It’s frustrating when you sit down to watch a title you’ve been waiting for on Prime Video but it refuses to play in the best resolution. We’ve run into this problem on Prime Video, and luckily, there are easy ways to fix this problem. This guide will help you with what to do when Amazon Prime Video won’t play in HD on your web browser.
We noticed that Prime Video has a problem playing videos in HD even when your hardware and display support it. Changing a few toggles and fixing a few settings in the website and your web browser will definitely help you fix the problem.
Let’s start solving the problem. We can start by looking at the video playback settings.
Note: Ensure that you restart your device and turn off VPN to see if they help resolve the issue before following the fixes below.
1. Check playback settings
If Prime Video doesn’t play in HD, you should first check if High-Definition playback is enabled in Settings. Here’s how you can do it.
Step 1: Click on the Settings icon in the player window.
Step 2: You will now get a list of video quality options in the drop down menu. Select Best to ensure that Prime Video plays the video in the best resolution.
If Prime Video doesn’t play in HD even after enabling it in settings, you probably need to check your internet connection.
2. Check the network connection
Optimum internet speed is required to play Prime videos in high definition or best definition. So make sure you check your internet speed, if it is not enough, you can contact your service provider and change your plan.
You can use fast.com or speedtest.net to quickly test your internet speed.
3. Check Amazon Prime Servers
If Prime videos are not playing in HD despite a good internet connection, you can try to check if Amazon Prime’s servers are experiencing downtime. If that happens, there is a possibility that Prime Video will also be affected.
There is nothing you can do in this situation but wait for Amazon to fix it, they will in time.
4. Sign out of Prime Video and sign in again
Another way you can try to fix this problem is to sign out of Amazon Prime Video and sign back in. This is essentially a means to refresh Prime Video and here’s how you can do it:
Step 1: Open Amazon Prime Video in any browser and tap on your username.
Step 2: Click on Sign Out.
Step 3: Now, click on ‘Sign in to join Prime’.
Step 4: Enter your credentials and click on Sign In.
If you will now be signed in to Amazon Prime Video and it still won’t play in HD, you can try clearing the web browser cache as another means of solving the problem.
5. Clear the browser cache
A cache is a form of temporary data stored in local storage. It quickly reloads the app’s features instead of downloading them from the internet. However, most caches are large amounts of data and garbage accumulations that are known to cause several problems with an application.
Therefore, you can clear the cache in your web browser and try to fix the problem with Prime Video. The steps, more or less, remain the same for all web browsers.
Step 1: Click on the three dots icon in the toolbar.
Step 2: Click on Settings.
Step 3: Click on ‘Privacy and Security’.
Step 4: Now, select ‘Clear Browsing Data’.
Step 5: Click on the Time Range button and select the time range as All Time. This will help you clear the data and cache stored in Chrome since you started using it.
Step 6: Now you will see a list of things to clear. Select what you want to delete and click on Clear Data.
The next time you launch it you’ll get a garbage-free web browser, and there’s a good chance Prime Video will play back in HD. If it doesn’t, you can try your hand at the next solution.
6. Enable hardware acceleration
Hardware acceleration is the process of using your system’s hardware resources to run software and ‘speed up’ work. We recommend enabling it as it provides better performance. Therefore, Prime Video running as a tab in your browser has opportunities to take advantage of Hardware Acceleration and play the video in the best resolution.
Here’s how you can enable hardware acceleration in your browser.
Enable hardware acceleration on Chrome
Step 1: Tap on the three-dot icon on the toolbar and select Settings.
Step 2: Click on System in the sidebar.
Step 3: Turn on the toggle for ‘Use hardware acceleration when available’.
If you use Firefox, here’s how you can enable its hardware acceleration.
Enable hardware acceleration in Firefox
Step 1: Click on the hamburger menu icon in the Firefox toolbar.
Step 2: Click on Settings.
Step 3: On the Settings page, scroll down to Performance.
Step 4: Here, uncheck the box for ‘Use recommended performance settings’ and check the box for ‘Use hardware acceleration when available’.
If none of the above methods work, you can try using Prime Video in a different browser.
7. Use a different browser
When Amazon Prime Video refused to play in the best definition on Microsoft Edge, we tried everything but the only way we could solve this problem was to switch to Firefox.
So, in cases where you cannot pinpoint a problem or setting that is causing the problem, you can use a different web browser on your computer. If Prime Video doesn’t play in HD even in another browser, you can check for an update to your display adapter driver.
8. Update Display Drivers
Display adapters and GPUs are responsible for rendering all the colorful and high-resolution visuals you can see on your display. This is obviously possible with the software or drivers used with these adapters. So, if this software or driver is outdated, update it to play HD videos on apps like Amazon Prime.
Step 1: Open Device Manager from the Start menu.
Step 2: Click on Display Adapters.
Step 3: Right-click on the display driver and tap on Update Driver.
Step 4: Click on ‘Search for drivers automatically’. If new versions are available, you can follow the on-screen instructions to update the drivers.
If none of the above methods work, you can try updating your web browser.
9. Update the web browser
If your web browser has a widespread bug that limits apps like Amazon Prime from running in HD, the developers will surely take note and fix the problem. They will soon release an update that fixes the problem. So, you need to check and update to the latest version of Chrome or any other browser you are using, and here is how you can do it.
Step 1: Click on the three-dot icon on the Chrome toolbar and click on Help.
Step 2: Click on ‘About Google Chrome’.
Step 3: You’ll now see information about the Chrome version, and if an update is available, you’ll be given an option to do so.
If you’ve tried all of these methods and Amazon Prime Video still won’t play in HD, try contacting Amazon Support.
Amazon has active customer support that can help you troubleshoot and resolve the issue quickly. If Prime Video refuses to play in HD after trying all the methods we have suggested, it is best to refer the problem to customer support.
That’s what we can recommend when Amazon Prime Video doesn’t play in HD. However, if you have more questions, check out our FAQ section below.
Amazon Prime Video Resolution FAQ
Amazon Prime Video supports titles up to 4K UHD (2160p) resolution.
Most, but not all, titles on Amazon Prime Video are available in Full HD resolution.
Yes, the higher the video resolution, the higher the data consumption of Prime Video.
SD refers to standard definition, which means that the video is played at 480p resolution on Prime Video. HD refers to high definition, which means that the video is played in 720p or 1080p.
Enjoy the HD resolution of Prime Video
We hope these methods will help you to fix the problem of Prime videos not playing in HD. This is a problem we face whenever we use Prime Video in the browser. So, we hope that Amazon will give it more attention and make sure to fix the Amazon Prime Video situation with updates over time.