YouTube is the largest on-demand video platform on earth.
In fact, over 30 million people watch 5 billion videos every single day on YouTube.
If you want to save videos to watch later, you need to understand how to download YouTube videos effectively. You may download YouTube videos into formats such as MP4, AVI, MPEG, and more. Or if you only need music, you can convert YouTube videos into MP3 files.
With so many ways to download and access videos on demand, I created this resource with the latest methods to download YouTube videos this year.
Let’s get started.
Disclaimer: Please note, I may receive affiliate compensation for some of the links below at no cost to you. Nonetheless, these are the best tools I have tested for downloading and converting YouTube videos into MP3 files.
YouTube has a fairly straightforward Terms of Service that delineates what a viewer can or can not do on the platform.
Downloading videos without prior consent, selling them, and committing copyright infringement are violations of the terms of service.
While downloading YouTube videos is technically a criminal action, YouTube has made no desire to penalize users for downloading movies. Certain royalty-free videos on YouTube with the right licenses are legal to download. Plus, if you’re just using the video for private use, it can be considered legal.
YouTube states,”You shall not copy, reproduce, distribute, transmit, broadcast, display, sell, license, or otherwise exploit any Content for any other purposes without the prior written approval of YouTube or the respective licensors of the Content.”
In other words, it is possible to watch Youtube videos, but just from Google applications.
Nevertheless, third-party apps will continue to sprout up online and let people download YouTube Videos. It’s tough to enforce or prohibit users for exploiting them — you can still watch YouTube videos when you are not signed in.
Ultimately, it is up to you to decide if downloading videos from YouTube for personal use is something you should be doing.
Downloading videos from YouTube is an easy and straightforward process.
The first way to download YouTube videos is to use a video converter.
Download YouTube Videos With a Video Downloading Tool.
Working with a YouTube downloader is the quickest way to download YouTube videos. Let us look at it step by step:
Choose a Downloading Tool/Converter.
First, select the best possible YouTube downloading tool.
In my view, the best tool on the market is 4K Download.
4K Video Downloader
4K Download works with Windows, Mac, and Linux and provides great features like batch downloading, saving playlists, and downloads in 720p, 1080p, and 4k. You may also extract YouTube subtitles and save them in over 50 languages.
Give 4K Download a try and find a 14-day money-back guarantee.
There are various other tools out there and even though there are some decent free tools, the paid versions offer way higher quality.
Features to Look for in A YouTube Downloading Tool.
Quality of The Video — The transformed file must have standard video quality for excellent viewing. Ideally, you should be able to control the quality of the video. It might range between low, medium, or high. It’s even better if you can choose specific video resolution like 360p, 720p, 1080p, and more.
Subtitles — We all like videos that are in various languages. In such situations, the use of subtitles is essential whilst playing with it on YouTube or YouTube Premium. Logically, you will prefer to download those special videos along with the subtitles.
Batch Downloading — You can download the files individually or in bulk based on playlists from YouTube channels.
If you like a particular band, you may want to download their entire discography. And if you like a film director, you might want to download their entire filmography.
Multiple Document Format Compatibility — You may want to download and save videos in multiple formats in your file manager. Having various options to choose from, like MP3, MP4, FLAC, or AAC, allows you to be more flexible.
Built-In Video Editor — You may want to view a specific song in the middle of a video. Or you may want to edit out a specific part of a film. Video editing needs can appear at any point in time, making it an important feature in a YouTube video downloading tool. You can try any Video Converter (AVC) which includes a built-in editor.
Speed — The application should have the ability to convert and download videos fast. The download times ideally should not be highly affected by fluctuations in internet and wi-fi connectivity.
Copy The Video Address Bar URL From YouTube.
Suppose you are using an online video downloading tool. In cases like this, you need to visit YouTube and open the movie you want to download.
You can just copy and paste the link URL displayed in the box.
You can start the application in a new tab on the same window. Once it opens, it will display a text box that you enter the URL.
Here’s a screenshot from y2mate where you can download the video. You simply must paste the URL in the text box above and click on the’Start’ option. Some sites may also have buttons saying’Go’ or’Download.’
Paste URL y2mate
In case you’re using a downloadable tool, you want to download and install it on your computer . As soon as you run it, it is going to supply you with the same choices to copy and paste the URL for conversion.
Be careful about unnecessary software that you might need to download also. Steer clear of those whenever possible. Some good alternatives are Keepvid, which can help you download video files with Apple MacOS, iPad, iPhone, and Android devices.
You may also have to check into alternative YouTube apps that work from the Google Play Store or with unique smartphones. And if you are downloading from Vimeo to watch videos offline, there are a host of other options to choose from.
Choose the File Format & Video Quality.
Once you glue the YouTube video URL into the search box, you’ll get a host of choices. For instance, y2mate lets you choose the video format you want to download, video quality, and the file size.
Some of the tools also allow you to download YouTube videos in formats like WMV, MPG, AVI, ASF, M2TS, 3GP, 3G2, FLV, MKV, SWF, WEBM, HTML5 WEBM, HTML5 OGG, HTML5, and more.
If you’re searching for batch downloads, you can also specify a folder in your computer to save all the videos that are downloaded. You may face some confusion if you’re using a VPN because tools usually emphasize in your IP address within the movie URL you enter. So if you are a VPN user, you may want to change the place for appropriate downloads.
Once the movie gets downloaded, you can play it whenever and wherever you need.
How Can You Download YouTube Videos Directly?
You do not always have to use a YouTube video downloading tool. It’s rather easy to download YouTube videos directly from YouTube.
Here are the steps:
Open YouTube on your browser and head into the movie that you want to download.
Add’ss’ From The URL.
Simply, enter ‘ss’ after ‘www.’ but before ‘youtube.com.’
After you’ve entered it, simply press the’Enter’ button on your computer.
Next, you get redirected to a free download site.
Go to the Download Site
Once redirected, there are plenty of free services to use that you don’t have to install or download. The moment you press the’Enter’ button, you get redirected to its site.
You will see that the text editor already has the video URL, so you don’t have to copy and paste any link. Your video is also ready to get downloaded — all you will need to do is click the’Download’ button.
You also get to select the format and the quality of the video. Finally, click on the”download” option, and you’ll have your video in a couple of seconds.
How Can You Download YouTube Videos with Browser Add-Ons?
You might not want to tinker around with the YouTube video URL. And some of you may not need to use any third party tool to download the videos.
In this instance, using add-ons in your browser is just the solution you want.
There is an add-on for practically everything you could need.
The fantastic news is that there are an assortment of choices available to download YouTube videos.
Some of them are best suited for Firefox and Chrome, while others are standalone tools.
Here’s an example of a similar add-on called’YouTube Video and Audio Downloader’ for Opera.
Download The Add-on.
The process is easy in Opera. And it is more or less the same for other browsers too.
In Opera, you can just go ahead and click on the’Add to Opera’ option displayed in green color. Moreover, be sure you download the correct add-on concerning the browser you are using. They won’t function otherwise.
Once the add-on gets downloaded, install it. If the add-in doesn’t work after installation, then restart your PC.
Head to YouTube.
Next, head into the YouTube video that you want to download. As soon as you’re there, you will notice an icon on the top right-hand (for Opera users).
When you install this add-in, you get some choices:
Next, click on the”quick download” option, and you’ll have the video set up on your system.
You won’t get the direct download option from YouTube regardless of what browser you use unless you use an add-on.
Pick Your File Format.
Most add-ons supply you with many different choices to save the movie. Alternatives range between multiple formats, as well as various video qualities. Ordinarily, a pop-up floats up during the download choice, asking for your tastes.
How Can You Download YouTube Videos with a Virtual Desktop?
Using a Virtual Desktop (VD) is another easy way to download YouTube videos.
Here is how you can do it.
First, visit the YouTube platform and type the title of the video you need to view and download. Once you do this and press the’Enter’ button, then the video begins playing.
Add”vd” To The URL.
Now the practice is similar to when you directly download videos by adding’ss’ to the URL. In cases like this, you want to edit the video address and insert the words’vd’ before’youtube’ and after’www.’ .
Check this out:
After the edit, press the ‘Enter’ button.
Next, you get redirected to the Django site for the video you wish to download.
On the VDYouTube website, scroll down to choose the quality and the format of the YouTube video. Based on your needs, you can go ahead.
Download the YouTube Video.
As soon as you click on the”download” option, it’s only a matter of seconds before it gets installed on your computer system.
How Do You Download YouTube Videos with a VLC Player?
If you don’t have the VLC media player in your computer system, then you can download it. VLC Media player is protected and makes it easier for you to download YouTube videos.
Here is how:
Head to YouTube and start the movie you want to download. Next, copy the URL of this video.
Ideally, you shouldn’t wait for this measure to start the VLC media player. You should keep it open on the taskbar to your advantage.
New Network Stream.
Of course, this is true when you are using a Windows OS.
When you’re using Mac, the flow is FILE > OPEN NETWORK.
In this stage, you will see a page with a text editor, no matter what OS you are using. Here, paste the copied URL of the YouTube video that you need to download.
When you click on the’play’ option, the video starts playing on VLC.
There, you’ll find an option called’codec information.’ You can also reach the’codec data’ option by using the’CTRL + J’ command.
When you click on the’codec info,’ a new window opens up.
The window looks something like this:
You want to copy the information of the movie from the location text box at the bottom of the page. This measure is pretty simple for Windows users.
But if you are a Mac user, you need to right-click on the field and click on the’Open URL’ option.
If you are on a Windows system, you copied the URL. Paste it onto your web browser and click on’Enter.’ The measure is redundant for Mac users.
At this stage, the video should be playing on your browser online. Right-click on the movie and choose the’Save video as’ option.
Download The Video.
The video will now start downloading. The default format is MP4, and the default title would be’videoplayback.’ When it gets downloaded, save it with your other videos.
Even though the process may seem lengthy right now, it’s pretty easy once you do it yourself.
There you have it — some of the best ways to download YouTube videos.
In my view, go with 4K Download — it is the best tool for video quality and MP3 conversions.
This tool lets you access your favorite YouTube videos anytime, even without an Internet connection. Downloading videos and saving them onto your computer or telephone can help you never miss out on the movies you prefer.
Can you download YouTube videos? Let me know in the comments below.