Thoughts on YouTube downloader apps?

I would like to download a number of videos from YouTube (they are educational videos provided free, but I would like to be able to watch offline as needed).

SetApp has three different ones: Downiest, Elmedia Player, and Pulltube.

Has anyone tried these out? Any preferences/suggestions?

(If not I can always just try all three out since I have SetApp, but if one is generally regarded as superior, and I can save time by learning that …)


I use Downie and I have had a lot of success with it. Most of my use is for downloading teaching resources and it has worked great!


Another vote for Downie, although I haven’t used the others. Downie works great and does everything I need, so I haven’t looked elsewhere.


Thanks @bandman and @tjluoma.

I will try out Downie, then.

Downie and as a back of Softorino YouTube Converter (SYC)

I hear good things about Downie - if you’re on SetApp just try it and decide for yourself.

I purchased Softorino a couple of years ago and it’s been perfect for grabbing videos from a dozen different sites including YouTube, and optionally saving files just as MP3s (useful for listening on the go in an iOS player app).

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Add another vote for Downie, but with the added dimension that I have had two opportunities to reach out to them for technical support, and got FAST, very helpful, and very friendly responses both times. I’m very impressed.


Downie is best for downloading videos especially if you are downloading entire playlists. It automatically recognizes playlist links and asks you if you want to download entire playlist or just that video. It saves you from entering link for each individual video.

On the other hand, if you just want to download a couple of videos, just add ss or vd before “y” and hit enter and it will take you to download page of that video. For example, suppose this is the link of video you want to download

you will do


and hit enter. You will get the download page. Here you can select video resolution, format, and more. You can choose to download only the audio copy if you want to.

Pro tip for using Downie: Don’t select automatic subtitles download. Since YouTube now autogenerates subtitles, you will get the prompt to select subtitle every time you are downloading a video. That is quite irritating. Do it manually for the videos that have real subtitles if you want it.

Hope this helps!

Same as the others, Downie works wonderfully, and comes with Setapp.

I’ve used ClipGrab for years and love it. I also have downie but end up using ClipGrab exclusively for YouTube. I just like the way it works…it automatically tries to get the highest resolution file but gives you the option to change to one of the others. Also once the app is open it automatically copies the URL if you have it in the clipboard.

I may try using downie for a few days again and see if I can see why I went with ClipGrab.

I can recommend ViDL. It is a simple app that does one job very well. I use it most often with the bookmarklet. And it is free.

I’ve used the free version of MacX YouTube Downloader

I use Clip Grab for downloading YouTube.

I use youtube-dl via Homebrew. My impression is that it can do just about anything if you are willing to read through the documentation. But I’ve only ever used it to grab single videos.

I can understand why you wouldn’t want to go down this path though (e.g. can’t be bothered with the command line; don’t want to install Homebrew).

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Thanks to all!

I wound up going with Downie, since it’s part of SetApp, and it is accomplishing what I need to get done.

I use this converter. It does the job and it works just fine.

I use Videobox Pro. I have used it for years to show clips for teaching. It works great. It is able to grab and download links from most sites.

+1 for ViDL. I got it after I saw Gruber recommend it but find myself using good old youtube-dl instead.