How to Download YouTube Videos

There are billions of hours of video recording on YouTube. Literally. And that ‘s barely the most amaze statistic about the locate, which has been the go-to address for uploading and watching television since 2005. That said, sometimes, you actually want or need to have one of those videos on your own computer or call. But when the subject of downloading YouTube video comes up, there ‘s a side subject that must be broached : Is it legal ? On the copyright front, american samoa long as you ‘re downloading a video for your own personal offline practice, you ‘re probably approve. It ‘s more black and white when you consider Google ‘s terms of serve for YouTube, which read : “ You are not allowed to … access, reproduce, download, circulate, transmit, broadcast, expose, sell, license, alter, change or differently use any part of the Service or any content except : ( a ) as expressly authorized by the Service ; or ( b-complex vitamin ) with prior written license from YouTube and, if applicable, the respective rights holders. ”
Watching YouTube video offline through unofficial channels takes money from Google and video recording creators. There ‘s a argue YouTube runs ads : People make a live this way.

obviously, stealing videos from YouTube is a big no-no. If you want to share a television, YouTube and most early video recording sites make it easy, from embedding to emailing to sharing via social networks. You merely do not need to download a video recording most of the clock time. however, you have your reasons. If you must download a YouTube video—absolutely need to, just for yourself, and not for dissemination, and not to be a full douche-nozzle—here ‘s how. eminence : This floor is updated frequently as the tools involved change regularly. Some of those changes are not constantly pleasant, such as software so full of “ extras, ” it gets flagged as malware by antivirus tools. The same goes for the assistant websites—a change in a locate ‘s ad network can besides create issues with malware. To prevent this from becoming a laundry list of programs and sites that can download YouTube videos, we came up with a few rules for inclusion. Services must :

  • Support 4K downloads evening in the detached translation .
  • exploit with top three video sites : YouTube, Facebook, and Vimeo .
  • Download entire playlists or channels in a batch ( on YouTube ), at least with a paid translation .
  • Output to MP3 for audio ( or offer companion software that does so ) .
  • Have an interface that doesn’t suck .
  • Not collect your personal data beyond your e-mail address .
  • Not contain malware. If there ‘s even a puff of it in the vent, even a PUP, it ‘s out .

The programs, services, and sites in this floor are all complimentary of spam/virus/problems as of this writing, but caution buyer. large clock. particularly if you ‘re not actually emptor-ing .

YouTube Premium Downloads

now available for subscribers of YouTube Premium —the paid adaptation of YouTube that allows you to watch without ads—are video downloads. Kind of. There ‘s one caution with quality : All the video you download is limited to 1080p quality soap, or lower. No 4K .

The biggest write out is, this feature doesn’t really download a video to save on your computer everlastingly. It is more akin to the download feature found on mobile apps for Netflix and Hulu, which makes a pour television available to watch later using your local anesthetic repositing and views it using the app ‘s interface entirely. This is not a method acting that allows you to, say, watch a video using different software such as the VLC Media Player. You access the download by going to the YouTube hamburger menu and selecting Downloads to view the list of what you ‘ve grabbed. The foliate says “ Downloads remain available angstrom farseeing as your device has an active internet connection at least once every 30 days. ” This probably is n’t precisely what you are looking for in a download. But the tools below give birth precisely that .

YouTube Premium

$ 11.99 Per Month

at YouTube

See It

Desktop Software

Third-party software is where you will get the best control over downloading on-line videos. typically, you paste the URL for the YouTube video you want into the plan, and it downloads the highest quality version it can find. For television in 1080p high Definition ( HD ) format, that ‘s normally an MP4 file. For anything higher in quality—4K or 8K—the file format is typically MKV. In the past, YouTube videos were Flash-based, so your download was an FLV file, but those tend to be harder to play back. MP4 ( short-circuit for MPEG-4 Part 14 multimedia format ) plays everywhere note that the MKV charge, besides called a Matroska, is a container—the file could contain video utilizing any number of codecs inside. The fool-proof means to play them all is to use the VLC Media Player for Windows, which plays everything. ( Read more about it below. ) As for the downloaders, here are the best options .

VLC Media Player

free ; Windows, macOS, Linux We mention VLC Media Player above because it ‘s a fantastic cock for Windows, Mac, and Linux users that plays back just about any media ever created. It besides has the ability to download YouTube videos, albeit in a byzantine room. ( If you run into any problems, try a full re-install of VLC and clear your hoard to make it work. ) Copy a url from a YouTube video, then open up VLC. From the Media menu, choose Open Network Stream ( Ctrl+N ) and paste in the URL. Click Play. When the video is playing, go to Tools > Codec Information. There is a box at the bottom called “ Source ” —copy the URL you find in that box .

Go back to your browser and paste the URL—it ‘s a temp world wide web address and will expire eventually—in the address bar and start playing the video. When you ‘re viewing the video in the browser, click the 3-dot menu at the lower right for the download option to keep it locally .

however, it appears that VLC is only going to save your file as 1080p and not any higher, even if the original YouTube stream was available in 1440p or 2160p ( aka 4K ). It besides wo n’t convert video to other formats. To get those options, you need the background software below .

VLC Media Player

$ 0.00

at VideoLAN Organization

See It

4K Video Downloader

free or $ 15 for life license on 3 computers ; Windows, macOS, Ubuntu Linux, Android

Multi-lingual 4K Video Downloader (4KVD) is frequently updated and features clear download links on the plan ‘s web site ; no ad bunker here. The software does what it advertises in a simple interface. It grabs videos up to 8K in quality and downloads to enough of formats. Simply copy a YouTube URL and click the Paste Link button to get started. 4KVD will evening grab subtitles, entire playlists, and all the video in a channel to which you subscribe. The sites supported are limited to the large names like YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, and a few others, but that covers most of what you need. It does display a large banner ad to keep the lights on and you ‘re limited to 30 downloads a day on the free interpretation. I had to make a switch from MP4 to MKV format to get my test video recording to download in 4K. 4KVD snagged the 3-minute, 229.7MB file for the movie dawdler in about 1 moment and 20 seconds. 4KVD defaults back to 1080p HD, so I made the same substitution when downloading an Ultra High Definition ( 8K ) playlist. If you enable the Smart Mode and its presets, 4KVD can perform one-click downloads to your front-runner format. If you want to download more than 25 videos at a time or subscribe to YouTube channels to instantaneously download the latest, that requires the give adaptation. playback of the resulting MKV files via VLC Media Player was flawless. The program itself has an option to extract audio to MP3 format, so you do n’t flush need the 4K YouTube to MP3 companion software .

VideoProc Converter

$ 59.90 for one year, $ 78.90 life, $ 119.90 family ( 2-5 PCs ) ; Windows, macOS

The brawny VideoProc from Digiarty comes in an editor program version and this converter, which besides provides edit and effects. The downloading aspect is great, a version similar to Digiarty ‘s WinX YouTube Downloader, which you can still find but is not promoted by the company these days. This makes sense, as VideoProc Converter handles a distribute of download, purportedly supporting 4K from over 1,000 websites. With hardware acceleration, it promises some amphetamine. thankfully, it frequently offers price discounts. To use it, you open the software, let it detect your hardware to see what you have to help with acceleration ( if anything ). Click the Downloader button, click Add video to place as many URLs as you want to batch, and then Download Now. Or you can get a unharmed YouTube playlist or live pour. It grabbed our 697MB quiz 4K video to WEBM format in about 2 minutes and 15 seconds, which is n’t bad. Best of all, the trial version of VideoProc Converter, which limits conversions to 5 minutes, does n’t appear to limit downloads .

VideoProc Converter

$ 59.90 Per Year Per PC

at VideoProc

See It


1-year license $ 44.99 plus tax ( or $ 9.99 for free YouTube Download ) ; Windows

Like some others, FlixGrab has respective different programs available, many with overlapping features. For example, it has FlixGrabMS ( a adaptation you get from the Microsoft Store to run on Windows 10/11 ) —but it would n’t let me grab video recording from YouTube. The directly download of the FlixGrab plan from the site did function with YouTube and respective other sites ,. Plus it offers a free YouTube Download that is specific to YouTube, yet uses the lapp easy-to-use interface. The downside, as with others, is the high subscription price, but it ‘s the only way to get high-quality downloads. The YouTube-only version is substantially cheaper at $ 9.99 per year, however. Neither comes with a test menstruation .

Free YouTube Download

$ 0.00

at FreeGrabApp

See It


exempt ; Windows and macOS

The free 5KPlayer is a batch more than a downloader, but it ‘s got a heck of an integrated downloader. Promising no viruses, ads, or circuit board requirements is a good start. It is, sadly, one of the few tested that asks for a registration of your identify and email—you have to do that to get the wide download affair across 300+ sites. however, you can still nab 4K vids from YouTube without registering. When download, the program does try to hide some things. paste in the URL for a YouTube video recording and the analysis engine runs and shows lone a few download options. Click the gearing icon, then the Show All button, and coil to see more—like a 4K 3,840-by-2,160 file in WebM format. The 227MB WebM test download took an agonizing 6.5 minutes. Grabbing playlists was potential, but you must adjust download settings one video at a time. The confuse interface makes it hard to go back to the early television in the playlist. 5K Player besides features DLNA server playback so television you grab can be watched on any devices that support DLNA, plus it supports AirPlay for quick playback to Apple devices. Pick a television in the library for quick conversion to MP4, MP3, or even ACC ( the audio format preferred by io ). The actor did n’t like playing back the excessively big 4K file, though, and experienced buffering issues ( VLC did n’t have any problem with the same file ). ultimately, there ‘s a lot to like about 5K Player, from the monetary value to the features, particularly if you look at them as extras on a downloader. But the bad interface, dull download speeds, and playback issues may have you looking elsewhere .

5K Player

$ 0.00

at DearMob

See It

Helper Websites

Do you want to avoid installing software ? Video download assistant sites are supposed to do the download ferment for you. All of them do one basic thing : You give them a YouTube URL ( or another video locate, if supported ), they parse it, give you a option of what size download you want, and provide a link to said download. They work on any platform, sometimes even on fluid devices. You do n’t have to install anything on your personal computer. It can take a distribute longer, depending on the size and quality of the video recording you want, but you ca n’t beat the public toilet. The problem is, you ca n’t constantly trust them. There are hundreds of these types of sites out there—it seems anyone with a modicum of coding ability has set one improving. such sites well go from utilitarian to fishy, specially if they get popular and the owner sells out to make cash off your visits. Since this story was beginning published, all the assistant sites we recommended have been removed for reasons like adding sexually explicit ads, no longer working, switching to pushing its download utility only, and one for going out of occupation to avoid getting sued. For that reason, we ‘re not recommending any assistant sites at the moment. Try one if you find it, but if your browser, antivirus, or instincts throw up warnings, avoid and affect on .


A browser annex can save you a gradation. however, you ‘re going to run into some issues with downloading television from YouTube, particularly if you ‘re using Chrome as your primary coil browser. The Chrome Web Store —where you get Chrome browser extensions—is controlled by YouTube ‘s owner Alphabet/Google. even an extension apparently for this purpose is n’t going to allow YouTube direct downloads, because of Chrome Store restrictions. In general, with Chrome extensions, the download of any RTMP protocol video recording ( protected video ) or streaming video recording is n’t possible. You can use them on other sites with video recording, of course. Just not YouTube. Want to get around it ? Get an extension that does not come from the Google Web Store. Some of the programs and helper sites offer an elongation component and will spell out how to do the install without the aid the Chrome Web Store normally provides. here are a couple .

YouTube Video Downloader

rid ; Chrome, Opera, Edge, Vivaldi, UCBrowser

YouTube Video Downloader from Addoncrop is on multiple browsers but with excellent side-load capabilities. It puts a button below whatever video you ‘re playing on YouTube, or even an embedded YouTube video, making it easy to grab. Supported video recording quality goes up to 8K. You can besides convert audio from the video to an MP3. It will even help you take video recording screenshots .

YouTube Video Downloader

$ 0.00

at AddOnCrop

See It

Video DownloadHelper

dislodge ; Firefox, Chrome, Edge Video DownloadHelper supports a huge number of sites—even those for adults. You ‘ll know a video recording is downloadable when the icon for the propagation animates when you ‘re on the web page. Video DownloadHelper for Chrome has stopped working with YouTube ; that means, it could get placement in the Chrome Web Store. Get around that by using the Video DownloadHelper extension on Firefox or Edge rather .

Video DownloadHelper

$ 0.00

at DownloadHelper

See It


Downloading from YouTube using an Android app from the Google Play Store is a challenge, given that Google has a close fascinate on the web site it owns, and offers the gainful YouTube Premium service that supports offline watch. That said, with Android, it is possible to install apps without going through Google. For exemplar, InsTube – Free Video and Music Downloader for Android can alone be found at InsTube ‘s site. Download the APK ( Android application package ) file to sideload on an Android device. Find it in your device ‘s downloads and chatter to install. ( You may have to go into your security settings and enable “ unknown sources. ” ) On iPhones and iPads, you ‘d think there would be no such limitation since Apple and Google are n’t precisely the best of pals ( or possibly they are ). however, on the io apps I have tried, not only would n’t they download from YouTube, but they ‘re besides typically not available for long. One of those apps said in its description, “ Downloading from YouTube is prohibited due to its Terms of Service. ” Apple is ensuring that app makers play by the rules—even Google ‘s rules. Chances are, the minute you find an io app that can download YouTube videos, it will get “ fixed ” or banned. The only real choice is to jailbreak your iPhone and use sideloaded apps that download what you want. There are workarounds. One is to subscribe to YouTube Premium ; it lets you download video on your iPhone or iPad to watch belated, much as Netflix and Hulu do. Another is using a loose io file director app like Documents by Readdle. Use the Safari browser to visit a YouTube video, and use the Share choice to find Copy Link. then go back to Documents, and use the built-in browser in the app to surf to a video download benefactor web site. Paste the link into the class ( hold your finger down on it until you get the “ Paste ” menu to pop up ). The site will give you the links to download, and you can save the file to Documents. Hold and drag the file up, until you ‘re rear on the main screen, then drag it to the Photos booklet. You ‘ll need to give Documents license to access Photos the first time. You can then access the video like you would any video taken on the call or tablet—in the Photos app .

Documents by Readdle

$ 0.00

at Apple App Store

See It
Another workaround : Go back to the background and try AnyTrans ( $ 39.99 for a single computer for one class, Windows or macOS ; $ 59.99 life design ), a background file director for io devices that has an integrated downloader supporting 900 sites, including YouTube and Facebook. It ‘ll transfer the television to the iPhone for you over the USB cable. even if you do n’t pay for AnyTrans, the download option remains and is complimentary forever .

YT Scribe

Want a in truth unique room to “ download ” a video ? YT Scribe lets you grab the transcription so you can read them alternatively. It auto-transcribes, punctuates, and paragraphs the textbook. The better the subtitles, the better the “ article, ” of course. Best of all, it ‘s wholly complimentary .

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