Convert YouTube Videos to MP4s

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Yesterday I showed you how to turn a YouTube video into an MP3. That's handy for songs, but what if you want the actual video? Surely there's a way to download YouTube vids--and convert them to an iPod-friendly format?

Actually, there are lots of ways, though YouTube appears to be cracking down on them. (Not sure I understand why. After all, iPhone users can already stream YouTube content, as can anyone with a browser and an Internet connection. Where's the harm in allowing offline viewing?)

Anyway, I'm partial to KeepVid and VideoDownloader, which are virtually identical in form and function: Copy the URL of the YouTube vid you want, paste it into the appropriate field on either site, and then click Download.

In an instant you'll get links for both FLV and MP4 versions of the video. Right-click the latter and choose Save Link As (or Save Target As if you're an Internet Explorer user). The video should take no more than a few minutes to download to your PC. From there it's a simple matter to import it into iTunes.

In the event that Google gets really serious about shutting down (or at least disabling) these services, you can always try a software solution like Replay Media Catcher, a personal favorite.

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