Move to Emby is completed. Report.


#1

My move from Plex to Emby is complete. It went smoothly and I can say that in many ways, for me, Emby is easier to use and more complete where it matters most to me.

My setup is simple:
I do NOT share with anyone.
I did not use music or other audio through Plex and that is not changing with Emby.
I do not use any type of DVR to record from a tuner.
My server(s) and my media are all on the same network.

Now on to observations and other info:
My Library is all named (both Movies and TV) according to Plex standards and Emby imported everything first try except for two movies that always fail on a new Plex install as well. Emby also exposed two misspellings in my file system that had caused Plex to actually mismatch two other movies. Plex had those wrong but I never watched them so I did not know until Emby did not match at all. I prefer that if the system is not sure that it does not match at all so here Emby matches better than Plex.
The libraries (that is the movies or TV shows in them) do not become much available for playback in Emby until the first scan of the library is finished, or nearly so. I do not really consider that a weakness or a strength, it is just a difference.

The Shield TV and Fire TV apps are VASTLY superior in Emby. I used those and the Roku app during testing and I have to say that for Emby, although the Roku app is quite good, the Shield and Fire are both better. In fact Emby on an old Fire stick is quite usable.

The collection implementation in Emby is WAY better than what passes for it in Plex. There is an "automatic" collection function that I did not test but it only takes a few minutes to add a large group of movies to a collection. Emby does have a weakness in their collections in that the only sorts available are "date released" and "name" and you cannot change the sort of a collection inside an app. It can only be done from the server.

Speaking of sorting there are few sorting or filter options in the apps in Emby and you cannot reverse a sort except in the web app.

In Emby you cannot, at least yet, exclude a library from the dashboard.

Emby require NO web connection to stream locally and, from what I understand, even to remote users. The streaming goes direct and is never passed through any Emby servers or processing.

Users seem easier to create and maintain and can be set with parental controls and library restrictions but I have only tested this slightly as my granddaughters will not be visiting until December.

Transcoding is less strenuous for the server. Also it seems, for me, to make better choices as to exactly how it transcodes and to what.

There are other little differences that are too numerous to mention but no real irritants that I have run into.

I am leaving my Plex server installed on my Shield as in does not impact anything and it is good to have a backup but I do not plan on using Plex unless something really unexpected happens.

I will continue trying to help people here but I have now calmed down somewhat so I "think" I will be less negative but who knows. Mood swings, along with some other things, come with age. The Emby forums are a lot less active and the entertainment factor is lower so these forums are more attractive for that.

I am sure I left out some (maybe a lot of) things that would be of interest to some people and anyone should feel free to use this thread to ask questions about the differences between Emby and Plex but let's keep the "how do you" questions about Emby in the Emby forums and limit ourselves to just differences and/or possibilities in this thread.

EB


#2

Emby require NO web connection to stream locally and, from what I understand, even to remote users. The streaming goes direct and is never passed through any Emby servers or processing.

My move is almost complete. Currently working through some SSL issues for external users. But you are correct, nothing needs to be passed through Emby servers. Looking forward to testing it out this weekend.

Edit: I also need to figure out trailers. I know they have a trailer plugin, but I want trailers for my library. I think I will have to download trailers for all my movies and reorganize movies into their own folder with extras.


#3

Interesting report.

Elijah, your comment about NO web connection needed to stream on your own network implies that you do need web connectivity for Plex stream just from a server on your own network. Is that right? Except for perhaps to obtain subtitles I'm not sure I know why.

I've always been a little concerned that if Plex closed down, my libraries would be stranded for remote access, but I didn't think that was the case for local access. Please elaborate.


#4

@brucethevideobug said:
Interesting report.

Elijah, your comment about NO web connection needed to stream on your own network implies that you do need web connectivity for Plex stream just from a server on your own network. Is that right? Except for perhaps to obtain subtitles I'm not sure I know why.

I've always been a little concerned that if Plex closed down, my libraries would be stranded for remote access, but I didn't think that was the case for local access. Please elaborate.

Plex, mostly, needs a web connection for most streaming but it is possible to stream locally using Plex without a web connection. I have streamed many times without web access. However I think that Plex needs connection to Plex's servers in order for remote users to work.
Emby, unless you use Emby connect, does not need a connection to any Emby servers for any streaming either remote or local.
Clearly if you have no web connection at all neither Plex or Emby can stream to remote users but both can work locally. It is just easier for many people with Emby. Also managed users that do not use Emby connect work fine locally without a web connection.
From an Emby developer(slightly paraphrased): "All streaming traffic passes directly from server to user without passing through any Emby servers."


#5

My move is also complete, with local and remote access. Both of these are without any login to emby services and more secure than Plex (mine had an A+ rating). I had a little more metadata cleansing to do, and also chose to create some Collections to semi-replace the Smart Playlist functionality in Plex (they don't update automatically) which took some time, but overall I'm very happy and not quite as disappointed as I was when I started over last weekend. The more I've used it, the less I've been concerned about how it looks (Plex does still look better to me) and more about how it works, and it works just as well as Plex, and even better in some areas. They already have a usable TV Guide and I could probably get away without a Premiere account as Live TV and manual DVR work without it (you do need it to schedule recordings, and probably also need to subscribe to Schedules Direct for a seamless DVR experience). If you were worried it's a poor replacement, it's most definitely not and certainly worth a look if Plex's control and privacy concern you.

One of the best things isn't actually the software, but the support community where you can actually get support from the emby team. Something sadly lacking here for some time.

I'll try to post a little less now I've left Plex behind but did I see a tweet from Plex to say plex.tv was down? This is one of the reasons why forcing connections to external services to use a local media server is just a really bad idea :open_mouth:


#6

Thanks! With a longtime user like yourself leaving, I think it reasonable to be concerned about my library being stranded if Plex were to go under. No one thought GM would go bankrupt once, and we know how that ended.

Were I starting a new setup, I might go emby. For now Plex meets my needs 95% of the time, and I find support here to be enough for my needs.

Best wishes on the new horse.


#7

I've made the transition as well. I ended up going all out and setting up Organizr/Ombi/Emby forwarded through Cloudflare and a Squid Reverse Proxy.

As others have stated, Emby isn't a "polished" when it comes to the UI, but all of the functionality that I wanted was there. Plex does seem to be better at matching obscure file names to their correct entry, but that mostly just pushed me to run everything through FileBot and fix the names on all of my media.

Overall, I'm happy with the transition. Hearing the screams from the Plex subreddit today about not being able to access their media due to the auth servers being down was just icing on the cake.


#8

I have both dockers for Plex and Emby installed on the same Linux server and both share the same movies and tv shows (ripped). I don't share my library, but do record OTA. Plex recordings are much better (due to their own transcoders) than Emby. Emby recordings look a little fuzzy, most likely due to using ffmpeg (versus Plex own program). However, Emby has a standard grid tv guide, which I prefer.

Waiting on the new Plex Roku app. I hope it just adds Live Tv/Guide on the left with the libraries and not do what was done on the FireTv.


#9

Move almost completed on Apple TV. Emby saves metadata's in folders, Infuse 5 read them and plays smoothly EVERYTHING I've thrown at it (remux, mkv, avi, mp4, dts, dts-hd passthrough, etc.). So long Plex...


#10

Sounds Great. Think I'll try it later. The lack of support from the Devs here is a pain!


#11

@chander said:
Move almost completed on Apple TV. Emby saves metadata's in folders, Infuse 5 read them and plays smoothly EVERYTHING I've thrown at it (remux, mkv, avi, mp4, dts, dts-hd passthrough, etc.). So long Plex...

It can't handle MPEG4 files for some reason; it either tries to direct play it and give you a green screen or transcodes it to play properly and they're not sure why. The difference is three different people are actively trying to help solve the problem. It's an intermittent bug, so it's being a pain to track down; but it' so weird to not be told it's my fault for not using it "their way".


#12

@adrianwi said:

One of the best things isn't actually the software, but the support community where you can actually get support from the emby team. Something sadly lacking here for some time.

When I see statements like this it amuses me. Plex used to be that way, then it grew. As it grew the problem slowly grew.
Emby is currently a distant second (dare I say third) to Plex in users, yet I already see comments about the lack of support on the Emby boards. Not many comments but a few.
As the user base of Emby grows (as it surely will with people ditching Plex for Emby) the same problem will most likely pop up there also.
I am currently running both Emby and Plex in my home. As I have always said, options options, options.
I have to say that I find Emby to be much slower and remote access is spotty at best for me on Emby. I do, however, continue to tweak the system so maybe it is a setting I am missing somewhere. We also are still having some issues with internet connectivity related to Hurricane Irma so that may have some bearing on it as well.


#13

@flamebird said:

@chander said:
Move almost completed on Apple TV. Emby saves metadata's in folders, Infuse 5 read them and plays smoothly EVERYTHING I've thrown at it (remux, mkv, avi, mp4, dts, dts-hd passthrough, etc.). So long Plex...

It can't handle MPEG4 files for some reason; it either tries to direct play it and give you a green screen or transcodes it to play properly and they're not sure why. The difference is three different people are actively trying to help solve the problem. It's an intermittent bug, so it's being a pain to track down; but it' so weird to not be told it's my fault for not using it "their way".

MPEG-4 is a dead horse.
Do NOT confuse MPEG-4 Video Streams with mp4 containers.
Not the same horse.
Not even close.


#14

@JuiceWSA said:

@flamebird said:

@chander said:
Move almost completed on Apple TV. Emby saves metadata's in folders, Infuse 5 read them and plays smoothly EVERYTHING I've thrown at it (remux, mkv, avi, mp4, dts, dts-hd passthrough, etc.). So long Plex...

It can't handle MPEG4 files for some reason; it either tries to direct play it and give you a green screen or transcodes it to play properly and they're not sure why. The difference is three different people are actively trying to help solve the problem. It's an intermittent bug, so it's being a pain to track down; but it' so weird to not be told it's my fault for not using it "their way".

MPEG-4 is a dead horse.
Do NOT confuse MPEG-4 Video Streams with mp4 containers.
Not the same horse.
Not even close.

That was the problem; letting my nephew "help" by converting and loading stuff to the server. I thought he knew what he was doing and so did he. The files he ended up with said MP4 and loaded and played fine in Plex; so I never noticed. . . till I started using Emby. Now lord only knows how many files I'm gonna have to track down and replace. :s My fault, really. But my point was; they could have just said that I need to fix/replace those files ( I do) and "sucks to be me", instead, they're actually trying to help make it work until I can clean up my own mess. That's nearly unheard of.


#15

Yep. MPEG-4 is a stream format. A dead/dying format. mp4 is a container.

That handy Handbrake guide in my sig can help a lot, but nothing good ever happens without some hard work.


#16

@rsava said:

@adrianwi said:

One of the best things isn't actually the software, but the support community where you can actually get support from the emby team. Something sadly lacking here for some time.

When I see statements like this it amuses me. Plex used to be that way, then it grew. As it grew the problem slowly grew.

Companies have the option to grow too. Those that don’t and try to provide the same levels of service to a growing customer based tend to fail when customers start to look elsewhere.


#17

@adrianwi said:

@rsava said:

@adrianwi said:

One of the best things isn't actually the software, but the support community where you can actually get support from the emby team. Something sadly lacking here for some time.

When I see statements like this it amuses me. Plex used to be that way, then it grew. As it grew the problem slowly grew.

Companies have the option to grow too. Those that don’t and try to provide the same levels of service to a growing customer based tend to fail when customers start to look elsewhere.

????


#18

@rsava said:
????

https://gcuwikipreneurs.wikispaces.com/The+Lifecycle+Of+A+Business

Plex is failing as a company. Their userbase is growing, yet they still function like a garage company. A lot of functions you would expect from a company with a customer base like Plex are inexistant: Communications and Support to name the 2 that would be needed the most.

Instead of doing market reserach to understand what it's clients really want Plex rolled out functionallity in the past that nobody wanted and seems to have produced a roadmap that fully misses their cients demands.


#19

@marcelhehle said:

@rsava said:
????

https://gcuwikipreneurs.wikispaces.com/The+Lifecycle+Of+A+Business

Plex is failing as a company. Their userbase is growing, yet they still function like a garage company. A lot of functions you would expect from a company with a customer base like Plex are inexistant: Communications and Support to name the 2 that would be needed the most.

Instead of doing market reserach to understand what it's clients really want Plex rolled out functionallity in the past that nobody wanted and seems to have produced a roadmap that fully misses their cients demands.

????
Why do you assume that I do not see Plex is not changing (fast enough) as a company?
Why do you think it is necessary to post silly Wiki articles about business when you nothing of my business background?
Why do you and @adrianwi assume I do not agree?
I was pointing out that Plex was in the position Emby is in now, and had the great interaction with the users - then slowly (more rapidly of late) lost touch with it's users.
I also pointed out that Emby is still behind Plex in user base yet I already see grumblings of things like "the devs don't listen to us", etc. in the Emby forums. Emby is getting ready to explode with users. I said Emby will most likely go through the same things because of these early grumblings.
There are people (former Plex users) are complaining because of a limitation on devices even with a Premiere license.
Others are the usual "I want a refund!".
And, there is a thread in Reddit that talks about forking it to bypass the license restrictions that Emby has put in place, because the users are pissed that they are trying to make it harder to use without getting a Premiere license.

I am not sure why you all had a hard time comprehending my post. Nowhere did I say Plex was right, nowhere did I say I did not agree, nowhere did I say people were wrong in their statements of what is happening at Plex. I said statements like that amuse me and here is why. I then gave my impressions of my Emby install, which are different from others.

So I follow up at the end of this with another:

*????
*


#20

I was simply pointing out that companies can take steps to avoid problems as they grow. Yours seems to suggest it was inevitable and emby would simply follow the same path. If they don't try and scale to meet their customer base, maybe they will, but Plex has already made the mistake and the cracks are beginning to show.