YouTube Secrets – Crystal Clear Video On YouTube Revisited

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A while back I did a tutorial showing how to get crystal clear video on YouTube.  Well, YouTube has changed some things since then, so I thought I’d pass along an updated version of that tutorial for those who are interested.

In addition, I’m adding some information for those who do screen capture videos…and…for those who embed YouTube videos on their web sites or blogs.

So here we go.

First, for normal videos (like those that come from a video camera), when preparing your video for uploading to YouTube, you’ll want to render that video at a size of either 640×480 or 480×360.  These dimensions will ensure that your videos won’t become distorted in any fashion once they’re up on YouTube.

As far as what file format they should be in, typically I recommend either MPEG-2, WMV or MP4 files on the Windows side of things, and MOV on the Mac side.

For screen capture videos, most people use Camtasia.  In Camtasia, when recording your videos, you have the option of recording to .camrec files or .avi files.  You’ll want to choose the .avi file setting.  For size, you’ll want to record your screen at the dimensions of 640×480.

After you’re done with your recording and you’ve made all the edits you need, you’ll want to produce that video out of Camtasia as a .wmv file, at the dimensions of 640×480.  The .wmv file that Camtasia produces will be the file you want to upload to YouTube.

After your videos have been uploaded to YouTube and converted…you’re not done.  Next to the embed code that YouTube gives you, you’ll want to click on the “customize” icon.  This will show you screen size options for your video.  You’ll want to select either the 640 or 480 width options.  YouTube will then adjust the embed code accordingly.  This is an important step, because by default, YouTube will give you embed code that will likely distort your video.

Now you want to copy the embed code and paste it into your web page or blog.  However, there’s a small modification you need to make to the embed code…a modification that will allow your video to play at the higest quality.

In the embed code, you’ll see a path to you video listed as something like this:

“http://www.youtube.com/v/zORv8wwiadQ&hl=en&fs=1”

You’ll want to stick this code right before the “&hl”: &ap=%2526fmt%3D18

So your code will come out looking someting like this:

“http://www.youtube.com/v/zORv8wwiadQ&ap=%2526fmt%3D18&hl=en&fs=1″

It’s important to note that you’ll need to do this is two different places within the embed code.  This is for all the different browsers being used on the Internet.

After that, you’re done.  You’re videos will now play in the highest possible quality (at least from YouTube).

If you’d like to see a video version of this tutorial, you can watch my YouTube Secrets video here.

And if you’d like to see what videos look like before and after the code trick I gave you above, you can see a head-to-head comparision here.

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