How to Check the Resolution Supported by Netflix on Your Computer

Many movies and TV series on Netflix are available for viewing in High Definition HD or Ultra HD as long as the device used supports these resolutions and the connection speed is at least 5 megabits per second (even more for higher quality content).

How to check the supported resolution

An easy way to check the resolution supported by Netflix from your computer is this:

  1. Open Netflix
  2. In the search section (the icon with the magnifying glass), type “Test patterns.”
  3. A collection of video patterns organized by resolution and frame rate appears.Netflix resolution test

You can play the various patterns to check the various supported resolutions and understand if you are actually able to watch 4K Ultra HD resolution content. In the image we are attaching, we see the words 1920 x 1080p or Full HD. If you see the wording 3840 x 2160 pixels, it means that you can watch Netflix content at the highest possible resolution.

Alternatively, you can play any content (a movie) and press the keyboard combination:

  • Ctrl + Alt + Shift + D (on Windows PC) or,
  • Ctrl + Option + Shift + D (on Mac)

This enables you to view a list of details which also includes the resolution supported at that time. Keep in mind that, with some connections, it takes a few seconds for the streaming of 4K content to actually load. Obviously, the content in question must be produced at the highest possible resolution. Older content may obviously not be available at the highest possible resolution.

Correct hardware to play Ultra HD content

To play 4K content with Netflix, you need the correct hardware. As for Windows PCs:

  • A 4K @ 60Hz display with HDCP 2.2 support (if external) is required.
  • For integrated graphics, you need a 7th generation Intel CPU or later or an AMD Ryzen.
  • For dedicated graphics, you need an AMD RX 400 or later, or an Nvidia GPU with certain minimum specifications,
  • A stable internet connection of 25 Mbps or higher.

On Mac, the requirements are similar, but you need:

  • A Mac with an Apple processor or Apple T2 security chip,
  • macOS Big Sur 11.0 or later.

Netflix in HDR (High Dynamic Range) format on Mac can be used on models compatible with HDR displays (MacBook Air and Pro 2018 or later, iMac 2020 and later, Mac Pro, Mac mini 2018, and later, Mac Pro 2019). On Windows, the HDR format is supported with Windows 10 and Windows 11 and compatible monitors.

With most browsers, Netflix limits the resolution to 720p on Mac. Safari supports resolution up to 1080p on macOS 10.11 up to version 10.15 and up to 4K on macOS 11.0 or later.

Taking into account what has been mentioned, to have the maximum resolution, it is sometimes necessary to consider other factors:

  • The need to use high-speed HDMI cables (to carry quality audio and video signals), such as HDMI 1.4 or later.
  • If you are using computers with multiple monitors at the same time, they must support the minimum Netflix requirements. Otherwise, you may need to unplug the one that doesn’t support certain resolutions.
  • If you are using HDMI adapters (e.g., USB-C to HDMI), make sure they support 4K @ 60Hz resolutions. Some of these support a maximum of 30 Hz output and, therefore, this refresh rate.

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