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Streaming video is great, but sometimes it’s more than you need – or more than you can drive if you’re far from an internet connection. If you enjoy listening to podcasts, lectures, or other sounds while driving, working, or practicing, you should be able to enjoy the vast amount of content published online every day.
In this article, we show you how easy it is to only download the audio file of any streaming video and save it to your hard drive for offline listening.
Option 1: Audio from YouTube videos
If the feed you want to capture is on YouTube (and let’s be honest: most of it will be), you can save time and use a tool specifically designed for this platform. There are a number of apps that will do anything you want, but a good choice is Peggo.co, a web application that makes it easy to record a YouTube video.
Extract audio from streaming video using Peggo.co.
The interface on Peggo.co is as simple as you can expect. There is nothing but a large address bar where you can copy the URL of the YouTube video you want to capture and press Enter. You will now see an integrated view of the video with a few simple controls:
- From and To: Drag the sliders if you do not want to record the entire video.
- Title and Artist: Use these two input boxes to choose a file name for your download, as well as to set the artist’s metadata, which is very useful for any software such as organized multimedia files.
- Delete silence: This parameter suppresses silence at the beginning or end of the video. Many YouTube videos have a home screen at the beginning or end that does not fit well into an audio file only, so it’s worth checking out.
- Normalize: Maintains the video volume in a uniform range, so that it does not seem out of place with other audio files.
And this is the click on the Record MP3 button to record the audio stream on your disc. Incidentally, if you want to record a video, you can do it from the same Peggo.co interface. Just click on one of the video links just below the video window.
Note: I struggled to get Peggo.co to properly download the files in Chrome until I temporarily disabled them. This solved the problem and I had no problem with Internet Explorer or Firefox.
Option Two: The sound of something else
If you want to use audio from a source other than YouTube, your options are a bit more limited. I have not found a good audio downloader for non-YouTube videos (if you share in comments), but there are more general FLV extractor extensions that are installed in your browser and easily save the video in streaming on your disk. If you’re using Chrome, a good option is Video Downloader. And if you use Firefox, try Download Helper.
Use VLC to extract the audio track from a streaming video that you have downloaded to your PC.
Once you have saved the video file to your machine, you can use any number of programs to record the audio track. For reference, here’s how you would with the popular VLC player:
- Open VLC
- Click Media -> Convert / Save
- In the next menu, click the Add button next to the File Selection field and become your downloaded FLV file. Click Ok.
- Then click Browse next to the destination box and select a location and file name for your finished audio file.
- Click on the selected Profile drop-down menu and select “Audio – MP3”
- Click Start
VLC opens a new read window, in which the progress bar indicates the length of the transcode. Once finished, you will find your finished MP3 on your hard drive, where you even told VLC to record it.