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FaceTime for Mac: About HD video calling

FaceTime for Mac supports video calling in high definition (HD) with Macs that include a built-in FaceTime HD camera. In addition, many existing Macs can receive an HD video call while sending standard definition video.

Sending call video in HD

Macs with a built-in FaceTime HD camera are capable of sending call video in HD:

  • iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2011)
  • iMac (27-inch, Mid 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (17-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011)

Sending HD video requires a minimum upload bandwidth of 1 Mbps.

Note: Other Macs with FaceTime for Mac and Mac OS X v10.6.6 and later can send a call with standard definition video. For more information, view Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard technical specifications.
 

Receiving a HD video call

These Macs are capable of viewing an HD call with FaceTime for Mac and Mac OS X v10.6.6 and later:

  • iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2011)
  • iMac (27-inch, Mid 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (17-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch and 17-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2010), or newer, with a 2.53 GHz or better processor
  • iMac (20-inch and 24-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • iMac (21.5-inch and 27-inch, Late 2009), or newer, with a 3.06 GHz or better processor
  • Mac Pro (all models), with a compatible video camera
  • Mac mini (Early 2009) or newer, with a 2.26 GHz or better processor and a compatible video camera

Receiving HD video requires a minimum download bandwidth of 1 Mbps.

Example: You are using a MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008) with FaceTime for Mac to call a friend who is using a MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011). Your MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008) will receive HD video from the MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011), and your friend's MacBook Pro will receive standard definition video from your MacBook.
 

Receiving a standard definition video call

Macs with Mac OS X v10.6.6 or later that were produced before those referenced in the sections above can use FaceTime for Mac. Calls will be sent and received using standard (non-HD) video.

If either Mac on a call can only send and receive standard video, then both Macs will only send and receive standard video.

Last Modified: May 22, 2014
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  • Last Modified: May 22, 2014
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