What YouTube Downloader is Right for You?

Are you interested in downloading video content? Low resolution or high? Full HD? Or maybe you only want the audio track? How about screengrabs? Perhaps you want all of that and more. Video downloaders are one of the most popular types of extensions for Firefox because there are so many unique ways to handle rich media.

In this post we’ll focus solely on YouTube downloaders, because there’s simply a lot to explore just within the world of video downloaders tailored for YouTube. However, if your video downloading needs aren’t specific to YouTube, I should point out there’s a vast array of video downloaders made for Firefox. The open-source developer community really cranks out some beautiful stuff—everything from do-it-all video downloaders like Video DownloadHelper, Bulk Media Downloader, Video Downloader Professional, Flash and Video Downloader, 1-Click Downloader, and SaveFrom.net to super niche video downloaders like Instagram Video Download or Private Video Downloader.

Downloading video and audio files is just a couple clicks away with Easy YouTube Downloader Express.

Easy YouTube Downloader Express

If you’re looking for a really solid YouTube downloader that covers the basics and covers them well, check out Easy YouTube Downloader Express. For one, it’s optimized to play well with the new YouTube interface (the new-look YouTube is known to cause problems for some extensions). Easy YouTube Downloader Express also offers 1080p full-HD downloads and handles MP3’s at 256Kbps. Just hit the “Download As:” button that appears conveniently on each video page and select your download preference.

YouTube Video and Audio Downloader

I like the elegance of this YouTube downloader’s interface. Hit a button on any video page and a menu pops up to offer “Quick Download” action or access to a “Download Panel” that displays various resolution and media options. This is a very simple and to-the-point YouTube downloader.

YouTube Video and Audio Downloader displays intuitive controls.

YouTube Download & Adblocker Smarttube

Have you ever eaten Indian pizza? Where they take traditional pizza dough but instead of topping it with stuff like cheese and pepperoni they cook it with curry, masala sauces and other delicious Indian flavors? You eat it and you’re like “why didn’t someone think of this years ago?”

YouTube Download & Adblocker is like that. It’s a great video downloader (that can also handle audio file conversions with an array of formats) PLUS it’s an effective YouTube ad blocker. Genius.

A couple more nice features: you can choose to block annotations with the flick of a checkbox. And with the ad blocker, you have the option to whitelist YouTube channels so ads only appear when you view your favorite content creators.

YouTube Video Download & Convert

If you want gobs of download options, YouTube Video Download & Convert has options—high and low res, static images, audio, even subtitles. It’s also a powerful media converter. All available actions appear as buttons just below the video player, which makes everything super convenient if you don’t mind YouTube pages loaded with buttons.

Easy YouTube MP3

Are you solely interested in converting a YouTube video into an audio MP3 file? That’s all Easy YouTube MP3 does. Quick and painless.

The extensions mentioned above are my favorites (I should probably add Download YouTube Video as well; it’s a really strong video downloader, but some might object to the edgy ads displayed on its custom download page). Did I miss your favorite YouTube downloader? If so please drop suggestions in the comments.

12 responses

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  1. therube wrote on :

    in what version of FF are these intended to work?
    i have the latest release, 56.0.2.

    easy youtube downloader express
    & youtube video & audio
    state they are corrupt? so won’t even attempt to install

    yt download & adblock states it wants to “access your for all websites”, “download files and read and modify the browser’s download history”, “access browser tabs”.

    just what is all that? sure sounds scary to me. or is this just “standard disclosure” these days?

    & then it didn’t seem to download anything at all?

    YT video download & convert

    i get a bunch of “blocks”, seemingly that should do something meaningful?
    but every video i tried came down as 0-bytes.
    every Preview i tried, did nothing.

    (it does seem it can pull down some thumbnails, for whatever that might be worth.)

    easy YT mp3

    does not seem to be a “downloader”, but seems to do nothing but sends you to a third-party site, that theoretically would convert the audio from a YT clip to mp3 audio?

    & even at that, it failed.
    i don’t even see why this was included in your list of “downloaders”?

    i have to ask, did you even test these to see if they even function, function in any way as one might expect them to, as in like to actually install in your browser, & then for kicks, to actually download something (& 0-byte files do not count)?

    maybe it is just me, maybe i’m missing something, this leaves me wondering …

    Reply

    1. Scott DeVaney wrote on :

      This is very odd and I’m not sure why you got such consistently wonky behavior. I ran all of these downloaders just fine on Nightly; tested each one. However if you’re running FF 56.0.2 that should definitely be recent enough.

      Regarding the permission details you saw for YouTube Download & Adblock Smarttube… those are fairly standard permissions, but admittedly they can sound scary. That’s why they require user approval before installing. Based on the permissions an extension utilizes, AMO will automatically surface the appropriate messages.

      So I’m not sure why these downloaders worked so poorly for you, but I’m sorry your experience was poor!

      Reply

      1. therube wrote on :

        OK, so I’ve got to ask, just what was your “agenda” in regards to your (blog) post?
        Was there one?

        And in the same regard, I guess you might ask what my agenda was with my reply to your blog post.

        And that’s quite simple, actually.
        On reading your post, I was wondering just why you were “promoting” these extensions.

        And with that, I’d figure I’d read about them, briefly, on AMO, to see what I could glean from there, then install them & see just what they might be able to do for me.

        Anyhow, like I say, I have the most recent FF release, 56.0.2. I fired up a new Profile, opened this thread, went to each extension, read a bit, then tried them out.

        The first two would not even install, stating that that:
        “The add-on downloaded from this site could not be installed because it appears to be corrupt.”.

        Now are they “corrupt” or might they require this “nightly” (what might that be FF 59 or something)?

        The extensions, all of them, state “Compatible with Firefox 57+”.
        Now FF 57+ is not a release version either, 56 is.
        Does that mean that none of them should work in the release version of FF, 56.0.2?
        Or does that mean that they might or might not work in FF 56?
        Or should they all (theoretically) work in FF 56?

        (While I might be coming across, harsh, I don’t mean to be, particularly, just a user, just trying to understand something that at this point is just confusing me.)

        Reply

        1. therube wrote on :

          > The first two would not even install, stating that that:
          > “The add-on downloaded from this site could not be installed because it appears to be corrupt.”.

          That is my error.
          (At least something I did in the past was the cause of the issue.)

          Some time back, I added a (what was it now ? an extension signing requirement bypass “hack”, if I’m recalling correctly) to my FF /installation directory/ (not Profile).

          I added a mozilla.cfg & /defaults/pref/autoconfig.js files to my instalDir.

          It was this that was blocking (causing the “corrupt” notification”), keeping the extension from installing.

          No clue as to why only those two particular extensions were reported as corrupt, install blocked, while the others worked fine, but that is what happened.

          Once I remove those two files, I’m able to successfully install those two “corrupt” extensions.

          Reply

          1. Scott DeVaney wrote on :

            Glad to hear it worked out, and thank you for sharing the knowledge of your fix.

          2. therube wrote on :

            > No clue as to why only those two particular extensions were reported as corrupt,
            > install blocked, while the others worked fine, but that is what happened.

            Possible explanation, addon id (or not); http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?p=14773969#p14773969

      2. therube wrote on :

        > Regarding the permission details you saw for YouTube Download & Adblock Smarttube… those are fairly
        > standard permissions, but admittedly they can sound scary. That’s why they require user approval before
        > installing. Based on the permissions an extension utilizes, AMO will automatically surface the appropriate
        > messages.

        https://palant.de/2017/08/05/revisiting-permission-prompt-for-firefox-extensions

        Standard they may be, but I see great confusion ahead.

        (Ironic isn’t it, to me at least, that FF now has all this “excess” telemetry, that AFAIK, is /on/ by default [i.e. opt out rather then opt in], yet when one wants, & goes to install an extension they’re presented with this doomsday rhetoric [of which they’ll have no idea what it means].)

        Reply

  2. Gerald wrote on :

    “Easy YouTube Downloader Express also offers 1080p full-HD downloads and handles MP3’s at 256Kbps”
    Not true out of the box: It’s not available unless you pay (Fair enough, but it’s not obvious from this post or the extension name.)

    Reply

    1. Scott DeVaney wrote on :

      You’re right. Thanks for pointing that out.

      Reply

  3. gr wrote on :

    SaveItOffline addon to download videos from youtube and others:
    https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/addon/saveitoffline/

    Reply

  4. Paul Steinberg wrote on :

    How does this adhere to the 4th and 7th principles of the Mozilla Manifesto? “Individuals’ security and privacy on the Internet are fundamental and must not be treated as optional.” “Free and open source software promotes the development of the Internet as a public resource.”

    Zero words here about the extensions’ licenses. Which extensions use (non-free?) Web services, which extensions download/convert the video locally?

    As therube already pointed out, I’m sorry to conclude this to be a very weak blog post. You should expect better from a blog post on blog.mozilla.org!

    Reply

  5. momo wrote on :

    JDownloader baby!

    Before, I used Complete YouTube Saver, also very good.
    https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/addon/complete-youtube-saver/

    Reply

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