a 4K set for the bedroom but I It would be no bigger than 43” and 4K sets at that size tend to be rubbish and aren’t bright enough to deal with hdr content
 

chopples

Distinguished Member
Interesting, why would an audio transcode also result in a video transcode.

i shall test with the same file but with the ac3 5.1 audio track selected and see what happens

it is a funny one for sure, this is on a syno ds920 btw so behaviour should be similar to your DS1019
 

chenks

Well-known Member
it is a funny one for sure, this is on a syno ds920 btw so behaviour should be similar to your DS1019

yeah the cpu in yours should be the same as mine
 

chenks

Well-known Member
Perhaps that could be the reason you get transcoding when connected to your set?

just tested and get the same result as you.
Changing the audio track to ac3 5.1 results in direct play on both video and audio

so why the original audio track results in the video transcoding I have no idea
 

Coulson

Distinguished Member
Looking through the replies you have here, there is more than enough information to start, maybe too much lol. First of all if you don't care too much about Dolby Vision then stick with your PC until you get more info :)

A modern £50 Android box which has hardware HEVC decoding will do the job as long as you don't care about Dolby Vision.

The 2017 and 2019 Nvidia Shield Pro is probably the best Android multi-purpose media player, second only to a very decent PC or dedicated media player. It handles Atmos/DTS:x and HDR. The 2019 version "can" play Dolby Vision using PLEX but from my own testing I'm not fully convinced.

As mentioned before there are a number of dedicated Android media players. The latest ones include the Realtek RTD1619 chipset which has Dolby Vision built in as well as HDR conversion facilities but my advice would be to avoid the conversion stuff.

Anyone of the options above should reduce the need for transcoding to almost zero. Assuming you have a Gigabit network with non-blocking switch then the NAS should be used as a passive storage device while your media player of choice does all the work.
 

chenks

Well-known Member
Perhaps, but lets move on

is the "HDR tone mapping" definitely working for you with plex server hosted on NAS?
this post on the plex forums suggests it still isn't support


this post wasn't the one i remembered that said it wasn't supported on NASs, but is more recent than the one i was remembering.
 

Coulson

Distinguished Member

chopples

Distinguished Member
is the "HDR tone mapping" definitely working for you with plex server hosted on NAS?
this post on the plex forums suggests it still isn't support


this post wasn't the one i remembered that said it wasn't supported on NASs, but is more recent than the one i was remembering.

Yes it does mate, perhaps I should of mentioned earlier, I have always ran my server in a docker, didn’t realise the native package had issues, my bad sorry.
 

chenks

Well-known Member
Yes it does mate, perhaps I should of mentioned earlier, I have always ran my server in a docker, didn’t realise the native package had issues, my bad sorry.

ah yes, docker does have support, native doesn't.
 

Coulson

Distinguished Member
he has a Synology DS920, and i have a DS1019+
Yeah I thought so. I was literally going to say that you at least have a decent Intel Celeron based CPU preferably with 4K 60Hz decoding built in. It's important for people to realise that for the majority of us with non Intel NAS, any type of relatively intensive processing on the NAS is almost always a bad idea. That's what the Android box/PC is for and it's why I said:

... the NAS should be used as a passive storage device while your media player of choice does all the work.
 

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