When it comes to media streaming, Netflix is a popular source of on-demand entertainment. It's hard to find a better app than Netflix. With one of the largest libraries of movies and TV shows in the world, Netflix is the go-to place for original and legacy content.
Unfortunately, Netflix's only weakness is its reliance on high-speed internet connections to deliver a crystal-clear viewing experience. If your favorite Netflix Originals are coming in at lower resolutions than you expected, it's really easy to change your picture settings.
Changing Netflix Picture Settings: Make Netflix HD or Ultra HD
Before changing your resolution settings, make sure you have a subscription that allows HD or UHD content. Netflix technically starts at $8,99 per month, but to access finer content you'll need to upgrade to the $12,99 or $15,99 per month plans. These enable HD and UHD respectively, as well as upgrading the number of devices that can stream Netflix at once.
Changing Netflix Picture Settings on Chrome, Safari, Edge, and Firefox
When watching Netflix content through a web browser, it's not initially obvious how you can change your playback settings, so don't worry if you can't find them right away. You will also need to make changes to your smart TVs and streaming devices by logging in to
- Log in and select your profile (if you have multiple profiles on one account.)
- Click the down arrow next to your profile name and select Account.
- Aller vers PROFILE & PARENTAL CONTROL and click on the drop-down menu to the right of your profile.
- In the Play settings section, click Switch.
- In the Data usage per screen window, click Haute for HD and UHD quality, then click save to make it the default.
Changing Netflix Picture Settings on Android and iOS
Sometimes streaming content on the go can eat up a lot of your data plan and drain your phone's battery. Visual quality degradation saves on both. Fortunately, your picture settings in the Netflix mobile app on Android and iOS are very easy to access.
- Sign in to Netflix and select your profile (if you have multiple profiles.)
- Click on Suite at the bottom of your Android or iOS screen.
- Then press App settings.
- For high quality downloads, select Download video quality Downloads section.
- Then press Haute Download video quality option.
- For streaming, scroll up on App settings menu and select Cellular data usage.
- In the Cellular data usage settings, turn Automatic disabled.
- Then select Maximum data for the best video quality.
Requirements for streaming UHD content
Streaming content in Ultra HD requires more than just a higher subscription level and changing some settings. You will need the proper equipment to support the contents of the crisper. Netflix recommends that you have the following:
- Internet speed of at least 25 Mbps: You can use a physical Ethernet cable to increase your speeds.
- A 60Hz monitor if you're streaming to your computer.
- A TV compatible with Ultra HD content: Models can be found by visiting the Netflix Help Center and entering the TV manufacturer.
Once you've met all the requirements, you're good to go! Start enjoying Ultra HD content.
Now that you're ready to stream UHD content, you need to stream that content. Remember that not all Netflix content is available in UHD. Whether it's an older show or wasn't released in a higher definition format, you may have to settle for standard definition on some shows and movies.
You can start watching higher quality content by searching for it or viewing a series. Here's how:
To search, just use Netflix search and type in “UHD”. A list of shows, series and movies will appear. Scroll down, choose one and start watching.
As you'll notice, the majority of titles available are newer, so you may not be able to watch Meredith from the desktop in full UHD.
Then you can find out if a title is available in higher quality by clicking on the button More information option.
If you click on a show, it will show "4K Ultra HD" in the upper right corner next to the title. Even better, Netflix will automatically play high resolution content if it's available to you.
If no shows seem to have this feature, it's probably because you're not eligible for UHD content. Check that you meet all the criteria above or contact Netflix support if you are still unable to get UHD content. If you think your internet speeds are slow, you can use the Speed Test Site or the app if you have a mobile device.
Unfortunately, there's no good way to check that you're actually streaming UHD content. Sure, you should be able to tell by visual quality, but Netflix and most TV manufacturers don't offer an option to test screen quality.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some additional answers to the most frequently asked questions about Netflix HD and UHD streaming.
Is it worth upgrading to Ultra HD?
The answer to this question is highly up to you. If you value better clarity and image quality, or are just an avid streamer, then yes, it's probably worth the upgrade. For those who don't watch Netflix often or haven't upgraded their TV in a while, it's best to stick with a lower tier plan.
The extra streams you get when you have Netflix's top tier package add to the value. If you have multiple people using the same account, it's necessary to update so everyone can stream uninterrupted.
Why can't I select the higher quality on Netflix?
The higher quality content streaming option may not work for you or may not appear at all. After upgrading your plan, the first thing you need to do is visit the settings for each profile on your account and tap Parameters. Locate it Play settings and enable the highest quality option. Although this action uses more data if you're streaming from a wifi source, it shouldn't affect anything.
If you have enabled the option and still not receiving any HD quality content, close Netflix and reopen it. This step gives the application time to save the new settings. If your HD content still isn't playing and you've confirmed you're using at least 25 Mbps with an HD-enabled device, contact Netflix Support for further assistance.
Is Netflix UHD the same as 4K?
Although UHD and 4K are technically different (true 4K has a slightly higher pixel ratio than UHD), most consumers won't notice a difference in quality. It may surprise you, but many TVs are advertised as 4K when they're actually ultra high definition.
I have a 4K TV, but it's not compatible. Why not?
So here's the kicker on 4K and UHD TVs; those made before 2014 (and even some after 2014) did not include the correct HEVC decoder. This basically allows your TV to display UHD content from Netflix as UHD content.
Netflix HD / UHD content
Now that you know what to check when you want to stream HD/UHD content on Netflix, you should be set. Also, don't forget to check your connection, to see if it's metered or not, this can reduce the quality of the streaming, if you're still having trouble viewing higher resolution content.
Have you had problems accessing HD and UHD content on Netflix? What do you stream in HD/UHD on Netflix?