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5 Different Ways on How to Record YouTube Videos on Mac

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Record screen activities as you like: full screen, custom screen, or multiple monitors recording
  • Support record dual/ multiple monitors smoothly and easily.
  • Customize recording frames to capture any section of the screen.
  • Record the full screen without quality loss.
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Are you looking for an ultra-low-cost, no-nonsense way on how to record YouTube videos on Mac quickly and easily? Then this is the right page. YouTube is a populous video-sharing site with more than 300 hours of videos shared every minute. Now, this makes it the perfect place to watch the latest movies, music, insightful tutorials, and so on. But, sadly, only YouTube Premium users can download and save the videos on their computer storage. And although you can do that using a third-party app, it's against YouTube's terms of service. So, this article shows you five solutions to record a YouTube video on Mac without quality loss.

Part 1. How do I download YouTube videos to my Mac for free?

Sometimes, you have to throw caution in the air and get a program that can help you directly extract a YouTube clip for offline playback. One such program is Wondershare UniConverter 13. With this all-in-one program, you can download videos from 10,000+ channels, including YouTube, Vimeo, Vine, Facebook, Likee, TikTok, etc. Before extracting, users can preset the output format and quality. And yes, you can record any computer screen activity using this app, as you'll see later on.

Step 1. Run the Downloader tool.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter launch downloader tool

Install and run UniConverter 13 on your computer and then tap the Downloader tab on the left taskbar. Now head to YouTube and copy the video URL you want to extract.

Step 2. Choose the output format (optional).

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter choose download format

Typically, you'll extract YouTube videos in MP4 format. But for varying reasons, you may want to convert the video into a different video or audio format. So, enable the Download then Convert Mode on UniConverter and then choose an output format under the Video tab. You can also select a device-ready format on the Device tab.

Step 3. Extract the video from YouTube.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter extract youtube video

Press the Download button at the center of the Downloader window. UniConverter will begin analyzing and downloading the video immediately. Remember to click the High Speed Download toggle to extract your video as quickly as possible. Also, you'll find the extracted video on the Finished tab. Enjoy!

Part 2. 2 Traditional methods to record YouTube videos for Mac users

Did you know that Mac comes with its own inbuilt video recording tools? Well, you can use iMovie and QuickTime Player to record videos without paying anything. So, without wasting time, here's how to screen record on Mac for YouTube using iMovie or QuickTime Player:

Method 1: Using QuickTime Player

QuickTime Player is the default video playback tool for Mac OS X. This tool can play almost any video and audio format on your Mac computer. But on top of that, QuickTime Player also doubles up as an excellent screen and audio recorder. Below is how to use it:

Step 1. Launch QuickTime Player and then click File before choosing New Screen Recording. The screen recording tool will launch immediately

how to record youtube videos on mac with quicktime player choose new screen recording

Step 2. Before you start recording, tap the Options arrow next to the record button to choose a microphone if you want to include voice narrations. You can also enable the "Show Mouse Clicks in Recording" option if you're going to emphasize the mouse clicks.

how to record youtube videos on mac with quicktime player set recording settings

Step 3. Now click the Record button, and the lasso tool will launch automatically. Play your video or computer screen to record and then customize the screen section you want to record.

Step 4. Lastly, click Start Recording to begin capturing the YouTube video. Click Stop to end the video recording session and then tap File > Save to export your video. That's it!

Limitation: Although you won't pay a dime to screen record on QuickTime Player, this method has many drawbacks. First, you can't insert vital features like annotations and webcam overlays. Also, QuickTime Player doesn't edit the processed video. Another thing, this method is only for Mac users.

Method 2: Using iMovie

Fortunately, you can use iMovie to record a YouTube video on Mac losslessly. Like QuickTime Player, this option is entirely free to use and available to Mac users only. That said, iMovie comes with multiple editing tools for trimming, splitting, adding motion effects, applying background audio, etc. So, use these steps to record a video clip on iMovie:

Step 1. Open Spotlight, search for iMovie, and then open it.

Step 2. Create a New Event on iMovie and then tap the Import Media button.

record youtube videos on mac with imovie-click import media

Step 3. Click the Facetime HD Camera button on the left pane to launch your inbuilt webcam.

record youtube videos on mac with imovie choose camera and start recording

Step 4. Tap Record to begin capturing your FaceTime camera. Then, click the Record button again to stop recording. That's it!

Limitation: As you can see, recording a YouTube video on Mac is pretty straightforward on iMovie. However, this option is only limited to taking Facecam videos. In other words, you can't record the computer screen using iMovie. So, use a professional tool like UniConverter, as we'll see in the next section.

Part 3. 3 Advanced but simple tools to screen record on Mac for YouTube

1. Wondershare UniConverter

For the best results, it's best to find a professional app like Wondershare UniConverter to record from YouTube on Mac or Windows without quality loss. You can losslessly record a YouTube video on Mac with this program before saving it as MP4, AVI, or FLV. As you record, UniConverter lets you insert features like microphone narrations, video overlay, system sound, and annotations like shapes and texts. And after recording, users can retouch the YouTube clip to make it more attractive and presentable.

wondershare uniconverter 13

Wondershare UniConverter - Best software to record a YouTube video on Mac or Windows 10/8.1/8/7.

safe mov video converter free download Security Verified. 3,591,664 people have downloaded it.

Smoothly record a YouTube video in full-screen or custom mode.

Insert a picture-in-picture effect, voice narration, and annotations.

Save the recorded video as AVI, MP4, or MP4.

Edit the captured video by trimming, cropping, adding watermarks, applying subtitles, etc.

Add or remove image and text watermarks from your videos effortlessly.

Below is how to record YouTube videos on Mac with Wondershare UniConverter:

Step 1 Run the screen capture tool.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter launch screen recorder

Install and run UniConverter on your Mac and then press the Screen Recorder tab. You'll see three recording tools on this window. Tap the Screen Recorder tool to launch it.

Step 2 Crop the capture area appropriately.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter crop capture area

Start by launching the YouTube video you want to record. Then, set the recording mode on UniConverter as Full Screen or Custom. If you select Full Screen, it means you'll capture the entire computer screen. On the other hand, the Custom mode lets you record precise video frame dimensions. Either way, tap Lock Aspect Ratio.

Step 3 Configure the recording devices and settings.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter configure recording devices

Next, choose an output sound device for recording the YouTube video sounds on the System Audio section. Then, proceed to enable or disable voice narration on the Microphone section. You can also choose a facecam on Webcam if you want to add a video overlay to your video.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter configure recording settings

After choosing your devices, press the Settings menu to view additional customization options. Here, you can preset the output format, quality, and frame rate. You can also set a recording timer, depending on the YouTube video length. And yes, you can choose the output format.

Step 4 Start recording the YouTube video and save it.

record youtube videos on mac with uniconverter start recording the video

Last but not least, play the YouTube video, preview the capture area, and then click Rec to begin recording. As you record, launch the taskbar, where you'll see the tools for recording the webcam, microphone, and system audio. You can also take a JPG screenshot or apply annotations like drawings, texts, lines, and more. Finally, if satisfied with the recording, click Stop to save the video.

Pro tip: As said before, UniConverter lets you edit the video by trimming, cropping, rotating, applying subtitles, adding watermarks, and more. So, to add the video on the editing window, right-click the video, choose Add, and then tap Video Editor. Now tap the Video Editor tab, and then go ahead to edit your video professionally.

2. VLC

how to record youtube videos on mac with vlc

VLC is an open-source, cross-platform multimedia player that's a mainstay on most computers. With VLC, you can open most multimedia files, including DVD, VCD, CD, AVCHD, and more. But even more interestingly, VLC hides features for streaming and recording videos in the background. VLC users can stream and record online videos from channels like YouTube and Vimeo. Also, users can directly capture computer screen activities and save the output as MP4, WebM, AVI, etc. But on the flip side, VLC can be challenging to use for green hands.

Key features:

  • Free, open-source app.
  • Stream and record videos directly from YouTube.
  • Record computer screens quickly and easily.
  • Excellent multimedia player.
  • Cross-platform compatibility.

3. Capto

how to record youtube videos on mac with capto

If you're still not impressed, you can try Capto to capture any computer screen activity on Mac. Apart from capturing your screen activities, this app can create compelling presentations, knowledgeable tutorials, and so much more. The screen recorder can capture top-quality HD videos at 60 frames per second and insert a picture-in-picture effect if you want. Also, Capto comes with an intuitive video editing suite for refining your recorded video. Moreover, users can directly share to YouTube, Facebook, Dropbox, and more.

Key features:

  • Record computer screen with webcam overlay.
  • Intuitive video and image editor.
  • Edit the video clip audio separately.
  • It supports iOS screen recording.
  • Easy sharing to social media and cloud.


These are the best methods on how to record YouTube on Mac. If you're on a budget, I recommend free alternatives like VLC, QuickTime, and iMovie. But noted before, these free apps are pretty limited in terms of functionality. So, get UniConverter 13 and enjoy recording videos, audio, and webcam on Mac or Windows with lossless quality.

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