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Frustrations with Plex UI -- any hope of changes?

ppayneppayne Posts: 7Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

I love Plex and use it semi-casually on my iPad and Amazon Fire TV. It's a nice way to view videos on my media PC (a NUC model) or my NAS, and I love it...but there are some serious UI issues that also make it frustrating to you.

1: Able to view by folder but not sort folders by last-modified.

While I sometimes watch movies, more often I'm watching episodes of anime in folders, and the current UI is really hard to use. On a Mac or PC I can sort the folders by "last modified date," so that any folder that has had something added recently will be at the top. This is super easy, but not something Plex seems to be able to do.

Having the ability to sort folders in folder view by last activity would be a bug UI improvement. Alternately, having links to other episodes in the series (e.g. if episode 8 of One Punch Man showed all the other episodes and showed them, rather than making you search for them squinting), that would be good.

2: No visual feedback for folders.

If I view all episode of anime in Recently Added format, I get a huge jumble of episodes at once, but at least they have pretty icons. There are no icons for folders. I think the icon of the first episode in that folder should be chosen and added to the folder.

3: Text titles should be handled in a "smart" way.

In 2016, people download files with filenames like

[Underwater] KILL la KILL 23 - Imitation Gold (TV 720p) [85D1F93F].mkv
[Leopard Raws] KILL la KILL 21 - Incomplete (TV 720p) [6F8EFD16].mkv

I believe Plex should, perhaps optionally, have the intelligence to strip out anything that's clearly not important from a title, like things in [brackets]. Among other things, it's totally impossible to read any title in Plex, and I'm forced (on Amazon TV anyway) to read while it slowly scrolls the long title, rather than having pre-truncated it nicely for me.

Similarly, Plex isn't smart enough to sort things for me if the filenames are not in order. I think it should know that anything with KILL la KILL and 08 in the title is probably episode 8, and KILL la KILL 09 is probably episode 9. Having true intelligence added to Plex would be ever so wonderful.

It's great to see Plex taking off so well on so many platforms. I hope to see these minor frustrations someday be addressed. If there's a better way to submit these suggestions to the company, or if there are options I don't know about, please tell me!

I can't see how to upload images here so I've posted some screenshots on my own server.

Example of folders that are sad because they have no icons
http://megumi.img.s3.amazonaws.com/IMG_4182.jpg

Example of a horrible (to my mind) mess of videos shown sorted by date added, with no grouping
http://megumi.img.s3.amazonaws.com/IMG_4183.jpg

Example of useless titles which have [bracketed text] in front of them and aren't even in proper episode order.
http://megumi.img.s3.amazonaws.com/IMG_4189.jpg

Answers

  • OpiousOpious Posts: 3Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Run "Filebot" on your movie directory. It will change the names of your movies (with your permission) to the standardized naming convention that most of the world uses. Plex will then recognize the movie or tv episode correctly and fix all your problems. Filebot

  • NekomimiScienceNekomimiScience Posts: 1Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Ah, anime naming. Took me a while to crack this as I was not going to rename several thousand files and every single new file as it came in.

    The trick is to put the shows in to folders of their EXACT name on tvdb. I say exact only because I've seen strange edge cases such as Sekko Boys not matching to Sekkō Boys. Folder structure matters, arguably more than the file name.

    Example:
    /Anime/Dagashi Kashi/[Mori] Dagashi Kashi - 01 [7CD8C64B].mkv

    For shows with multiple seasons, you would do something like the following:
    /Anime/Love Live!/Season 2/[FFF] Love Live! S2 - 01 [BD][1080p-FLAC][9F1E9EFF].mkv

    For OVAs, you may need to look at the specials section of the relevant TVDB page and insert a dummy episode number in the filename or manually match in the Plex web interface.
    /Anime/Love Live!/Specials/[FFF] Love Live! - OVA S0E06 [BD][1080p-FLAC][B750C279].mkv (Where S0E06 was added by me to explicitly match to the "Music S.T.A.R.T!!" OVA without having to manually match it in the Plex web interface.)

    Once Plex starts to properly index your anime, everything else will start to work properly. You get pretty folders, clean text titles, etc.

    Instead of sorting by last added, I'd recommend using the Deck as it intelligently shows you the next unwatched episode you have in a series and if you don't have a next episode, the show will hide until a new episode is added, when it will come back offering to play that new, unwatched episode. Using folder view is almost defeating the purpose of Plex as a full media library.

    Little late I know but hopefully this at least helps others.

  • AirOpAirOp Posts: 47Members ✭✭

    For your 3rd item, the plex scanners bend over backwards to take files that don't match the convention.

    My problem is that I have named the files carefully (btw, now I need to look at filebot) and plex goofes them up really bad because they are in subfolders that represent genre. I could easily add that sub folder feature if the scanner was simpler. The file naming convention should allow for a nice splitting on " - "'s which is easy to do with a bulk rename utility (everything is easier to do on windows)
    The mac bulk rename utility built into finder can work some too...

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