Episode overview

Plex have been very busy recently, with the release of MyPlex could service and now Plex for Windows along with a new Mac version. There are some nice touches with the Windows version including Windows Media Center integration. The new client has been re-written and includes a new skinning engine, takes less CPU amd memory and has improved media playback.

The Plex desktop client has been largely rewritten, based on the latest stable release of XBMC. This means that it’ll benefit from all the great work that team has put in, and will have the updated skinning engine and player that Plex makes use of. This means that it’ll run smoother, and consume less CPU and memory. Media playback is also much better, with improved and more flexible A/V sync, support for optical media, and more. In addition, we’ve updated the core engine (the incredible ffmpeg) to the very latest code, which means there is support for 10-bit video (Hi10P), HTTP Live Streaming, and much more. We’ve also made it easier to keep abreast of future changes from both teams.

This new release of Plex fully supports myPlex, and is a “thin client”. This means you can download just the client, sign into myPlex, and you have instant access to all your media (and media shared with you), no matter where you are. The client can transcode or Direct Play remote media, including Flash/Silverlight video. Many of you have asked for this feature, and we’re incredibly happy to bring it to you. If you look closely, you’ll see there’s even an option for including shared libraries in the universal search.

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There are also improvements to the Plex Media Server:

  • Memory usage reading iTunes XML file greatly reduced.
  • Added browsing movies by country.
  • Allow browsing by collection in music sections.
  • Fix for crashes when scanning directories without permission.
  • [Linux] Fixes for inotify automatic scans.
  • Improved reliability in network advertisements.
  • Fix for date-based episodes not getting any metadata.
  • Greatly sped up starting audio playback over slow connections.
  • Fix 100% CPU usage on run first.
  • Fixed unmatched items not getting local subtitles.
  • Crash starting and and then quickly stopping Flash/Silverlight playback.
  • [Windows] Fix unresponsive tray icon.
  • [Windows] A few other crashes.
  • Sped up recently added media queries.
  • Allow Direct Streaming for up to 160kbps AAC
  • Fix nested iTunes playlists.

You can get the Windows and Mac version from Plex’s download site

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