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Fix in the works for Apple TV screen flickering issue

post #1 of 20
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A software fix is said to be in the works for users who have experienced screen flickering issues after updating to the latest firmware for the Apple TV set top box.

An Apple support representative has confirmed that Apple is aware of the issues caused by the latest update to the Apple TV, software version 4.2, AppleInsider has learned. The Cupertino, Calif., company is said to be working on a fix that will address the screen flickering problems for a small number of users.

No timeframe was given for when the fix might be released, but it is a sign that Apple is aware of the problems experienced by some with older high-definition television sets.

Last week, AppleInsider first reported on the screen flickering problems caused by the 4.2 update for Apple TV. The problems occur on a variety of TV sets from different manufacturers, affecting major brands including Sony, Panasonic, Hitachi, Samsung and Toshiba.

Users have experienced flickers and screen flashes with direct HDMI video connections, as well as with an HDMI to DVI video adapter. The problems did not exist before Apple released the Apple TV 4.2 update last Wednesday.

The latest software update added streaming Major League Baseball and National Basketball League games, support for AirPlay wireless streaming in third-party applications, and Dolby Digital 5.1 sound output for Netflix Instant Watch streaming movies. But for some users converting the 720p output of the Apple TV, the software update also caused problems.

The new $99 Apple TV, released last year, does not output video in the 1080i high definition format. But some older HDTVs are only capable of displaying 1080i video.

Some TV sets and receivers will accept a 720p resolution video from a device like the Apple TV, and automatically convert it to the compatible 1080i resolution. While this conversion worked fine for many TV sets before the 4.2 Apple TV update, those with 1080i displays began experiencing the flickering issue after last weeks' update.

In addition, some users have been unable to change the HDMI output setting on the Apple TV with the latest software update. Affected users said their HDMI output has been set to "Auto," and their picture has been changed to a non-high-definition 480p picture, which cannot be changed.

Bugs related to resolution and download issues were addressed with a previous software update in December. That fix was issued about two weeks after the problems began to gain attention.
post #2 of 20
I have the same problem with a Canon camcorder when hooked up to my LG flat screen. It can take 1080i signals, but the Canon sometimes fails to figure it out and the result is no signal. It works sometimes, other times it flickers. Guess HDMI is a user experience fail compared to older HD connectors like DVI and analog RCA cables.

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post #3 of 20
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Originally Posted by ihatepears88 View Post

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post #5 of 20
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Originally Posted by bcahill009 View Post

Please stop now or find a new forum. Thank you

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post #6 of 20
Is it just me or did the recent 4.2 update slow down my streaming? I have a b!tch of a time streaming movies that are stored on my iMac. Movie stops and kicks back to the main ATV2 menu. Tried resetting, rebooting, etc.
post #7 of 20
This is the least of their problems with the Apple TV. Several people, myself included, can not sync our data with our apple tvs now that we have the new Macbook Pros. There's several topics going for it over on the official Apple boards.
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post

This is the least of their problems with the Apple TV. Several people, myself included, can not sync our data with our apple tvs now that we have the new Macbook Pros. There's several topics going for it over on the official Apple boards.

Are you talking about the original ATV, because ATV2 obviously doesn't synch. I'm not sure you'll see a fix for ATV1.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 3M TA3 View Post

Is it just me or did the recent 4.2 update slow down my streaming? I have a b!tch of a time streaming movies that are stored on my iMac. Movie stops and kicks back to the main ATV2 menu. Tried resetting, rebooting, etc.

I was about to visit the Apple store in a tirade when the update essentially "bricked" my ATV's. I couldn't stream a thing from the web or my server. Not even music. I guess there's no way to revert to the factory OS and support told me to exchange my ATV's and not install the update once i get them home. (???) Not a response I expected from Apple.

Anyway. I just left them unplugged for a couple of hours. All is fine now, so I'm really not sure what was going on.
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post #9 of 20
I only rent movies and watch youtube and pod casts with ATV2.
My only issue is occasionally when trying to enter a podcast(mainly TWIT broadcasts) or when it ends, ATV2 reboots or kicks me out to main screen and everything reloads on the screen. this occurred before latest update, sooo.. Otherwise , seems to work fine. I use an Airport extreme, generally everything que's up and streams nicely.
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post #10 of 20
I just spoke to apple care 2nd level rep (Steve) about the flickering problem with the new software. He said that ATV2 was not designed to work and was not tested with HDMI to DVI adaptor... He said NO fix was being made and there is no way to revert to previous software version...sorry. Only option...buy a new tv?!?
post #11 of 20
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Originally Posted by a_greer View Post

You must be new here, welcome to Paradise!

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post #12 of 20
I installed the upgrade with no problems, but I am glad that Apple is going to fix it for the people that need it.
post #13 of 20
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Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Quote:
Originally Posted by a_greer View Post

You must be new here, welcome to Paradise!

Funny I was gonna say the same thing to you...

As for a topical post... Despite what this article says... This has been an issue even before the latest patch.. Also you should add Sharp Aquos to the list... My several year old 4 or 5 set non 1080p set also experiences a flicker issue but it clears up in a reasonable period of time... It happens when the atv comes out of sleep almost exclusively.
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post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by spliff monkey View Post

Are you talking about the original ATV, because ATV2 obviously doesn't synch. I'm not sure you'll see a fix for ATV1.

Yes the original. There are all kinds of problems going on with syncing right now. Mine will not sync with itunes and gives me some type of bogus firewall message. Also, it's was not letting me view some of my content, saying it was the wrong format, which is obviously false as well because I've watched it before and now it won't even show me my content to stream it. It does not get along with the new Macbook Pros yet.
post #15 of 20
Could this issue/problem also cause the ATV2 not to send the correct HDMI signal to the set? I've had issues with no signal being recognized by my set (3 years old supports both 720p and 1080i). I have to cycle through the tv inputs and sometimes I have to unplug the ATV2 in order to get a signal.

Wasn't having that problem (much) prior to the update.
post #16 of 20
Might wanna make a correction to the article.
The flickering issue didn't come with the recent firmware update.
I had this problem from the first minute I got appleTV.
I had to update to the then gold master of the update to partially solve the problem.
post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by dimitris View Post

Might wanna make a correction to the article.
The flickering issue didn't come with the recent firmware update.
I had this problem from the first minute I got appleTV.
I had to update to the then gold master of the update to partially solve the problem.

I agree that the flickering issue was there already before the update. This is using a 1080P 46" Samsung that's just 2 years old.

The update seem to have fixed that.

Question to all:
We have 3 ATV's. One original and 2 ATV2's. I find that the original ATV has much better black levels via HDMI than the ATV2. They seem too bright; more gray that actual black.

Does anyone having both model experience the same?
post #18 of 20
slightly off topic, I hanent found a good integrated solution (like say boxee) for a flash of the atv 2, has any?
post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman View Post

I agree that the flickering issue was there already before the update. This is using a 1080P 46" Samsung that's just 2 years old.

The update seem to have fixed that.

Question to all:
We have 3 ATV's. One original and 2 ATV2's. I find that the original ATV has much better black levels via HDMI than the ATV2. They seem too bright; more gray that actual black.

Does anyone having both model experience the same?

I can definitely tell you it's the cable. At first I had used one of the newest hdmi cables (the ones that go upto 4k if I remember correctly) and the blacks were exactly as you described. Then I switched to the cable I'm using for my ps3 and it was working as expected.
The other thing I noticed and I was quite surprised is that each hdmi output at least in my tv was giving a different level of contrast. Same cable same machine hooked on a different port will give a slightly different picture. I was dissapointed since I payed a lot for my tv but it might explain your frustration. A new hdmi cable combined with varying quality hdmi ports might be the issue.
As a rule try to avoid the newest hdmi cables for the apple tv. Go with the previous gen. (1.2?? I can't remember for sure. You need to check that out. )
post #20 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3M TA3 View Post

Is it just me or did the recent 4.2 update slow down my streaming? I have a b!tch of a time streaming movies that are stored on my iMac. Movie stops and kicks back to the main ATV2 menu. Tried resetting, rebooting, etc.

I've had this problem since I got my ATV2, but the problem (in my case) is very poor WiFi reception for my iMac meaning it often can't stream fast enough for HD. Streaming HD from my iPhone 4 works fine. Once I get a wired LAN solution for my iMac the problem will go away.
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