Looking for the best Plex Alternatives in 2021? Then this article is for you. Despite the influx of several kinds of music and video streaming apps, media server apps are here to stay. They give enhanced and seamless management of files. And with lots of customization tools, you can create your own Netflix and keep your whole library not only ideally organized but also available for streaming across platforms. Speaking of media server applications, “Plex” stands out as the most efficient option.
Nevertheless, its freemium version does not offer access to some notable features, including parental controls, DVR & Live TV, and mobile sync. Also, while Plex is a great media server app, it’s not for everyone. In this article, we’re going to take a peek at some of the best Plex alternatives that you can use in 2021.
Best Plex Alternatives in 2021
Luckily, the market is flooded with a variety of media server apps. Nevertheless, not all of them have the goods to provide useful media streaming and management. So, To save you from extensive research, I have selected some of the best Plex Alternatives. So, if you’re toying with the idea of creating a massive collection of your music, videos, and even memorable photos, take a peek at this extensive roundup to pick a versatile app for your device right now!
1. Media Portal
The First on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is Media Portal. As someone who appreciates more flexibility, “Media Portal” has stood up to my high expectations. The application works as a versatile entertainment hub, which plays a crucial role in handling media and monitoring the whole library. And with such numerous media organizing tools put in place, it gives the much-needed convenience to deal with various files just like Plex. So if you have to manage plenty of media files, this is exactly what you would want to keep your stuff in sync with your requirements.
On the streaming front, Media Portal excels gratitude to the compatibility with tons of media formats. I did not notice any buffering or sluggishness during my test, which speaks volumes of its quality. That’s not all; it’s further designed to work with plugins that can bring in both desired efficiency into the way you manage your files and helpful customization.
Platform: Windows, Android, Web
Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is Universal Media Player. When it comes to giving a reliable performance, “Universal Media Player” is a trusted name. Though it lacks an elegant UI, it offers many user-friendly features to manage your media efficiently. In addition, it boasts a great transcoder and has the support for many media formats. Therefore, it doesn’t matter which media formats you have to deal with; it would permit you to get your job done with the required proficiency.
Furthermore, it also has support for DLNA compatible devices. That implies you can stream your media to a wide variety of devices, including Sony PlayStation 4 (PS4) and PlayStation 3 (PS3), Microsoft Xbox One and 360, many TVs (Samsung, Panasonic, and more). Aside from compatibility, it allows you to access content locally, which is yet another plus. & with the free media server application at your disposal, you have a little more convenience to manage your files and keep track of them.
Platform: Windows, macOS, Linux, NAS Devices
If there’s a media server application that can match Plex in most aspects, it has to be “Emby”. It’s pretty simple and gives you enough flexibility to keep all your songs, videos, and photos organized, just like Plex. The auto-organization functionality assures you don’t have to spend any time keeping your media in the right order. The great part about it is that it automatically converts your media in real-time so that you can seamlessly stream it on any device.
Another great feature of Emby is the neat interface, which permits you to navigate your files conveniently and access them with comfort. You can stream live TV to your preferred device without any buffering or latency issues. When it gets to managing DVR, it does an impressive job. The application keeps you notified with instant alerts whenever any notable actions occur to retain you in the loop with all the necessary actions.
Like Plex, Emby also offers a super convenient parental control feature, allowing you to control what type of content your children access. Plus, you’ll also be able to keep a tab on their session so that their media watching never goes beyond limitations. The support for many platforms and seamless cloud syncing further enriches its reputation as 1 of the best Plex Alternatives. Do not that the free tier won’t allow you access to all the features. And you’ll have to go for Emby Premiere to unlock all the pro features.
Platform: Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, Web, Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, NAS Devices
The Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is Serviio. It has long been a noted media server application. And, if you desire to organize your whole media in one place well, you can’t go wrong with it. The application does a reliable job of streaming media files like music, videos, and even image to supported devices such as TV sets, Bluray players, games consoles, and smartphones on your connected homework. More importantly, it supports Alexa skills, which implies you can take advantage of the smart virtual assistant to stream media.
As for the transcoder, I’ve found it up to the task. The availability of the free media server application for most devices assures the media management task remains a comfortable experience for you. However, keep in mind that the free version of the app won’t let you access content anywhere, which is a bit disappointing.
Platform: Windows, macOS, Linux, NAS Devices
Previously known as XBMC, “Kodi” is a robust open source media player and an entertainment hub. You can play and view music, videos, podcasts, photos, and several other media files from the Internet, local, and network storage media. Gratitude to the support for almost any media formats, the app gives you maximum liberty to keep all of your files in line with your demand.
The application makes sure your movie collection always looks in the apple-pie-order with great artwork and categorized sections. In addition, the personal slideshows bring more pleasure to the way you share your photos. Another trait worth mentioning is the full-on customization, which suggests you can add more personalization to the app to align with what you want. Even better, it appears with a 10-foot UI designed to be used with televisions and remote controls.
With the unique add-on support, Kodi gives you the freedom to further enhance the functionality. Depending on your requirements, you can choose the add-on that will let you bring in some cool customization into the mix and change the way you manage your media. However, compared to Plex, Kodi has 1 big drawback. The application only allows you to stream content on a local WiFi network. Nevertheless, it’s one of the best Plex alternatives you can use for free if you don’t require online streaming capabilities.
Platform: Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, Raspberry Pi, Amazon Fire TV, Nvidia Shield, Xbox, and more
Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is Ampache. Both as a file manager and media server app, “Ampache” is a reasonable option. The app highlights an extremely simple interface that’s quite straightforward to handle. So, After exporting all of your music, you can create a huge collection and design it in accordance with your requirements. Furthermore, you can stream music to your preferred player and also control it with comfort. And if I were to compare it with Plex on flexibility and convenience fronts, I would not hesitate in putting the former very close to the latter.
Love listening to your music on the web? Well, it gives you the efficient HTML5 player to let you stream music directly on the web. Moreover, thanks to the compatible client, you’ll be able to listen to your music on not only tablets and smartphones but also on TV. Overall, “Ampache” is a reliable bet for taking control of music files.
Platform: OS Independent
The Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is MediaGoblin. The app comes with straightforward to use tools to let you manage your media and also share them conveniently. Furthermore, due mainly to the support for various media types such as audio files, videos, books, 3D models, and even ASCII-art, it ensures you don’t have to run into incompatibility issues.
Well, if you’ve to handle tons of media files, the compatibility with a large number of files would be something that you wouldn’t want to compromise. Talking about the UI, I have found MediaGoblin as intuitive as Plex. Moreover, the option to add a new media type and authentication provider could come in handy when you don’t require the limited functionality to become a roadblock for your experience.
Platform: Windows, macOS, and Linux
Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is JRIver Media Center. It claims to be a comprehensive media software. After trying out this software, I can state that it has the quality to be more than a handy replacement for Plex. Whether you desire to manage a lot of audio or keep your music/videos in sync with your specific demand, it shouldn’t disappoint you. In addition, JRIver Media Center has some pretty neat editing tools that come in handy in letting you manage your media files as elegantly as Plex.
Courtesy DLNA support permits you to stream your video on almost any device, including smartphones, tablets, and computers. Furthermore, JRIver Media Center also offers much-needed security and privacy to your data. Therefore, your files will be ideally safeguarded and easily accessible.
Platform: Windows, macOS, and Linux
The Next on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is Streama. Ever desired to have your personal Netflix? If true, “Streama” can prove to be a clever pick for you. The app has got a very impressive UI and comes with a Netflix-inspired player. You can swiftly navigate through your entire collection and also organize the files as per your specific taste. When it gets to organizing media and offering maximum liberty, Streama can give Plex a run for its money.
There is an “Episode Browser” that can assist you in keeping a tab on your episodes and access them comfortably. In addition, streama shows all of your recently watched movies and permits you to start from where you left off. I love this feature a lot as it makes it a tad easier to continue to watch after an interval.
Platform: Windows, Linux, and Android
The Last on our list of the best Plex Alternatives is OSMC. It looks and works pretty much like “Kodi” (mentioned above). So, if you’re looking for a free and open-source media server app that has a striking similarity with Kodi, it would be a safe way to go. The application has a modern-looking design that instantly calls for attention and puts it in the same league as Plex. You can effortlessly create a dependable media server with OSMC and export your entire media files to one secure place.
With the aid of FTP, SMB, or UPnP protocol, you will be able to access your media on the local network quickly. But what makes this application a real deal is the availability of an App Store that lets you download plenty of music and TV services. So if you see yourself often looking for out of the box music or fun loving TV shows, this native App Store would fit into your taste admirably.
Platform: Vero, Raspberry Pi, Apple TV
Manage Your Media with the Great Plex Alternatives:
With some of the excellent media server apps at your beck and call, media sharing and management should now be a pretty easy affair for you. Of course, Plex may still be a cut above the rest in some aspects; nevertheless, Emby, Kodi, Streama, and other apps on this list have the qualities to beat it on quite a few fronts. So do let me know your preferred Plex alternatives by writing in the comments section below.