Vimeo streams in 4K resolution

January 5th, 2015 icon / message-square 3
Vimeo streams in 4K resolution

It’s been proven that Vimeo now supports UltraHD streaming for new 4K content. Vimeo themselves have only disclosed support for 4K downloading for Pro users, but the sought after feature is available right now.

Vimeo Banner4K streaming has been available for a while on YouTube and it’s only been a matter of time as to when it would become available on Vimeo, some may consider it’s overdue. Filmmaker James Miller discovered a lovely little “easter egg” that proves 4K streaming is available on Vimeo right now.

Those with a high resolution display such as a retina will instantly notice this hidden feature. For those that don’t, let me show you.

When full screen mode is enabled, Vimeo has a button in the bottom right hand corner that toggles Native Resolution with Fit To Screen. I’m going to show you examples of what the native resolutions looks like on Vimeo including 1080 and 4K. These examples are kindly taken from James Miller’s tests, to view these video clips, check out his page here.

Hitting full screen on any 1080p Vimeo file and selecting native resolution will give you the following on a 15″ retina:

1080 native

What you are seeing is a native 1920X1080 file in full screen mode.

Here’s the same clip again by James Miller, but this time it’s a 3840X2160 file:

4k native

The clip twice the size, filling the screen showing that Vimeo streams in 4K. Comparing a scaled 1080p video to native 4K, the difference is clear. here’s a crop of side by side:

2160p 1080p side by side

Vimeo also supports 2.5K, here’s what native 1440p looks like:

1440 native

Vimeo currently don’t advertise this feature, but the fact that it’s available and working suggests an imminent public release.

Unfortunately this feature is only available for Pro Vimeo account users. I tested this on a Plus account, and it downscaled the file to 1080p.

It also will not work on previous 4K uploads. These “old” videos are down converted to 1080p; only newly uploaded 4K videos via a Vimeo Pro account will work. We’ve re-uploaded a video in 4K to test it out – check out this review film of the Pansonic LX100 shot by our colleague Johnnie Behiri:

Shot on the Panasonic LX100 – read the full review here.

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