Viewing YouTube offline often involves downloading MP4 clips. How to download YouTube videos on Mac? Users will gravitate towards the best apps that convert online streams to video formats.
Downloads are just one way to watch YouTube offline, but they are definitely prevalent. A good downloader is often the key. Still, there are other possibilities and other factors at play that could be useful to know. We will go through the steps of offline YouTube viewing, sharing insights along the way.
All YouTube downloaders do the following: they accept YouTube URLs as input, they find and download the MP4/WebM/M4A files, and convert them if needed. Generally, it’s the most efficient way to watch YouTube video offline. The main differences lie in implementation: downloaders compete through interfaces, performance and features.
A great example of a desktop downloader would be Airy. It is found both on Mac and on Windows, and its smooth experience is unmatched on either platform. It can queue up a large amount of downloads, including playlists. Flawless browser integration, quality options and download management - these components tie it all together, endowing Airy with professional quality.
2. Go to YouTube in your browser.
3. Copy a video address.
4. Paste it in Airy.
Other ways to download can be found in browsers: online services and plugins have their pros and cons. For example, browser add-ons include Video DownloadHelper and Addoncrop. They are located on add-on stores and similar sites. Whereas conversion services are easily found on Google - things like y2mp3.net.
Their main upside is quick installation. The downsides? Web downloaders are slow, and pugin-based downloaders may be loaded with ads or spyware.
Finally, if you’ve got patience, you could try youtube-dl, a popular console app.
No matter which downloader you choose, none can download a running YouTube stream. This becomes a problem for extra-large streams, since YouTube only allows videos up to 12 hours in length. For this type of video, footage older than 12 hours will gradually get removed. You can see this happen on various radio channels that run 24/7.
In this case, you’ll have to resort to screen recorders. Both Windows and Mac have built-in recording capabilities. For instance, you can open the Xbox Toolbar (Win+G) in Windows 10, and start a recording right there. As for Mac, QuickTime Player has its own function, accessible via File > New Screen Recording.
If the aforementioned solutions don’t satisfy you, you could try using a third-party app like OBS Studio. A hint for OBS in particular: add a "Display Capture" as your video source.
Here are some numbers for context. A 480p 30-minute video will take up to 170 megabytes. A 60 FPS HD clip of the same length will gravitate towards 850 MB. Thus, 1 TB - average laptop hard drive capacity - can contain about 585 hours of HD clips. A typical smartphone only has 64 GB of internal memory - about 16 times less. It will cap out at 185 hours of low-res videos. How can this be improved?
If you need another terabyte (or two) of high-quality footage, you’ll certainly see merit in external hard drives. HDs are a much cheaper way to store data when compared to SD cards and flash drives.
Maximizing your micro-SD size is obvious advice for mobile viewers. But there’s a great mobile technology that often goes unnoticed: OTG. With the right cable, you can connect USB flash drives and hard drives straight to your phone, and access them from the file manager.
This info can come in handy:
Sometimes, you only need a small part of a downloaded MP4 file. Look out for apps that can both download and cut YouTube videos. The quality of the application will make a huge difference - manually cutting clips can get tedious.
If you like building playlists, a speedy utility will help you on every step of the way. YouTube downloader buttons - whether PC tools or web extensions - will prove valuable. Doing everything in one click is the motto of these apps.