Plex Audio Out Of Sync (Easy Fixes!)

David Hughes
By David Hughes 12 Min Read

Have you ever been watching a movie or a show on Plex and noticed that the words don’t match up with the people’s mouths? It’s like their lips are moving, but the sound is coming a second too late or too early. Annoying, right?

Good News: We Can Fix It!

Don’t worry, though! I’ve got some great tips and tricks to help you solve this problem. We’re going to make sure that from now on, your videos and their sound are perfectly in sync. Let’s dive in and get this sorted out together!

Why Is Plex Audio Out Of Sync?

Ever wonder why the sound in your Plex videos isn’t matching up with the picture? Well, it’s often because of something called “transcoding issues.” Let me break it down for you:

Imagine you have a video that’s like a puzzle piece, but it doesn’t quite fit into your device’s puzzle. Transcoding is like reshaping this puzzle piece so it fits perfectly. This means changing the video and audio into a format that your device likes better.

When Plex does this reshaping (or transcoding) to make sure the video works on your device, it can sometimes mess up the timing between the picture and the sound. It’s like the sound and the picture are racing, but one starts running before the other!

It’s not just transcoding, though. Sometimes the problem is with the video files themselves – they might be a bit wonky to begin with (think corrupted or not put together correctly). Or, it could be that your device isn’t strong enough to handle the video, or maybe some settings in the player need a tweak.

The good news? There are plenty of ways to fix this and get everything back in sync. Stay tuned, and I’ll guide you through them!

How Do I Fix Plex Audio Out Of Sync

Method 1: Pause Or Skip Forward Your Video

🔹 Try the Easy Fix First

Guess what? Sometimes the fix is super simple! If your Plex audio is out of sync, try pausing the video for a moment or skipping forward a little. This quick trick might just get the sound and video back in step with each other. Give it a shot and see if it works. If not, no worries – we’ve got more tricks up our sleeve!

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Method 2: Verify The Integrity Of The Media File.

🔹 Is Your Video File the Real Problem?

Before you blame Plex, let’s take a closer look at the video file itself. Sometimes the file is the troublemaker. Use tools like MediaArea or FFmpeg – they’re like detectives for video files. They can help you find out if there’s something wrong with your video.

🔹 Check Plex’s Supported Formats

Also, check out the Plex support article on what kinds of video formats work best with Plex. Make sure your file matches these formats. If you find something off with your file, then it’s the file that’s causing the problem, not Plex.

Method 3: Update Plex Media Server

🔹 Stay Updated for Fewer Problems

Did you know that updating your Plex Media Server can solve a bunch of problems, including audio sync issues? Plex often releases updates that fix bugs and make things run smoother. So, make sure you’re using the latest version.

🔹 How to Update?

It’s easy to update. If you’re using the Plex Web App, just refresh your browser. Plex will automatically add any new updates. Keeping up with updates is a smart move to keep everything running smoothly.

Method 4: Force Quit The Plex App:

🔹 Simple but Effective

Here’s an easy one: sometimes just closing the Plex app forcefully can fix the audio sync issue. It’s like giving the app a quick refresh. You can also unplug your device, wait a moment, plug it back in, and then open Plex again. See if that does the trick!

Method 5: Reinstall Plex App

🔹 Start Fresh

Using Plex on gadgets like Roku, Apple TV, or NVIDIA Shield? If nothing else works, try uninstalling and then reinstalling the Plex app. It’s like giving it a clean slate, which might just solve your problem.

Method 6: Adjust Audio Delay Settings

🔹 Be Your Own Tech Wizard

Now, let’s get a bit technical, but in a fun way. You can actually adjust the timing of the audio yourself! Here’s how:

  • On the Plex Media Server, use the keyboard shortcuts: Press ALT+A to make the sound come later, or ALT+Shift+A to make it come sooner.
  • On devices like NVIDIA Shield and Apple TV, you can adjust the audio delay in the settings. For example, on NVIDIA Shield, go to Settings > Display & Sounds > Advanced Settings > Audio Video Sync. There, you’ll see a slider and a bouncing ball. Just adjust the slider until the ball’s bounce matches the sound you hear. It’s like playing a little game to get your audio and video in harmony!
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Method 7: Adjust The Transcoder Settings

🔹 What’s This Transcoder Thing?

First up, let’s talk about transcoder settings. These settings control how Plex changes your media files so they play nicely on different devices. Sometimes, adjusting these settings can be the key to fixing audio sync issues. Here’s how to do it: Open Plex, head to Settings > Server > Transcoder.

Now, Let’s Dive Into Some Specific Settings:

  1. Transcoder Quality: Choose Your Fighter
    • You’ll find options like “Automatic,” “Prefer Higher Speed,” and “Make My CPU Hurt.”
    • The “Automatic” setting tries to balance quality and performance. But if your audio is out of sync, try “Prefer Higher Speed” or “Make My CPU Hurt.” These options focus on getting the audio and video to play at the same time, even if it means working your CPU harder.
  2. Background Transcoding: To Be or Not to Be
    • Plex usually does some transcoding in the background while you stream. This means it’s working on the video even as you watch it.
    • But this can slow things down and mess up the sync. Try turning off background transcoding and see if it helps the audio catch up with the video.
  3. Transcoder Temporary Directory: Keep It Roomy
    • The transcoder needs a temporary spot to store stuff while it works on your video. Make sure this place (the temporary directory) has plenty of space.
    • If it gets too full, it could cause problems, including with the audio sync.
  4. Hardware Acceleration: Get Some Extra Muscle
    • This feature lets Plex pass some of the heavy lifting to your computer’s hardware (like GPUs) instead of doing everything through software.
    • Turning on hardware acceleration can speed things up and may help keep your audio and video in sync. Just make sure your system has the right hardware for it.

Method 8: Change Buffer Settings

🔹 A Buffering Solution

Think of buffer settings like a cushion for your video – they help everything run smoothly. Changing these settings in Plex might fix your audio sync issue. Here’s how you do it:

  • Open Plex and go to Preferences > Player.
  • You’ll see three buffer settings there, usually set to ‘auto’. Let’s tweak them:
    • Initial Buffer: Set this to 25MB.
    • Pending Buffer: Change this to 50MB.
    • Total Buffer: Make this 75MB.
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Adjusting these might give Plex the little nudge it needs to keep audio and video in sync.

Method 9: Disable Audio Passthrough

🔹 When Passthrough Doesn’t Pass the Test

Audio passthrough is like Plex handing off the audio directly to your speaker or TV without messing with it. But sometimes, this handoff doesn’t go smoothly, and your audio gets out of sync.

  • Disabling audio passthrough means Plex handles the audio itself, which might fix sync problems.
  • If your audio receiver or TV is having a hard time with the audio format, turning off passthrough can be a big help.

Method 10: Check Device Settings

🔹 It’s All in the Settings

Did you know that certain settings on your TV or device can mess with how well Plex works? Things like picture mode, color mode, game mode, and sound mode might not directly cause audio sync issues, but they can affect how videos play.

  • For example, game mode is great for gaming because it makes the TV respond faster. But, it might make the sound lag behind the video in Plex.
  • If you’re having trouble with audio sync and game mode is on, try turning it off.
  • Another trick is to reset your device to its factory settings. This can clear out any fancy settings that might be causing trouble.

Method 11: Contact Support

Tried everything and still stuck with out-of-sync audio? It’s time to call in the pros. The Plex support team is there to help you out. They can give you advice and steps tailored just for your situation. Don’t hesitate to reach out to them for some expert assistance!

Wrapping It Up: You’ve Got This!

Dealing with audio out of sync on Plex can be a bit of a puzzle, but don’t worry – the tips we’ve covered should help you get back on track. From simple fixes like pausing your video to diving into the technical side with transcoder settings, there’s a solution for every scenario.

Remember, every device is a little different, so the exact steps might vary for you. That’s totally normal!

And hey, if you try all these methods and still find yourself scratching your head, no stress. The Plex support team is just a message away. They’re super knowledgeable and ready to help you figure out a solution that’s just right for your setup.

So there you have it! Armed with these methods, you’re all set to tackle any audio sync issues and get back to enjoying your favorite shows and movies in perfect harmony. Happy watching!

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Meet David, the tech blog's brilliant author and copywriting expert. With a profound passion for technology, David's captivating articles on tech, Android, Windows, internet, social media, gadgets, and reviews are the epitome of excellence. His expertise in crafting compelling content combined with his love for all things tech make him a formidable force in the industry.
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