Can You Save a YouTube Video as an MP3 File?

Since its inception in 2005, YouTube has become one of the biggest sites visited worldwide. You can spend all your time browsing YouTube, and you still won’t be able to watch everything – at least everything that may interest you. On average, there are 2,500 new videos uploaded to YouTube every minute, amounting to 183 hours of video content, with an average video length of 4.4 minutes.  

But as YouTube grew, we’ve also seen ads popping one after the other, and some are even unskippable. It’s an annoyance, especially if you come to YouTube only to listen to music or talk. This is why there’s an option where you can save the audio portion of the YouTube video as an MP3 file so you can listen to it later. This way, you don’t have to deal with ads and can listen to them offline.

Try YouTube Offline

If you always find yourself at places with spotty Internet connectivity or when you’re always commuting, and you love watching videos, then YouTube’s offline feature might be helpful for you. You may want to try it first before downloading a YouTube video as an MP3 file because this one’s more convenient. This allows YouTube users to continue enjoying their favorite videos on Android and iOS devices without Wi-Fi or mobile data.

The downloaded video is available for offline playback only through the YouTube app. You can download it via mobile data or Wi-Fi. However, it’s worth noting that not every video can be downloaded for offline viewing. You might come across some content that is not available to download.

YouTube unveiled an offline feature in 2014, allowing users to download videos from YouTube to their Android device for later watching when without usable network connectivity. The feature was introduced in response to the growing demand for mobile-friendly video content, especially in areas with limited or unstable internet connections.

Before the introduction of YouTube offline, users could only watch YouTube videos online and needed a stable internet connection. This made it difficult for people living in areas with limited internet access or with expensive data plans to enjoy YouTube content regularly.

With the launch of YouTube offline, users could download and save videos onto their devices and watch them offline at their convenience. This feature was initially launched in India first, then eventually in Indonesia and the Philippines – which are some of YouTube’s largest markets, where many users faced slow and unreliable internet connections.

The initial version of YouTube Offline was limited to Android devices and was available through the YouTube app. Users could download videos by tapping the download button located beneath the video player, and the downloaded videos were stored in the app’s cache.

Over time, the feature was expanded to other regions and devices, including iOS devices and desktop computers. The feature also underwent several improvements, including the ability to download videos in different resolutions and the ability to schedule downloads during off-peak hours.

Today, YouTube Offline remains a popular feature among users, allowing them to access their favorite videos offline and providing a more flexible and convenient viewing experience.

How to Download Videos to Watch Offline

You can download certain videos from the YouTube mobile app to watch offline. For some regions, these videos are available for up to 48 hours, and after that, you’ll need to reconnect the device to a Wi-Fi or mobile network. Reconnecting allows the app to check the video’s changes or availability.

To download videos to watch offline on YouTube, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Go to the Watch page of the video you want to download.
  2. Below the video, tap the “Download” icon (arrow down) or tap “More,” then click Download.
  3. Once the video is downloaded, the “Download” icon will turn into a “Downloaded” blue icon with a checkmark.

If your device loses connectivity while downloading a video or a playlist, the progress will only resume when you reconnect to the internet.

Why Save YouTube Videos as an MP3 File?

If in case you don’t want to use the YouTube app offline, or for some reason, it doesn’t load well when there’s no Internet connection, you may want to skip using the YouTube app altogether. When this is the case, you can download YouTube videos as a video or audio file.

Suppose the video you want to watch anytime doesn’t need visuals (like music, TED talks, stand-up comedy, readings, lectures, preaching, podcast uploaded on YouTube, etc.). In that case, you may consider downloading it as an MP3 file. MP3 files are smaller than video file formats like MP4, AVI, MOV, etc., so you may want to consider doing this.

Saving YouTube videos as MP3 files provide greater flexibility, portability, and convenience, especially when listening to music or audio content. Check out its several advantages, including:

Offline Listening

By saving YouTube videos as MP3 files, you can listen to them offline without the need for an internet connection. This way, you can listen to your favorite music, talk, podcast, or any video you may want to listen to that is uploaded on YouTube. If you’re going off the grid or someplace with no stable Internet connection, you can still play the file and listen.


Online video converters don’t save the ads – they only get the video’s audio content and convert it as an audio MP3 file. This way, you can freely listen without being interrupted by ads.


By saving only the audio portion of a video as an MP3 file, you can eliminate distractions and focus on the content of the video without being distracted by visual elements.


As mentioned earlier, MP3 files are much smaller in size than video files, so saving a video as an MP3 file can save you storage space on your computer or mobile device. Also, if you don’t need to watch it since the audio is sufficient for you, why download it as a video file?


MP3 files are widely supported by music players and devices, making it easy to listen to your favorite YouTube videos on the go. If you still like using your iPod or your car’s MP3 player, you may prefer saving the file there to play and listen to anywhere.

Background playback

Since you saved the video as an MP3 file, you can simply play it in the background using your device’s music player app. It helps if you want to do other stuff on your device while listening to the audio. If you want to save it on your phone, it allows you to listen to the file while your phone is locked. If you’re going to play the video on YouTube offline, the device must stay on the app with the screen unlocked.


Not all YouTube videos can be downloaded offline through the YouTube app; in this case, you may use third-party online conversion tools to download it as an MP3 file.


If you like listening to music and you’re always online, the most convenient way to listen to music is to use streaming services like Spotify. But sometimes, the music we want to listen to isn’t on Spotify, like some covers, instrumentals, podcasts, and indie music, which are more likely uploaded on YouTube. If this is the case, it’s better to download the video and convert it into an MP3 file.


MP3 files can be edited and manipulated easily, allowing you to create custom ringtones, mashups, or remixes. If you want to add your own tweak to the audio for casual, personal use, then download it as an MP3 video file first.  

How to Save YouTube Video as an MP3 File

There are several ways to save a YouTube video as an MP3 file, but the two popular methods are using online conversion tools and using a browser extension:

Using Online Conversion Tools

  1. Find the YouTube video you want to save as an MP3 file and copy its URL.
  2. Go to an online video-to-MP3 converter site. Here are some sites you may want to check out:
  • clip

Do note that some of these sites do not allow the download and conversion of some copyrighted videos on YouTube. Some of these websites may have pop-ups or advertisements, so be careful when using them. Additionally, downloading copyrighted material is illegal in many countries, so make sure you have the right to download and use the content you are converting.

  1. Paste the YouTube video URL into the converter and select “Convert” or “Start.”
  2. Wait for the conversion process to complete.
  3. Download the MP3 file to your computer or mobile device.

Using a Browser Extension

  1. Install a browser extension that allows you to download YouTube videos and convert them to MP3:
  • Video DownloadHelper
  • 4K Video Downloader
  • YouTube Video and Audio Downloader
  • Easy YouTube Video Downloader
  • helper
  • YouTube MP3 Converter
  • YouTube MP3 Downloader
  • Freemake Video Downloader
  • Addon
  • Y2mate Browser Extension

Do note that some of these extensions may have limitations or restrictions, such as only allowing you to download videos of a certain length or quality.

  1. Go to the YouTube video you want to save as an MP3 file.
  2. Click on the extension icon in your browser’s toolbar.
  3. Select “MP3” as the output format and click “Download.”
  4. Wait for the download process to complete.
  5. The MP3 file will be saved to your computer’s default downloads folder.


As the old saying goes, where there is a will, there is a way. If you don’t want to use YouTube offline, if you want to play a file on the app on your device, or if you prefer using your trusty MP3 player, then downloading a YouTube video and converting it into MP3 is a good option. This way, you can save any YouTube video as an MP3 file and enjoy it on your audio player whenever and wherever you want.