Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Community Member

Chrome quality issues.

First of all, I am a happy customer of Stadia. I know it is a platform in progress but in general I have had a great experience not having to download large games or updates on my computer in order to play them. 

My reason for the post is I am a PC gamer. My gaming machine is connected to my primary 4k television always. I watch tv using through my computer in browser and never have a reason to use other inputs unless I am playing some other external gaming console. I knew that Stadia would not support 4k gaming initially in chrome, but it was a surprise to find out I would have to plug the Stadia controller into my computer in order to use it in chrome. Well at least my xbox controllers work wirelessly, but I am unsure of the lag introduced using this setup after warnings from google. In the first few days of Stadia before I received the CCU (Chrome Cast Ultra), it felt very laggy in Samurai Showdown, or I just suck at Samurai Showdown. Perhaps some combination of timing issues because of unreliable response time?

My initial impressions of Stadia through the chrome browser (before CCU), made me think that my internet connection was either not stable enough, that Stadia did not have enough servers near me, or that the service was not going to be what was promised. I told my friends up to that point, again before the CCU, that Stadia appeared to not live up to any of its promises. Despite having a 300 download and about 100 upload speed, Stadia was super pixelated and blurry. You could see massive compression artifacts. Sometimes I could manage decent connections when trying Destiny 2. Even though the lag felt less than Samurai Showdown using the wireless xbox controller (perhaps better masked by game type), the quality in Chrome was never good.

I then get the CCU and Stadia Controller earlier than scheduled (awesome Google!!!). I still did not hold out much hope after how horrible it worked in Chrome. I plug the CCU into the TV and my router, link the controller, purchase RDR2 deluxe and watched as it seamlessly added itself to the Stadia interface and be playable immediately. A 108 or so gigabyte game ready to play in seconds!!! 😃 I was thrilled, but still expected the worse when it came to graphic fidelity after my experience in Chrome. Much to my amazement, it ran flawlessly on the CCU. I could not sense any input lag. The graphics, while hdr, most likely not truly 4k or 60 fps in this game, definitely well above what I was expecting after my experience in Chrome. I was a believer. A lowly TV dongle is capable of decoding high quality video streams in real time to the point of feeling like all the processing was being done on it and not being streamed to it.    

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic Author C. Clark (source google search =))

Being that I like playing games on my computer so that I have access to my browser, youtube,, or anything else on it at any given time, my preference would be to by pass the CCU and just run Stadia in Chrome. I just needed to wait till they supported Stadia gaming in Chrome at 4k. I started hearing reports of some Chrome users getting to use 4k for stadia. I tried it again in chrome, and it looked horrible. Worse, when I took the Borderlands 3 session from the browser to the CCU (which is a really cool feature), the CCU seemed to never be able to get to the 4K quality, only rendering at a lower 1080p. That is odd. Makes me think Google is opening gaming sessions with different quality profiles based on the platform that is making the opening request. I quit the game and shut down the Stadia session, and waited about 30 minutes to ensure a new spin up and loaded the BL3 on the CCU. Back up to 4k quality in the Stadia menu.

So I would like to know when can we expect 4k in chrome. I am not sure what is preventing Chrome from looking at least decent. I will for the time being, be playing on the CCU which is mostly flawless. My preference will definitely be using Chrome especially when I am out of town as soon as it seems to work.

Surely the gtx 1080, the SkyLake i7, and wired 300 downloads and 100 uploads should be capable of a steady Stadia stream. After using advice from AquaRegia on reddit I tried monitoring the Chrome gaming sessions using the Javascript they wrote as bookmarlet. The codec is using VP9, but the connection seems completely unstable varying from 4 Mb to 20 Mb and the quality level never gets above "good" in the Stadia Menu (shift-tab). It seems, while on the BL3 loading screen, it sometimes gets to 1080p but usually within a few seconds drops back down to warnings about disconnecting the session because of an unstable connection.

Sorry for the long first post. I love Stadia. I am looking forward to what it is going to be. I have kept my subscription and have purchased games. I would just like to know if google is looking into why Chrome performance is so horrible. How is the buddy pass supposed to sell the system if the buddy, without a CCU,  has experiences like my experiences in Chrome.

Thanks 😃


Edit. AquaRegia is awesome. I am unsure if of their gender and I used a definitive pronoun by mistake. 😃

3 Kudos
11 Replies
Community Member


This post was originally deleted and was restored by the google gods. Not sure why it was deleted and no reason for restoring it was provided. Anyway, I want to be clear I am not sure if the HDMI cable was the reason for my issues as the replacement that seemed to fix it had the same issues the next time I started a chrome stadia session to test the new 4k option.


I was not planning on spending my day testing Stadia but here we are. I really want to play on my computer in the browser and not have to switch to the CCU.

After doing research I discovered that for some unknown reason the HDMI cable can cause Stadia through Chrome to have issues. As I shared in another topic, here is the relevant information.

Troubleshoot slow game responses or degraded visual quality -> (Google Chrome)

If you use an HDMI cable to connect your computer to your display, make sure the cable supports HDMI 2.0 or greater, and is plugged into an HDMI 2.0 or greater port on both ends.

Well after digging through some boxes I discovered that, despite trying to buy the highest standard HDMI cables over the years not a single one listed its HDMI specification. All of my cables, if there were markings, stated "High Speed HDMI with Ethernet". At this point the whole HDMI specification group should be disbanded for this level of stupidity! 

I started testing different HDMI cables waiting for Stadia to actually load into each game and viewing the stats and the Stadia connection indicator using (shift-tab). Incredibly the first cable I tested seem to resolve the unstable connection issue I was experiencing, but unfortunately it did not fix the image quality as described in this thread. I could observe that my data throughput stayed pretty consistent at 20 Mbs and at certain points it looked like it was pumping out steady 60 fps. Thing is the image quality was horrible. So then I ran this javascript using chrome developer tools to force vp9 to see if that would make a difference. This has to be run in the developer tools before starting a games session. All this does is override a key in the browser's local storage to force vp9, on refreshing the browser the value should default to what is loaded in the startup script.


localStorage.setItem("video_codec_implementation_by_codec_key", '{"vp9":"ExternalDecoder"}')


I observed that it did force vp9 this time, but the image quality was still horrible compared to the CCU, especially during BL3 gameplay.

Why would the HDMI cable affect the connection quality to Stadia through Chrome? I have no idea. I figured it might affect the image quality if it did not support high enough bandwidth but otherwise the cable should be dumb. The conspiracist in me wants to think it has something to do with HDCP encryption, other wise I would expect the output from the chrome display to be dumb. 

So back to the original question. Why does Stadia on Chrome seem to look so poor? Unless it is just my particular setup, which is fairly nice, why would anybody not want to purchase a CCU to actually enjoy this service. I do have a pixel 3a and it seems to work nice there, I was just hoping to be able to run Stadia via the browser.


2 Kudos
Community Member

Seems a detailed post that I spent a large amount of time on as a follow up was deleted here. I am unsure as to why. I am a happy Stadia customer that was trying to provide information and details. I have made several edits to try to clear up things and I have already received several Kudos whatever that means. I just joined yesterday and wish for a reason for deletion. Can I at least edit my comment?


1 Kudo
Community Member

Ive noticed something similar. From my pc browser, destiny 2 for example looks horribly washed out and grainy,though it dos run super smooth.


On the CCU however, it looks bloody gorgeous. But its actually gotten to the point that i ust say screw it and run stadia on my asus c434 instead now, or on my Samsung note 9 which also just looks fantastic

2 Kudos
Community Member

Still disappointed that google deleted a detailed analysis post but I would still like a response as to why there seem to be connection issues when using Stadia in a browser. 

After the update to Chrome I wanted to verify if I could get 4K with Stadia. Sure enough I was able to get 4k for about 2 seconds before dropping back to 720 and having connection stability issues. I will say I am incredibly impressed at how smoothly stadia still runs at 1mb/s connection.

I decided to try running in a private window as recommended. I was curious if url linking to sessions worked saving me from having to login in the private session. I opened a new private chrome session, pasted the game link and the game loaded up. Pretty Cool. 

Still the connection was unstable. I then downloaded the new edge browser. Did no imports and pasted the link. No extensions nothing custom. The session opened without having to log in. Still connection issues. I run a speed test, 200+mb/s download. Please google what is happening?

I have the tcp and udp ports opened on my windows firewall and the CCU seems to have zero issues so I am assuming the router is fine. Does the CCU access the stadia servers different than how the browsers access stadia? Could my ISP be blocking ports that only affect running stadia in a browser? Is there a browser test to verify that all ports are opened or to diagnose what may be happening? I mean if it is running the browser something should be showing as a potential blocker. 

Maybe compare sessions on my account between the CCU and the browser and see what is going on. I cannot imagine that this is an isolated issue and I have a fairly beefy machine. If presented with a series of things to try I will and report and hopefully not have that post deleted.

I love Stadia on the CCU! I love not having to download games, or waiting for patches and I am looking forward to what the future may bring, but i am not sure how to sell this to people who do not have a CCU. As far as I have experienced, it fails to deliver on the browser.

Thanks 😃

2 Kudos
Community Member

I did some more research into my issues and here are some updates.

I am starting to think my quality issues in Chrome may have to do with my decode hardware. Even when I am able to get a fairly steady 25+ Mbs connection in chrome and intermittent even if mostly 4k stream it does not look or feel as smooth as the CCU. I am not sure if the controller being wired in chrome may cause of the smoothness differences, but I did look up the hardware specs for what I consider a fairly beefy machine that was built for vr 3 years ago.

intel skylake i7 6700 4ghz 32 gb ram

nvidia gtx 1080

I discovered the first chip to fully support VP9 4k in hdr is the chip 2 series after skylake.

Version 5 (Skylake) The Skylake microarchitecture adds a full fixed-function H.265/HEVC main/8-bit encoding and decoding acceleration, hybrid and partial HEVC main10/10-bit decoding acceleration, JPEG encoding acceleration for resolutions up to 16,000×16,000 pixels, and partial VP9 encoding and decoding acceleration.[11] Version 6 (Kaby Lake, Coffee Lake, Whiskey Lake, Comet Lake) The Kaby Lake, Coffee Lake and Comet Lake microarchitecture adds full fixed-function H.265/HEVC Main10/10-bit encoding and decoding acceleration and full fixed-function VP9 8-bit and 10-bit decoding acceleration and 8-bit encoding acceleration.[12][13] Version 7 (Ice Lake) The Ice Lake (microarchitecture) adds VP9 4:4:4 decoding, VP9 encoding (up to 10-bit and 4:4:4), HEVC 4:2:2 and 4:4:4 decoding and encoding,[14] HDR10 Tone Mapping[15] and Open Source Media Shaders.[16] HEVC hardware encoding quality has also been improved.[17] Version 8 (Tiger Lake) The Tiger Lake (microarchitecture) adds VP9 12-bit & 12-bit 4:4:4 hardware decoding and HEVC 12-bit 4:2:0, 4:2:2 and 4:4:4 hardware decoding[18]
1 Kudo
Community Member

And believe it or not but the gtx 1080 does not fully support 4k hdr with 4:4:4 either. Continued in next post because of character limit of posts.


/CHIPTotal # of NDECMPEG-1MPEG-2VC-1   VP8   VP9H.264
(AVCHD)H.265 (HEVC) 4:2:0*H.265 (HEVC) 4:4:48 bit 10 bit 12 bit 8 bit 10 bit 12 bit 8 bit 10 bit 12 bit

GeForce GT 1030                   Pascal       GP108D111YESYESYESNOYESYESYESYESYESYESYESNONONO


1 Kudo
Community Member

edit*** I tried adding a subsection of the table from nvidia to the post and ran into a character limit. I assumed splitting my post would allow the table, but the table with headers is large***/edit

And believe it or not but the gtx 1080 does not fully support 4k hdr with 4:4:4 either.

So I wish google would let us know what the hardware requirements are for running Stadia in a browser at the 4k hdr quality of the CCU. I know google said you would not need hardware but the only thing that runs Stadia as well as a console for me is the CCU. Sure I can play on my phone but most times I will have my laptop which I still have not tested with Stadia. I have a hard time thinking many computers will be able to run Stadia as flawlessly as the CCU.

My next point deals with what I assume the best hardware would be to run Stadia in a browser. I am willing to bet the newest generation intel chip with full vp9 support would run better than a GPU. Using hardware decode on the CPU would be better then offloading the decode to the graphics card. Why? An extra step in latency. In order for the graphics card to process the stream, the stream has to be pushed into the GPU video ram via the pci express bus before the card can process the stream. If the processor GPU has dedicated hardware decode it will already have the stream in memory and be able to run the decode in the stream already in ram. This is most likely why the CCU makes my computer look like a dud when running Stadia. I am not 100% sure of this but this would be my hypothesis. I also believe that all of the new amd chips are fully capable of decoding vp9/hevc at 4k hdr 4:4:4

If you are wondering what 4:4:4 is here is the answer from wikipedia.

Digital signals are often compressed to reduce file size and save transmission time. Since the human visual system is much more sensitive to variations in brightness than color, a video system can be optimized by devoting more bandwidth to the luma component (usually denoted Y'), than to the color difference components Cb and Cr. In compressed images, for example, the 4:2:2 Y'CbCr scheme requires two-thirds the bandwidth of (4:4:4) R'G'B'. This reduction results in almost no visual difference as perceived by the viewer.

The truth of the matter is monitors usually run 4:4:4 RGB because anything less causes text to become fuzzy from lack of pixel information. TV's many times do not fully support 4:4:4 at the highest resolutions.

Sorry for the rambling. I hope Google addresses what performance to expect in Chrome based on hardware.

Thanks 😃

2 Kudos
Community Member

Hey crs117,

i solved this problem now:

Go to your nvidia control panel --> Manage 3D- Settings --> Programm Settings --> Choose Google Chrome (chrome.exe) 
--> Power Managment Mode: Choose "Prefer Maximal Performance" --> Low Latency Mode: Choose "Ultra" --> safe 

that worked fine for me and i can play in 4K and without lags! 

Here is a screenshot of my control panel settings, unluckily in german language but i think its enough for orientation:


Greetings, Unrestrict

5 Kudos

IT works! Thank u for it. I use a 1080gtx too. Hope stadia Support See it.

IT also fix the Problem with fluctuating latency. 

Love u! (now i hope the division 2 is Not only @1080p like destiny 2 🙈

3 Kudos
Community Member

Wow! Thanks so much @Unrestrict! You managed to solve my problem. I have a beefy computer that can run a lot of games natively in 4K/60fps but I was having trouble with Stadia. My PC has Intel i7 9700K and Nvidia RTX 2070 Super, both of which support VP9 decoding but both Chrome and Microsoft Edge looked horrible and it was a laggy blurry mess. Even my network is hardwired Gigabit fiber connection which is rock solid so I knew that it can't be the problem.


In short, this is the perfect solution and I hope if someone in a position like me enters the right keywords in Google search, stumbles upon this. Cheers!

1 Kudo
Community Member

Hey crs117. I just opened the same topic in the network section For me the same, i can play for ~2 Minutes with 4K before Stadia changes to 720p settings. Would be fine if Google can tell us what we need to do...

2 Kudos