Could apple bump the current ATV to 4K with a software update?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by R1PPER, Jan 12, 2016.

  1. R1PPER macrumors 6502

    Oct 1, 2008
    Whats stopping apple bumping apple TV to 4K in a patch. The box is capable of running 4K I'm sure. Is it down to the HDMI cable?
  2. StuMcBill macrumors 6502a

    Jul 11, 2011
    Aberdeen, Scotland
    I think its the HDMI port on the device itself - its not 4K capable.
  3. hamiltonDSi macrumors 68000


    Jul 29, 2012
    The problem is with the HDMI port on the ATV. It does not support 4k.
    In theory, the A8 in the iPhone 6 could handle 4k content (read an article a while ago) , but we all now the A8 chip in the ATV is "tuned" with 2GB of Ram and the clock speed is unknown.
  4. thisismyusername macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2015
    Why give out a new feature like that for free when you can just get your customers to pay for a new device that supports said feature? Apple needs to come up with reasons to get people to buy new hardware every once in a while and 4K is a perfect reason.

    Regarding the AppleTV 4's HDMI port, it's version 1.4 which is good enough for 4K at 30Hz and thus most of the content that's currently out there. It's when you get into 4K at 60Hz (requires HDMI 2.0) and HDR (requires HDMI 2.0a) that it's not good enough although I'm not sure if the port can be upgraded via a software/firmware update. I know some 2015 model TVs shipped with HDMI 2.0 and were later upgraded to 2.0a via a software update but I've never seen a device upgrade from 1.4 to 2.0.
  5. westrock2000 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 18, 2013
    They would probably want to get H.265 decoding deployed across the company portfolio first. All supported devices would need to be able to decode H.265. Then iTunes (client and store) would need to be updated to support H.265 playback as well as have content.

    No way is Apple going to go out of it's way to make the Apple TV be able to just play 4K for no good reason. If the current Apple TV did support it, what would you watch on it? Outside of Netflix, there would be no legal way to get 4K on to the Apple TV (can't rip blurays that don't exist).
  6. mellofello, Jan 13, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2016

    mellofello macrumors 65816

    Feb 1, 2011
    Vudu ultraflix Amazon direct tv etc all have 4K content.

    Not to mention the video shot in 4K on my APPLE 6s+, go pro etc. Then the benefits of looking at your photos in high Resolution.
  7. perezr10 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 12, 2014
    Monroe, Louisiana
  8. Robnsn2015 macrumors 6502

    Jul 12, 2015
  9. McScooby macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2005
    The Paps of Glenn Close, Scotland.
    'Cause it's not like :apple: have anything else that uses 4K? ;)
  10. Snoopy4, Jan 15, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2016

    Snoopy4 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 29, 2014
    Sony says their devices can be upgraded from 1.4 to 2.0 with software. Maybe this can too. It's all about the interface wires and connections in terms of the kind of bit rates they can deliver. The connection is the same. Apple usually has pretty robust internals so maybe and they just don't advertise it.

    Basically the hardware meets the standard on the internals and it simply needs an update. No physical changes required.
  11. d21mike macrumors 68040


    Jul 11, 2007
    Torrance, CA
    No. It is Apple. I believe they simply will not do it. The current hardware will support limited 4K like other hardware does. But Apple will not do it. They will require you to buy new hardwire with "better" 4K support. That of course is only my opinion.
  12. Snoopy4 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 29, 2014
    Yeah, I'm pretty sure they want the pound of flesh from us. :eek:
  13. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    How about the 4K shot on your iPhone 6s? I hear they've sold tens of millions of those... all able to shoot 4K but no easy, "just works" way to push that 4K to a 4K TV.
  14. Dunk the Lunk macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2007
    H.265 support is being deployed across the company portfolio. We know iPhones and iPads have it (for FaceTime), and as the ATV has the same chip it too almost certainly does.
  15. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    Now that's an interesting question. USB-C does carry an HDMI signal. I'm sure it's disabled or if not it'll still be 1.4a but it would be a great way to enable it in post.

    They won't though. Once the hardware is all-in on H.265 they'll roll out a new version.
  16. AZREOSpecialist macrumors 68020


    Mar 15, 2009
    Apple TV 4 uses HDMI 1.4, which is fully capable of delivering 4k video. You are wrong.
  17. kiranmk2 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 4, 2008
    While the HDMI 1.4 port is technically capable of playing 4k, it can only play 4k upto 30fps. If higher frame-rate stuff comes (i.e. tv shows, HFR films) then it's going to be a mess of stuff the AppleTV can and can't play in 4k. Then there's HDR which needs HDMI 2.0a. Much simpler to use the AppleTV4 to get the number of apps up and then drop the UHD AppleTV 5 later this year with full UHD/HDR support. As there have been plenty of arguments over whether 4k is worth it on various screen sizes, it would be much more exciting if iTunes adopted HDR with adaptive scaling (i.e. offered 720p, 1080p, 1440p, 2160p depending on your bandwidth but always with HDR).
  18. d21mike macrumors 68040


    Jul 11, 2007
    Torrance, CA
    As a comparison the Amazon Fire TV 4K only supports 4K @ 30fps. And they claim they are a 4K Box. However, the Roku 4 does support 4K @ 60fps. Just saying if Apple wanted to be as good as the Fire TV 4K they could with a software update. I personally do not care if they do or not but I believe they could if they wanted to just to say they can do what the Fire TV 4 can do.

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