DISCLAIMER: Downloading from YouTube violates their Terms of Service, and can be illegal if copyright is reserved. However, most people do not have trouble because the files downloaded are for personal consumption only. Unauthorized use of content that is not yours is copyright infringement, distributing it to make money is theft (not that you aren’t stealing in the first place, but you get it, right?).
This tutorial is for educational purposes only.
Setting up YouTube MP3 Downloads
1. Open YouTube in a browser tab, and a site that converts YouTube files to downloadable MP3’s. Any site like vid2mp3.com will do, I personally use FLVTO.com because of their speed.
2. Search for the desired “song” or video on YouTube. Open it. Copy the URL shown in your address bar to the “Insert Link to Media” bar in FLVTO or whatever you use.
3. Wait for the conversion, and when prompted, download.
Getting your MP3 into iTunes.
1. At this point, your browser should ask you what to do with the file. You can save it anywhere but by default, the file should be stored in your Downloads folder.
1a. Some browsers like Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome give you the option to open the file with a program. If you want it in iTunes (or whatever music program you use), select Open with iTunes (ex.). You can leave the “Do this from now on” button checked if you want your downloaded MP3’s to open in iTunes.
1b. If you use multiple music programs on a Windows PC, leave the one you use most as your default.
Managing Content in iTunes
Great! You have your downloaded MP3 in iTunes. But, if you want it to match the rest of your library (and not look funny), take these few extra steps.
1. Find the song(s) you just imported. Select it, right click and Get More Info.
2. You will now be at a menu which lets you modify song information. Find the Info tab. The song title by default for downloaded videos will combine all information.
An example: Song Title: Yellow Submarine – The Beatles – Yellow Submarine – 1969 – Apple Records
As a result, you won’t see any of the Artist Info, Album, etc. Re-sort the info into Song/Artist/Album at the least. Any additional info you know can make your library even more organized.
3. This is optional, but if you want Album Art, make sure all of the relevant information is there. iTunes has gotten better about finding Album Art, but still fails sometimes. If it’s really that big of a deal, you can find an image of the album and upload it yourself (but that’s for another discussion).
This section is entirely optional, but may address some complaints you have.
1. Kbps rate: Generally, the sites mentioned above only output a range of 96-128kbps. That isn’t to say it’s BAD, but may miss some fine detail. Any real problems with audio quality are most likely from the uploader themselves. But, remember that YouTube only has so much bandwidth. If you’re looking for 256kpbs or even 320, check iTunes and physical media (CD’s might give this information away on the album cover, it will for sure once you import it). You can also check other sources…which I will not name.
If you love FLAC or Lossless, I’m not sure why you’re reading this tutorial.
2. Adjusting Volume: This is a neat feature I wish more people would do. You can artificially increase the volume of your music by 100% in iTunes. When you select a song, visit the Get More Info tab (by right clicking). Find the Options bar and increase the volume to your preference. I go all the way up, because I never listen to my music that loudly.
If you have any questions, e-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org