Why is Netflix so poor on ATV?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by striker33, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. macrumors 65816


    Bought the ATV 3rd Gen yesteday, to replace my PS3 as a main Netflix streamer and for itunes match etc, due to it sucking up way less power and much less heat.

    However, I noticed right off the bat that Netflix content looks extremely poor on it. Its nowhere near HD quality, and would look poor even as a SD stream. My PS3 on the other hand streams perfectly at 1080p at the highest quality possible for the service.

    What gives?

    Has Apple restricted the quality of Netflix in order to fill their own pockets from HD iTunes purchases, similar to what Micro$oft has done on the 360?
  2. macrumors 68040


    Must be something on your setup, I got all 3 (ATV, XBOX, PS3) and Netflix look just fine on HD and all 3
  3. macrumors Nehalem


    For me it looks great on both 24" and 47" HD TVs. It has to be your internet.
  4. macrumors 65816


  5. macrumors 6502a

    Well, the other poster was making a bad assumption -- it does not HAVE to be your internet. I suspect a setting somewhere either in Netflix preferences or the ATV settings is not optimal. I'm afraid you may have to go digging for it. I use my ATV3 for Netflix every day, and we get beautiful 1080p feeds for the most part. You should expect to be able to get the same results or to have your unit replaced as defective.
  6. macrumors G5


    I'm about to start a trial freebie here in the UK, hoping for good things.
  7. macrumors 65816


    I have a stable 6mbps connection, been streaming at the highest quality since Netflix launched in the UK on my PS3, so definitely isnt my internet.

    Is there any individual Netflix settings on the ATV itself? I've been through every option on the main settings screen. Also went into my account on the Netflix site, double checked the quality was set to 'best', and there are no device options etc to tweak.
  8. macrumors 603


    Looks fine for me. Some older movies in HD (such as Tron) don't seem to be recognisably HD, but they certainly couldn't be called poor for SD.

    I'm quite happy with the quality; it's just a pity so much is still SD.
  9. macrumors member

    Netflix looks great in HD on my 56" LCoS RPTV. Cox cable internet, 25-28Mbps downstream via speedtest.net to ATV2 over hard-wired Cat6.
  10. macrumors 603


    is 6Mbps good?

    i get around 30
  11. macrumors 603


    Passive aggressive method of nudging you toward itunes content:p?
  12. macrumors member

    I have 3 ATV's and a PS3 in my house. I was running two ATV's (daughter was watching the backyardigans and my wife was watching a movie on the other) and I was playing COD online and the quality of all three was excellent all running on the same wifi network.

    I would check your internet.
  13. DARK N00DLE, Mar 27, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2012

    macrumors newbie

    You could also try looking at the settings in your router, the way ATV communicates to Netflix might be where an issue is. Also what kind of bandwith are you using? a/b/c/g/n? that will also change how it works. I can stream just fine through my AirPort Extreme which uses "n" with the ATV but if I use it at the g/f's place the speed is much slower and has issues with loading because it's on a "g" bandwith and she has crappy internet.
  14. macrumors regular

    My Netflix pauses and buffers every minute or so ever since I upgraded from ATV2 to ATV3. I've used other streaming sources like TV and Movies from iTunes and they all stream fine. I also get between 25-30 MBps down. Netflix worked perfectly before I upgraded.
  15. macrumors 604


    This. ATV has the best implementation of netflix I've seen on any devices.

    If your home network is slow Netflix will downsample the video so this could be an issue.
  16. macrumors 65816


    Its not my internet, nor is it my network.

    Is it really that hard for people on here to acknowledge that there could be some issues with ATV's handling of Netflix content?


    PS3 = G band = Full HD streaming on Netflix.

    ATV = N band = Piss poor SD streaming.
  17. macrumors regular

    I'm finding Netflix goes down on ATV while being up on other devices. Very odd.
  18. macrumors 68020

    not sure if this will help or not.

    on the netflix web page, go to settings, and in the "instant watching" section click "manage video quality" and set that to high. mine had no setting to begin with.
    (this link should take you directly to the correct settings page).
  19. macrumors newbie

    It's not the we're not acknowledging there could be issues with ATV, we're trying to do a top-down approach of what kinds of issues there could be, the most logical is either internet or network and the most unlogical is the actual ATV itself. Is your NAT open? I've had problems with that before and there have been huge differences between gaming consoles and ATV, also have you reset your ATV yet?
  20. macrumors 65816


    NAT Open, static ip with DMZ etc, reset a few times, after each change was made. Still nothing :(

    Oh, and once again, apparently 'Netflix is not available'.
  21. macrumors 6502a

    ATV2 is Superior to ATV3

    I'm returning to the 3 to BB. I have a 2, and a roku. but the 2 has a better picture etc than the 3. my 2 is jailbroken, maybe that makes a difference. but the 2 on netflix just has great resolution, the 3 is dull. anyone else find that or maybe i got a lemon.
  22. macrumors regular


    Google DNS?

    I have a ATV2 and it is great. Stable HD all the time from US Netflix. I can't comment on the 3, maybe there is a difference emerging.

    Anyway, one thing that some 2 owners have found to be useful is to use google DNS servers and YMMV. If you have a 3 and have not tried it, it could be worth a try. I use it and it did make a difference for me. I get 30M down on my wifi from the WAN, and the ATV2 connects at 52, wireless b/g/n: but this change still made a positive improvement on Netflix. Good luck.
  23. macrumors 65816


    Thanks for the suggestion. Gave it a try, but no improvement. Still streaming in SD only.

    I'll give Apple a ring in the morning and see if they have any suggestions. Otherwise it looks like I'm gonna have to fight to return it.
  24. macrumors member

    Since there are many of with excellent results, yes, it's difficult to make the logical jump that there's something wrong with ATVs in general when it comes to Netflix. The existence of many counterexamples suggests there's either something wrong with your setup or something wrong with your ATV unit.
  25. macrumors newbie

    That isn't a problem with your ATV then, I had the same problem a while back and after a lot of googling I figured out it was actually Netflix and their local servers that was the issue, I waited a couple of days, did a reset and it was back to normal.

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