Finally..., my media my way.

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After months of planning and a lot of work my home network project is complete. The plan was to get rid of cable and have the media we want to watch/listen to available on all devices not only in the home but also anywhere there is an internet connection. I ran cat6 ethernet to many locations in the house, and use wifi to all others. Converted my old desktop into a dedicated media server using Plex. Incorporated a HD antenna for reception of major network content. I am very happy with the way Plex is working out. My entire movie and music collection resides on the 'server' and is available on every client device from the living room TV to an old ipad and our phones. Between Netflix, Hulu, and all of our own content via Plex we have not missed cable in even the slightest way. I also like the idea that we do not have to rely on itunes or similar "cloud" storage provided by someone else and stored on hard drives I don't have access to with network admins that I don't know. Picture below shows the network distribution center I built in the basement. The old desktop has a 6-core AMD cpu with enough power to trans-code 2 blu-ray quality 1080p streams to 2 different devices simultaneously with enough juice left over to send a music stream to a 3rd device. I know FreeNas ZFS gurus may take issue with my use of the term 'server' but it certainly is serving me, pun intended. [img:center]http://s1153.photobucket.com/user/jquib1/Media%20Server/story[/img]
 
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Pretty awesome project. If my media wasn't already in cloud services I might consider doing the same with my old desktop. One question, assuming you're on your home connection how did you handle the dynamic IP address? Did you have to use a dynamic DNS service or does Plex handle this for you?
 
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Originally Posted By: Cardiobuck
"After months of planning and a lot of work my home network project is complete. The plan was to get rid of cable and have the media we want to watch/listen to available on all devices not only in the home but also anywhere there is an internet connection......Between Netflix, Hulu, and all of our own content via Plex we have not missed cable in even the slightest way."
This is really interesting to me - can you explain what you mean by no longer missing cable? Are you saying that by going with Netflix and Hulu you're also saving $$$ every month but still watch what you want? Thank you! Ed
 
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Nice. I used to have a full size desktop box as a media server until recently. Then decided to save space and electricity, and just switched out to a small Intel NUC box instead. Plex runs great on it, although it probably wouldn't have enough go-juice to transcode two 1080p steams simultaneously, but I don't have a need for it. I typically stream to my Roku 3 player, which allows for direct streaming, so typically no transcoding required.
 

Cardiobuck

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Originally Posted By: glock19
One question, assuming you're on your home connection how did you handle the dynamic IP address? Did you have to use a dynamic DNS service or does Plex handle this for you?
Plex handles DNS for you.
 

Cardiobuck

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Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
This is really interesting to me - can you explain what you mean by no longer missing cable? Are you saying that by going with Netflix and Hulu you're also saving $$$ every month but still watch what you want? Thank you! Ed
What I mean is we save $100 per month by no longer paying for a cable subscription. We have more media to watch then we will ever have time for, and that media is available whenever we want on any device we own. For example, we were recently a few hundred miles from home and my daughter watched Madagascar on my old ipad--steamed from my media server. As long as we have an internet connection, all of our media content is available.
 
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Nice! Now put it on a UPS. I've been rocking OwnCloud on a home server for while now, got all my personal information and phone auto-upload pictures off of the various cloud drive servers. Media server is next but I'm getting there in steps. I've started with populating the A/V in the SUV so we don't have to drag DVD's around.
 

Cardiobuck

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Originally Posted By: Ed_Flecko
Pretty cool! The only "problem* (if you want to call it that) is that you don't have live t.v., right? Ed
The HD antenna takes care of that. I have ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox in high def that I can pick up with the antenna. On the fourth of July we watched Boston Pops fireworks live. I am even able to record whatever the antenna picks up for later viewing. Will come in handy this fall when football season begins. Believe it or not the quality of over-the-air HD broadcast is pristine; unlike DirectTV or traditional cable it is an uncompressed stream. I took advantage of the existing RG6 cable that the house was built with to carry the signal from the second floor antenna to the living room.
 
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Pretty cool solution. My direcTV bill is 36 dollars. I wish that a 20 dollar solution came around that had all local channels and maybe 10 channels that I pick. I would go for that in a heartbeat. Even the cheapest direcTV package is too many channels that I will never watch. I watch about 30 minutes of TV per day, mostly while I am getting ready for work, traffic reports and weather.
 
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Good for you buddy, We cut the pay TV cord years ago and have saved thousands of $$ since. We watch all we want AND don't have to endure all of the constant sex and violence that is out there.
 
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We cut the cord many years ago as well. We don't have Plex and, still, there's FAR more content on Netflix and Hulu than one could possibly watch. Have fun!
 
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Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
We cut the cord many years ago as well. We don't have Plex and, still, there's FAR more content on Netflix and Hulu than one could possibly watch. Have fun!
I have 4 words for you, Kodi with Genesis addon
 

OVERKILL

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Originally Posted By: Rand
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
We cut the cord many years ago as well. We don't have Plex and, still, there's FAR more content on Netflix and Hulu than one could possibly watch. Have fun!
I have 4 words for you, Kodi with Genesis addon
Yup, the bomb.
 
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Very cool indeed! No cable or sat here. I do get free TV off-the-air OTA. I mostly watch borrowed movies from a local library. Last year I rewired my house with CAT5, separate VOICE & DATA. Old twisted pair finally shorted. Cheers!
 
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