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How to get HDR on Sky Q

The Sky Q platform can now play HDR content, but not everyone customer will have access to it. Here’s how to get HDR on your Sky Q box.

Related: Sky Q 2020 review

How to get HDR on your Sky Q box

Sky launched its HDR service on May 27th, but all its boxes were compatible so HDR was not widely available. The original Sky Q Silver box shipped with a HDMI 1.4 output, which is not compatible with the current HDR standard.

You will need a Ultra HD or Sky Q experience subscription for 4K content. Before you can start watching HDR content, you need to check your set-top box is compatible. Thankfully, there’s a way of doing so:

  • Press the Home button on your remote
  • Select settings
  • Select System info. There you can see box’s hardware version

Only Sky Q boxes with these numbers are compatible:

Sky Q 2TB boxes

  • 32B1xx
  • 32B205
  • 32B206

Sky Q 1TB boxes

  • 32B203
  • 32B204
  • 32B205
  • 32B206
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The Sky Q Mini boxes do not support Ultra HD, so you cannot get HDR on these units.

We were told that Sky customers who don’t have compatible boxes need to give Sky’s customer service a call and discuss options for upgrading.

It’s been confirmed that customers will need to pay a feww for a replacement box. For those with 2TB boxes, you will need to pay £50 to receive a new box. This includes postage, administration fees and the return of your old Sky box. For those who need a replacement of a 1TB box, this will incur a cost of £25.

The 1TB replacement program has already started, while reports suggest the 2TB replacement is expected to begin in the next few weeks. If you’re not fussed about watching HDR, Sky will still support older boxes. You can register your interest in getting a 2TB box here.

Make sure that your TV is HDR compliant (most new 4K TVs are), and then it’s another trip into the settings to enable HDR:

  • Press Home
  • Select Settings
  • Select Setup, then Audio visual
  • Choose 2160p (UHD)

You’ll receive a prompt asking to select 8-bit, 10-bit or ‘Find it for me’. To make it simple, select 10-bit, as that is what’s required for  HDR playback.

Once that’s over, you should be able to enjoy the limited amount of HDR content available. Your viewing options are a choice between three nature programmes – Gangs of Lemur Island, Pridelands: Wilderness Reborn and Malawi Wildlife Rescue. More content will arrive by the end of the year, and they include more nature shows, some Sky Originals and a selection of blockbusters in time for Sky Cinema Christmas.

Sky has said that it will be updating apps to support HDR, and this will include Netflix and Disney Plus. Expect that to roll out in the next few months.

Related: How to get Disney Plus on Sky Q

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