Long gone are the times where your NAS only served the single purpose of holding all your files in a centralized location. Today’s NAS are equipped with powerful processors that can do so much more than serve you your files and thanks to their built-in iGPU they are even able to deliver 4K content directly to your TV. Today I’ll show you how to set up an amazing home theater experience with just your Thecus NAS and a TV.
Plex Media Server and Player
Plex is a client-server media player system and software suite comprising two main components. The Plex Media Server is either running on Windows, MacOS, Linux, FreeBSD, or on a NAS which is the case here. It is an easy-to-use application which organizes music, photo, and video content from personal media libraries and streams it to their player counterparts.
Using the Thecus NAS as a remote media station isn’t a problem either thanks to DLNA/UPnP streaming as well as Apple TV and Chromecast streaming. Your consoles and mobile phones can also easily connect to the Plex server, even when you’re on the go. Built-in DDNS features and mobile apps make it a breeze.
The players can either be the Plex Apps available for mobile devices, smart TVs, and streaming boxes – or users can utilize the web-based user interface of the Plex Media Server.
Plex is quick and easy to set up on a Thecus NAS. We’ve installed it through the app center and the initialization will only take a moment.
The first step is to give the server a name. Throughout this article, I will be using the same simple name for ease, but you might want to call it something more interesting. The important thing is that you can recognize it.
As you add new items, the Plex system will start to grab information on the content and list it. I’ve equipped each folder with an NFO file linking to the TV shows database and also a folder image. These will help the various media server apps to identify the content and list it with the proper information.
Grabbing all this information and building the database takes quite a bit of time, at least if your library is as big as mine. You can however already watch it all, it just doesn’t show additional information, images, and trailers yet.
Now that we’ve added all our media to the server, it is time to play some of it. The playback is smooth and the quality is great on both audio and video.
Besides the browser view, we can also stream to other devices with Plex apps such as mobile phones, tablets, gaming consoles, and smart TVs. It also has a UPnP/DLNA service built-in which can stream to devices that don’t have their own Plex app.
To best harness Plex Media’s vast multimedia functionality, it is recommended to use Thecus’ N2810PRO and N4810. These NASs offer truly a solid base for a media center. One of the key benefits is the connectivity. With HDMI and DisplayPort you can enjoy up to 4K video resolutions and media playback directly on any screen with the appropriate connector. To ensure crystal clear digital sound to your amplifier a SPDIF port is available for the complete Multimedia experience.