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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Watching YouTube videos at higher resolutions

Yes, it's (finally) true, and you'll probably have noticed it if you watched this.

This week I was digging into this because of an article I read on Corriere della sera. There were rumors about Google desiring to launch a higher-definition version of his video-sharing technology, probably because Google is interested in launching a platform to distribute content such as HD movies for which the YouTube platform was clearly insufficient.

Until Google won't officially launch the enhanced version of YouTube (or whatever the name will be), you can see video stored in higher resolutions using a trick: just add the fmt parameter to the URL of the video you want to see and use one of these:
  • fmt=18: with this parameter, the video resolution will be set to 480x270 pixel2 and stereo audio
  • fmt=22: with this parameter, the video resolution will be set to 1280x720, which is a pretty interesting resolution if you like watching full-screen videos
Please note that this parameter will have any effect only if Google is storing a higher definition version of the video you want to see, which will probably be true if the video is recent.

Look at the difference:

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