youtube tricks

Youtube has become a massive video platform, ranking 2nd in the world by Alexa rankings, only to be beaten by it’s parent company, Google. People spend a lot of time watching videos on youtube. While youtube is really feature rich, some of it’s features are not well known. Here are some Youtube Tricks which are sure to make your Youtube watching experience much more pleasurable.

1. Download Youtube Videos

Let’s start with the thing that people usually ask the most, “How to download youtube videos?”. Simple, add “ss” in front of “youtube” in the URL.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1ULJ92aldE
becomes
https://www.ssyoutube.com/watch?v=q1ULJ92aldE
This will open up a website where you can choose from multiple options and formats in which you want to download your video

select the choice of format for download
Select the required format and download

Check this article if you want to download videos from any other website.

2. Bypassing Age Restriction without Logging In

We’ve all had that moment while researching, we reach a page which asks us to verify that we are mature enough, so that our innocence of youth is not defiled by the horrors that Youtube holds. Maybe, some people like me, are just too lazy to login to watch a video.
The solution? Add “nsfw” in front of “youtube” in the URL.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIcTM8WXFjk
becomes
https://www.nsfwyoutube.com/watch?v=qIcTM8WXFjk

3. Useful Keyboard shortcuts

Here are some shortcuts which are going to make your Youtube experience MUCH more convenient.

For making seeking through the video much more convenient
J : Rewind 10 secs
K : Pause the video
L : Forward 10 secs

These shortcuts allow you to go through the video, frame by frame. The video must be paused to use these two.
< : Go back a single frame
> : Go forward to the next frame

Some shortcuts using arrow keys(only usable when the video player has focus).
: Rewind 5 secs
: Forward 5 secs
: Increase the volume
: Decrease the volume

F : Toggle fullscreen mode
M : Toggle audio mute

Here’s a picture with most of the general shortcuts

Youtube Keyboard Shortcuts
Some useful Youtube Shortcuts

If you are really into shortcuts, check the official keyboard shortcuts for Youtube by Google here for some more shortcuts.

4. Create a gif of a video

To create a gif of a video or to share certain parts as a gif
Add “gif” in front of youtube in the URL.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIcTM8WXFjk
to
https://www.gifyoutube.com/watch?v=qIcTM8WXFjk
You have many customization options from here. You can select time stamps from the video, add text, effects and more. When you’re done click, on “Create Gif” and you’ll get a URL which you can use to share the gif with your friends.

gif options
Select the time stamp, any effects and click on “Create Gif”

5. Get the thumbnail image of a video

Youtube thumbnails often have very attractive images. Wouldn’t it be amazing if there were some way to get those images? Luckily, you can use this trick to get the image in the thumbnail of any youtube video.

Replace the “[VideoID]” part of the code below with the youtube video’s id.
img.youtube.com/vi/[VideoID]/maxresdefault.jpg, paste it into the address bar and hit go.

What is the VideoID of a video, one might ask?
The VideoID is the string of characters after the “www.youtube.com/watch?v=” part in the URL.

In this video URL
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qIcTM8WXFjk
the video id would be qIcTM8WXFjk
so to get the thumbnail of this video we’d replace the videoID in the above code template as:
https://img.youtube.com/vi/qIcTM8WXFjk/maxresdefault.jpg
To download the thumbnail, just right click on it and click save.

6. Start a video from a specific time

Ever wanted to share a specific part of a video with a friend?
Right click on the video player and select “Copy Video URL at current time”. Now share the URL where ever you want and the video will start from the moment you wanted it to.

Copy video URL at current time
Select “Copy video URL at current time” from the right click menu

7. Play a video on repeat/loop it

Have a favourite song that you replayed so many times, that you fear the replay button might die? Right click on the video and select Loop, now the video will keep replaying itself until you click Loop again. No need to overwork the poor replay button, buttons too deserve rest.

select loop from the options
Select “Loop” from the right click menu

8. Youtube Enhancer

This is a not really a youtube trick, but rather a browser extension. A quite useful browser extension to be precise and it’s free. This enables god mode on youtube, allowing you to take maximum control. Has tons of features including themes, controlling media playback, removing ads, shortcuts, custom scripts, and a lot more.
Get the free browser extension for your favourite browser below:
Firefox
Chrome
Opera

Hope these little tricks make your video watching experience more pleasant. Leave a comment below if you have any questions or some suggestions.