If you‘re a cord-cutter who uses Kodi for media streaming, having the ability to directly access your Plex libraries from within the Kodi interface is a total game-changer. The Plex Kodi addon delivers a unified streaming experience so you can enjoy all your movies, TV shows, music, and photos without having to switch between apps.
In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll walk you through everything you need to know to get up and running with the Plex addon on your Firestick, Android TV box, NVIDIA Shield, or other Kodi device. We‘ll cover:
- Benefits of the Plex Kodi integration
- Step-by-step installation instructions
- How to link your Plex account
- Tips for use and troubleshooting
- Additional features and customization
By the end, you‘ll have seamless access to all your Plex media directly within the Kodi ecosystem. Let‘s get started!
Why Integrate Plex with Kodi?
Here are some of the biggest benefits of using the Plex addon on Kodi:
Unified Streaming Experience
Having to switch back and forth between apps to access your different media libraries can be tedious. The Plex addon enables direct browsing and streaming of your Plex content within Kodi for a singular media experience.
Enjoy Plex Features in Kodi
Via the addon, you can take advantage of powerful Plex features like continue watching, recommendations, managed user profiles, offline viewing, and more – all from right within Kodi!
Direct Playback and Faster Streaming
Media plays directly from your Plex server rather than having to go through additional scraping and lookup processes for faster streaming.
Your playback position and watch status are synced between Kodi and other Plex apps so you can pick up where you left off no matter which device you‘re on.
Easily share your libraries with family members so everyone can enjoy your Plex content.
Integrating Plex with Kodi brings together the best aspects of both platforms for a centralized home media solution.
Supported Devices for Plex Kodi Integration
The Plex addon works great on all of the most popular streaming platforms and devices including:
- Firestick, Fire TV, Fire TV Cube
- NVIDIA Shield
- Android smartphones and tablets
- Android TV boxes like Xiaomi, Nvidia, etc.
- Raspberry Pi
- Windows PCs
- Mac computers
- Linux devices
- iOS devices (with workaround for connecting to Plex server)
Essentially, if the device can run Kodi, then it can support the Plex addon as well. This covers pretty much any streaming hardware you might be using.
Next, let‘s look at how to get the Plex Kodi addon installed on your device.
Step-by-Step Guide to Install Plex Addon on Kodi
The process for installing the official Plex addon on Kodi only takes a few minutes. Follow these steps:
1. Launch Kodi
First, open up the Kodi app on your streaming device.
I recommend closing any other open apps to maximize available system resources.
2. Go to Add-ons > Package Installer Icon
In Kodi, navigate to Add-ons in the main sidebar menu.
Then click on the little open box icon in the top left corner under Add-ons to open the package installer.
3. Select Install from Repository
- From the context menu that pops up, choose Install from repository.
4. Choose Kodi Add-on Repository
- You‘ll now see a list of repositories. Select the Kodi Add-on repository.
5. Go to Video Add-ons
- Next, navigate down to Video add-ons within the Kodi repository.
6. Select Plex
- From there, find Plex in the list of video addons and select it.
7. Click Install
- A dialog box will pop up to install Plex – click on Install to continue.
8. Access Plex Addon
- Once installed, go back to Add-ons > Video Add-ons and select Plex.
9. Sign In to Link Plex Account
- You‘ll be prompted to sign in to your Plex account – enter your credentials to link it.
10. Link Device on Plex Website
- Next, go to plex.tv/link on a computer or mobile device.
11. Enter Pairing Code
- Enter the 6-digit pairing code displayed in Kodi into the field on the webpage.
12. Click Link to Connect Account
- Finally, click Link to connect your Plex account with Kodi.
That completes the installation process! The Plex addon will now be enabled and ready for use in Kodi.
Linking Your Plex Account
Linking your Plex account is a key step that authorizes the Kodi addon to access your Plex media servers and libraries. Here‘s an overview of how account linking works:
When you first launch the Plex addon, you‘ll be prompted to sign into your Plex account. Enter your credentials here.
Kodi then provides a temporary pairing code that links your account solely to that device.
Head to plex.tv/link on any web browser and enter that pairing code into the field.
Finally click the Link button, which securely connects your Plex account with your Kodi device.
Once linked, the addon will have full access to your Plex libraries without needing to sign in again.
The account linking process only takes a minute and needs to be done once per device. It allows the addon to work its magic synchronizing your Plex media.
Using the Plex Addon in Kodi
Now that you have the addon installed and linked, using it is simple. Here‘s an overview of how the Plex addon functions within Kodi:
Browse Your Media Libraries
- You‘ll see all of your Plex libraries and content just like in the regular Plex app. Navigate through Movies, TV Shows, Music, Photos, and any other custom libraries you‘ve created.
Stream Content Directly
- When you select a movie, TV show, or other media, it will immediately begin playing directly from your Plex server instead of needing to separately scrape for sources.
- Thanks to multi-device syncing, you can continue watching movies and shows right where you left off on other apps. This works vice versa too.
On Deck and Recently Added Sections
- Quickly access the latest media additions to your libraries as well as currently watching items.
Media Information and Meta Data
- View summaries, descriptions, posters, and backdrops for your media, powered by Plex metadata.
Search Your Media Libraries
- Use the builtin search to quickly find movies, shows, artists, albums, tracks, and more across your libraries.
As you can see, the Plex addon brings the main features of Plex over to the Kodi side for a familiar streaming experience.
Plex Features Accessible Within Kodi
One of the biggest perks of the integration is being able to take advantage of various powerful Plex tools from directly inside Kodi.
Seamlessly switch between managed user profiles in Kodi, with separate watch history, recommendations, restrictions, and more.
Control what content your kids can access with Plex‘s customizable parental controls now available in Kodi.
Offline Media Syncing
Save media locally for offline playback when traveling just like you can with the Plex apps.
Live TV & DVR
For Plex Pass subscribers, the addon enables streaming and recording of Live TV within Kodi.
TIDAL Music Integration
Browse and play music from your TIDAL subscription through Plex now in Kodi.
Easily view your Plex photos and albums organized into galleries directly in Kodi.
Plex Watch Later
Save movies, shows, albums, tracks, and photos to a Watch Later playlist for simple access later on.
Benefits for Music Streaming
The Plex addon is especially useful for streaming your music libraries within Kodi.
Organized Music Libraries
Plex does a fantastic job organizing and tagging your music using metadata and album art. That nicely organized library gets carried right over into Kodi via the addon.
High Quality Audio Playback
Stream music files in high fidelity lossless formats like FLAC and ALAC with full support for multi-channel audio up to 7.1 surround sound.
DJ Style Mixing and Gapless Playback
Queue up songs and albums into instantly playing mixes and enjoy seamless gapless playback between tracks.
Crossfading Between Tracks
On music queue playlists, you can enable crossfade transition effects between songs for uninterrupted mixing.
Synced Lyrics Display
Thanks to Plex‘s lyric syncing, you can now enjoy real-time scrolling lyrics as you listen to music in Kodi.
Overall, the Plex music integration massively improves the music streaming experience in Kodi.
Video Streaming Considerations and Tips
When streaming video content like movies and shows via the Plex Kodi addon, keep these tips in mind:
Use Wired Network Connections
For best performance, always use wired ethernet connections to your streaming device and Plex server when available. This prevents buffering issues.
Optimize Media Files
Make sure your video files are optimized for direct streaming. Avoid massive uncompressed BluRay rips. Enable Plex transcoding settings for extra compatibility.
Enable Hardware Acceleration
Turn on GPU hardware acceleration in Plex server settings to allow video encoding/decoding to be handled by your graphics card for smoother streaming.
Adjust Quality Settings
Lower the streaming quality setting in the Kodi Plex addon settings if you experience buffering. This prevents transcoding large files.
Check Internet Bandwidth
Make sure you have sufficient internet bandwidth if you‘re streaming 4K or high bitrate 1080p content, especially for remote streaming.
With some adjusting of quality/transcoding settings, the Plex Kodi integration can handle even the most demanding video libraries.
Integration Options Compared
There are a few different ways you can go about integrating your Plex media into Kodi. Here‘s how the main options stack up:
|Plex Addon||PlexKodiConnect||Kodi Library Integration|
|Best For||Users who want the easiest setup using the official addon.||Power users who want deeper integration with advanced customization.||Kodi purists who just want local media in native database.|
As you can see, the official Plex addon provides the best blend of simplicity and features for most users. PlexKodiConnect offers better performance but requires more tinkering. Native Kodi library integration requires matching and importing local media into Kodi‘s database.
Additional Customization and Usage Tips
Here are some additional ways to customize and enhance your Plex Kodi integration:
Link to Trakt for Playback Syncing
Connecting your Trakt account in both Kodi and the Plex desktop app allows 3-way syncing of watch status and playback between devices.
Create a Plex Watch Later Playlist
Save movies, shows, music, and more into a Watch Later playlist in Plex for quick access later on in Kodi.
Use Plexamp for Offline Music
The Plexamp app provides a great interface for downloading your Plex music for offline listening on your Kodi device.
Control Playback with Plex Mobile App
The Plex app for iOS, Android, etc. can function as a handy remote to control playback on your Kodi device.
Adjust Addon Settings
Dive into the settings section of the addon to toggle options like cinema trailers, intro skipping, photo transitions, and more to your liking.
Go to the Plex web app settings to enable notifications for recently added media. You‘ll then see notifications from the Plex addon within Kodi.
The Plex integration offers a whole world of possibilities to create your ideal streaming setup across devices.
Troubleshooting Issues with the Plex Addon for Kodi
In most cases, the Plex addon works flawlessly after getting everything set up. But occasionally issues can arise. Here are some common problems and fixes:
Plex Addon Not Showing Up in Kodi
If Plex isn‘t listed under Video Addons, try reinstalling the addon. Also enable Unknown Sources in Kodi system settings first.
Error When Trying to Install Addon
Dependency errors or conflicts with pre-existing addons can sometimes occur. Try installing/updating another addon first, or do a factory reset of Kodi.
Can‘t Link Plex Account
Check your firewall settings aren‘t blocking access. Temporarily disable VPN or proxy services and try again.
Buffering or Laggy Playback
Your network connection speed and settings may need optimization. Turn down quality settings in the addon and enable Plex hardware encoding features.
Content Not Showing Up
Double check that media locations are properly added and shared in Plex server settings. Restart both Kodi and the Plex Media Server.
Remote Access Not Working
You may need to adjust port forwarding settings on your router for external access. Sign out and back into your Plex account on the addon.
When in doubt, restarting Kodi, reauthorizing the Plex addon, and checking for Kodi or Plex app updates usually resolves miscellaneous issues.
Hopefully these troubleshooting tips help you tackle any problems that arise with the addon. Overall it is very reliable after getting past the initial installation and setup.
Final Thoughts on Plex Integration with Kodi
Being able to directly access your Plex media libraries from within Kodi is an absolute game-changer for cord-cutters. It provides a single unified streaming platform so you don‘t have to jump between apps or services.
The official Plex addon delivers a straightforward one-click solution to connect the two ecosystems together. Once set up, you‘ll enjoy seamless Plex streaming and features from directly inside Kodi.
If you use both Kodi and Plex, integrating them together with the official addon is a no-brainer way to level up your home media experience. The integration possibilities are almost endless.
So give the Plex Kodi addon a try and let me know your feedback! I‘m happy to help out with any issues you encounter along the way. Enjoy effortlessly streaming your Plex media through Kodi.