What is 4K PassThrough Receiver

What is 4K Passthrough receiver

What is 4K PassThrough AV Receiver?

This is a type of Audio Video receiver that allows any 4K video source content to passthrough the receiver without an additional post-processing to deliver an exact video output and then feeds into 4K displays such as Televisions.

Let’s say that the source contents contain copyrighted 4K video signal and you want it to be shown thru a 4K TV.

The source output must be connected thru a compatible HDMI cable that supports HDCP 2.2 (High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection), and then it must be connected to the input of the 4K passthrough receiver.

The video copy is protected because there will be no post-processing within the receiver. This means that it removes that possibility of blocking or obstructing the digital data midstream between the original source and the display output.

The AV receiver will then deliver its output via HDMI and connect to the display’s input that also supports HDCP 2.2


Do I need a new AV receiver to go with my 4K TV?

This is a tricky question. No worries, you are not alone.

Let’s see what are your options…

AV receiver is the heart of your surround system to enjoy those high-powered speakers and video system. Unless you are satisfied with the normal TV speaker, then you won’t really need a new audio video receiver.

However, should you need to buy a new AV receiver unit (under $500)…

These days, AVR units usually contain multiple slots of HDMI inputs, and at least one slot that supports HDCP 2.2.

Be very careful when choosing your new audio video receiver that should support HDCP 2.2

Otherwise, whatever signal that comes out from your Ultra High-Definition Blu-Ray player or 4K/UHD streaming device will not be able to pass through successfully to your 4K display unit.

Another consideration for AVR should be able to operate with HDMI 2.0 at beefy 18 Gbps or higher bitrate. It works best with 4K displays (2160p) at 60 fps and 32 channels. They can last longer especially for future upgrades.

4K Upscaling vs Passthrough

Did you ever asked yourself, what happens if your AVR has an 4K upscaling plus passthrough feature, and your 4K display has also the same upscaling feature?

Which one is superior? Should you use both or use only from one source?

Let’s clarify each functions:

AVR does an excellent job to do 4K passthrough. It passes the native 4K content through it and then displays it. So, NO upscaling is needed.

While, upscaling from a 1080p content (or lower) to a “fake 4K” display is required in order to show a better version of the images or video. Remember, your TV should support 4K display to do this, otherwise you get a big black screen after upscaling it.

In a nutshell, whether there are benefits when upscaling from your AVR or not will be dependent upon your video source and/or TV itself. Usually, TV manufacturers excel in the upscaling to 4K, so which ever does a better job (AVR or TV) than the other will be on your choice.

What can you say with your 4K passthrough receiver and how we can help you. Put your comments in the section below.


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2 thoughts on “What is 4K PassThrough Receiver”

  1. Hi got the b8 /12 Philips Fidelio soundbar 1.4 arc at back and 2 more hdmi sockets it says it’s got 4k pass through the TV is a Philips 6500 series model also got V6 virgin media box and a PS4 how do I connect to get best sound from soundbar the TV has not got Atmos feature

    1. Hi Alan,

      I believe you got the Philips SkyQuake Fidelio soundbar speaker with Dolby Atmos, which is awesome by the way. Sound is really excellent!

      Behind your soundbar includes 1 piece of HDMI Out (ARC which stands for Audio Return Channel) that should be connected to the HDMI input of your Philips 6500 TV. With the HDMI ARC connection, you do not need to connect the extra audio cable that sends the sound of the TV picture to the HTS. The HDMI ARC connection combines both signals.

      Use the HDMI cable that came with your V6 Virgin media box to connect it to your SkyQuake soundbar HDMI IN1.

      From your PS4 system HDMI Out port, connect it to your Philips Fidelio HDMI IN2.

      With these setups, you get input source from V6 media box and PS4, then delivers the sound outputs to your SkyQuake soundbar as well as 4K video to your Philips 6500 TV.

      Hope it helps you well.
      Let me know.


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