HBO’s long-awaited prequel series to “Game of Thrones” called, “House of the Dragon” became its first episode on HBO Max Sunday night as one of the premium service’s first new series available in 4K HDR.

HBO Max is streaming the program now in 4K with Dolby Vision HDR (or HDR10 on non-DV TVs and streamers) through 4K/HDR-ready devices including Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Apple TV 4K, Google TV, some LG 4K TVs, Roku, some Samsung 4K TVs and Vizio 4K TVs.

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Dolby Atmos surround sound is also available to supporting devices.

The prequel series concerns the House of Targaryen 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. In Dolby Vision, the series takes on a similar feel to the way Game of Thrones was presented. Lighting comes across quite dark with mildly elevated specular highlight elements. It’s a good test for an HDR television’s ability to handle dark shadow detail.

In addition to “House of the Dragon” HBO Max also recently began streaming “Game of Thrones” in 4K/HDR as well.

According to reports some HBO Max subscribers ran into issues streaming the first episode — “The Heirs of the Dragon” — when it premiered Sunday night. Some devices were said to have crashed sending viewers to HBO support lines. The issue was attributed to heavy volumes of viewers, according to The Hollywood Reporter, but HBO later issued a statement saying outages impacted only a “small portion of users” using certain devices and the network support team worked directly with those impacted to get them into the platform.

The show appeared to be streaming well Monday morning in our testing.

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By Greg Tarr

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