YouTube is the largest on-demand video platform in the world.
In actuality, over 30 million visitors watch 5 billion videos each and every day on YouTube.
If you want to save videos to watch later, you will need to understand how to download YouTube videos effectively. You can download YouTube videos into formats like MP4, AVI, MPEG, and much more. Or if you just need music, you can convert YouTube videos to MP3 files.
With all these ways to download and access videos on demand, I created this resource with the most recent ways to download YouTube videos this year.
Disclaimer: Please be aware , I may get affiliate reimbursement for some of the links below at no charge to you. Nonetheless, these are the best tools I’ve tested for downloading and converting YouTube videos into MP3 files.
YouTube has a pretty straightforward Terms of Service that delineates what a viewer can or can’t do on the platform.
Downloading videos without prior consent, selling them, and committing copyright infringement are violations of their terms of service.
Whilst downloading YouTube videos is a criminal act, YouTube has made no desire to punish users for downloading videos. 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 lawful.
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 consent of YouTube or the various licensors of the Content.”
In other words, you can watch Youtube videos, but just from Google applications.
However, third-party programs will continue to sprout up online and let people download YouTube Videos. It’s difficult to enforce or prohibit users for exploiting them — you can still watch YouTube videos when you are not signed in.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide if downloading videos from YouTube for personal use is something that you should be doing.
What Are the Steps to Download Youtube Videos?
Downloading videos from YouTube is a simple and straightforward process.
The first method to download YouTube videos is to use a video converter.
Download YouTube Videos Using a Video Downloading Tool.
Using a YouTube downloader is the quickest way to download YouTube videos.
Pick 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 offers great features like batch downloading, saving playlists, and downloads in 720p, 1080p, and 4k. You can even extract YouTube subtitles and save them in over 50 languages.
Give 4K Download a try and get a 14-day money-back guarantee.
There are various other tools out there and even though there are some good free tools, the paid versions provide way higher quality.
Characteristics to Look for in A YouTube Downloading Tool.
Quality of The Video — The converted file should have regular video quality for excellent viewing. Ideally, you should be able to manipulate the quality of the video. It might range between low, moderate, or high. It’s even better if you can choose specific video resolution like 360p, 720p, 1080p, and more.
Subtitles — We all like videos in various languages. In such situations, the use of subtitles is essential while playing with it on YouTube or YouTube Premium. Logically, you will prefer to download those special videos together with the subtitles. If you like a specific band, you may want to download their entire discography. And if you like a movie director, you might want to download their entire filmography.
Multiple Document Format Compatibility — You may choose to download and save videos in multiple formats in your file manager. Having various options to choose from, such as MP3, MP4, FLAC, or AAC, allows you to be more elastic.
Built-In Video Editor — you might want to view a specific song in the midst of a video. Or you might want to edit out a particular part of a film. Video editing needs can arise at any point in time, making it an important feature in a YouTube video downloading tool. You can try any Video Converter (AVC) that includes a built-in editor.
Speed — The tool should be able to download and convert videos fast. The download times ideally shouldn’t be highly affected by changes in internet and wi-fi connectivity.
Copy The Video Address Bar URL From YouTube.
Suppose you’re using an internet video downloading tool. In cases like this, you need to head to YouTube and start the movie you want to download.
You can just copy and paste the link URL displayed in the box.
It is possible to open the tool in a new tab on the same window. Once it opens, it will display a text box that you input the URL.
Here is a screenshot from y2mate where you are able to download the video. You simply must paste the URL in the text box above and click the’Start’ option.
Glue URL y2mate
In case you’re using a downloadable tool, you want to download and install it on your computer . Once you run it, it is going to provide you with the very same options to copy and paste the URL for conversion.
Be careful about unnecessary software you might need to download also. Avoid those whenever possible. Some good options are Keepvid, which can help you download video files with Apple MacOS, iPad, iPhone, and Android devices.
You may also have to look into alternative YouTube apps that work in the Google Play Store or with unique smartphones. And if you are downloading from Vimeo to watch videos offline, there are a host of different choices to select from.
Choose the File Format & Video Quality.
Once you paste the YouTube video URL into the search box, you’ll find a host of alternatives. As an example, y2mate lets you decide on the video format you wish to download, video quality, and also the file size.
Some of these 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 looking for batch downloads, you can also specify a folder in your computer to store all the downloaded videos. You may face some confusion if you are using a VPN because tools usually emphasize in your IP address within the video URL you input. So if you are a VPN user, you might want to change the location for appropriate downloads.
Once the video gets downloaded, you can play it whenever and wherever you need.
How Do You Download YouTube Videos Directly?
You don’t always have to use a YouTube video downloading tool. It’s rather easy to download YouTube videos straight from YouTube.
Open YouTube on your browser and head to the video you want to download.
Add’ss’ From The URL.
After you’ve entered it, simply press the’Enter’ button on your keyboard.
Go to the Download Site
Once redirected, there are plenty of free services to use that you don’t need to install or download. The moment you press the’Enter’ button, you get redirected to its website.
You will see that the text editor currently has the video URL, so you don’t have to copy and paste any connection. Your video is also prepared to receive downloaded — all you need to do is click the’Download’ button.
You also get to choose the format and the quality of the video. Lastly, click on the”download” option, and you will have your video within a couple of seconds.
How Do You Download YouTube Videos with Browser Add-Ons?
You may 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 case, using add-ons on your browser is simply the solution you want.
Choose An Add-on.
There is an add-on for practically everything you could need.
The good thing is that there are an assortment of choices available to download YouTube videos.
Some of them are best suited for Firefox and Chrome, while some are standalone tools.
Here’s an example of a similar add-on called’YouTube Video and Audio Downloader’ for Opera.
Opera Add-Ons YouTube Downloader
Download The Add-on.
The process is simple in Opera. And it’s more or less the same for other browsers too.
In Opera, you can simply go ahead and click on the’Add to Opera’ option displayed in green colour. Moreover, be certain you download the right 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 does not work after installation, then restart your PC.
Next, head into the YouTube video you want to download. As soon as you’re there, you will see 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 will have the video set up on your system.
You won’t receive the direct download option from YouTube no matter what browser you use if you don’t use an add-on.
Pick Your File Format.
Most add-ons supply you with many different options to save the video. Alternatives range between multiple formats, in addition to various video qualities. Usually, a pop-up floats up during the download option, asking for your preferences.
How Can You Download YouTube Videos with a Virtual Desktop?
Working with a Virtual Desktop (VD) is another simple way to download YouTube videos.
Here’s how you can do it.
First, visit the YouTube platform and type the title of the video that you want to see and download. Once you do this and press the’Enter’ button, the video begins playing.
Insert”vd” To The URL.
Now the process is similar to when you directly download videos by adding’ss’ to the URL. In cases like this, you need to edit the movie address and add 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 website for the video you wish to download.
On the VDYouTube website, scroll down to Pick the quality and the format of the YouTube video. Based on your needs, you can go ahead.
Download the YouTube Video.
Once you click on the”download” option, it’s simply a matter of seconds before it gets installed on your computer system.
How Can You Download YouTube Videos with a VLC Player? VLC Media player is secure and makes it easier for you to download YouTube videos.
Here is how:
Head to YouTube and open the movie you want to download. Next, copy the URL of the video.
Ideally, you should not wait for this step to open the VLC media player. You should keep it open on the taskbar for your benefit.
When you start the VLC media player, head over to the’Media’ option, and click on it.
Next, select the ‘Open Network Stream’ option.
Of course, this is the case when you’re using a Windows OS.
When you are using Mac, the stream is FILE > OPEN NETWORK.
In this stage, you’ll 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 want to download.
Next, click on the ‘Tools’ option on the top right-hand corner.
There, you will find an option called’codec info.’ You can also reach the’codec data’ option by using the’CTRL + J’ command.
You need to copy the information of the video from the location text box in the bottom of the page. This step is pretty straightforward for Windows users.
But if you are a Mac user, you want to right-click on the field and click on the’Open URL’ option.
If you’re on a Windows system, you already copied the URL. Paste it onto your web browser and click on’Enter.’ The step is redundant for Mac users.
At this point, the video should be playing on your browser online. Right-click on the movie and choose the’Save video as’ option.
The movie will now begin downloading. The default format is MP4, and the default name would be’videoplayback.’ Once it gets downloaded, save it with your other movies.
Even though the process might seem lengthy at the moment, it’s pretty easy when 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 ideal 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 on your computer or phone can help you never lose out on the movies you like.
Can you download YouTube videos? Let me know in the comments below.