YouTube is undoubtedly the most popular video streaming platform out there and while it packs in some very cool features, what if you could get more out of it? If you are like me, you use YouTube mostly on your browser. If you are using Chrome, you must be aware of the plethora of extensions available for the Google browser. There are Chrome extensions to enhance the Gmail experience, customize tabs and more. Also, there are various Chrome extensions aimed at making your YouTube experience better. Well, here are the 10 best YouTube Chrome extensions you should use:
1. Magic Actions
Magic Actions is an all in one Chrome extension that adds dozens of handy features in YouTube. Some of its prominent features include the ability to control volume with mouse wheel or right-click, take video screenshots, preview video & its ratings, day/night mode, cinema mode with different themes, control buffer, bypass country restrictions and much more.
Magic Actions add a button in the address bar that is only visible when you open YouTube. You can click on the button and then go to ‘Options” to configure all the features. Every feature has its own set of options, so that you can totally customize your experience.
2. Turn Off the Lights
While Magic Actions offers the cinema mode feature, where the background is dimmed and video is put in focus, it is fairly limited. The Turn Off the Lights extension offers the theater mode feature with loads of customization options. You have full control over the opacity of the faded background and you can also automate the process. Additionally, you can change the color of the fade to any color you like, so you are no more limited to the Black fade color.
Some of its other features include, night mode for easy browsing in the dark, screensaver, password protection, camera motion detection, voice commands and more. Furthermore, these features work on all the web pages; it is not just limited to YouTube.
If you have a slower internet connection, which results in videos on YouTube to be forever stuck in buffering, you should give SmartVideo a try. It’s a buffer control extension that gives you full control over how the buffering of a video works. You can configure the extensions to make sure YouTube videos start buffering as soon as the page loads, instead of waiting for the video to start. It can also automatically play the video when buffering is complete, or play it when it knows that the video will play smoothly afterwards (based on your internet speed).
Apart from buffer control, it also has many other additional features such as loop all videos played, hide annotations, configure video quality and hide player settings. Furthermore, SmartVideo works on both videos in YouTube and videos embedded on other websites.
Like GIFs? You can easily make GIFs out of YouTube videos and share them with anyone you like. Although YouTube natively lets you create GIFs out of videos, it is a bit complicated and lacks customization options. You should give GIFit! a try, if you are serious about creating GIFs out of YouTube videos. It works right from the YouTube video player and you can just click on the “GIFit” button in the bottom bar to get started. GIFit! lets you set the start and end time of a GIF and also adjust height, width, frame rate, and quality. When done, click on the red GIFit! button to create and download the GIF.
5. Video Blocker
If you are tired of seeing videos from a channel you really hate or find inappropriate, you should use the Video Blocker extension. It lets you block all the videos from a specific channel, and the videos will never be shown to you again. It will remove the videos from your search, recommendations and any other part of YouTube and make it like they were never even there.
To block videos, simply right-click on any video from the channel you want to block and select “Block videos from this channel”. Additionally, you can also use keywords, wildcards and channel names to block channels and specific types of videos.
6. Video Preview
YouTube videos usually have a single display picture to tell you what it’s about, but it can be a little hard to guess the content it features. Video Preview extension lets you see three preview images picked from a video to give you an idea of the content it offers. On top of that, it also shows you a bar on the bottom of the featured image suggesting the likes and dislikes on the video. Overall, the Video Preview extension can save you a lot of time that would have been otherwise wasted when you click on a video only to find that it’s not worth watching.
Like Video Preview, the BriefTube Chrome extension makes sure you don’t waste your time on videos that only look good on the outside. BriefTube creates a summary of what a video offers and lets you directly jump to the video part that is relevant to you. The summary creates an outline of the topics in the video along with the time stamps, so that you can click on the topics to directly move to it in the video.
Unfortunately, BriefTube only works on videos, which have English subtitles, are HTML5 and longer than 5 minutes. To sum things up, the extension is best for educational videos featuring chapters, so that you can easily switch between different chapters.
8. YouTube Plus
YouTube Plus is another very cool Chrome extension for YouTube, which offers multiple features similar to Magic Actions along with its own unique offerings. Its features include infinite scroll in feeds, different video layouts, static audio volume, ability to select video quality, change volume with mouse wheel, prioritize HTML5 player and more.
YouTube Plus also lets you automatically create a playlist of the top 20 videos from your subscriptions list. Additionally, you can also block videos from specific channels with the help of a built-in block button.
9. Ratings Preview
As the name suggests, Ratings Preview shows you the rating (likes and dislikes) of all YouTube videos under the video thumbnail as a bar. While the Video Preview extension can also do the same, Ratings Preview offers more customization options and additional features. You can change the bar’s thickness, color and opacity to suit your taste. It also has built-in RP score system that uses different algorithms to determine how good a video is and gives them 0-10 rating.
Furthermore, Ratings Preview also highlights videos with the highest rating on a page, so that you can quickly skim through the list and find the best ones.
10. Smart Pause
Smart Pause is a pretty cool Chrome extension for YouTube. What it does, is it automatically pauses a YouTube video when you leave the tab and resumes the video again when you come back to the tab. So, if you always tend to miss out on videos because you have to open a different tab, Smart Pause is the perfect tool to ensure you never miss a video while also continuing to work on other things. In my experience, Smart Pause was very good at pausing the video and it paused and resumed the video instantly.
Try these cool Chrome Extensions for YouTube
These YouTube Chrome extensions should supercharge your YouTube experience. There are extensions to enhance functionality on YouTube, to make its playback experience better and also to make you productive while using the video platform. So, try them out and let us know what you think. Also, drop us a line if you know of a cool Chrome extension for YouTube that should have made this list. We love hearing from you!
Featured Image Courtesy: flickr