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Plex/Media Server

by ctrlaltd1337


Part List View full price breakdown


Date Published

Jan. 20, 2019

CPU Clock Rate

2.3 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.582 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

8.008 GHz


I outgrew my previous HTPC build, so I moved all of the storage (along with some more) into a new system after doing some research on building a Plex server.

I found a post on /r/Plex by JDM_WAAAT and eventually found his Discord that has a bunch of helpful people and information. With my luck, they were in the middle of putting together a new build that was much more powerful than the last guide they put together and had a great motherboard for a great price as well.

After it was all said and done, I learned a lot including the working of a new OS, server grade hardware, and new software. A lot of this stuff was mine from previous builds/spare parts, but I did need to purchase the CPUs, CPU fans, motherboard, PSU, case, case fans and some cables.

Some stats:

  • Currently at 29TB of storage with an 8TB parity drive, 51% full
  • HDD temperatures range from 30C-34C
  • Maximum current transcodes in Plex so far has been 6, but I haven't tested it further

Comments Sorted by:

ZFGeek 1 Build 2 points 3 months ago

what is filling half of 29 terabytes!?! That is lot of movies...
You could probably transcode a little more, but not too much.

simberdavid 1 point 3 months ago

does a media server need all those cores?

ZFGeek 1 Build 2 points 3 months ago

Yes, especially if he plans to have multiple devices streaming from it at the same time. When it comes to streaming from a self hosted server like Plex, each video needs to be transcoded for the device it is going to. This requires CPU power, and more cores means you can transcode more at the same time. If he only had one or two people streaming at the same time, maybe not, but if he wants more than that he is gonna need all of those cores. I think the minimum for good playback is 6 cores, any lower and you encounter stuttering and long buffer. I've used less, but it is a bit sluggish running one transcode.

simberdavid 1 point 2 months ago

ok, good to know

quiekMew 1 point 2 months ago

Can the GPU be utilized aswell? Using a 1060 for simple display out would be kind of a waste in my book. He didn't mention specifically buying it so I guess he had it lying around?

ZFGeek 1 Build 1 point 2 months ago

Yes, the GPU can be utilized for hardware-accelerated encoding. That allows the GPU to offload some of the strain off of the CPU, and allows you to transcode more at the same time. It only works on intel CPUs from 2011 to today, and you need to have Plex's payed subscription. Also, at lower resolutions, quality can be worse than using just a CPU. Although, GPU allows for more quality high resolution streaming, like 4k.

ctrlaltd1337 submitter 3 Builds 2 points 2 months ago

All correct info but to add, I believe GPU transcoding from things like NVIDIA P2000's only works on Windows, not Linux. So I am unable to utilize that as I went the Unraid route.