[Guide] Hardware Transcoding: The JDM way! QuickSync and NVENC

I playing with the thought off bulding a transcoding server so does it make a huge difference between the nuber of streams i would be able to transcode between the Intel Celeron G4900 or Intel Celeron G4900t. becuse i would like to go with a low enrgy build and there for a Intel Celeron G4900t would be better i guess what are you thoughts? btw how many streams could i get with those processors?

Thanks for all the info in HW transcoding.

Does anyone know what the limiting factor is on how many transcodes you can run on QuickSync?

NVENC seems to be limited by GPU RAM. What about QS?

And would a i9 9900k get more simultaneous HW transcodes than say a G4900?

Someone correct me if I’m wrong but the regular G4900 will throttle down on power when not in use…so the benefits offset any energy performance gains by getting the T model. I would guess they both idle around the same wattage.

As for your other question I think someone has stated they could get over 20 streams going. I personally have had over 15 in a test case but never really have more than a few going at a time.

QuickSync/iGPU share system RAM, so I think it’s really just down to the power of the encoding chip.

I wouldn’t recommend a 9900k at all, it’s a complete waste…

The T will use less power overall, even if it is marginal.

G4900 and G4900T have similar performance.

Thanks. So the more system RAM the more simultaneous transcodes you could run?

Just wanting to make sure I don’t bottleneck my system with too little RAM, if that’s the limiting factor.

And re. the 9900- the only advantage this would have is if I’m running olmultiple other CPU intensive processes (ie unpacking in SAB, analyzing files in Plex, Rclone encryption etc)?

Quick Question:
Intel Celeron G4900 or Intel Celeron G5900?
Should I still invest in LGA 1151v2 or should I go with a LGA 1200 plattform?
The Price is about the same where I live.

If the price is the same i would go comet lake (LGA 1200), but just know you are leading the charge and there may be a early adopter tax when it comes to problems. It would probably be just fine though.

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LGA1200 motherboards are the same price as 1151?

What are your thoughts on running an all-in-one setup under Unraid with Intel Quicksync (currently have a Xeon E-2176g I can use) compared to having them separate?

I’m mulling over the idea of moving everything under Unraid instead of having them separate and just turning my current Unraid setup into JBODs.

You can do it that way, but it’s generally recommended to keep Plex hardware separate for QS. It’s much simpler to setup and maintain a separate box, and you’re not potentially sharing resources between Plex and other containers/VMs.


@Geran_Brown and @ALANMAN , I have a similar question. I want to build a Plex server and Unraid NAS (nothing currently), including some dockers and VM. My thought is to do all-in-one using Xeon E-2246g. This should handle everything and last me quite some time. I’m not exactly sure how putting together a separate box just for Plex would be advantageous. In fact, I think it would add complexity because then I would want to add 10Gb direct connect Ethernet because drives separate from Plex. I’d also be paying more for a second system and for more watts (although minor). I can see where this could be advantageous for someone with an existing unraid system that doesn’t have QuickSync. But, for me, building energy efficient, powerful system from scratch, is there any advantage? Am I missing anything regarding Plex on a separate box advantages? Thanks

Exactly how much power do you figure you’ll be saving going this route? Isn’t power also dependent on load, which will theoretically be the same.
Have you also considered what other power saving activities you could be doing as well if that’s a top priority for you (lower ac, switch to led lights, turn things off when not in use).

Btw, that’s an expensive cpu. Won’t even get into how long it would take to recoup that cost over a small electrical bill savings.

One major point of these guides is to save money by purchasing the recommended parts at the time published from the used market.

The point of quicksync specifically is that it quickly outpaces standard CPU transcoding while keeping the cost down. A 50 dollar CPU with quicksync can outperform a several hundred or thousand dollar CPU without quicksync when it comes to plex transcodes.

It is recommended to keep Plex with quicksync as a dedicated system to simplify setup and maintenance. More specifically, this is to avoid complications passing the iGPU through docker or a VM and avoid potential resource sharing issues.

The Xeon you listed does have quicksync, but also costs nearly 3x as much an entire HP 290 or Otis build, and that’s just the CPU.

Since the 290 availability and price fluctuates and is inconsistent lately, I recommend the Otis build. Either of these options should be paired with a NAS, but Otis can also be built out as a multipurpose all in one box if you wish to go that route. Check out the NAS Killer 4.0 guide as well.

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For 3-4 1080p streams would a Pentium Gold G5400 w/ 16 GB (3200) of ram be sufficient? That cpu is $50 New at microcenter right now.

Streams is a general term.

If you mean transcodes, with QuickSync that CPU can do 20 easily. 16GB of RAM is completely overkill, most people usually use 8GB. RAM speeds are not important, 2400 or 2666 is fine.

There’s one G5400T left for $39.99 - no reason to buy new.

After reading I’m seeing that LGA1200 Mobo are about the same in price. But they do not have the LGA 1200 pentiums in stock anywhere. Is a New Celeron a better option for a plex/home storage over the G5400?

Where are you finding a LGA1200 motherboard for $70? Because thats what the 9th gen motherboards are running new at microcenter. The cheapest LGA1200 motherboards I saw there were $150.

Little more than $50 but not sure if its worth investing in a new socket.