M1 Pro/M1 Max MacBook Pro Crashes When Playing HDR Videos on YouTube, Report Users

According to MacRumors, a number of M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro owners on the publication’s forums are reporting kernel crashes on macOS Monterey 12.0.1 that cause their notebooks to shut down and restart when playing HDR content on YouTube.

Playing an HDR video on YouTube and then scrolling through the comments on the page, or playing YouTube in full screen and then exiting full screen mode is what appears to be triggering the crash. The issue has been confirmed to affect both Safari and Google Chrome, and can be easily reproduced.

The bug is predominant among MacBooks with only 16GB of RAM, but 32GB/64GB configurations can also be affected.

MacRumors reader Sam.b1 described their experience with the bug:

I’m getting the same error under the same conditions, 4k HDR YouTube playback on Safari/Chrome. At first I thought it could have been some Chrome bug but then it crashed in Safari too. I’m running Monterey 12.0.1, 16 inch M1 Max with 32GB RAM.

Apple is not having the best of times with macOS Monterey as of late. Not only did the Monterey update start bricking older Mac computers upon release, it’s also been causing memory leaks and excessively high RAM usage on many devices.

Some MacBook Pro owners theorize the crashes may be caused by an issue with AV1 decoding, but exactly what the problem is and if it’s something that can be fixed in a software update remains unknown. Apple is yet to officially comment on the situation.

Not all 2021 MacBook Pro users are experiencing this issue, but MacRumors was able to easily reproduce it in testing. macOS Monterey‌ 12.1 may fix the problem, as some users are reporting improved performance after updating to the beta, but it’ll be a while before an official release hits.