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Netflix Low Quality On PC: Causes and How to Fix

As an avid Netflix watcher, I’ve been frustrated lately by a low-quality picture on my PC. After a bit of research, I’ve found some tips and tricks to help solve the issue. In this blog post, I’m going to share what I’ve learned and the solutions I’ve discovered to help you get the best streaming quality on Netflix.

The most common reason for having Netflix low quality on PC is a slow or unstable internet connection. You can try to resolve this by restarting your computer and internet router, then reconnecting your device. If your network connection problem persists, contact your internet service provider.

Why Is My Netflix Low Quality On PC?

Four key factors could play roles in why your Netflix is low quality on PC. 

  1. Your Internet Connection

First, you probably didn’t meet the recommended Netflix internet connection speed. The recommended speed for SD is 1Mbps while HD is 3 to 5 Mbps. For 4K/Ultra HD, you’ll need 15 Mbps.

Second, it might be that your internet connection couldn’t play Netflix. If you’re using public Wi-Fi, ask if Netflix is restricted. Mobile hotspots, cellular networks, or satellite networks may also be too slow to access Netflix.

Third, you have a weak Wi-Fi signal. Your router might be too distant from the device and obstacles reduce signal strength.

  1. Your Computer

You may be using an outdated version of Windows. Windows 7 doesn’t support Netflix’s Digital Rights Management (DRM) for high-resolution videos. On Windows 10, you might need to update Netflix manually.

It could also be that your computer isn’t capable of HD content output. 720p or higher is the HD video output. If you’re uncertain if your device supports HD video, check the owner’s manual.

  1. Your Netflix Account

You might have changed your Netflix playback setting to “low” to save data usage. This could cause a quality drop of as low as 240p.

  1. Your Browser

It’s possible that your browser doesn’t support HD output. Chrome doesn’t consistently support Netflix HD streaming.

How to Fix Netflix Low Quality on PC?

Now that we’ve identified the four possible factors affecting Netflix’s low quality on PC, here are the ways to fix them.

  1. Fix your Internet connection

If you haven’t visited the official Netflix helpdesk, it provides comprehensive solutions to poor quality or distorted video. Troubleshoot if video resolution doesn’t improve after a minute of streaming.

First, check fast.com to determine if your internet speed matches Netflix’s. Check Netflix’s ISP speed index as well. If your ISP is low-ranking, it might be throttling Netflix users.

If you have a home network, turn off your computer and unplug your modem and router for 30-60 seconds. Restart your devices and try Netflix again.

Boost your Wi-Fi signal if the problem persists. You may move your router and device closer together. You should also keep your router away from other wireless devices. For optimal reception, set your router on a desk or bookshelf.

Finally, contact your ISP to confirm its arrangement with Netflix.

  1. Troubleshoot Your Computer

If you followed Netflix’s instructions and the issue persists, the problem might be due to your computer.

Make sure you have Windows that supports DRM. If you have a low-resolution display, you can try adjusting your Windows 10 screen resolution.

In case your computer isn’t capable of HD Content output, you might be unable to stream Netflix 4k. The following minimum specs would be ideal for Netflix UHD:

  • HDCP 2.2 compatible, 4K 60Hz display 
  • 7th gen or newer Intel CPU or Ryzen CPU 
  • Motherboard with HDMI 2.0, Nvidia GTX 1050, or a better GPU
  • For Mac processors, a T2 chip or an Apple Silicone
  1. Check Your Netflix Account Settings

Another important way to resolve your Netflix issue is to check your Netflix account.

  • Sign in to netflix.com to change playback settings.
  • Click your profile from “Who’s Watching?”.
  • In the upper right, choose Profile then Account.
  • Change your profile under Profile & Parental Controls. (Kids’ profiles can’t change data usage settings.)
  • Change Playback settings.
  • Click High, then Save. Remember, this setting may increase data usage.
  • Restart Netflix.

If you’ve exhausted all these efforts and the problem persists, we recommend you try these last resorts to solving your problem:

  1. Change Your Browser or Download the Netflix App

Chrome and Firefox aren’t ideal for Netflix streaming. These browsers stream only 720p, even if you pay Netflix for Ultra HD or have a 4K screen.

On the other hand, Netflix can utilize DRM on Microsoft Edge (for Windows users) and Apple Safari (for Mac users), which allows subscribers to enjoy the highest video quality.

You can also download the Netflix app on your computer and make it the default player. The Netflix app supports UHD streaming, so this could work for you.

Conclusion

Netflix is fun if you enjoy the best quality video. Before making your move, if you’re experiencing quality issues, verify you’re subscribed to the right Netflix plan. Confirm that your ISP is in good arrangement with Netflix. Finally, make sure you have the right streaming device and browser.

One sure thing remains though: there’s always a way to resolve Netflix low quality on PC!