{ % feed_meta %} Converting Media Format | A Few Pinches of Salt

Converting Media Format

The beauty of Plex has not gone unnoticed by my family, having the ability to watch our local series and movies at home on the device of their choosing, while also having the ability to access it from outside of our home network. Recently, my friends have also benefitted from this, as I am testingtheir viewing experience on the 5 Mbps upload speed of our fibre line. So far I haven’t had any complaints, although I don’t believe that I two people have attempted to watch at the same time.

The one side of having the ability to watch the media on all of these devices is that fact that not all of the files can be directly streamed without being converted. This results in many of the devices having to transcode the media while watching. Fortunately for those devices, they do not have to do the transcoding as that responsibility falls to the Plex server…

These old media formats (ahem!! Looking at you *.avi), require transcoding in order to be viewed by these devices. This puts undue stress on my home PC to transcode these files whenever someone wants to watch them.

Fortunately, this can be resolved. The use of ffmpeg in this case means that all of these titles can be converted to formats/containers which don’t require transcoding.

I have a large amount of media stockpiled on the different hard drives on my PC, currently sitting at 590 movies, and 88 shows. This would take a while to go through each and every movie and episode to do the conversion.

I made a repo with some scripts in which to do this, it also has a script which backups a list of the movies and series.

This conversion process, ideally, converts the files in-place, so that the old versions are not kept. One of the first parts of the script is to rename all of the folders and files so that there are no spaces in the names, as this breaks the script. This is all built in.

So far this has been performing as required. The AVI file type is not used much anymore, so this is often a once-off process, however, it simplifies this process greatly.