State of the Media Player (Plex vs JellyFin)

Some nagging problems with my Plex (https://www.plex.tv) installation inspired me to re-survey the field of home-based Media Player solutions and see if any of them were adequate replacements. I ended up learning about JellyFin (https://jellyfin.org), and installed it for the first time, pointing it at the same collections as Plex.

Problems with Plex:
* Plex Radio skips large portions of songs, while randomly playing the collection
– a workaround is to randomly play “by artist”
– the “Smart” pick algorithm of Radio focuses too much on recent releases, ignoring a lot of great music (just like most radio stations)
* Plex Photo “explodes” onto the filesystem with so many variant sizes of each photo, that backing up the Plex working directories is approaching impossible.
* Plex Movie art in the “What’s On” and “Browse” areas of “Live TV and DVR” is increasingly missing.

Solutions with JellyFin:
* JellyFin doesn’t offer “radio”, but does allow randomly playing “by artist”, which works
* JellyFin’s Photo/metadata/art storage is very reasonably small
* JellyFin has a very high hit rate of matching art to music and movies – no missing art

Problems with JellyFin (10.7 RC1):
* JellyFin seemed to randomly ignore camera movies in the photo collection, making it unsuitable to take over for Plex
* JellyFin kept showing up in my “Top 5” list of RAM and CPU hog processes. The CPU is able to drop lower, but the RAM use was insane – approaching 1.6 GB ! That’s a showstopper for me.
* Strangely, Movie player controls for skipping forward/back 15 seconds were missing from all (web/android) UI’s. I was really looking forward to seeing JellyFin race past Plex’s sluggish skip behavior.

Yet to evaluate in JellyFin:
* DVR functions.
* I understand JellyFin doesn’t yet support Comskip on recordings. This is a showstopper for me.

In short, JellyFin is impressive, but not yet ready to take over for Plex. But definitely worth watching!