Media Devices Media Services

Record Ahead with Plex DVR

plex-live-skip-3For many Windows Media Center enthusiasts, Plex was the natural replacement for a full-featured media library solution. When Plex rolled out their DVR solution last year it was able to convert even more people from Microsoft’s aging software, but it still had many features that needed to be built. One thing remains constant about Plex though: their rate of change! While the DVR solution launched with many huge gaps in functionality, they’ve regularly released small updates to plug those holes.

The latest update to the Plex DVR brings some users the ability to watch a live television show as it is being recorded. Previously, you could watch a show while it was recording, but now if you jump in late you can start from the beginning of the recording. Then you can rewind and fast-forward up to the point where the show is live. Plex hasn’t figured out how to fast-forward into the future…yet!

The key scenario is simple. If a show starts at 8pm, you can set it to record, then start watching at about 8:15pm. Then, as you get to the commercial breaks you can easily fast-forward through them. It’s a little more work than Plex’s recently announced commercial-skipping feature, but it allows you to watch the closest thing to real-time.

A show that is in the process of recording still won’t show in your TV library until it has completed. To watch it live, you’ll still need to go through the Program Guide. Also, that previously mentioned commercial skipping feature doesn’t really come into play here. That’s because the commercial scanning process doesn’t start until the recording has completed.

The only other limitation to these new features is where you can use them. This new update has been released for Android TV (specifically the NVIDIA SHIELD TV and FireTV) and mobile devices.

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About the author

Josh Pollard

Josh has been writing software since his parents brought home their first computer. His love for gadgets and technology eventually spurred a passion for home theater technology. After starting the DMZ, he received Microsoft’s MVP award for Windows Media Center. Even though the beloved home theater PC platform is all but dead he continues to tinker with consumer entertainment technology. He’s a life-long gamer and DIY smart home enthusiast. He co-hosts the Entertainment 2.0 podcast with Richard Gunther and the DMZ’s gaming podcast, Story Players, with Joe DeStazio.