PlayStation 4 Pro not working with some 4K TVs due to firmware issue, but there is a fix
Stephan Jukic – November 14, 2016
While the PlayStation 4 Pro from Sony has been much lauded as a cutting-edge new 4K UHD TV gaming console with HDR as an awesome bonus technology, some users who have bought the newly released (as of November 10th) device might find themselves sorely disappointed in its performance as soon as they get home and plug the PS4 Pro into their 4K TVs.
It seems that numerous reports are popping up across the web about users of the new Pro console claiming that it doesn’t quite work properly with some 4K ultra HD TVs and the root of this problem seems to stem from the console’s software and its updates.
Apparently, the PS4 Pro ships to buyers with a system software update numbered version 4.0 already installed. However, this update isn’t the latest in the series of those released by Sony since the company released another minor but crucial update in late October. It is with this further 4.05 update that something seems to be wrong for now.
According to reporting from the web, a number of users have posted to Reddit and other sites claiming that once they bought their PS4 Pro and were asked by the console to also install update 4.05, they could no longer get reliable 4K resolution display on their TVs afterwards while using the console.
To cite a couple of examples of what we’re referring to: A user who goes by Bravo514 posted to a PS4 thread on Reddit claiming that, “Plugged my Pro in and it booted up in beautiful 2160p. Then it asked me to update to 4.05. After update – no signal. I thought my Pro was fried.”
Another user named biostang also claimed that “just leaving the Pro in 1080p on the 4K/60hz input causes the TV to go blank for a few seconds every ten minutes.”. And aside from these two, other users have posted to claim the same sort of phenomena, namely that installing update 4.05 causes their PS4 Pro consoles to start showing black or blank screens and even audio cut-outs every few minutes, making their PS 4 Pro consoles unusable on 4K UHD TVs from certain brands and with certain 4K-capable HDMI connectivity ports used.
The issue seems to revolve mainly around LG, Hisense and Vizio 4K TVs and especially around older models from these brands. Other users who own newer 2016 4K televisions from Vizio and the others seem to have had no problems of this kind with the PS4 Pro and 4K connectivity.
Since Sony hasn’t yet come forward with a solution, at least at the time of this writing, the PlayStation 4 Pro console user community on the web has come up with its own slightly cumbersome workaround to fix the issue. This has so far worked with Vizio’s M-Series and P-Series TVs and comes to us from Reddit user Bravo514:
“1. Make sure your PS4 is off
- Plug the HDMI into the 4K 60hz port on your tv
- Turn your tv on
- Hold down the power button on your PS4 until it beeps twice (Safe mode)
- Change HDCP setting to 1.4 only
- PS4 will restart and you’ll probably still have no signal
- Turn PS4 off and get back to Safe Mode (step 4)
- Choose change resolution which will restart PS4
- If you get an image after PS4 restarts then choose the yuv420 option. Hooray!
- If you got no signal still after PS4 restarted then go back to safe mode and go back to HDCP and choose automatic
- [Go] back to safe mode again and choose change resolution and then choose yuv420
If still not working then try the above steps a couple more times”
As you can see, this is still hardly an ideal solution and if the problem persists, Sony will hopefully come out with a response since the problem clearly seems to stem from their and specifically from the new update 4.05 patch.
According to reporting on this same issue from the website polygon.com, the root of the problem seems to stem from the PS4 Pro’s HDR-ready HDMI 2.0a and HDCP 2.2 copy protection for 4K content. These two specifications of modern HDMI are crucial for the transfer of copy protected digital 4K video content and the HDR video signals that the PS4 Pro is capable of, as well as other types of HDR 4K video from other devices. Thus, while the PlayStation 4 Pro comes with both technologies, many of the older 2015 and 2014 4K TVs the above Reddit posters are using don’t necessarily come with the same connectivity standards, or at least don’t include them in all of their HDMI ports.
It’s also worth noting here that while older PS4 models from before the release of the Pro version are technically also capable of HDR, they don’t come with HDMI 2.0a or HDCP’s 2.2 version. Instead their connectivity consists of HDMI 1.4 and an older version of HDCP.
However this is only part of the problem and another interrupting factor in smooth connectivity between the PS4 Pro and these older TVs could possibly involve the need to enable HDR settings in the TVs themselves first before plugging them into HDR gaming through the PS4 Pro. Thus for example, Vizio TVs have an “HDMI Color Subsampling” setting which can be enabled for their HDMI ports, and similar settings called “enhanced format” and “HDMI UHD Color” exist for Sony and Samsung 4K TVs respectively.
These latter issues are rather speculative however, and for the time being, while we hope for some sort of response from Sony on its console update 4.05 issue, your best bet is to try the steps quoted above if you too have been experiencing these problems in your own 4K TV/PS 4 combo.
Story by 4k.com