How can I get YouTube to accelerate playback to 2x or 3x?
August 17, 2010 11:34 AM   Subscribe

I love Khan Academy's educational videos on YouTube, but I'm impatient - How can I accelerate YouTube video playback to 2x or 3x speed?

As far as browsers are concerned, I have access to IE 8, Firefox, and Chrome. I'm running Windows XP on one box and OS X Snow Leopard on another. I'd prefer browser plug-ins or extensions to stand-alone third party software, but if there's an elegant solution out there for free, I'd love to hear about it.
posted by lizzicide to Technology (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
If YouTube has H.264 versions of the videos (what iPhones, among others, play) then using your OS X machine, QuickTime will allow you to change the speed as you desire with that downloaded file.
posted by alexandermatheson at 11:43 AM on August 17, 2010

Pardon me for posting twice, but I thought I should explain how to force H.264 playback in the first place. ClickToFlash (a wonderful plug-in for Safari in itself, which prevents Flash items from loading until you want them) will bring you the higher-quality, speed-variable format as described here. I'm not sure whether you'd need to download, or whether you can adjust the QuickTime settings from within the webpage; experimenting with that (control-click on the video) could yield the result you're looking for. Best!
posted by alexandermatheson at 11:48 AM on August 17, 2010

MySpeed is a plugin that has a 7 day trial but cost $30 to keep using. I haven't used it, but it is listed as spyware free by CNet, and it was vouched for by LifeHacker circa 2008.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:53 AM on August 17, 2010

Argh, I just added 2x playback to the HTML5 player but of course his vids are monetized so they don't work in HTML5 yet. HTML5 ad support is coming eventually. We'll probably be adding varispeed into Flash sometime soon as well, but no guarantee on that.

Also, we have h264 versions of 99% of videos so that shouldn't be an issue. (The whole "h264 instead of Flash" language makes my head hurt, that's wrong in so many ways. I think what they're concerned with is MP4 container vs FLV container).

[But for non-monetized vids, HTML5 now has 1/4, 1/2, 1x, 1.5, and 2x playback. I could add 3x trivially but still playing with the UI, and personally 2x is the limit for intelligible playback].
posted by wildcrdj at 2:35 PM on August 17, 2010

Download it as .flv and then open in Zoom Player.
posted by rxrfrx at 3:04 PM on August 17, 2010

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