What is the maximum screen resolution possible with AirPlay Extend Display on the Apple TV 4K?

I.e. is it possible to treat an Apple TV 4K connected to a 4k TV as an external Retina-enabled display with a physical 3840×2160 resolution mimicking a 1920x1080 display, but with better font clarity etc?

  • Indirectly related, but replying in case it's helpful: Airplay from MacBook Pro M3-Pro to MacBook Air M2 connected to a 1920x1200 monitor via USB-C to VGA adapter, I can get 3840x2160 resolution as the maximum resolution for extend display on MBP M3-Pro, although the scaling makes it quite small. I can also get many other resolutions, including the native monitor 1920x1200. Commented Jan 20 at 13:35

1 Answer 1


I had some luck with my lg 65 inch 4k display. By turning off underscanning in the Apple TVs Airplay menu I have gone from having bars around my 'external' display and this seems to have increased the clarity of text.

However, I am still faced with only scaled options for 1080p and 720 on my macs display options for Apple TV.

I guess there could be two reasons for this...

Requires a High Sierra Software update to enable 4K mirroring

The network bandwidth required for 4K streaming may be a challenge to ensure a smooth experience and hence why it is still not possible.

it would be nice to have the option either way....if it came with a disclaimer that performance may be delayed at least id have a choice to put up with it or not....

  • 1
    Any update on this? Commented Apr 13, 2018 at 18:27
  • This might be a limitation on the hardware h.264 encoder on your Mac. Commented Dec 9, 2020 at 11:23

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