Avoid transcoding with subtitles


I’m going to build a NK 4.0 for Sonarr/Radarr/NZBGet paired with an HP 290 for Plex. My mom uses subtitles a lot and I’m worried about CPU usage when trying to encode subtitles as QS won’t do that to my understanding. Would using something like Bazarr to grab SRT files work to be in a format that won’t require transcoding for subtitles, or is that client specific?


The subtitle transcode may take place on the CPU if the client doesn’t support it, but the CPU usage isn’t that high. Plex Pass includes automatic subtitle fetching with Open Subtitles so you really do not need Bazarr. If it’s only for 1 or 2 people, I wouldn’t worry about it. Give it a test and see how it goes before changing anything.


I’ve been running plex with plexdrive off a 2011 i7 MacBook Pro (Ubuntu OS), Sonarr/Radarr/NZBGet/etc. on a bytesized VPS, for a few years and I’m excited to see the performance increase running local storage and hardware transcoding for my remote users!

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Using SRT subs alone won’t always do it. On the client side, change the Burn Subtitles setting to Only Image Formats. With that setting enabled, SRT subs will just be sent to the client as-is for the client to render on the screen. You won’t get all the fancy fonts you do with image-based subs, but you won’t need to transcode either.

Also, to get full Open Subtitles functionality, you need to sign up for a free account at https://opensubtitles.org and enter your credentials into Plex (Settings > Agents > Movies > Plex Movie, then click the gear icon next to the OpenSubtitles.org). While you’re there, make sure the agent is enabled for Movies and TV Shows.


Is this done on server or each client?

Edit: the open subtitles part, specifically.

The Open Subtitles credentials are added on the server side.

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Awesome, thank you for the information I’ll give it a try!

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