CPU Upgrade recommendation - Plex UHD Movies


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Hi guys and gals

 

Basically, I have family that access my plex server and I am now amassing a UHD collection. The issue being that the cpu is being overloaded when i run a 4k movie locally, and there is then an audible alarm triggered. So, I am looking for a recommendation for cpu upgrade? Current system is as per below. Thanks!

 

CPU: Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1241v3 (8M Cache, 3.50 GHz)

Motherboard: Supermicro X10SL7-F

Memory: 2 x Crucial 16GB Kit (8GBx2) DDR3/DDR3L-1600MT/s (PC3-12800) DR x8 ECC UDIMM Server Memory CT2KIT102472BD160B/CT2CP102472BD160B

PSU: Corsair HX850i 80 Plus Platinum 850W Power Supply

Case: Fractal Design Define R5 Mid Tower Black

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Define "alarms?

 

Because CPU's don't get "over loaded". They get used and there's nothing wrong with 100% load. But if there isn't enough cooling they over heat and that IS bad.

 

The difference matters because even with optimized versions your CPU is going to get loaded up while optimizing and it'll still trigger the "alarms".

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2 hours ago, kingmonkey said:

Ok, I’m with you, sounds like the issue is overheating then. Can you explain how I can combat this then? 

This may sound obvious, but here goes.

 

The CPU die is where the heat is produced. The heat has to be transferred from the inside of the CPU to the CPU case, to the heatsink, to the air inside the case, and moved outside the case.

 

You have to figure out where in the chain the heat is being trapped. The CPU die to case is factory sealed, so that's not typically an issue, the CPU case to the heatsink relies on a solid mechanical connection, with heatsink compound to fill in the little voids between the heatsink and CPU case. The heatsink needs airflow with enough temperature differential to absorb all the heat produced. Either a large volume of warmish ambient air, or a smaller volume of cold air.

 

Follow the heat to find the issue. If the heatsink isn't overly warm when the alarms are going off, then check heatsink compound and fitment of the heatsink to ensure a good tight connection. If the heatsink is piping hot, then chase down the airflow issue, fans, dust, ambient temp, whatever.

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7 hours ago, kingmonkey said:

Hi guys and gals

 

Basically, I have family that access my plex server and I am now amassing a UHD collection. The issue being that the cpu is being overloaded when i run a 4k movie locally, and there is then an audible alarm triggered. So, I am looking for a recommendation for cpu upgrade? Current system is as per below. Thanks!

 

CPU: Intel® Xeon® Processor E3-1241v3 (8M Cache, 3.50 GHz)

Motherboard: Supermicro X10SL7-F

Memory: 2 x Crucial 16GB Kit (8GBx2) DDR3/DDR3L-1600MT/s (PC3-12800) DR x8 ECC UDIMM Server Memory CT2KIT102472BD160B/CT2CP102472BD160B

PSU: Corsair HX850i 80 Plus Platinum 850W Power Supply

Case: Fractal Design Define R5 Mid Tower Black

 

If you do decide down the road to upgrade your CPU, you probably want a Coffee Lake CPU (Either the i7 8700/8700K or the new Xeon E-2176G/2186G) if Plex hardware transcoding (really reduces the load on the CPU and offloads it to the iGPU) is of interest to you.  The Coffee Lake chips have 6 core/12 threads so there is more raw CPU power as well, if needed.

 

Of course, either processor means a new motherboard and DDR4 RAM as well.

 

The Kaby Lake CPUs can do 4K, but, if you are going to upgrade, might as well go with more cores and higher clock speeds as well and for full UHD, Coffee Lake is (supposedly) better.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Unpopular opinion, but get you and your family some cheap Chinese android boxes that will direct play the files, so that your stuff won't have to be transcoded.  The biggest problem with having plex on TV's is that the majority of them can't do ATMOS, and because of that, Plex will transcode the files.  Most people also don't have their TV's setup to passthrough their audio to a sound system, so they are relying on the TV itself to do the processing.  The other option, is you could only encode or source versions of your movies that are compliant with what the TV's can play, ie AAC audio instead of ATMOS/TRUHD.  You could also try switching to Emby, which let's you use an external player like SPMC or Kodi, which will obviously direct play the files no problem.

 

I am hoping that you do have a 4k capable TV and your server isn't trying to convert it down to SDR instead.

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I recently had the same need for upgrade for HW 4k transcoding. I only run a few Dockers incl. Emby.

I had DDR3 ram like you, so I got a Asrock board with an integrated Celeron J3455 CPU and DDR3 support for about $100.

Perhaps not the "best" best option, but a very cheap and low power one that works.

 

Edited by _jonte
Typo
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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone,

I got a 

dual Intel® Xeon® CPU E5-2690 0 @ 2.90GHz

192gb ram

Supermicro - X9DRL-3F/iF motherboard

 2 ssd for cache

transcoding on memory

 

i download a 4k atmos movie, and my server could not handle that... WTF

cpu overheated start beeping like there is no tomorrow

running unraid server 6.6.1

 

any idea what to do to make play hud movies?

 

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25 minutes ago, Matt M Speer said:

Hi everyone,

I got a 

dual Intel® Xeon® CPU E5-2690 0 @ 2.90GHz

192gb ram

Supermicro - X9DRL-3F/iF motherboard

 2 ssd for cache

transcoding on memory

 

i download a 4k atmos movie, and my server could not handle that... WTF

cpu overheated start beeping like there is no tomorrow

running unraid server 6.6.1

 

any idea what to do to make play hud movies?

 

 

He found a solution.
  vvvvvvvvvvvv

On 9/1/2018 at 4:52 AM, _jonte said:

I recently had the same need for upgrade for HW 4k transcoding  ... <snip> ... so I got a Asrock board with an integrated Celeron J3455 CPU and DDR3 support for about $100.

Perhaps not the "best" best option, but a very cheap and low power one that works.

 

 

Xeon CPU's are typically not a great choice for video transcoding, but the devil is in the details. Maybe make a separate, new post with all the details?

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1 hour ago, whipdancer said:

Xeon CPU's are typically not a great choice for video transcoding

@Matt M Speer The Xeons with iGPU and Quick Sync Video support are very good at transcoding.  You need an E3 Xeon or the new E-21xx Xeons to do this.  I have an E3-1245 V5 Xeon in my main server and it does Plex hardware and software transcoding very well, but, transcoding UHD/HEVC 10-bit utilizes all cores/threads at 85-95%

 

The Kaby Lake (E3-12x5 V6) and the Coffee Lake (E-21xxG) Xeon processors are capable of H.265/HEVC 10-bit (UHD)/4K encode and decode in hardware without bringing the CPU to its knees.

 

Basically, any Kaby Lake or Coffee Lake generation CPU with an iGPU/QSV support from Celeron to Xeon can do H.265/HEVC/4K HW transcoding.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intel_Quick_Sync_Video

 

 

Edited by Hoopster
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[mention=85824]Matt M Speer[/mention] The Xeons with iGPU and Quick Sync Video support are very good at transcoding.  You need an E3 Xeon or the new E-21xx Xeons to do this.  I have an E3-1245 V5 Xeon in my main server and it does Plex hardware and software transcoding very well, but, transcoding UHD/HEVC 10-bit utilizes all cores/threads at 85-95%
 
The Kaby Lake (E3-12x5 V6) and the Coffee Lake (E-21xxG) Xeon processors are capable of H.265/HEVC 10-bit (UHD)/4K encode and decode in hardware without bringing the CPU to its knees.
 
Basically, any Kaby Lake or Coffee Lake generation CPU with an iGPU/QSV support from Celeron to Xeon can do H.265/HEVC/4K HW transcoding.
 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intel_Quick_Sync_Video
 
 
Also you need to make sure your motherboard chipset suppprts iGPU. The OP's X10SL7-F (C222 chipset) does not. I believe there are only a couple X10 boards that do. You need a C226 chipset. I had an X10SLL-F. After trying unsuccessfully to get X10SLH-F, I decided to just upgrade to an X11 board. However I found my newly purchased X11SLL-F (C232 chipset) didn't support iGPU either. Which brings me to my X11SSH-F with a C236 chipset that works perfectly streaming/transcoding using VA API in Emby.
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11 hours ago, Hoopster said:

@Matt M Speer The Xeons with iGPU and Quick Sync Video support are very good at transcoding.  You need an E3 Xeon or the new E-21xx Xeons to do this.  I have an E3-1245 V5 Xeon in my main server and it does Plex hardware and software transcoding very well, but, transcoding UHD/HEVC 10-bit utilizes all cores/threads at 85-95%

 

The Kaby Lake (E3-12x5 V6) and the Coffee Lake (E-21xxG) Xeon processors are capable of H.265/HEVC 10-bit (UHD)/4K encode and decode in hardware without bringing the CPU to its knees.

 

Basically, any Kaby Lake or Coffee Lake generation CPU with an iGPU/QSV support from Celeron to Xeon can do H.265/HEVC/4K HW transcoding.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intel_Quick_Sync_Video

 

 

As I said, the devil is in the details.

There are specific lines of Xeon & Core CPU's that are good at it. There are far more that do not excel at it.

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9 hours ago, whipdancer said:

As I said, the devil is in the details.

I am the devil, I provided some details and devil macias provided a few more 😀 

 

The E5 Xeon the OP (and many other unRAIDers) has is definitely not on the "good at HW transcoding" list and it does not have the brute force to make up for it with 4K/UHD.

Edited by Hoopster
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I have a relatively moderate 4k collection atm, and all my devices direct play what they need to (once I disable the TrueHD audio track) so I never even need to transcode. 

 

Are you transcoding 4K movies down to 1080p for people? or just lower bitrate 4k files for streaming?

To avoid this I recently started replacing some large REMUX files with smaller 20-30gb files (theoretically around my maximum uploadable file for a ~2hr movie)  

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I can't direct play or transcode 4k/UHD without significant buffering. 

Since I use Plex, I take advantage of it's "Optimize" feature - that creates a copy you can choose to watch. So, until I am able to upgrade my network (I use powerline adapters because I'm in a rental) I will continue to keep the best quality version I can and create a "streaming" copy from that.

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An Odroid C2 running the OpenPHT software can play 4K UHD from an internal Plex Docker without transcoding - it can also pass-thru all of the audio formats that go along with the UHD movies. Very low cost and very effective way of dealing with the 4K issue.

Other than the OpenPHT (Open Plex Home Theatre) being a community build and a little out-of-date it still performs better for me than most other builds I have tried.

 

Edited by dstanley
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  • 4 months later...
On 10/25/2018 at 7:58 AM, whipdancer said:

I can't direct play or transcode 4k/UHD without significant buffering. 

Since I use Plex, I take advantage of it's "Optimize" feature - that creates a copy you can choose to watch. So, until I am able to upgrade my network (I use powerline adapters because I'm in a rental) I will continue to keep the best quality version I can and create a "streaming" copy from that.

Powerline adapters connecting your server, TV or both?  I had my TV on a powerline adapter (server hardwired directly to the router) and also had significant buffering.  Turns out my 2017 LG OLED C7 only has a 10/100 LAN port - upgrading to a Nighthawk with AC and switching to wifi fixed it, 4K direct plays are now perfectly smooth, and my server only has a crappy i5 and 16gb

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