About one month ago, YouTube added support for HDR streaming and as promised Samsung has released an update to enable YouTube HDR on its 2016 “SUHD” and UHD TVs.
YouTube HDR on Samsung TVs
YouTube in HDR quality requires hardware support for the ‘VP9 Profile2’ format so all 2015 models are left out in the cold. Samsung’s 2016 TVs on the other hand support it.
As promised, Samsung has released a firmware update (version 1154.0) to enable YouTube HDR. The update started rolling out yesterday in the US and Europe.
It may not yet show up as an over-the-air update on your TV so if you are eager to try it out you can download it from the US support site or UK support site, unzip it onto a USB stick, and install it from one of the USB ports in your TV. If you are based in another region go to your local Samsung support webpage.
YouTube HDR has been confirmed to work on the KS7, KS8 and KS9 models. It should also work on the KU6xxx models but we have yet to confirm it or hear from any owners of these TVs. The firmware update version 1154.0 applies to these TVs, too. Samsung says that all 2016 UHD TVS come with built-in support for VP9 Profile2.
There is still not a lot HDR content on YouTube but you can find some of the best stuff on this playlist. YouTube’s HDR generally looks very good because it uses a significantly higher bitrate than Netflix and Amazon (if you internet connection is fast enough).
Sony and LG have confirmed to FlatpanelsHD that similar updates are coming to select 2016 TVs but we are still awaiting further details. If you want to experience YouTube’s HDR on a non-compatible TV you can connect the Chromecast Ultra.