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Updated by Brent Archer - Contact Author

Can Plex Play AV1? How to Play AV1 Videos in Plex?

"I have the same issue, Plex can’t play AV1 videos but VLC does for the records. PlexDev, we want to see our favorite Plex able to play AV1 videos so please fix it in your future updates." – from Plex Forum

As of now, Plex does not support AV1/AV01 codec fully. The Plex forum has been flooded with requests for AV1 decoding, but sadly there is still no official response from the developer. If you see an error message like "Cannot convert this item. Implementation for video decoder 'av1' not found." or "no av1 decoder" when playing AV1 videos in Plex, you need to convert AV1 codec to Plex-supported format first.

[Updated] From Plex employee Moussa: Plex version 1.30.1 has been released for Plex HTPC, which has added AV1 playback support.

Plex not decoding AV1

Best AV1 Video Transcoder to Convert AV1 for Plex Direct Play

Winxvideo AI is among the few video converters with AV1 decoding ability. You can use it to convert AV1-encoded videos to Plex-supported formats, such as MP4, MOV, MKV, H.264 and HEVC to enable direct play in Plex without an error.

Table of Contents

Part 1. Does Plex Support AV1?

Yes and no. Normal Plex app currently doesn't support the AV1 video playback no matter what version you are using. However, the Plex employee Moussa announced that Plex HTPC version 1.30.1 had been released, which added the AV1 playback support. That means you can stream AV1 videos on Windows, Mac, and Linux with Plex HTPC version 1.30.1 or later.

Plex HTPC AV1 Support

However, as you can see, earlier versions of Plex HTPC have no ability to process AV1 videos. How to play AV1 videos on Plex? As of now, you have one and only solution to solve Plex not playing AV1 issue - convert AV1 videos to Plex-supported formats with an AV1 video converter.

Here, we recommend you Winxvideo AI - a 4K video converter which has added AV1 decoding in the latest version. You can use it to convert AV1 to HEVC, H.264, MEPG4, MOV, or MP4 that is supported by Plex. It has support for Intel/nVIDIA/AMD hardware acceleration and built-in High Quality Engine, which assures the fastest transcoding speed and highest output quality of the final video.

Part 2. How to Convert AV1 Videos to Plex-supported Formats?

Step 1. Free download Winxvideo AI, install, and launch it on your computer.

Step 2. Click on the "Video Converter " button, and then click on the "+ Video" button to add the AV1 video needing transcoding.

Step 3. When the Output Profile window pops up, choose an output format. Here, we suggest you to choose "MP4 (h264+aac)" as the best output format for Plex.

Step 4. Optionally, you can click on the Settings icon to adjust the video codec, frame rate, aspect ratio, video resolution (e.g. 4K to 1080p), etc. to make the video match Plex.

Step 5. Once done, click the "Browse" button to choose a destination folder to save the converted file. Then, hit "RUN" button to start transcoding AV1 video to Plex.

Note: If your video is too large or high in resolution, you are advised to turn on the Hardware Acceleration option to speed up the conversion process.

Step 6. Once converted, you can play AV1 videos in Plex without issue.

Convert AV1 Video

Now that not all Plex apps have added AV1 decoding support officially while you are in need of this function, AV1 video conversion is the only way to let all versions of Plex play AV1 videos. No matter you get the AV1 videos from YouTube, or from other content providers like Vimeo, Netflix, Facebook, etc., you can use Winxvideo AI to convert AV1 videos to Plex-supported file formats easily and quickly.

Part 3. Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can Plex play AV1 files?

Yes. Plex HTPC version 1.30.1 and later can directly play AV1 videos. For other versions of Plex app, you can try to convert AV1 to Plex-supported format first with Winxvideo AI, and then play the video with Plex.

2. How do I add AV1 to Plex?

For online videos, sign in and find the AV1 video to play. For home videos, simply add the AV1 videos to Plex to play.


author - Brent Archer

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Brent Archer is an experienced editor who loves all things related to social. He has spent more than a decade writing instructional contents related to social media, streaming services and video related topics all over the internet for Digiarty. Outside the social, he is addicted to Google I/O, Apple WWDC and other tech news to keep him informed.

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