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Posted by Donna Peng - Contact Author

Can Plex Play ISO? How Can I Play ISO Files with Plex?

An ISO Image is a disk image of an optical disc. By converting DVD to ISO image, we can make a complete backup of DVD and save as a single ISO image file into computer's hard drive, external hard drive, NAS, or somewhere we would like. ISO file can be played with VLC, 5KPlayer, and some other media players on computer. However, some people want to play ISO movie files with Plex. Can Plex play ISO files? How to Play DVD ISO files with Plex? This article will give answers.

Table of Contents

Part 1. Can Plex Play ISO File?

No. The fact is Plex refuses to play any ISO file. According to Plex support, Plex doesn't support disk image formats including ISO, IMG, VIDEO_TS folder, and BDMV[1].

Why Plex can't play ISO and other disk image formats?

These formats do not fit the idea behind the ecosystem of Plex. Disk image files like ISO hide the video content behind the menu system. Users need to interact with the menu interface to access content, but we do not have a good way to present the menu on Plex apps of some devices such as iOS and Android. For an ISO file of TV series, it will contain many episodes. As a result, it is difficult for users to jump directly to specific episode to watch. No one would like to fast-forward through 9 episodes if he or she just wants to watch the tenth episode.

So, to let Plex play ISO files or other files from DVD discs, you need to convert ISO to Plex-supported format first.

What media formats are supported by Plex for Direct Play?[2]

Container format

Video encoding

Audio encoding

ASF

vc1, wmv2

wmav2

AVI

mpeg4, msmpeg4, msmpeg4v2, msmpeg4v3, vc1, wmv3

aac, ac3, mp3

MOV

H.264

aac

MP4

H.264, hevc (H.265), mpeg4, vc1, wmv3

aac, ac3, eac3, mp3

MPEGTS, TS

H.264, mpeg2video

aac, ac3, mp2

MKV

H.264, hevc (H.265), mpeg4, msmpeg4v2, msmpeg4v3, vc1, vp9, wmv3

aac, ac3, alac, e-ac3,flac, mp3

WMV

wmv2, vc1

wmav2

Part 2. How to Make Plex Play ISO Files?

According to the suggestion from Plex, we can convert ISO file to a Plex compatible format. WinX DVD Ripper Platinum is a great choice that can convert ISO file to Plex supported formats like MP4 while maintaining original quality. Supporting hardware acceleration, multi-core CPU, and hyper-threading tech, it can finish this in a few minutes.

Tips: In addition to transcoding ISO to Plex, WinX DVD Ripper Platinum can rip DVD (copy-protected also compatible) and VIDEO_TS folder (which is also not supported by Plex) to MP4, AVI, WMV, MOV, TS, FLV, and more media formats.

Now free download WinX DVD Ripper Platinum and follow the guide below to convert ISO for playback with Plex.

Step 1. After you click the download button above, install it, and then open it. On the main interface, click the ISO Image button to browse and select the ISO image file you want to convert for streaming via Plex. And click OK to start importing the ISO file into this DVD ripper.

Convert ISO to MP4 for streaming/playing with Plex
Convert ISO to MP4 for streaming/playing with Plex

Step 2. Output Profile window will show up. You need to choose a format that Plex supports. For example, we can go to General Profiles and choose MP4 Video (codec: H.264+AAC).

This software will auto detect the main title for movie ISO file. For ISO files stored with TV shows, it will select one title only by default. You need to check other titles (episodes) manually if you want to convert all of them for playing with Plex.

Step 3. Click the Browse button at the bottom to specify a destination folder and hit RUN to begin converting ISO file to Plex playable format.

Disclaimer: Digiarty Software does not advocate ripping/copying copy-protected DVDs for any commercial purpose and suggests referring to the DVD copyright laws in your countries before doing so. And do not use WinX DVD Ripper to rip DVD rentals.

Part 3. FAQs

1. Can Plex play ISO file?

No. Files such as ISO or IMG and folder structures such as VIDEO_TS or BDMV (including Blu-ray ISO file) are generally referred to as "disk image" formats because they're basically "cloning" the structure and content from a DVD or Blu-Ray optical disc. Such formats are not supported in Plex.

2. Can I display the menus and choose subtitles if I convert ISO file?

If you convert ISO to MP4 and the like, DVD menu will disappear and subtitle will be embedded if you didn't disable subtitle when ripping.

3. Can Plex read Video_TS?

No. Video_TS is also a DVD file that cannot be recognized by Plex.

4. Can Plex play DVD rips?

Yes. As long as you rip DVD to MP4, MKV, AVI, MOV, etc. with right codecs via WinX DVD Ripper Platinbum, Plex can play the DVD files.

5. How do I add an ISO to Plex?

Step 1. Download and install Plex Media Server, and then sign in.

Step 2. Run Plex and click "Add Selection" and "Movies" to add the ripped DVD ISO file to Plex.

Step 3. Install Plex app on any of your devices to stream and watch the ISO file.

References:

1. "Why are ISO, VIDEO_TS, and other Disk Image Formats Not Supported?". plex.tv. Retrieved 23 June 2020.
2. "What media formats are supported?". plex.tv. Retrieved 23 June 2020.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

author - Donna Peng

Donna Peng twitter icon

Donna Peng's fascination with multimedia began at an early age - shortly after she licked the physical disc and then she's been obsessed ever since. Her decade-long career at Digiarty after the graduation has seen her unmatched expertise in the field of DVD, digital video, software and anything related to home theatre. She is currently fascinated with photography.

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