Streaming services build noob questions

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs & Equipment' started by Motley, Jun 20, 2018.

  1. Motley

    Motley 2[H]4U

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    Hello everyone. I'm a complete noob to streaming solutions, so forgive my ignorance. I am very skilled with building PC's gaming, etc. with only a little linux knowledge, but can do basics.

    I've been doing some researching on streaming movies and my collection of audio cd's. Watched some youtube videos on FreeNas. I'm planning on building a PC that can run as a media server.

    AMD Ryzen 3 2200GB, 8GB DDR4, Gigabyte GA-AB350-Gaming AM4, Asus CD/blu-ray player read only, 4TB Seagate Barracuda HD, and a cheap HDMI video card.

    I have the 2017 Sony XBR-X55850D TV. Receiver is an 7.1 Yamaha RX-A660
    Home network is a Ubiquiti USG, Netgear Nighhawk X6 R8000 5GH wireless router.

    Once I get the NAS server built, how do I watch the movies and listen to CDs on my TV?

    What is the best quality I can get when i rip the blu-rays and CDs?

    Is the system I have plan to build sufficient?

    What other advice you can provide I will greatly appreciate it!
     
  2. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    I'm confused by your post: what state is your media library in: do you already have movies and CDs ripped, or are you asking how to do that too?

    Also, are you just planning on playing back downloaded Juarez content, or just your own legal library? The latter is a lot easier to get working, as you can do test encodes of movies to verify they playback on your TV.

    Your planned media server system is more than capable of streaming playback. For figuring out your expected storge needs, normal Bluray movies under HEVC quality 19 average about 5GB for HEVC 1080p (800 movies on 4TB). You can get storage down to around 2.5GB average if you compromise and go 720p. (1600 movies). Unless you insist on FLAC, your music library will use a tiny fraction of the space used by video.

    Also, your 2200G comes with onboard video, so you can save some money usng that. Your wifi should be plenty for streaming 1080p video.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
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  3. Motley

    Motley 2[H]4U

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    Ok so my movie collection has never been ripped, what is the best tool to rip BD. No Juarez content, I own all the movies. My music collection however is about 80% ripped (on my other PC gaming system).

    I was doing some research today, and discovered Plex. My Sony TV actually already has the Plex app on it.

    Can I use Win 10 on this media server and use Plex? Or do I need to use FreeNAS?
     
  4. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    You can use Plex if you want, or any other DLNA server (FreeNAS, or Universal Media Server). I use Universal Media Server to stream to my TV.

    How to do DLNA media playback on Sony TVs:

    https://www.sony-asia.com/microsite/bravia_connectivityguide/pc/dlna/index.html

    Plex is typically used for folks trying to stream video outside their own network, or when playing back Juarez content of unknown setting that may need to be transcoded. It can get a bit complex versus DLNA if all you need is local playback of known good files.

    For video extraction, I use DVDFab. I find it the easiest to use of the various tools I've tried. You can use their tool for 30 days free, and you can reset that counter indefinitely by uninstalling and downloading a new copy. Just select "main movie," and BD50 target size to maintain full quality.

    You can also use this tool to re-encode the movies as well, but I'm a control freak so I just do it myself using Handbrake. when you open the extracted bluray in handbrake, tell it to open folder, and point it to the folder that contains "BDMV" and "CERTIFICATE" and it will automatically parse the files for you.

    Use mkv for better compatibility, under Picture tab set Anamorphic to None (you'd be surprised how many TVs have issues with this), 1080p resolution , then under Video se;lect h.265 codec constant quality 19 should look fantastic.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
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  5. Motley

    Motley 2[H]4U

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    Right on brother, I appreciate the advice. I will probably try to use MKV and see how that works first.

    Also on this server I plan on having my photos stored, as well as a backup server for my gaming PC, laptop, etc. Thus the need for the 4TB HD.
     
  6. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    Also, were you planning on feeding that TV the direct steam copy from the BluRay files (7.1), and sending it via HDMI Return Channel? It will increase the size of you movies a bit.

    https://www.soundandvision.com/content/hdmi-audio-return-channel

    TVs are sometimes picky about native playback of multi-channel audio , but I'd imagine return channel takes this out of their hands? But you'll have to test things out.

    I've always been a stereo guy, with a pair of beefy monitors. So I just let Handbrake downmix to Stereo, and it sounds pretty good over the TV's optical out.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
  7. AlphaAtlas

    AlphaAtlas Limp Gawd Staff Member

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    I use MakeMKV to rip stuff. Free, and it works well.

    As for the actual transcoding, I use StaxRip. Unlike handbrake (last time I checked handbrake, anyway), it supports hardware encoding acceleration on GPUs/IGPs, which will dramatically speed up encoding times since your 2200G isn't the strongest CPU out there. It's also great for adding in some rather sophisticated filters, like QTGMC or VIVTC for deinterlacing DVDs, adaptivesharpen for sharpening, others for denoising, upscaling and so on.
     
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  8. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    Just be aware that using hardware acceleration will increase the size of your output files. The hardware transcode speeds things up dramatically, but it's not as efficient as a software encoder at packing the bytes in there.

    You'll have to do your own testing, but I've heard it can take up to 25-50% more space for the same quality level. I usually don't

    Each software video encode in h.265 1080p took about 6 hours on my i5 2500k. You should get similar or faster performance out of that 2200g. 720p will cut that time in half.

    I guess it just depends how many pictures you plan on throwing on that drive, and how patient you are about movie encode times. On the rare occasions I want to watch the movie immediately, I get around this delay by having a gaming PC hooked up to my TV - VLC will play back Blu Ray rips with ease. But for those times, you could use a hardware transcode to get a quick copy?
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
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  9. ob1

    ob1 2[H]4U

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    I would not say Plex is used for external streaming or playing warez at all. It has a good interface and is easy to use and setup first and foremost. Then you have the ability to stream to friends and family. If you want to point fingers at copyright violators, point to Kodi and not Plex. I started ripping all of my movies manually, over a thousand movies and unknown amount of TV series. I got about half way before I found a different source. I buy movies now and never open them, just put them in a box still sealed. Why should every single person rip and compress their own copy?
    At any rate, I run a legit Plex server. I have 40+ users on my server. Typically I will have between 4 and 8 users streaming simultaneously during prime time on weekends. I use the system in sig to do this, (a few HGST 8TB drives too), plus use it as a gaming system. On my internal TV systems I run either Fire TV boxes or nVidia Shields, which the shield plays everything direct play/stream so I do very little transcoding on my internal playbacks. Most external users have built in TV apps, Roku, or Apple stuff which require some transcoding. My library is mainly 1080p content encoded with HEVC with file sizes around 2 to 4 GB. TV shows though are generally 720p HEVC so they are a couple hundred megabytes.
    My vote would be for Plex on your server and a Shield on your TV, particularly if you have non-techie people planning on watching, like wives/SO/etc.
     
  10. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    I never said Juarez was bad, just making a clear distinction. That one choice vastly limits your playback options (it's Plex or nothing, and you suddenly have to worry about the transcode configuration, and capability of your PC), even if it's vastly easier than ripping everything you own.

    And really, how many people go through the trouble of setting up Plex when they're not planning on streaming to other parties (or yourself, when away from the house)?
     
  11. AlphaAtlas

    AlphaAtlas Limp Gawd Staff Member

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    Maybe at stock settings on older cards.

    Newer encoding blocks on newer cards can hit decent compression/IQ rates, especially if you specify VBR or CQP and 10-bit HEVC instead of the default (I think it's still 8-bit CBR?) mode. Also, it frees up the CPU to run other effects, like denoising, sharpening and deblocking, or even motion interpolation, which can give you better IQ and compression rate.

    Depending on the presets, 10-bit HEVC encoding is really slow on quad core CPUs. Whether it's worth the extra space saving or not will require testing, yeah, but GPU encoding is a better option than it used to be.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2018
  12. Motley

    Motley 2[H]4U

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    Thanks for all the help guys. I've decided on a slightly better hardware on this, because I may do some photo editing on this as well.

    Getting the AMD 1600 OC'd to 4.0 Ghz. upping the ram to 16gb. And the video card will be an radeon 560,

    I've also decided to use Plex on this.

    I'm picking everything up tomorrow at MC. Will let you guys know how the build goes, and I'm sure I'll have more questions once I start ripping movies.
     
  13. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Dum

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    Have fun,, that Ryzen 12-thread procesor should let you rip through software encodes pretty quickly.
     
  14. Vengance_01

    Vengance_01 [H]ardness Supreme

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    Do you have another pc to rip your content. IMO shield + Plex server/nas combo is the way to go. Building htpcs unless your gonna game is a waste of money
     
  15. Motley

    Motley 2[H]4U

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    I still haven't built the new plex server yet. Still waiting to buy a new case, probably tomorrow. Also I ended up getting a GTX 1060 for the video card.

    I plan on using this for not only ripping and streaming movies, but also light gaming, and rendering RAW photos
     
  16. gobnu1

    gobnu1 [H]Lite

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    As I've said before, if you're going to use Plex (and I do) transcode using Handbrake so the server has little work to do. Just queue them up in Handbrake and let them transcode at your leisure. This way you need very little in terms of a Plex server and are only limited by you ISP upload speed to share with those outside your network
     
  17. westrock2000

    westrock2000 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Handbrake supports QuickSync which is ridiculous fast (on any supported CPU), but you loose some quality control settings. Mainly on the x264 preset it's hard-coded to "fast" where on CPU you can choose whatever (I use "Slow"). I don't know if QuickSync supports h265 yet, and I have a Ryzen now so I haven't used any recent QuickSync implementations. Objectively I probably couldn't tell any difference in picture quality back when I was using QuickSync and CPU. I use a Constant Quality factor of 17, which is pretty generous.

    The main upside I liked about QuickSync is that the actual CPU usage was unaffected, so I could encode videos while playing games or doing other video work in Sony Vegas or something. But it could rip a DVD in like 20 minutes and a Bluray in maybe 40-60 minutes.
     
  18. AlphaAtlas

    AlphaAtlas Limp Gawd Staff Member

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    With h.264 quicksync, that the quality you get for the bitrate is really bad. It may look ok, but you end up with a big file.

    Kaby lake and up can do HEVC, IIRC.

    I'd say h.264 hardware encoding usually isn't worth it. It's OK if you're streaming, or youre on an old CPU with a GCN1/Kepler GPU, but otherwise hardware h.265 or software h.264 with a low process priority is usually better all-around.