Apple TV

Get your audio and video playback just the way you like it with a few manual tweaks in the Settings app.

One of the major conveniences of Apple TV is that it handles most of the setup work for you: It automatically detects audio and video hardware, and adjusts those settings accordingly. If, however, things don't quite look or sound right, you can manually make minor adjustments yourself. Here's how.

How to change the speaker output on Apple TV

You can either use the default audio connection to your TV, piggyback audio from a third-generation Apple TV or AirPort, or hook up a home entertainment sound system.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Select Audio and Video.

    Opening the Settings app on Apple TV

  3. Select Audio Output.
  4. Select your preferred speaker output.

    Selecting a speaker on Apple tv

How to change the surround sound on Apple TV

When you connect your Apple TV to your TV set, it will automatically detect the best quality available. You can, however, manually select a different setting.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Select Audio and Video.

    Opening the Settings app on Apple TV

  3. Select Surround Sound.
  4. Switch to Dolby Digital 5.1 or Stereo.

    Selecting surround sound on Apple TV

How to enable 16-bit audio output on Apple TV

Apple TV is set up to automatically select the best audio output, but some TVs require 16-bit.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Select Audio and Video.

    Opening the Settings app on Apple TV

  3. Select Audio Mode.

    Choosing 16-bit on Apple TV

When you select it, it will switch to 16-bit.

How to change the HDMI output on Apple TV

Depending on which type of screen you have, you may use a YCbCR or RGB HDMI output. While Apple TV will automatically detect which is correct, you can change it yourself.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Select Audio and Video.

    Opening the Settings app on Apple TV

  3. Select HDMI Output.
  4. Switch to YCbCr, RGB High, or RGB Low.

How to change the resolution on Apple TV

If your TV is older, it probably doesn't support 1080p; why stream content (and eat at your bandwidth) at such a high resolution when you can adjust it to your screen?

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Select Audio and Video.

    Opening the Settings app on Apple TV

  3. Select a different resolution.
  4. When prompted, select OK.

    Unsupported screen resolution on Apple TV

If your TV doesn't support a given resolution, you will get an error message and it will revert to the automatic setting.

Any questions?

Is there anything about adjusting the audio and video settings on Apple TV that you'd like to know more about? Post it in the comments and we'll get back to you.