QNAP offers a variety of solutions to suit your needs and budget, but which one is right for you? Together we will help you narrow down the choice and help you choose the perfect NAS to host your Plex Media Server.
Typically your NAS will not come with hard drives, leaving you free to establish how much storage you need, so it's worth double-checking with your retailer before hitting the "buy now" button.
As soon as you are set up and connected to your home network (router), transfer all your media, including movies, TV Shows, photos and music to your NAS. Then download Plex Media Server via the QNAP app store, create an account, and start pointing your Plex libraries to your NAS stored media folders.
Now it's time to download the Plex app to your devices and start streaming all your content to your mobile devices and Smart TVs, as well as via most media streaming devices (e.g. NVIDIA Shield TV, Roku, Apple TV 4, Chromecast and Fire TV).
A perfect media experience, whether it’s watching one of your movies, a TV episode or streaming your impressive music collection, needs a stable environment, including your Plex Media Server. Since your new NAS is designed to run 24/7 without having to power off every day like a PC, your multimedia files are available online all the time, giving you your very own private cloud. This solution allows you to remotely access and play your media anytime on any device.
Transcoding is a process of conversion to overcome a file incompatibility issue, such as playing an mkv file on a device welcoming, for example, an mp4 only. When this happens, transcoding delivers conversion to a more suitable (but not limited to) resolution during playback.
Another example could be when out-and-about. Bandwidth can lag while streaming high definition content stored on your NAS, and streaming remotely to wherever you are with internet may need transcoding capabilities to a more desirable resolution.
Providing your NAS has the necessary horse-power, Plex will transcode your media on-the-fly so that you can enjoy your content wherever you are and on any device without stalling or hiccups.
Primarily, Plex uses only software transcoding, relying mainly on the CPU of the NAS to do the hardware transcoding. We, therefore, recommend you choose a NAS with at least an Intel® based CPU for HD content transcoding, and Intel® Core™ i3 (or higher-end) for most scenarios, including extreme high bit-rate HD video content.
With RAM in mind, 4GB should be your preferred minimum and 8GB+ where budget allows. RAM can also assist with your cache needs, especially if you intend on running additional applications while streaming.
Before committing, explore the NAS capability list managed provided by Plex.
*1080p (HD 1080p media will work, but higher bitrates may produce buffering during playback or result in playback failure.)
*4K (4K SDR media may work, but higher bitrates can produce buffering during playback and/or playback failure.)
**Prices correct at time of publication from leading suppliers and can fluctuate.
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