My Favorite Online Video Service [Frequency]

I’ll be honest. 99% of all my online video consumption is on YouTube. I simply don’t have time to go through all the other niche video sites which also have amazing content. Good content however exists on every platform, which is why I use Frequency, which is both a free web based service, and a free iPad app which crawls all the various video services, and supercharges it by taking the best videos from all the services, and letting you browse them easily.

My three favorite things about this app are:

1. You can view highlights from many sites at once

frequency videos

Link up all your feeds from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and just pick some of your favorite topics (eg. New York Times for news) once, and Frequency sorts out everything for you ongoing.  This essentially lets you browse channels you care about very, very quickly and watch the videos which appeal to you the most no matter where it comes from. 

2. You’re watching a video stream not a video

One key difference between online video and TV, is that online video is much more interactive.   You watch a video, decide what’s the next video, and keep going on. Frequency is a much more laid back approach where playlists get created dynamically, and one video goes on to the next – without interaction – Just like TV.  Strangely this only works on the iPad version.  PC version, you still have to click on each video to play it.  I guess they figure people are more laid back when using a tablet. 

3. Highlights are YOUR highlights

Frequency has a section called ‘Your Highlights"’.  This is where the most popular content from your feeds be it Facebook, news, and other networks get aggregated and you can watch it all in a continuous stream.  If you want to go deeper into certain topics, you could also create your own stream and add the relevant channels to it.  In my case, I have one channel just for funny videos.

All in all…

While you’re waiting for YouTube to release an official iPad app, this is the way to go. No video app on the iPad gives you as much fun,and it runs really well on the website alone :)

4 Ways To Convert YouTube Videos Into MP3 Files

youtube cupcake

Just several years ago, it would have been impossible to imagine a one-stop solution for all our media needs; and yet today, YouTube practically fulfils every part of it – from searching for our favourite music videos, to catching up with the latest media gossip.

But what if there was a certain song you wanted to listen to on your portable music player, or a business podcast you wanted to carry around in audio format – instead of watching it as a video online? Fret not, for here are a few magical ways to transform that YouTube video into an audio mp3 file for your convenience:

1. How To Convert Youtube Videos Online And Download Them Instantly

clip_image002

By far the easiest way to obtain an MP3 file from a Youtube video is to have all the work done for you beforehand, so that you can use it instantly with no extra hassle. This is probably the preferred method for most laymen, since it’s as simple as click-and-go in most cases.

Video2MP3 is personally my favourite site for online video conversion. All you have to do is copy and paste the Youtube URL of the video you want to convert into the text bar, select whether you want the MP3 file in standard or high quality (higher quality usually takes longer to download), and press the convert button. You’ll have to wait awhile for it to convert and download, but it’s mostly an automated process in which you don’t have to lift a finger otherwise.

If you like this kind of instant conversion, other sites to consider include VidtoMP3, FromVideo (which also supports Vimeo!) and YoutubetoMP3.

2. How To Convert Videos Locally On Your Computer Straight From YouTube

clip_image004

The first method converts the YouTube videos into MP3 files on a third party’s computer, then allows you to download them; but what if you wanted to skip the download and head straight to the conversion step? One reason you may want to do this is perhaps for security reasons, so here’s a way to bypass the third party and keep the process strictly between your computer and YouTube.

DVDVideoSoft provides a large warehouse of free conversion software, but by far their most useful offering is their free Youtube To MP3 Converter. As the name implies, the software extracts and converts Youtube videos directly on your computer, so you’re assured of a safe MP3 file if you’re cautious about viruses. The interface may not be as pretty as more recent software, but the entire process is easy to understand and user-friendly, with a straightforward guide to help you out in case you need some hand-holding.

3. How To Download Videos First, And Then Convert Them At Your Convenience

clip_image006

If you’re like me, then you probably won’t want to just convert the videos into songs, but would like to store a collection of the videos themselves as well. To do this, you’ll have to take two steps: firstly, to download the videos to your computer, then convert them into MP3s yourself.

To download the videos to your computer, you can either choose to download them via online downloaders, or use local software to do the job. Some of the online video downloaders include KeepVid and SaveVid, while the free Youtube Video Downloader is installable onto your computer. If you use Mozilla Firefox, you’ll be happy to know that Download Youtube Videos + offers a secure solution for downloading Youtube videos right from within your browser.

Next, you’ll want to convert the videos you’ve downloaded into MP3 files. If you’re using Windows, the free Freez Flv to Mp3 Converter works well to convert the downloaded Youtube videos (.flv) into MP3 files.

And there you have it, your untouched downloaded Youtube videos and converted MP3 audio files, all in one setup!

4. How To Download Videos & Convert Them Into MP3s On a Mac

clip_image008

If you’re on a Mac, then you’ll have to use slightly different software to perform the above steps, but the process is mostly the same. The reason behind this is because Macs are unable to run the FLV codec natively, so you have to download them as H.264 videos instead and use the appropriate software to convert them into MP3s.

Videobox offers a nifty solution for downloading Youtube videos to your Mac. In tech speak, it downloads Flash videos and converts them into H.264 format so that you can play them on Quicktime – but for the layman, it downloads them so that it just works on your Mac.

After you’ve downloaded the video, the next step is to convert it into an MP3 file. FfmpegX is an amazing conversion software which works exceedingly well and has independently amassed glowing reviews, and is by far the best conversion software I would recommend. In fact, codec fans will be happy to note that FfmpegX handles a wide variety of formats, so its conversion capabilities are not confined to merely converting videos into MP3 files.

Have you ever wanted to convert a YouTube video?  Tell us your experience in the comments

This post was guest written by Aaron Pek

5 Easy Ways to Download YouTube Videos To Your Computer

3dtv

Online video streaming has been the rage for some time now – and we can view countless videos through sites like YouTube and Metacafe – but what happens if you find a video you really like and would like to store it for offline viewing or to watch it on a mobile device?  Unfortunately, we are limited only to streaming as there is no option to download the videos on YouTube. Well, fret not as we have at our disposal easy-to-use tools that make downloading such videos possible.

1.  How to Download Videos with One Click

keepvid

KeepVid.com is a web-based video downloader. Perfect for those who are on the go or do not wish to install additional applications on their computer, KeepVid oozes simplicity and idiot-proof video downloading. To download YouTube videos, simply copy the URL of the YouTube video page you wish to download, and paste it in the Keepvid Textbox. A link will then appear which allows you to save the .flv video file to your computer! As an added bonus, KeepVid can also download videos from several other video streaming services such as Metacafe.  It also comes with a bookmarklet so you can download any video you’re watching with one click.

2. How to Download Videos Directly from the URL Box

kissyoutube

Another funky and ingenious method to download videos from YouTube is to add a kiss to the video you wish to download, literally! How would you do that? Simple, just add the word ˜kiss’ in front of the ˜youtube’ word in the URL and press enter. You will then be brought to the download page with a link to the .flv video. For example, say we want to download this Super Bowl video. The original URL would be œhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jxyYwrKIKQ. Now just add a kiss, and make it œhttp://www.kissyoutube.com/watch?v=9jxyYwrKIKQ for the download. Simple as that! Java is required for this website to work, though.

3. How to Convert .flv Videos On The Fly

vixy

Now this is a tool you won’t want to miss! Vixy.net is both a web-based YouTube video downloader and converter! While many popular media players such as Windows Media Player and Quicktime aren’t capable of playing back .flv extensions (which YouTube videos are streamed in), Vixy.net solves those problems by offering a free conversion service along with any download. After entering the URL of the desired video, just choose the file type you wish to convert into (there is AVI, 3GP, and MOV, among others). This is a truly convenient way of making YouTube videos more accessible to other media players.

4. Where to Find YouTube Download Software

youtube

For those who fancy having gadgets and utilities lying around their computer desktops, YouTube Downloader is the perfect tool! This nifty little program can easily download YouTube videos – just copy and paste the video URL and press the button! Its additional feature includes a built-in video converter to convert downloaded .flv files into other more convenient formats.

5. Where to Find an Awesome Firefox Plugin to Download Videos

firefox

Firefox fans rejoice! Now there is a quick and convenient way to extract your favorite YouTube videos using this add-on. Besides YouTube, this plug-in supports other video streaming sites including Metacafe, Google Videos and Dailymotion, among others. Just surf like normal and when DownloadHelper detects a downloadable object, its icon will animate, allowing you to download the streaming video.

Would you download a youtube video?  Tell us in the comments!

This guest post was written by Chan HH.  If you’d like to write for Friedbeef’s Tech, just drop me a line.