Supported DVR Devices and Antennas

Tip!: Setting up and using a DVR or Live TV is a premium feature and requires an active Plex Pass subscription.

Cable and satellite TV subscriptions can be expensive and many people often forget that broadcast television is still free "over the air" (OTA). Anyone who wants a cheap and easy way to get programming from major and local networks can make use of digital TV. To make use of Plex DVR with OTA broadcasts, you'll need both a DVR device and an antenna.

If you do have cable service, though, you can still make use of a DVR that supports cable to let you view unencrypted content!

Plex Media Server Platform Support

The DVR functionality is currently available when running Plex Media Server v1.4.1 or newer.

Be aware that if you run your Plex Media Server on a low-powered NAS device that doesn't support transcoding, many apps will be unable to play recorded content. Over the air broadcasts are often in MPEG2 or other older formats, which few devices or apps can play directly (and would thus require transcoding in those cases).

Related Page: Plex Media Server > NAS Devices

Supported DVR Devices

Supported DVR tuners can vary by region and operating system or device. Please refer to the following charts for tuner and operating system/device compatibility in different regions. The tuner names in the tables will link to the manufacturer's website for each device. Some tuners below may require the most recent Plex Pass version of Plex Media Server.

North America (ATSC /QAM)

The following DVR tuner devices are supported in North America, where signals use the ATSC/QAM format.

Tuner Windows macOS Linux NAS NVIDIA SHIELD
SiliconDust HDHomeRun (all models) bullet.png supported supported supported supported
Hauppauge WinTV-dualHD supported   supported   supported
Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-955Q supported   supported    
Hauppauge WinTV-quadHD supported   supported    
Hauppauge Digital TV for Xbox One supported   supported    
AVerMedia AVerTV Volar Hybrid Q supported       supported

Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia (DVB-C/DVB-T/DVB-T2)

The following DVR tuner devices are supported in regions where signals use the DVB-C, DVB-T, or DVB-T2 formats, such as Europe, Australia, Africa, and Asia.

Tuner Windows macOS Linux NAS NVIDIA SHIELD
SiliconDust HDHomeRun (all models) supported supported supported supported supported
Hauppauge WinTV-dualHD supported   supported   supported
Hauppauge WinTV-soloHD supported   supported    
Hauppauge WinTV-quadHD supported   supported    
Hauppauge Freeview HD TV for Xbox One supported   supported    
DVBLogic TVButler 100TC supported supported supported supported  

Notes

  • Ensure your tuner device firmware/driver is up-to-date.
  • For over-the-air broadcasts, a weak television signal can interfere with both DVR and live TV viewing.
  • USB/PCIe tuners require Plex Media Server v1.7.2 or newer.
  • Linux compatibility is based on Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS. See this page for kernel and driver information for Hauppauge tuners.
  • WinTV-quadHD: This device will show up as two dual-tuner devices. You can simply add it as two devices to a single Plex DVR to make use of all four tuners.
  • TVButler 100TC: Please verify TV Butler compatibility with the vendor. Some NASs such as WD EX2 and Seagate have experienced issues.
  • NVIDIA SHIELD: Non-HDHomeRun tuners (i.e. USB tuners) require "SHIELD Experience Upgrade 5.2" firmware.
  • Windows: "WinTV 8" (for WinTV tuners) or "AVerMedia TVBox" (for AVerMedia tuners) software might conflict with Plex Media Server's use of the tuner. If you have issues tuning channels, please remove this software, install only the driver for your tuner, then attempt to scan channels again.
  • The "Xbox One" tuners must be plugged into the computer running Plex Media Server, not into an Xbox One.

Related Page: Hauppauge: Running WinTV Tuners under Linux

Antennas

You will need to connect your DVR to an antenna to be able to pick up the free digital Over the Air broadcasts.

Plex will work with any digital antenna, regardless of manufacturer. The best antenna for you can vary greatly based on a number of factors, including: your particular location, channels availability, and distance/direction from the broadcast sources. An "amplified" antenna may provide improved reception and allow you to reach more distant stations, particularly when using an indoor antenna.

There are many antenna manufactures to choose from. We've found that antennas from Mohu and HD Frequency have performed well in our own testing.

Related Page: Mohu
Related Page: HD Frequency

Both the Mohu and HD Frequency websites have information about the different types of antennas that are available. There are also many other resources for great information and tips on choosing the most appropriate antenna for you, including the following.

Related Page: The Wirecutter: The Best Indoor HDTV Antenna
Related Page: Lifehacker: How to Choose the Best Over-the-Air Antenna for Free HDTV
Related Page: Over the Air Digital TV: Choosing an Over the Air TV Antenna for Free HD Channels