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Question Problems with Plex buffering when streaming "some" 4K

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
I'm trying to run 4K content through my LAN to Plex on my Xbox from my Synology NAS.

The issue is that some of the content streams just fine and some of the content buffers heavily so much so it's unwatchable.

I'm confused why some works and some doesn't so I played each one individually and listed what Plex said it was playing at the time in the dashboard to get as much info as possible in the hope that someone might be able to spot the problem?

Here's the list:
Content 1
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 34.5GB
Result: Buffers

Content 2
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 62.9GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 3
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 15.9GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 4
Video: 4K (H.264 Constrained Baseline) > 1080P (H264)—Transcode
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 35.3GB
Result: Buffers

Content 5
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 53.8GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 6
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 37.4GB
Result: Buffers

Content 7
Video: 4K (HEVC Main) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 20.4GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 8
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 23.2GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 9
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 63.8GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 10
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 32.6GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 11
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AC3 Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 54.4GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 12
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AC3 Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 63.8GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 13
Video: 4K (H.264 Constrained Baseline) > 1080P (H264)—Transcode
Audio: Unknown (AAC 5.1) > Direct Stream
File Size: 31.4GB
Result: Buffers

Content 14
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 36.7GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 15
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AC3 Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 48.7GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 16
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 58.9GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 17
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 24.7GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 18
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 20.5GB
Result: Buffers

Content 19
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 29.1GB
Result: Plays Fine

Content 20
Video: 4K (HEVC Main 10 HDR) > Direct Stream
Audio: English (TRUEHD 7.1) > AAC—Transcode
File Size: 47.2GB
Result: Buffers

Content 21
Video: 4K (HEVC Main) > Direct Play
Audio: Unknown (AAC Stereo) > Direct Play
File Size: 24.3GB
Result: Plays Fine

I have also tried Plex on the TV app as well as the Xbox with the same result. My setup is as follows:
NAS: Synology DS1815+ (upgraded to 8GB RAM)
TV: Samsung QE75Q9FN
Soundbar: Yamaha YSP-5600
Streamer: Plex on Xbox One S
HDMI Splitter: HDFury Maestro
LAN: 1Gbps

The HDMI splitter is to split the video and audio from each input and then sends the video direct to the TV and audio directly to the soundbar. This bypasses the need for ARC so I can get true Dolby Atmos. I'm 99.9% sure this isn't the issue though and this just passes the signal through and everything is either processed either on the NAS or Xbox and the network throughput should be more than ample I would have thought?

Thanks for your time reading and help.
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Also when playing from my laptop on a Wi-Fi through the web browser when logged into Plex they play fine. I noted that when viewing "Content 13" through Plex on the Xbox it transcodes it to 1080P as follows which is probably causing the issue with CPU usage:
Video: 4K (H.264 Constrained Baseline) > 1080P (H264)—Transcode
However, when I played it through the plex web browser server it plays fine and in 4K as it should be:
4K (H.264 Constrained Baseline) > Direct Stream
 
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
Hi Mate

It seems that when transcoding is happening the additional overhead is putting undue stress on your setup, I expect the ones which are playing will be pretty close the edge. Whether it's down to cpu stress, excessive read writes (when transcoding the Plex server will create a temp file which contains the transcoded audio to then send over) or the receiving devices ability to create a suitable buffer to play, network overhead or a combination of all of these I am not sure.

I have a question though, the HD fury maestro isn't cheap, your NAS is not cheap. So why don't you just buy a device more suitable for playing back the media you own? a lot of the items you have listed contain DTS-HD and TRUE HD (atmos).Would be a shame to not be able to listen to these as intended. These soundtracks will always need to be transcoded for playback on the xbox. If you do insist on using the xbox then the you are probably better just re ripping your content and ensuring the 2 channel soundtracks on the disks is present, or convert the multichannel lossless soundtracks into a lossy one.

Plex for xbox is very much a work and progress and due to Microsoft not allowing access to the relevant api's will never have the same functions as the Blu-ray app.

cheers
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Hi Mate,

Thanks for the reply...

I tend to agree with you that the others are probably pretty close to the edge and would love to get a setup that will do the job. The problem is I don't know what the issue is?

Are you saying I should replace the NAS or replace the Xbox for running Plex? I use the Xbox purely because Plex is amazing on there supporting both HDR and Atmos. Also, Prime Video supports HDR10+ and are due to be bringing out some Atmos content as well so I decided to use it as my streaming platform.

Cheers :)
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Just thinking about this and I presume you mean changing the Xbox not the NAS as it works fine on my laptop so can't be the NAS... can it? lol
 

HSC

Established Member
2 questions I’d ask is:
1./ what’s the network path and is pure gigabit?
2./ what’s the bitrate of the content?
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Hi HSC,

1) Network path goes, Xbox One S > Netgear JGS516PE Switch > Synology NAS and yes the main Router (Draytek Vigor 2862ac), Switch and NAS are all Gbit.
2) According to VLC Player the "Content bitrate" is fluctuating between 35000-4000kb/s on average. It does go up but it does go below at times.

Thanks.
 

HSC

Established Member
Ok
So my money is on the NAS not being able to keep up with that bitrate.

Can you try setting up the laptop as a Plex server
Do you have access to a more powerful device to setup as a server?
Even for a test?
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Actually HSC I checked with Mediainfo which was a better tool. I checked all the ones I was having issues with and most were just under 30Mb/s but one was 39Mb/s, another 43Mb/s and the last one a massive 53.5Mb/s.
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Ok
So my money is on the NAS not being able to keep up with that bitrate.

Can you try setting up the laptop as a Plex server
Do you have access to a more powerful device to setup as a server?
Even for a test?

Yeah, I can do it with my Laptop, it's a brand new custom built one so if that cannot run it plex is stupidly over demanding! I'll get back to you once I've set it up and tested the ones that I'm struggling with.

Thanks for the help.
 
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
Hi Mate,

Thanks for the reply...

I tend to agree with you that the others are probably pretty close to the edge and would love to get a setup that will do the job. The problem is I don't know what the issue is?

Are you saying I should replace the NAS or replace the Xbox for running Plex? I use the Xbox purely because Plex is amazing on there supporting both HDR and Atmos. Also, Prime Video supports HDR10+ and are due to be bringing out some Atmos content as well so I decided to use it as my streaming platform.

Cheers :)


Hi mate

the XBOX only supports atmos for half a dozen or so games, UHD disks, netflix and I assume amazon. When its turned on in the xbox settings the signal will be sent as atmos at all times even if the actual audio isn't, your bar will either upmix or the non relevant channels are ignored. Plex will not be sending atmos to your soundbar, if it was you would not see the audio being transcoded into AAC in the plex dashboard ;)

There is an update currently in preview where the xbox allows up mixing, by all accounts the algorithm is pretty good but I think it is limited to games only and it is still not the real thing.

I know it was in the works but I didn't think the xbox had actually released the hdr10+ update yet? either way this is supported by the Q9FN native app and lossy atmos is supported by this app for the only title it is currently on (Jack Ryan)

The Plex Client on the Q9FN has all the same features as the xbox one, both will handle lossless audio the same way and transcode to AAC so there is no real benefit to use the xbox client over the TV's one.

The only advantage the xbox has as a streaming platform is that it is one of the few boxes, along with the ATV4k which allows atmos audio when streaming from Netflix.


cheers
 
Last edited by a moderator:
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
Yeah, I can do it with my Laptop, it's a brand new custom built one so if that cannot run it plex is stupidly over demanding! I'll get back to you once I've set it up and tested the ones that I'm struggling with.

Thanks for the help.

Another thing you can try is to enable DLNA on your NAS and play the file through the Samsung TV's own video player, you may get an audio error, ignore that, but if it plays then you can rule out network.

If using Plex with 4K HDR files is important then its just as important to use a device which is capable of direct playing the both the video and the audio, NAS compute power becomes irrelevant then, I use a bottom of the junk pile readynas 1.2ghz ARM (old one) and 512mb of RAM. I have zero issues playing back my 4k HDR files to both my Shield TV and ATV4K

cheers
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Chopples,

I only use the Xbox for a streamer only, I don't game and have the Panasonic UB9000 for the Blu-Ray player. I only use the Xbox Netflix app as a streamer because it's the only platform I have found which supports it with both HDR and Atmos.

As far as Prime is concerned I know there's not much as far as Atmos is concerned but there's quite a lot of content for HDR10+. I wasn't aware the Xbox didn't support HDR10+ yet? The HDFury is reporting the stream for Jack Ryan as:
4K23.973 RGB BT2020 L 10b HDR 371MHz 2.2

I'm not sure if that's HDR10+ or not though?

Regardless, if I use the TV app I lose Atmos because the TV won't allow me to pass Atmos over the ARC which is why I got the HDFury in the first place. So I lose either HDR10+ or Atmos. Maybe you have a better idea for a streamer?
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Another thing you can try is to enable DLNA on your NAS and play the file through the Samsung TV's own video player, you may get an audio error, ignore that, but if it plays then you can rule out network.

If using Plex with 4K HDR files is important then its just as important to use a device which is capable of direct playing the both the video and the audio, NAS compute power becomes irrelevant then, I use a bottom of the junk pile readynas 1.2ghz ARM (old one) and 512mb of RAM. I have zero issues playing back my 4k HDR files to both my Shield TV and ATV4K

cheers
I've got DLNA enabled but can't for the life of me find the TV's own player to try and play it? Is it an app? I cannot see one that does this?

Thanks again for the help.
 
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
Chopples,

I only use the Xbox for a streamer only, I don't game and have the Panasonic UB9000 for the Blu-Ray player. I only use the Xbox Netflix app as a streamer because it's the only platform I have found which supports it with both HDR and Atmos.

As far as Prime is concerned I know there's not much as far as Atmos is concerned but there's quite a lot of content for HDR10+. I wasn't aware the Xbox didn't support HDR10+ yet? The HDFury is reporting the stream for Jack Ryan as:
4K23.973 RGB BT2020 L 10b HDR 371MHz 2.2

I'm not sure if that's HDR10+ or not though?

Regardless, if I use the TV app I lose Atmos because the TV won't allow me to pass Atmos over the ARC which is why I got the HDFury in the first place. So I lose either HDR10+ or Atmos. Maybe you have a better idea for a streamer?

Hi mate

Appreciate the xbox is one of the few streamers which does atmos from netflix, it does complicate things, I use an ATV4k for this.

I am not really sure on how hdr10+ metadata reads on a fury, I have a linker somewhere. If i get time I will have look myself with my One X but I didn't think the update was actually live yet, just announced with no timescale. I think your UB9000 (nice spinner btw) supports HDR10+ too

Your TV should pass atmos from Jack Ryan, my Q7 does, you will have to go into the expert sound settings on the TV whilst it is playing and select Dolby Digital+

I've got DLNA enabled but can't for the life of me find the TV's own player to try and play it? Is it an app? I cannot see one that does this?

Thanks again for the help.

Bring up the home menu and go to sources, on the quick settings it should be visible as a device, it will be after any hdmi devices and USB devices you may have plugged in.




It is hard to pick one box because as you probably realise not one box does it all. My setup is as follows:-

Q7 + N850 atmos bar

TV and ARC - Amazon Prime HDR10+ and lossy atmos, I also have Sky Q which passes lossy atmos over ARC

Soundbar
HDMI 1 - Shield TV Lossless audio from rips, including atmos and DTS:X
HDMI 2 - ATV4k HDR and atmos Netflix, Also use the Itunes Movie Store which is excellent and has HDR Atmos too

Your NAS is top draw mate, I wouldn't be looking at replacing that, it can do everything apart from transcoding HEVC which is something you do not need if your intention is to play back the files as intended

cheers
 

next010

Distinguished Member
If you look over on Plex forums there are some persistent issue with buffering and game consoles in general, see here for similar issues.

Try the steps I outlined here, generate a new video with AC3 (Dolby) audio from one of the DTS-MA videos that buffer, now see if the same video with AC3 buffers during playback.
 

scarty16

Prominent Member
QNAP (412) old....
Kodi on QNAP & Nvidia shield to stream, I stream 4k hdr over AC wifi, no issues.

QNAP wired to router, Virgin super hub, then AC to the Nvidia.

No transcoding needed.
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
Right guys, Sorry for the delay but you gave me a bit to on there and a lot to test out and we are getting somewhere (yayyyy)...

I managed to get 4K streaming great by both using my Laptop as a server and still using the NAS as a server but using the Nvidia Sheild as a Plex receiver. I am surprised though because I would have thought the Xbox One S would have had enough under the hood to manage it?

I also tried DLNA on the TV which worked fine for the <1080P content but the 4K folder listed everything as *.mpg when they were *.mkv (weird) and also listed the file size as 0.00mb and wouldn't play the files saying there was an error. However, that's no issue if I have a device capable of streaming the 4K content now.

I also tested the Atmos over the ARC using Prime and this was my issue previously with the TV (and I have discussed this at length with Samsung who are useless) that you need to select Dolby Digital+ in the menu after you start playing it and it doesn't auto-switch as it should and sometimes it didn't work at all. It did work with Prime though so that's good.

So I have Plex and Prime sorted now, but I don't really want ANOTHER device just for Netflix so I can have HDR and Atmos, the lesser devices the better to support everything.

Time to get Excel out and list all the devices and HDR / Atmos / HDR10+ / 4K / and see which devices are best to suit me.

Thanks guys.
 
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
Good stuff mate

check out this thread

Panasonic UHD players: Netflix and Atmos

It seems your UHD spinner can output atmos from netflix, I am also certain it supports HDR10+

that would put you down to 2 devices?

UB9000 - disks, netflix atmos, prime hdr10+ (and atmos)
Shield - own media with lossless audio

cheers
 

TheCableGuy96

Established Member
hmmm you've got me excited pal but i'm not seeing the Atmos option in Netflix pop up like it does when it's supported. I looked at the App in the player and it's saying it's from 2013 eeek? Trying to find out how to update it at the moment!
 
D

Deleted member 433786

Guest
hmmm you've got me excited pal but i'm not seeing the Atmos option in Netflix pop up like it does when it's supported. I looked at the App in the player and it's saying it's from 2013 eeek? Trying to find out how to update it at the moment!

thread seems hit and miss, some say it works, others say not. I have read the thread and If I was to guess then i suspect you may need Dolby vision enabled on the player which the Samsung doesn't support. Might be work asking in the dedicated thread, fingers crossed and good luck

cheers
 

bardel

Prominent Member
You’ve probably worked this out already but the basics are this.

When a Plex client requests a file to be played from a Plex server, they have to negotiate on the format capabilities of the client device which is going to display the content vs the file format.

When a clean match is possible, direct play is chosen and there is no overhead to the delivery of the content, all you need is enough bandwidth (which you seem to have)

When a good match can’t be made, the client and server negotiate a suitable format and the server has to convert this on the fly (transcoding). This requires cpu horsepower at the server end, of which your Nas does not have enough, and quite possibly doesn’t support hardware acceleration also. This is where the buffering is coming from.

You have further proved this by using your laptop as the Plex server (even though you kept the Nas in the chain it is now only a file server), your laptop clearly has the horsepower to transcode on the fly without running out of steam and buffering.

Ideally you want to use a client that can ya Le all the formats you can possibly throw at it, I believe the shield is the closest device you will get for this. There is also a dependency on the software written for that device, as you have seen with the Xbox, despite being a powerful machine, the software simply doesn’t have a match for the right formats for your content.
 

scarty16

Prominent Member
Plex has a greater overhead than kodi to do anything, and the OP needs a lighter system.

It might resolve his stuttering issue.
 

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