Graphics on Apple TV 4K 2017

Just a quick question:

I recently bought an 2017 Apple TV 4K to run Zwift on my TV.

I watched the video by DC Rainmaker on YouTube about the comparison of the new and old Apple TV 4K and thought the graphics look great on the old ATV 4K and went on to buy one.

Now I set it up and realized, that the graphics is not that great at all. First and foremost, I have no shadows of buildings, fences, trees and stuff or of the avatar plus bikes.

I found out, that Zwift has updated the graphics for the new ATV 4K and wondered if that meant that graphics for the old one got worse? Or is there a way to change graphic settings on Zwift to get more details.

Thanks for helping me out.


Hi @Florian_Santana, no there is no way to improve the graphics on Apple TV. Zwift controls it and gives it only the basic profile with low detail and no shadows.

This was before Zwift made them look exactly the same, not long afterwards. It was because the new model wasn’t correctly supported at launch, not because the older model was better in any way. It technically benchmarks better from a GPU perspective, but that makes literally no difference in Zwift.

Edit: DCR’s comparison post was published on 22nd May. ZHQ corrected the profile on the new model on 2nd June, less than two weeks later.

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Thanks guys for your answers. But that doesn’t really answer the question. I know that the new Apple TV is now supported with updated graphics and stuff, but on the other hand it seems that the old Apple TV 4K has now lesser graphics than before - at least mine does.

Just take a look at the screenshots in the article by DCR - my Zwift on Apple TV 4K 2017 does not look even remotely close to those screenshots.

So what’s the deal with it? It obviously has had graphics with shadows before and just because the new Apple TV has now updated graphics does not essentially mean that the old Apple TV now has to have worse graphics.

Are you absolutely sure you’ve got a 4K model? The only reason you would have ‘worse’ graphics (bearing in mind they’re all marginally better than the worst Zwift has to offer) is if you’re on the HD model. Post up some screenshots of what you’re referring to.

I’m not aware of any being downgraded. There would be no reason whatsoever to do that, and I’m sure the many users of ATV would be complaining if it happened.

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What color is the remote control? Silver or black?

I think the HD has a silver remote, not positive?

No, that’s the 3rd gen and older. They’re not even compatible with Zwift. 4th gen HD model has the black Siri remote, like 5th gen/4K.

I have the black remote, which was the one for the old ATV 4K model. The new 2021 model has a silver remote.

I’m absolutely 100% sure to have the 2017 ATV 4K model.

Could it be the TV or the connection to the TV via HDMI cable?

What’s the model number on the base of the unit? It’s not the cable, no. That doesn’t affect the profile the game uses.

I assume you’ve already tried reinstalling the game in case it’s a weird quirk?

Model A1842

MQD22FD/A Apple TV 4K (32GB)

Yeah, I deinstalled and reinstalled it, it’s updated to the current version.

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Good to check. :+1:

All I can suggest is reinstalling the game. Beyond that, I’m stuck. Be interested to see some pics, because I’m not aware of anything being downgraded. Wouldn’t make any sense.

You definitely should have shadows from trees etc (not bikes though) on Apple TV 4K 2017. That’s what I run on. Something is wrong there. Have you rebooted the ATV?

Here’s a screenshot from my Apple TV 4K from a month ago. You can see shadows there, just not a bike/rider shadow.

i get building tree etc shaded, just no rider shadows