What is 4K?
4K is a resolution for your TV. Technically called 4K UHD (or 4K Ultra HD, or 4K Ultra High Definition), it packs in four times as many pixels as a 1080p HDTV. This makes for a sharper, more detailed picture.
To watch in 4K and its companion video technology, HDR (high dynamic range), you must have a 4K TV and either an Xbox One X or Xbox One S console.
Native 4K vs. 4K upscaling
When you set your console resolution to 4K UHD, everything on the console—Home, games, and apps—will display at 4K. On Xbox One X, 4K content is displayed in its native 4K resolution, and other content (like games encoded for 1080p) is upscaled to 4K. Games on Xbox One S also get upscaled to 4K. While typically smoother and more detailed than native 720p or 1080p, upscaled 4K is not as rich and detailed as native 4K.
To set your resolution and upscale everything to 4K, press the Xbox button to open the guide, go to System > Settings > General > TV & display options. For Resolution, select 4K UHD.
4K in games and apps
You don't have to set your console resolution to 4K to play 4K content. You can set your console to another resolution, such as 1080p, and when a game or app requires 4K (and your TV supports the 4K mode it wants), it'll automatically switch to 4K. This is good if you want to play 1080p content in its native resolution, but also take advantage of the 4K resolution when playing 4K content.
To set your resolution to a lower resolution but switch to 4K when 4K content is played:
- Open the guide and go to System > Settings > General > TV & display options and then make sure Resolution is set to 720p or 1080p.
- Select Video modes and make sure Allow 4K is checked.
To provide better support, did this solution solve your problem?
Thank you for your feedback
Thanks for your feedback!
Provide feedback for this topic
Would you like to contact Support regarding the "What is 4K?" issue you were reading about or a different issue?