Plex Pass subscribers who use the Plexamp app have gotten a massive upgrade to the backend server that Plex uses to run the app. Users can now enable the Sonic features via their server settings that will allow Plex to scan the media and provide much improved playlists and song matches than before.
The sonic feature uses an analysis tool to match the actual sound of the music to other songs instead of a simple tag-based system (there is a bit more to it, but that is basically how it works). The biggest issue that this update fixed is the lack of proper metadata on the music itself that can result from using in-house metadata or simply unpopular music not getting much love from the community. The second issue that we are happy to see corrected, is the fact that two identically tagged songs may not be even close to each other in sound or tone. Hopefully, this means much better sounding playlists for users using the app!
Users can also see what tracks are matched to their songs within the app once the features are enabled and processed. For those that missed the old Plex Mix feature that was lost when Plex changed their data provider, they will be happy to hear that Track Radio has been added to achieve the same function and so has an Album Radio for those crazy users.
Plex has also added album sorting within the libraries, and this is even seen within the normal Plex apps as well! Albums (or album-like groupings) are now broken down into groups like most other music libraries, where studio albums, live albums, compilations, etc are separated within the same listing. There is also an On This Day feature being added to add some life into the app for daily users.
Don’t forget that you will need to enable these features in both the server and the libraries that you want to use these features with. You will need to enable sonic analysis as a task with the Settings > Server > Library settings on the web app (although it is likely already enabled by default after you upgrade the server). You will then need to go into the advanced settings of the music library(s) that you want to add this feature to and enable Sonic Analysis within the settings (this is not enabled by default after the upgrade).
Just be aware that depending on your server settings, this may wait until a scheduled task time to analyze or analyze right away, but the features for the end-user will not be enabled until this process is complete. Overall, this is exciting news for hose who use Plex as their music server and I can personally say that improved song matching will receive much love from myself!