Streaming video on 5K looks terrible

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Awimoway, Mar 18, 2018.

  1. Awimoway, Mar 18, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018

    Awimoway macrumors 65816

    Awimoway

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    Location:
    California
    #1
    I just got a 5K 2017 iMac. Streaming video from all the major services — Hulu, Amazon Prime, Netflix (non-original series) — looks terrible. Grainy, with a shimmering noisiness. Netflix Originals look pretty good, on the other hand, as do 4K videos from YouTube, but most series available on major streaming services look awful, worse than on the 2010 iMac I just replaced.

    Is there anything I can do to improve this?
     
  2. Glockworkorange macrumors 65816

    Glockworkorange

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2015
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #2
    You won’t get 4K resolution through Safari on anything. Chrome used to give me YT videos at 4K, but now that no longer works.

    Bottom line—state of 4K streaming on Macs is not good.
     
  3. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #3
    4K YouTube video in Chrome works for me.
     
  4. Glockworkorange macrumors 65816

    Glockworkorange

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2015
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #4
    Removed my VPN and Chrome is back to 4K. Not sure why that happened!

    I do think it is incredibly frustrating you can buy 4K movies on iTunes but cannot watch them in 4K on your retina 21 or 27 inch iMac.
     
  5. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #5
    I agree. It is frustrating. I am also running a VPN (PIA) and haven't had any problems with 4K YouTube. I take it your VPN is internal?
     
  6. Glockworkorange macrumors 65816

    Glockworkorange

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2015
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    #6
    I am using PIA as well.

    When you mentioned earlier Chrome was fine for you, I switched PIA off and 4K started working.

    I just flipped it back on and 4K still works in Chrome, so I am not sure what happened there.

    I am in Chicago and the VPN is set to Texas. Not sure if maybe PIA was set internationally at some point and that was the issue.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 18, 2018 ---
    Digital Rights Management must be a real dumpster fire if the same company that manufactures, sells and markets the computers and sells and markets the content can't broadcast the content.

    If any other forum members can explain this or provide a link, it would be much appreciated.

    I have a 4K TV, but there are times I'd prefer to just watch something in my office.
     
  7. FredT2 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    #7
    Should't be that way. I've had two iMacs with 5K display, and all video sources look great, 720p, 1080p, and 4K. What is your display resolution?
     
  8. TyWahn macrumors 6502

    TyWahn

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2003
    #8
    I have somewhat of the same problem as the OP. I have a 2017 4k iMac and streaming video, even from iTunes looks bad, I don't know how to fix it, if it's in the display settings or what.
     
  9. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #9
    It's a sad state of affairs that Apple -- which set the standard for graphics and video for all other companies to follow -- cannot or WILL NOT market a Mac which supports modern video formats like 4k...
     
  10. EugW, Mar 19, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2018

    EugW macrumors 603

    EugW

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2017
    #10
    There is no streaming DRM'd 4K support on the Mac right now, from any provider.

    Netflix 1080p requires Safari. If you use Chrome you only get 720p. 1080p will look decent if the source is good, but 720p looks noticeably worse.

    For YouTube, it is limited to 1440p in Safari (which looks pretty good), but you can get 4K 2160p from Chrome (which looks even better).

    tl;dr:

    For Netflix, use Safari, and you will get 1080p which is the current maximum.
    For YouTube, use Chrome, and you will get 4K.

    I'm predicting this will come with 10.14. They already have the codec support in 10.13, but could add the DRM support in 10.14... but only for 7th generation Macs or later, thus requiring a Mac released in 2017 or later. This would include the 2017 iMacs and 2017 MacBooks, and probably the 2017 iMac Pros, but would exclude the 2017 MacBook Airs.
     

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