Stream 4K Video to Roku via Plex

Roku models that support 4K video playback

Although the Plex channel for Roku players is supported on a large number of Roku models, however, currently, you only get the chance to stream local 4K video to the following models via Plex Media Server:
– Roku 4
– Roku 4K TV
– Roku Premiere
– Roku Premiere+
– Roku Ultra

Direct playback 4K content on Roku via Plex app

What’s more, the native playback of 4K video on Roku via Plex without transcoding should meet the following standards:
– Resolution: 3840×2160 or smaller
– Video encoding: H.265 (HEVC; both 8-bit and 10-bit) or VP9

From above information, we can conclude that if you try to play 4K video on Roku models that don’t own the capability to handle 4K resolution video, the Plex Media Server will try to transcoded down. Or if you have 4K content with different encoding (such as H.264), it can not be played at 4K and will instead be transcoded down to a maximum of 1080p. The bad news is that 4K content can be a CPU-intensive process and some lower-powered computer (and especially NAS devices) might not be capable of doing so in real-time. The following article will show you how to:
– Stream 4K video via Plex on 1080p Roku models
– Stream unsupported 4K video on 4K Roku models via Plex

Related article: Play DVD on Roku from USB | Play MP4 on Roku from USB | Apple TV VS Roku 

Stream 4K video via Plex on 1080p Roku models

If the Roku models that you own are the ones such as Roku 1/2/3 or other models that lacks the ability to handle 4K resolution video playback, then it would be much ideal to compress 4K to Roku 1/2/3 native playback 1080p H.264 formats. If the CPU of your computer is not powerful enough, then, it would be a good option for you to take help from a third-party 4K Video Converter app such as Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate. The program has full support for all 4K video wrapped with different container file format such as AVI, WMV, MP4, MOV, MKV, MXF, XAVC, XAVC S or compression codec like H.265, H.264, Prores, Cinema-DNG, etc. You can batch tanscode and compress 4K video to 1080p Roku models native playback HD H.264 format with the container file formats of MKV, MP4, MOV.

Stream unsupported 4K video to 4K Roku models via Plex

If the 4K videos don’t meet the standard to direct play on 4K Roku models via Plex, but the CPU powerful of the Plex Media Server is not powerful enough to do the transcoding in real-time, then you can still use our 4K Video Transcoding tool – Pavtube Video Converter Ultimate listed above to encode unsupported 4K video such as 4K H.264, 4K Prores, 4K Cinema-DNG to 4K Roku models playable H.265/HEVC codec with the container file formats of MKV, MP4 or MOV.

Hard-ware encoding acceleration for H.264/H.265 codec

For your great convenience, our program supports hard-ware encoding acceleration. You can get up to 6x faster H.264 codec encoding speed as long as you run your computer on Graphic cards that supports Nvidia CUDA or AMD App technology or up to 30x faster H.265 codec encoding speed as long as your computer runs on Maxwell (GM206) or Pascal based Graphic cards that supports Nvidia NVENC technology.

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Step by Step to Transcode and Compress 4K for Roku Streaming via Plex

Step 1: Load 4K video into the application.

Download the free trial version of the program. Launch it on your computer. Click “File” menu and select “Add Video/Audio” or click the “Add Video” button on the top tool bar to import source 4K video files into the program.

Load 4K video into the application

Step 2: Define the output format.

Clicking the Format bar, from its drop-down list, select 1080p Roku models native playback 1080p HD video by following “H.264 HD Video(*.mp4)” under”HD Video” main category.

Output 1080p Roku models supported HD file formats

For 4K Roku models, please choose “H.265 Video(*.mp4)” under “Common Video” main category.

Output 4K Roku supported 4K formats

Tips: Click “Settings” on the main interface to open “Profile Settings” window, here, you can flexibly choose or specify exactly the profile parameters including video codec, resolution, bit rate, frame rate, audio codec, bit rate, sample rate, channels, etc as you like to get better output video and audio quality.

Step 3: Enable GPU Encode Acceleration.

Click “Tools” > “Options”, in the opened “Options” window, click “Acceleration” menu, then check “Enable GPU Encode Acceleration” otpion so that the program will accelerate converion speed when encoding video to H.264/H.265 codec.

Enable GPU Encode Acceleration

Step 4: Begin the final conversion process.

After all settings is completed, hit right-bottom “Convert” button to begin the conversion from 4K video to 1080p or 4K models compatible file formats encoding process.

When the conversion is completed, you can then smoothly stream 4K video to 1080p or 4K Roku models via Plex smoothly.

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