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Best free YouTube downloaders

When internet connections and streaming quality are poor, you can still enjoy your favorite YouTube playlists and episodes another way: Use a video downloader. With this tool, you can download a YouTube video right to your device.

All corresponding copyright laws still apply, of course, as well as YouTube’s terms of service and any waivers from the downloaders themselves, all of which may mention restrictions for offline use.

But if streaming just doesn’t work for you, these are the tools you should look into, starting with the incredibly well-designed 4K Video Downloader.

4K Video Downloader

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No downloader is as complete or well-crafted as 4K Video Downloader. It’s fast, comes with an excellent interface, and provides a simple copy-and-paste URL field that anyone can use.

However, if you want to go deeper, you can customize the downloader to grab and preserve video exactly the way you want. That includes your desired format (MP3 included), video quality, and save location — all without any annoying popup ads. There’s even support for 3D or 360-degree video, subtitles, and the ability to set up a proxy connection.

You can set it up to download entire playlists as long as you aren’t downloading more than 24 videos at once. While the software is free, you can buy a key to support longer playlists and elements like captions.

The only catch is that you must download this tool onto your device, which isn’t for everyone. But for web app options, we do have some picks further down the list.

Find it here

DVDVideoSoft’s Free YouTube Download

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Many people watching YouTube don’t want to learn a complex new app just so they can download their favorite videos. For them, Free YouTube Download is the perfect fit.

This app is so easy to use — just visit the site, and it provides a GIF showing you exactly how to download from YouTube in literal seconds. Copy the URL, use the app’s big Paste button, and hit Download. For more complex use, the app supports choosing between several formats, converting video files to different formats, and automatically transferring videos to places like iTunes.

The big caveat is that it’s fairly limited for playlists and bundles of videos, so you can only download a few at a time.

Find it here

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Don’t want to install a separate app just for downloading and converting videos from sites like YouTube? We recommend visiting instead.

This basic web app makes downloading super easy for videos you find online. It has a simple search bar allowing you to search for online videos or paste in a video’s URL, then quickly pick your format, convert, and download it to your device. It’s fast, efficient, and gives you several options for file size to help you manage storage more easily.

However, it’s worth noting that this web app is designed to download one video at a time, so it doesn’t work for batch downloads.

Find it here

WinX YouTube Downloader

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WinX is another high-quality app that has many of the options included in 4K Download. Paste in a URL, and it’s smart enough to automatically detect the current resolution, format, and size. It then gives you quick options for tweaking those specifications to get the exact download that you want.

Formats including FLV and WebM are supported, and you can create previews and snapshots as well. It also scales very well, allowing you to add up to 300 URLs in a batch and maximize download speed if necessary. There’s also support for 4K resolution video, recording YouTube livestreams, and more.

About the only thing that WinX’s app can’t do is handle 3D or 360-degree video.

Find it here

iTubeGo YouTube Downloader

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If you’re in the market for a full range of activities such as managing, saving, downloading, and listening to more than 10,000 streaming sites, then iTubeGo is for you. You get a streamlined interface that’s simple to use, along with the ability to convert multiple audio and video formats all from the same place. You can even download whole channels or playlists with just one click.

If you don’t want to use the app to play music, it also supports quick downloads to your chosen folder. Multitasking and download control features also allow you to control how fast you want your downloads to go and which ones to prioritize.

Unfortunately, iPhone users are out of luck. The app is only available through Android. A macOS download is available, but you may still encounter some compatibility issues.

Find it here

YT Cutter

YT Cutter
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YT Cutter isn’t the most conventional video downloader, but it’s a great tool all the same. You can download a full video or cut clips to download pieces. 

The tool is simple to use; simply paste the URL and choose the start and stop times you want to be cut. You can also view the video before downloading it and manually record the parts. 

YT Cutter can export in most major file formats, including GIFs and screenshots. 

Find it here

Editors' Recommendations

Tyler Lacoma
Former Digital Trends Contributor
If it can be streamed, voice-activated, made better with an app, or beaten by mashing buttons, Tyler's into it. When he's not…
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