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Optimize and Subtitles

bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

Hi guys,

Please accept my apologies - I am new to all of the below - before 2 weeks ago I knew what MKV and MP4 were but that was it... and I had never used Plex. I am here to learn :)

I'm running Plex Server 0.9.16.3.1840 on my DS1515+ (DSM 6.0-7321)

Because my NAS is just too slow to transcode my Blu Ray rips (I use Make MKV), I've decided to re-encode them to be Direct Play-ed to my Google Chromecast or PS4.

I've found that picking the "Original Quality" preset works a treat. The resultant quality is perfect, and it Direct Plays to both devices with the tests I've done. As a sidenote, since I have no need for the original (and larger file size) MKV files after the conversion is done, currently I am moving the converted MP4 files elsewhere - deleting the original MKV files and re-synchronising the MP4 files back into my Library as if they are the new Originals.

Now, time for my questions.

1) How are subtitles chosen when using this Optimize process? I seemingly have no option to select which subtitle to use.
2) Is there a way I can force the Optimizer to always use Forced English subtitles when doing this "Pre-Transcoding"?
3) Is there a way I can tell the difference between the Forced English-only subtitles, and the regular English subtitles when using the Web App or my iOS app? They are all just called "English (PGS)".

I am really not interested in using something like Handbrake to re-encode manually every file I rip. I really love the "set and forget" nature of the Optimize feature... it's just messing up some movies by automatically picking the first subtitle track it can find.

I think I've ripped and Optimized "The Bourne Ultimatum" about 4 times now and have yet to get it right.

Thanks in advance!

Best Answer

Answers

  • cgacordcgacord Posts: 86Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    I'm assuming by the "Optimize process" you mean the library refresh/update, which is when the server will collect metadata and subtitles if you have it set. The optimize library process does something different.

    So I have answer to your first question, but not for the forced subtitles questions. In your agents settings (Settings->Server->Agents) choose your category (movie/tv) and go to freebase, there should be an opensubtitles agent there. when you hover over the item a cog (settings icon) will show on the right side, click on that and you can set 3 languages for the agent to download.

    There is also sub-zero subtitle plug-in to download subtitles. (https://forums.plex.tv/discussion/comment/1161372#Comment_1161372)

    Hopefully, this at least helps a little. :)

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja

    @bstapylton said:
    Hi guys,

    Please accept my apologies - I am new to all of the below - before 2 weeks ago I knew what MKV and MP4 were but that was it... and I had never used Plex. I am here to learn :)

    I'm running Plex Server 0.9.16.3.1840 on my DS1515+ (DSM 6.0-7321)

    Because my NAS is just too slow to transcode my Blu Ray rips (I use Make MKV), I've decided to re-encode them to be Direct Play-ed to my Google Chromecast or PS4.

    I've found that picking the "Original Quality" preset works a treat. The resultant quality is perfect, and it Direct Plays to both devices with the tests I've done. As a sidenote, since I have no need for the original (and larger file size) MKV files after the conversion is done, currently I am moving the converted MP4 files elsewhere - deleting the original MKV files and re-synchronising the MP4 files back into my Library as if they are the new Originals.

    Now, time for my questions.

    1) How are subtitles chosen when using this Optimize process? I seemingly have no option to select which subtitle to use.
    2) Is there a way I can force the Optimizer to always use Forced English subtitles when doing this "Pre-Transcoding"?
    3) Is there a way I can tell the difference between the Forced English-only subtitles, and the regular English subtitles when using the Web App or my iOS app? They are all just called "English (PGS)".

    I am really not interested in using something like Handbrake to re-encode manually every file I rip. I really love the "set and forget" nature of the Optimize feature... it's just messing up some movies by automatically picking the first subtitle track it can find.

    I think I've ripped and Optimized "The Bourne Ultimatum" about 4 times now and have yet to get it right.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. When using optimise, Plex will strip out any embedded subtitle files and replace them with an .srt external subtitle file.
    2. Plex will always chose the first subtitle file it finds and there is no way to change that behaviour.
    3. see point 1. I believe that PGS graphic based subtitles are replaced with .srt text based subtitles.

    The Optimise feature in Plex is primarily designed to allow files that could not otherwise be played on your devices, to be played. It is not designed to 'optimise' your entire library.

    For file re-encoding you are much better off using Video To Video (PC) or Handbrake (Mac) or any of the other video encoders out there. You have much more control over how the video is encoded and what is or is not included with the file.

    You can also use FFmpeg to do the encoding which is what Plex uses, but you will have to research the best parameters to use.

    MP4 H.264/AAC or AVC/AAC is the most compatible format across the most devices and is the preferred format.

    Other things to be mindful of, the High Code should not exceed 4.1 and in most cases should be set at 4.0 for the most compatibility. Overall bitrates should be kept at <10Mpbs for use with your DS1515+ where transcoding is expected. You may be able to increase the overall bitrate if the files are direct playable.

    Test some of the files here to see the highest bitrate you can comfortably stream with/without transcoding: http://www.jell.yfish.us/

    There are also a number of programs available that can manipulate the subtitles without re-encoding the video file. You may want to Google some of those to handle your subtitle files.

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


    Device Profiles | File Naming in Plex | NAS - Plex Compatibility Guide | What CPU does my NAS have | Synology FAQ's page | Tips & Tricks
  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    @trumpy81 said:

    @bstapylton said:
    Hi guys,

    Please accept my apologies - I am new to all of the below - before 2 weeks ago I knew what MKV and MP4 were but that was it... and I had never used Plex. I am here to learn :)

    I'm running Plex Server 0.9.16.3.1840 on my DS1515+ (DSM 6.0-7321)

    Because my NAS is just too slow to transcode my Blu Ray rips (I use Make MKV), I've decided to re-encode them to be Direct Play-ed to my Google Chromecast or PS4.

    I've found that picking the "Original Quality" preset works a treat. The resultant quality is perfect, and it Direct Plays to both devices with the tests I've done. As a sidenote, since I have no need for the original (and larger file size) MKV files after the conversion is done, currently I am moving the converted MP4 files elsewhere - deleting the original MKV files and re-synchronising the MP4 files back into my Library as if they are the new Originals.

    Now, time for my questions.

    1) How are subtitles chosen when using this Optimize process? I seemingly have no option to select which subtitle to use.
    2) Is there a way I can force the Optimizer to always use Forced English subtitles when doing this "Pre-Transcoding"?
    3) Is there a way I can tell the difference between the Forced English-only subtitles, and the regular English subtitles when using the Web App or my iOS app? They are all just called "English (PGS)".

    I am really not interested in using something like Handbrake to re-encode manually every file I rip. I really love the "set and forget" nature of the Optimize feature... it's just messing up some movies by automatically picking the first subtitle track it can find.

    I think I've ripped and Optimized "The Bourne Ultimatum" about 4 times now and have yet to get it right.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. When using optimise, Plex will strip out any embedded subtitle files and replace them with an .srt external subtitle file.
    2. Plex will always chose the first subtitle file it finds and there is no way to change that behaviour.
    3. see point 1. I believe that PGS graphic based subtitles are replaced with .srt text based subtitles.

    The Optimise feature in Plex is primarily designed to allow files that could not otherwise be played on your devices, to be played. It is not designed to 'optimise' your entire library.

    For file re-encoding you are much better off using Video To Video (PC) or Handbrake (Mac) or any of the other video encoders out there. You have much more control over how the video is encoded and what is or is not included with the file.

    You can also use FFmpeg to do the encoding which is what Plex uses, but you will have to research the best parameters to use.

    MP4 H.264/AAC or AVC/AAC is the most compatible format across the most devices and is the preferred format.

    Other things to be mindful of, the High Code should not exceed 4.1 and in most cases should be set at 4.0 for the most compatibility. Overall bitrates should be kept at <10Mpbs for use with your DS1515+ where transcoding is expected. You may be able to increase the overall bitrate if the files are direct playable.

    Test some of the files here to see the highest bitrate you can comfortably stream with/without transcoding: http://www.jell.yfish.us/

    There are also a number of programs available that can manipulate the subtitles without re-encoding the video file. You may want to Google some of those to handle your subtitle files.

    Hi Trumpy,

    Regarding (1): I've seen no such .srt files after an optimise process has completed - I'm quite sure that the subtitles are burned into the video - which is the entire point. My PS4 and Chromecast can't handle subtitles on their own I'm pretty sure, but the resultant MP4 shows them, and is Direct Played.

    You said the Optimise process isn't designed to optimise my library? That's actually exactly what it's designed for; so I can encode files for use on devices that I otherwise would have to request the file's content to be transcoded.

    Regarding (2), I tried Handbrake on Windows on my Surface Book, and the process took 5 hours for one film, and didn't even work on the PS4 when it was finished. I had picked MP4 H.264 and AAC audio, with a level of 4.0 just like you recommended. The Plex process is just so much better - I click "Optmize" and I click "OK" and can go to bed.

    It's a shame there is no option to select which subtitles are used. Surely it's a feature anyone who actually used subtitles with their media would care about. What is the use-case for the Optimise feature where just the first subtitle on the top of the list will do?

  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    @cgacord said:
    I'm assuming by the "Optimize process" you mean the library refresh/update, which is when the server will collect metadata and subtitles if you have it set. The optimize library process does something different.

    So I have answer to your first question, but not for the forced subtitles questions. In your agents settings (Settings->Server->Agents) choose your category (movie/tv) and go to freebase, there should be an opensubtitles agent there. when you hover over the item a cog (settings icon) will show on the right side, click on that and you can set 3 languages for the agent to download.

    There is also sub-zero subtitle plug-in to download subtitles. (https://forums.plex.tv/discussion/comment/1161372#Comment_1161372)

    Hopefully, this at least helps a little. :)

    Hi cgacord,

    Your assumption is incorrect I'm afraid. I'm talking about the "Optmized Versions" feature. You can click the "..." on a movie, and choose to "Optimize" it. Plex will transcode it in its own time and save the result so that the next time a device wishes to watch the movie, and the optimised version will suit it's needs, it can be Direct Played without the need for transcoding.

    When it comes to foreign audio parts in films, or subtitles showing the time/location of a scene, subtitles are needed.

    I have the subtitles already in the ripped MKV file, so I don't need an agent to get them. What my question was about, was if I accidentally or otherwise had more than one subtitle track for my movie - which one is picked when I Optimize it, and how can I configure/change it?

  • cgacordcgacord Posts: 86Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Hi cgacord,

    Your assumption is incorrect I'm afraid. I'm talking about the "Optmized Versions" feature. You can click the "..." on a movie, and choose to "Optimize" it. Plex will transcode it in its own time and save the result so that the next time a device wishes to watch the movie, and the optimised version will suit it's needs, it can be Direct Played without the need for transcoding.

    When it comes to foreign audio parts in films, or subtitles showing the time/location of a scene, subtitles are needed.

    I have the subtitles already in the ripped MKV file, so I don't need an agent to get them. What my question was about, was if I accidentally or otherwise had more than one subtitle track for my movie - which one is picked when I Optimize it, and how can I configure/change it?

    Oh ok... the reuse of terms makes things a little confusing sometimes. I'm not sure about subtitles and how they work with the Create Optimized Version process... Sorry

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja

    @bstapylton said:
    Hi Trumpy,

    Regarding (1): I've seen no such .srt files after an optimise process has completed - I'm quite sure that the subtitles are burned into the video - which is the entire point. My PS4 and Chromecast can't handle subtitles on their own I'm pretty sure, but the resultant MP4 shows them, and is Direct Played.

    You said the Optimise process isn't designed to optimise my library? That's actually exactly what it's designed for; so I can encode files for use on devices that I otherwise would have to request the file's content to be transcoded.

    Regarding (2), I tried Handbrake on Windows on my Surface Book, and the process took 5 hours for one film, and didn't even work on the PS4 when it was finished. I had picked MP4 H.264 and AAC audio, with a level of 4.0 just like you recommended. The Plex process is just so much better - I click "Optmize" and I click "OK" and can go to bed.

    It's a shame there is no option to select which subtitles are used. Surely it's a feature anyone who actually used subtitles with their media would care about. What is the use-case for the Optimise feature where just the first subtitle on the top of the list will do?

    1. I optimised one of the few files I have with an embedded subtitle and after the optimisation completed the resultant video file had no embedded subtitle and there was an external subtitle file, namely an .srt, in the folder with the video file. I suggest you check the destination folder of the optimised file.

    2. Optimise is NOT intended to optimise entire libraries. By your own admission, the Optimise function does not give optimal results, it was never intended to, it was only intended to allow a video to be played, end of story.

    3. Using Handbrake is a learned experience, you have to experiment and learn why certain parameters do not work on certain devices. No one said it was easy. If you want to learn this stuff then do so instead of jumping to wild conclusions based on zero evidence. There are an awful lot of parameters in a typical video file and some encoders let you manipulate some of those parameters but not all of them.

    If Handbrake did not work or you could not find the correct parameters to use, then try another program. I use several programs to re-encode my videos depending on what I need at the time, given the file that I am working with. No two video files are exactly the same simply because of the actual content of the video itself.

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


    Device Profiles | File Naming in Plex | NAS - Plex Compatibility Guide | What CPU does my NAS have | Synology FAQ's page | Tips & Tricks
  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    @trumpy81 said:

    @bstapylton said:
    Hi Trumpy,

    Regarding (1): I've seen no such .srt files after an optimise process has completed - I'm quite sure that the subtitles are burned into the video - which is the entire point. My PS4 and Chromecast can't handle subtitles on their own I'm pretty sure, but the resultant MP4 shows them, and is Direct Played.

    You said the Optimise process isn't designed to optimise my library? That's actually exactly what it's designed for; so I can encode files for use on devices that I otherwise would have to request the file's content to be transcoded.

    Regarding (2), I tried Handbrake on Windows on my Surface Book, and the process took 5 hours for one film, and didn't even work on the PS4 when it was finished. I had picked MP4 H.264 and AAC audio, with a level of 4.0 just like you recommended. The Plex process is just so much better - I click "Optmize" and I click "OK" and can go to bed.

    It's a shame there is no option to select which subtitles are used. Surely it's a feature anyone who actually used subtitles with their media would care about. What is the use-case for the Optimise feature where just the first subtitle on the top of the list will do?

    1. I optimised one of the few files I have with an embedded subtitle and after the optimisation completed the resultant video file had no embedded subtitle and there was an external subtitle file, namely an .srt, in the folder with the video file. I suggest you check the destination folder of the optimised file.

    2. Optimise is NOT intended to optimise entire libraries. By your own admission, the Optimise function does not give optimal results, it was never intended to, it was only intended to allow a video to be played, end of story.

    3. Using Handbrake is a learned experience, you have to experiment and learn why certain parameters do not work on certain devices. No one said it was easy. If you want to learn this stuff then do so instead of jumping to wild conclusions based on zero evidence. There are an awful lot of parameters in a typical video file and some encoders let you manipulate some of those parameters but not all of them.

    If Handbrake did not work or you could not find the correct parameters to use, then try another program. I use several programs to re-encode my videos depending on what I need at the time, given the file that I am working with. No two video files are exactly the same simply because of the actual content of the video itself.

    Hi again Trumpy,

    1) I've re-checked my Optimized versions and can confirm that neither a SRT file, nor an embedded subtitle track exists on the Optimized copy. This makes sense, because the transcoder has burned it into the video track. I'm hoping someone who knows more about this could come and inform us both on what's happening here.

    2) My admission was that Optmize works perfectly except for this subtitles issue I'm having. I am struggling to imagine a situation that it could be used that would be useful other than for what I'm using it for - i.e. to convert my media into a format that I can stream directly to my player, working around the Transcoding option entirely. If that's what it's for, why wouldn't we use it on our entire libraries?

    3) I'm really not keen on running Handbrake on my laptop 24/7 when it could more easily be done by Plex's Optimize process.

    I was hoping to hear that there is some config file somewhere that can tinker with the Optimize setup. Is that an option?

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja
    edited April 2016

    !. See the attached images. One image displays the embedded subtitle in MediaInfo and the other image displays the results of Plex optimise. Do you still want to argue that Plex does not create an .srt?

    This might explain why you don't see PGS subtitles: https://support.plex.tv/hc/en-us/articles/202822288-Why-don-t-my-PGS-VOBSUB-subtitles-appear-for-transcoded-content-
    2. You first argue that Plex optimise works perfectly, then you argue that it doesn't because it doesn't handle subtitles. So which is it? Is Plex optimise 'ideal' or is it not 'ideal' for optimising your library?
    3. Welcome to the world of video. If you had any sense, then you would not download files that cannot be played on your system in the first place. Then you would not need to optimise or re-encode, you could simply save and watch.

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


    Device Profiles | File Naming in Plex | NAS - Plex Compatibility Guide | What CPU does my NAS have | Synology FAQ's page | Tips & Tricks
  • mickeldaelmansmickeldaelmans Posts: 343Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Could it be that the .srt files are put there by a subtitle-agent?

    My Plex setup: Synology DS916+ (8GB), RPI3 + Plex for Kodi, Oneplus 3 (Android 7), Chromecast 1st gen & 2nd gen, Samsung UE43KU6500

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja

    No, because I do not normally use subtitles and I do not have subtitles turned on, besides, that would not explain the OP's lack of subtitles, but using PGS subtitles would since they are a graphic based subtitles and not text based subtitles.

    Clearly I was wrong about PGS subtitles, I did believe they were replaced by an .srt, but that appears not to be the case.

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


    Device Profiles | File Naming in Plex | NAS - Plex Compatibility Guide | What CPU does my NAS have | Synology FAQ's page | Tips & Tricks
  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    1) Find attached a screenshot of my Optimized output folder to "prove" there are no SRT files. Find another attachment of Inglourious Basterds using that app you used - showing it hasn't been embedded either. The third attachment shows the original MKV with the original embedded ripped subs.

    2) You win this time, sir. It is not optimal. Your suggestion of manually re-encoding my library is even less so, though, so perhaps there is another solution?

    3) I don't download movies. These are ripped from my own Blu Rays via MakeMKV - as per my original post. If I could just save and watch straight from Blu Ray I would jump on it. But alas, every Blu Ray I've looked at uses MKV, which my players apparently don't like. If you had any sense you would have read that part.

    Isn't asking for info on forums just a blast!

    Maybe the solution is merely to buy a big fat Apple TV just to handle transcoding. Or some player that actually plays MKV files - are there even any that isn't a PC?

  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    Alas the order of my attachments were altered in my previous post - it shouldn't be difficult to mentally match each to it's purpose though.

    Cheers

  • moody_bluemoody_blue Posts: 3,221Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja
    edited April 2016

    @bstapylton there are alternatives to the PMS optimize process such as PoisonConvert. Not so powerfull as Handbrake, but probably it can suit your needs. PoisonConvert does not touch subtitles.

    QNAP TS-253A 4G QTS 4.3.4.0569 + PMS 1.13.1.5063 + QPython2 2.7.12.0 + PlexConnect 0.6

    TV Sony KDL-32V2500 (720p) + aTV3 Rev. A firmware 7.2.2 + Denon AVR-1604 A/V Receiver 5.1 + Harmony Touch

    Portables 1x iPad4, 2x Android phone, 1x Android tablet, 2x PMP on Win10

    No support via PM unless requested by me

  • bstapyltonbstapylton Posts: 24Members Plex Pass

    @trumpy81 said:
    Yes the forum software also messed up the order of my images, but you got the idea. :)

    Whether you download or create your own, the point of my argument should have been clear enough, I apologise if that was not the case. And apologies for the bum steer re: PGS subtitles.

    When ripping from Blu-Ray, I would suggest that you try another program, one that gives you some control over the parameters used. And FYI, Blu-ray Disks are NOT encoded with MKV they use H.262. H.264 and various other formats, it is the encoding software that adds the MKV container.

    This document may help in understanding what a BD is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blu-ray

    If you search in Google using 'BD ripping software' you will most likely find some suggestions for software to use and hopefully you will be able to rip in formats that are compatible with your devices etc. that should save you a few arguments at least ... :P :))

    At the very least, the software should allow you to rip, save and watch without having to worry about optimising or re-encoding and I am sure that will make you happier with your Plex experience in general and save you some hassle in the process.

    Some things to be aware of:

    1. High Code should not be higher than 4.1 with 4.0 preferred for the most compatibility.
    2. Overall Bitrate should be kept <10Mbps if transcoding is expected, but do experiment, your system may be able to handle higher bitrates when streaming. Check out some test videos with different bitrates here: http://www.jell.yfish.us/ to see what your system/s are capable of.
    3. MP4 H.264/AVC or AVC/AAC for the most compatibility across the most devices. You can use H.265, but only if all of your devices actually support it. Not many devices do at this point in time.

    If you do need a client device that allows subtitle playback for your TV, then consider using a Raspberry Pi2 or 3 together with RasPlex (Plex Home Theatre for the RPi). It is inexpensive and will handle higher bitrates and more codecs etc. than a lot of other devices.

    Trumpy,

    Please read all of this with zero sarcasm.

    You've done me a great service. My mind was fixed on the problem of fixing the MKV files. It had not occurred to me to fix the root cause, MakeMKV is just ripping my Blu Rays in a less-than-desirable container.

    Thanks also for the links to testable media. This will be very helpful to fix a Chromecast problem I've just identified (audio is dropping while video continues to play, almost like a buffering problem. I suspect it isn't quick enough to handle the high bitrate).

    For now I'll mark the question as "answered" but the quest continues.

    I was hoping to not have to become some sort of expert to just watch my movies without discs, adverts, trailers or menus (or FBI warnings for that matter). But some more upskilling is required.

    Cheers again, for your help.

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja

    Yes, I can understand your viewpoint, but unfortunately, it does require some basic knowledge. This is because of the complete mess that video is at the moment and that is not likely to change anytime soon. :(

    Load and go is the aim of Plex, but sometimes that doesn't help explain why things go wrong.

    Anyhow, I hope you have gained some knowledge and are better equipped to handle the nightmare that is video these days.

    Happy Plexing! and if you have any other questions just ask, I will try to be less abrasive I promise ... :)

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


    Device Profiles | File Naming in Plex | NAS - Plex Compatibility Guide | What CPU does my NAS have | Synology FAQ's page | Tips & Tricks
  • Rob HufstetlerRob Hufstetler Posts: 6Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    So, after experiencing the exact same issue as the original poster, I come across this message thread.

    I agree that Plex Optimize works exactly as I would like to replace my original content, except for the subtitle issue.

    I love the way it maintains the audio options with 2, 3, or 5 different audio streams selectable from within Plex playback environment even after optimization. It's Awesome!

    So why don't we kindly discuss adding this functionality for SubTitles to the Optimize feature that the Audio has, instead of browbeating a new enthusiast out of the hobby? (You handled that well by the way) Since the original MKV ripped file can have many SubTitle options that work fine within the Plex playback environment, why do we need to choose one with HandBrake and hope it is the one with the "Forced Only track"? Ya, I have learned that the 2nd subtitle track usually the correct forced track but it's still a gamble that you are forced to make when compressing with Handbrake.

    Why not just keep all the subtitle tracks like with the Audio and simply compress the video. Then we can set up an Optimize compress run on 20 files and go to bed. Small change that would make an admitted less than optimal feature become a contender for the best option.

  • trumpy81trumpy81 Posts: 10,872Members, Plex Pass, Plex Ninja Plex Ninja

    If you are going to 'Optimise' your files, you are far better off doing it with HandBrake or the like. You will find that the video quality will be better (depending on your original file quality), you will have much better control over the process and you can control things like file size (to a degree), which can be important if you are running out of space.

    Your PC/Mac/Linux machine is going to get the job done much quicker than any NAS can possibly manage and you can keep whatever subtitles you want or don't want. You can set HandBrake to shut the machine down when finished if you want to and you can re-encode as many files as you want in one go.

    HandBrake also has a setting for Forced Only subtitles, so that should not be an issue. You can also configure the default behaviour where subtitles are concerned, so you can set and forget to some degree.

    In HandBrake, I recommend you start with the Fast 1080p 30 preset and enable Web Optimised and on the Video tab, enable Fast Decode. The rest of the settings should be fine so don't mess with them. Do check the Audio, Subtitle and Chapter tabs are to your liking though.

    As for the Plex Optimise routine not keeping subtitles, it requires a whole lot of processing to include subtitles and ffmpeg is not well suited for that, especially when it comes to graphic based vs. text based subtitles. If it was an easy process, it would have been done by now.

    Regards,
    Andy M.

    My Equipment: Synology DS1813+ | Panasonic TH-L42ET60A & TH-55DX600U | Windows 10 Professional 64Bit PC's | Raspberry Pi 2's & Odroid C2 with OpenPHT


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