Jump to content

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Montana Bengal

NAS or Router - Media Server Ideas

Recommended Posts

I've got a Roku in one room and a jailbroken ATV2 in another room.  We have some video that we like to be able stream locally.  I can do this while one of my computers is on....only  thing is I don't want to leave my machine on all the time.

 

So I've been toying around with an NAS that can act as a DLNA server or a router that I can attach a USB drive to and the router would detect the drive (ala a DLNA server - ASUS AC66U/N66U or a Netgear WNDR4500).

 

The NAS would be nice, but would be more upfront because I'd need to grab the drives....where as with the router I've already got a couple of external drives.

Any thoughts?

 

Either way it will be wired no wireless....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

about to do this myself... im getting the synology DS. has both ituens and DLNA media servers built in... and its el flocko approved..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there a specific one you are looking at?  I was thinking....I could always pick the NAS up and maybe use the external drive on it (if it has a USB) and then pick up drives later.

 

I'm finally happy with that Roku I bought from you...they added a channel that allows to bring in local content.  Right now I'm using a Netgear router, but the DLNA on it isn't very good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

213j or 413j depending how many bays..

 

roku supports plex, so i would think it could have done that for some time..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah - I've been running plex on my macbook...just don't want to have to have the MB on all the time.  I a surprised how long it took to get the channel to do it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have the symbology ds212j (I think that's the model) and I fucking love it. Can't recommend this product enough. I bought it to store all my media and stream it to several devices in my house (Mac mini hooked up to tv downstairs, roku in the bedroom upstairs, iPhones, ipad). It also does 10000 other things that aren't relevant to this topic.

Unfortunately, unless you guys know something I don't, I don't think you'll be able to completely eliminate the MacBook from the equation. While the NAS is great at storing content, playing content is an entirely different story. I tried to set up a plex server on my DS (synology has a plex app for the DS), and while I could access the server from every device, I wasn't able to play a lot of the content.

I ended up running the plex server on the Mac mini, with all the content stored on the DS. So when I watch stuff on the roku it's steaming it from the Mac which is pulling from the DS. Despite all that it works flawlessly and will stream 1080p all day long with no issue.

Oh and it's all wireless, the only wired connection in my house is from the DS to the router.

Long story short, I don't know if there's a NAS out there that can work flawlessly on its own as a plex-like server. I think they simply don't had the processor to handle all the encoding/decoding.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Have you tried using the newer "media player" channel that Roku released? I was able to stream a file from my router since it acts as a DLNA server....it also recognizes the plex server. Not nearly as pretty as plex, but you can get past the computer running.

I was actually looking at the model you have, but didn't realize it had a plex app you could install. I have actually been looking at a little android box (pivos) to run xbmc. They are getting ready to release a new device so I didn't pick one us. I was also given a Roku 3 for Xmas and I am hoping to try that later this week.

What version of the Roku do you have?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I swear one of the guys at work uses plex on his synology.    He also did some custom coding on some other apps to manage his libraries/downloads/etc...

 

I dont have a synology(some day), but i wonder if they do not have enough power to handle transcoding to non-dlna devices(like apple devices)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the 213j has double the ram as the 212j so if it is a performance issue, that could be... 

 

but for me, i will be using it with ONLY apple TV's, so the built in itunes server should stream almost perfectly to the ATV's...one would think...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

also mine will be wired into my switch directly as are all of my apple tvs via cat5e, so wireless streaming wont hold me back.... if i ever get this done..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I tried Plex on my Netgear NAS and wasn't terribly pleased with the results.  Many decoding problems and for example one file would play when I first tried it out, then it couldn't play the file an hour later.  Also, the CPU temperature went up 10°C and stayed there while Plex was running. 

 

Normally, I just use Windows Media Center with Media Browser (MB is awesome) on the Home theater PC, and it accesses the media files on the NAS over a relatively simple windows share.  Adding Mac/Air/appletv, Roku, etc. is beyond the scope of what I need. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In my case its not a processor power issue its a file format and transcoding issue. There were a few instances where the Roku couldn't handle certain file types and the DS plex was unable to transcode. When i dug a little deeper into the issue the things i read sounded to me like the DS plex app was a little subpar in its capabilities, and probably designed that way because its processer isn't designed for transcoding on the fly. I imagine this wouldn't be a problem if you're watching content on a mac or similiarly capable device, but a $40 roku box just doesn't have the same capability. The way the Plex Roku app is set up is for the plex server to do all the heavy lifting, and conversly the DS plex app is set up for the media player to do all the heavy lifting.

 

I tunes server should have no problem, i would imagine, becuase the AppleTV should have no problem with any iTunes content.

 

I haven't tried the media player channel yet, but based on what i said above I'd imagine i'd run into the same issues. If i remebmber correctly it handled the mp4s okay but the big hang up was with MKVs which make up a solid 50-75% of my movie library. 

 

I have the Roku HD...all the older Rokus were on clearence on Amazon this black friday. I was looking into AppleTVs but for less than half the price this was far too cheap to pass up, and the plex app was the icing on the cake.

 

In my humble semi-informed opinion, montanta, you're best bet may be buying/making a cheap robust plex or XBMC player and using that to run the Plex server. This way all the content can still be stored on a NAS, but the player can do all the hard work. All your devices (roku, ATV, mac book) can access it and you're macbook doesn't need to be running all the time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the input.  I will have to keep you posted on how this works.  I do have a older (DNS-321) NAS that I flashed last night with an alternative firmware (ALT F).  I was able to set up a DLNA server and test a couple of large files last night on the Roku (3-4 gig) and it seemed to do well with it.  (They were MP4s).

That said, I'm a little nervous about using that NAS - I always thought it would catch fire.  Either way I'm going to wind up spending money.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd still rather have the standalone Roku as opposed to it being built into the TV.  Those things don't last forever and it's easier (and cheaper) to just go buy a new Roku than have to rip one out and put back into a TV... 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd still rather have the standalone Roku as opposed to it being built into the TV.  Those things don't last forever and it's easier (and cheaper) to just go buy a new Roku than have to rip one out and put back into a TV... 

couldn't agree more

 

i'm not a big smart TV guy anyway. always found it to be gimicky and not entirely good at what its supposed to do

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had an original Roku which I liked and used for years. Then the tv crapped out so I bought a smart tv which was okay. I ended up getting a Roku 3 because of it's usb port which I use quite often. I have 6 external hard drives of varying sizes and while a lot of the stuff I have is already in .mp4 format, I occasionally use Handbrake to convert iso images. I've thought of getting a NAS and I've thought of installing a Plex server but for the time being I really don't need it. I just keep an up to date spreadsheet so I know what video is on which drive. Old-fashioned but it works well enough for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had an original Roku which I liked and used for years. Then the tv crapped out so I bought a smart tv which was okay. I ended up getting a Roku 3 because of it's usb port which I use quite often. I have 6 external hard drives of varying sizes and while a lot of the stuff I have is already in .mp4 format, I occasionally use Handbrake to convert iso images. I've thought of getting a NAS and I've thought of installing a Plex server but for the time being I really don't need it. I just keep an up to date spreadsheet so I know what video is on which drive. Old-fashioned but it works well enough for me.

 

holy shit.

 

old school meets technology...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well the Roku 3 seems much faster to me that my other Roku.  I'm going to clean up the Apple TV 2 this weekend and sell it on ebay (awesome investment).  Use that cash to pick up a solid NAS.  I'm pretty sure I'll go with a Synology...just need to figure out which one.  I saw there was a 214se, but it looks like it doesn't have the processor or the ram that the 213 does.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Short term solution for what I want to do....I have an old DNS 321 that I've installed alternative firmware on (ALF-F).  It is running minidnla and serves up my files.  I've got a 1gb drive I've thrown in to it.

 

 I'll revisit after we get our tax return.  Right now there are too many little and more important things that I have to spend dough on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...