Plex vs Kodi – Ultimate Comparison Guide for Beginners

plex kodi

Plex vs Kodi – The Ultimate Comparison Guide for Beginners

Plex vs Kodi is a question that is commonly asked by beginners who are trying to setup a media center. Plex Media Server ( is a server based program which streams your media files to a variety of client devices with a client side Plex application installed. The Plex Media Server is available on Windows, Linux and OSX platforms and can also be integrated directly into some NAS setups. Plex is proprietary software which offers many useful features to those wishing to access their media library from different rooms of their home or even from remote locations. [Read: Combine Plex and Kodi – Get the Features of Both Using PlexKodiConnect]

Kodi Home Theater

(, formerly XBMC, is stand alone, open source Home Theater Software which is very flexible and customizable. Kodi is also available on a variety of platforms including Windows, OSX and several different Linux flavors. It is also available for ARM devices. [Read: Raspberry Pi 2 with quad-core CPU and 1GB RAM for $35]

When comparing Plex vs Kodi (or Plex vs XBMC) its important to remember that they share a common pedigree and are sort of long lost brothers. Portions of Plex were forked (or derived from) Kodi source code back in 2008. This results in some similarities between the two. Both Plex and Kodi not only play your media, but organize it using a powerful back-end database which is populated by ‘scrapping’ metadata, images and artwork from online sources (such as or You can then organize, categorize and even use this information to display and browse your media library in stunning fashion.

Despite their common lineage, after several years of evolution, comparing Kodi vs Plex it is noted that they are more different than they are similar. This post will discuss some of Kodi vs Plex differences and how they might be beneficial to different types of users.

Plex vs Kodi Comparison Summary

In case you do not want to read through the whole Plex Media Server vs Kodi comparison guide, the table below provides a quick summary. Of course, I suggest that you read through the entire Plex vs Kodi comparison guide to understand the differences between Plex and Kodi / XMBC before making a decision on which would be best for you.

Features Kodi Plex Media Server
Database Location Client Based (or Centrally with MySQL) Central Server
Database Management Client Interface Web Interface
Transcoding Handled by Client Handled by Server
Client Hardware Support A Lot A Lot More
Add-ons Lots Limited
Visual Customization Very Flexible Limited
Add-on Maintenance Community Professional
Cost Free Free, $5 per Client and/or Optional Subscription
Remote Streaming Impossible/Difficult Possible

Kodi vs Plex Detailed Comparison

Now let us look at the above summary of Kodi Plex comparison in detail.


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