Originally Posted by tppytel
Plex on the Shield also has the ability to natively read PGS/SUP subtitles without the need for the server to burn them in (which requires transcoding). Most other Plex clients can't do that. I haven't tested but I would assume the PC version does, since PC Plex generally supports every option. I don't know about the Oppo's client. It looks like Kodi supports external subs too, but I don't have any experience with it. Of course, if you rarely watch anything with subtitles this doesn't matter much.
A powerline adapter can also provide enough bandwidth if wireless or Cat5/6 aren't feasible. A 1:1 BD rip will be 25-30mbps - we get about 50mbps on the TP-Link AV2000. But powerlines depend on the quirks of your home's wiring and there's no good way to predict how well they'll actually work until you plug them in and try it out.
The server will obviously need plenty of storage (~25GB per movie, a little more with extras), but it may not need much horsepower depending on your setup. If all you're doing is pushing MKV's to Plex clients that will absolutely never need transcoding, then you can get away with a basic NAS. But if you're going to have people watching on tablets or want remote access or whatever, then you probably want to build a server with processing power appropriate to the number of simultaneous transcodes you need to support.
Pretty good info here.
The wireline adapters have one critical requirement - both of the outlets that the devices are plugged into have to be on the same "bus" in the panel. If the breakers that control both outlets are on the same side as each other, you should be ok.
BD rips are all over the map in terms of size as they are mostly related to the original quality they were recorded in. Avatar and the Lord of the Rings movies are roughly 40G while the BD version of Bram Stoker's Dracula is somewhere around 7G. Many of my BD rips are somewhere in the 18-25G range, so 25G as an average probably isn't a bad guideline.
While the server doesn't really need a lot of horsepower if you aren't transcoding, it absolutely SHOULD have a gigabit NIC and have a decent amount of RAM to work with. This facilitates the ability to serve multiple clients at once. Additionally, if you intend to give external access (Plex specific comment here, although may apply to others), then you will need to be able to transcode as your upload speeds to the Internet will not support native mode streaming of content.
I've tried building a Plex server with "very old" hardware, and it just doesn't work well in the long run. Booting, restarting the service, installing updates, and even the performance of your clients is affected. If you can get a machine produced in the last 5-6 years as your base, you should be able to run a nice setup. I use HGST Deskstar NAS drives in my machines as they are rated for 1,000,000 hours MTBF. That's a CRAZY amount of time to be able to be powered on with the expectation of no failures.
While I generally don't worry about subtitles, I do rip all of my content with MakeMKV (makemkvcli specifically - headless machine) and then post-process with HandBrake to burn in forced subtitles (subtitles for on-screen dialog that is in a different language than the movie). I also leverage the compression of HandBrake and end up seeing roughly a 70% decrease in file size with no discernible quality drop to the naked eye even on my 75" 4K TV.