video

Downloading Channels and Playlists with 4K Video Downloader

Downloading videos off YouTube is no major undertaking. There are more apps and plugins to grab videos than you can shake a stick at. However, things get a little more tricky when you want to download all the videos from a channel or in a playlist.

My favorite tool for downloading videos is Freemake Video Downloader, but over the past few months and releases some of the features have fallen to the wayside, specifically it’s ability to download playlists. It used to have this feature, but it either no longer works or has been completely removed. Either way, feeding it a playlist URL won’t give you what you want.

Strangely, getting an app to pull in a playlist is turning out to be more challenging that I thought. Most apps in fact can’t do it. They either see the URL as bad or will only grab the first item on the list and stop. Even the download managers don’t know what to do with it and see it as an HTML file. That’s no good. How am I to download the 180+ items in the 80s Playlist?

All is not lost. I began to experiment with 4K Video Downloader and it really shines when it comes to playlists. In fact, if you’re not downloading lists or channels, it’s probably not an app you need. You can use Freemake Video Downloader, which still grabs videos with ease and can convert them to MP3 if needed.

But, the goal was to grab several large playlists. One was for music videos which I wanted to convert to MP3 files and the other was a list of car videos from Jay Leno’s Garage. And since we are getting to that season, there were some Vincent Price videos I wanted as well. Yes, clearly I could copy and paste each link and get everything I wanted, and that works fine for about 10 items or so, but for big lists or big channels, that’s just not going to work for me. Call me lazy if you like, but I prefer the word efficient.

Enter 4K Video Downloader which accepts the playlist URL and parses out all the pieces to give you a complete list of items it will download. You can choose to grab everything or remove particular items. Once you get started it will go down the list and save every file for you.

If it’s a music list you’re going after, change the option to Extract rather than Download and choose the audio quality. The files are then saved in MP3 format so they can be played as music.

Now, depending on your Internet speed and speed of your processor, this may take some time. But, on my home machine with a 10MB connection and 8-cores, it grabbed so much data out of that 180+ item list that the app actually appeared locked for a minute. However, under the hood all was well and it was processing like a fiend! It was grabbing as many files as it could get it’s digital hands on and new filenames blasted onto the drive. After that initial burst, things leveled out and I got a steady stream of downloads and files being written. The whole process only took a couple of minutes and when all was said and done I had 1.5GB of new files. Wow, that was pretty awesome.

The process was basically the same for video files. The playlist was parsed and presented and when I released the hounds, 4K Downloader grabbed as much data as it could manage. It then settled into using 3 threads (user configured) and in short order had all the movies downloaded. Again, I had a dozens of files in just a few minutes. For comparison, I tried it on my laptop and while the process was noticeably slower, it still worked just fine. Give it a few minutes and you’ll get there.

In the free version you can download single files as often as you like and you can download up to 25 files in a playlist, which is pretty reasonable actually. But if you really want to saturate your network and spew files all over your drive, not to mention support the development of 4K Downloader, it’ll cost you $9.95 to upgrade to the full Lifetime License which can be used on 3 separate machines. And that’s the way it should be – low price and a multi-system license.

If you look around you can find a couple of coupon codes that will drop the price to $7.96. That is a pretty reasonable price for downloading huge amounts of files from YouTube. I didn’t try it out, but it also works with Vimeo, DailyMotion, Metacafe and a couple of others.

I’ve already found 4K Downloader to be pretty darn useful. I’m not sure how many more actual playlists are out there waiting for me, but I think I’m pretty prepared.

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A list of videos available to download. Some of the videos were no longer available which is why you see 162 of 193. But multiple video formats are available and 4K Downloader can grab 1080p videos as a single file rather than a separate video and audio track.

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The Extract Audio option. Keep in mind, if the audio source was crap to begin with, a 320k version will just be a higher quality version of crap.

4K Video Downloader

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A closer look at Besiege! Plus video!

So I’ve had Besiege for a few days and it is absolutely awesome! It may be Early Access, but it works so well and already has so much to offer and so many things to play around with! Not only is this one of the best sub $10 games I’ve ever bought, it is well on it’s way to becoming one of my favorite games of all time. I can’t wait for the rest of the content to be added to see what these guys come up with. But even with the single "world" there are dozens of challenges to complete not to mention the sandbox. Just because you finish a level doesn’t mean you can’t go back and build an even bigger, better machine that handles the tasks better or faster. I’m telling you, there is almost endless fun in mowing down foot soldiers and archers.

For example, just because you knock down a tower or wall with a catapult, doesn’t mean you won’t feel compelled to go back and try again with different weapons or even a different machine. Perhaps an air strike against that tower is in order on the second run. Perhaps a "helicopter" that rains down bombs from above would be a better way to destroy it. It’s quickly becoming "the sky’s the limit" with this game.

Besiege has three main ways of playing. You can be presented with a simple challenge of defeating all the infantry or dispatching all the sheep on a level. Second, you may be asked to perform a simple task like move wood or iron from one spot to another. Third, the goal can be to destroy a house, tower, wall or other structure.

How you accomplish these tasks is entirely up to you. There is no predetermined way to win. Complete the goal by any means necessary. If you want to run all the soldiers over, that’s perfectly fine. If you want to go at them with spikes and spinning blades, that’s fine to. Think flamer throwers will finish off the job, get to it!

You are presented with a fantastic interface that seems to take a lot of cues from the excellent interface you see in Banished. From there you pick the building blocks of your creation. You get wooden blocks, braces, wheels, hinges, springs, grabbers, couplers, pistons, cogs, wings and propellers. And trust me, you can build damn near anything from just that list. Once built, it’s time to load it down with weapons which includes bombs, fireballs, spikes, blades, circular saws, cannons and boulders. Just like Minecraft, it’s an endless Lego set of destruction.

For an Early Access game and one that shows the revision as 0.002, this game is amazing! It works so well and plays so smoothly. And just because there is "limited content" doesn’t mean you’re actually limited in what you can make. The building mechanics are excellent so you can build just about anything you can dream up. As it stands right now, there are hours and hours worth of entertainment to be had with this game. Even when you get something right, you just feel compelled to keep trying and making new things. And even when things go wrong, the results are usually so amazingly funny or unexpected that you can’t help but laugh and still have a great time learning from your mistakes. This game is a pure joy to play.

The graphics are well done and amusing. The detail of the machine is very good. For the most part the physics work as expected. There are a couple of amusing quirks here and there, but considering this is alpha, it’s incredibly solid.

If you don’t have a copy, you really should jump over to Steam and pick it up. If you have a Mac or Linux machine, head over to the main site and pick up a copy for your OS.

Like so many other great games, it takes only a couple minutes to learn, but years to master.

Besiege on Steam
Besiege from the official site


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Time to Upgrade to Audials One 12 Just $19

image The new version of Audials One has been out for awhile, but I haven’t jumped to the upgrade yet mostly because I’ve been waiting for a sale. The $39 upgrade price that the Audials site offers isn’t bad, certainly better than the $80 for a new copy, but that’s still a bit steep for me. Well, the waiting is over. Avanquest has come out with an offer to upgrade to Audials One 12 for a mere $19. You can’t for a lot more than that can you?

In case you were wondering, Audials One is a pretty impressive Swiss Army Knife when it comes to digital media. It’s a combination of Audials MovieBox, TuneBite and RadioTracker. But it does more than just play music, videos and tune into radio stations. You can just as easily record music from sites like Pandora and Grooveshark, download videos from YouTube and extract the audio track as an MP3 and you can capture video from sites like Hulu, Netflix, Amazon and others. In fact, I have recorded the Tour de France for the last 3 years using Audials. That’s 21 stages with each stage running from 4-9 hours. Yeah, each one of those files is a whopper in size! But Audials captured them all.

Audials One also makes a nice media manager. You can easily type in the name of a song, the band, or the album and your library will be searched for matches. You don’t need to drill down through your folders to find it. The same is true for movies and video clips. If you have your video files tagged correctly (which Audials can help with) then you can easily find all the movies with Ryan Reynolds, or all the episodes from Criminal Minds Season 9. Can’t remember where you put a movie because your folder structure is a mess like mine? Audials builds a database so you can search through and find what you’re looking for.

As a comparison, it’s somewhat similar to MediaMonkey, except there is a heavier focus on video and of course capturing content from the Internet. It’s a great program and this is a sweet price. $20 for all that power? You can’t beat that.

Get Audials One 12 from Avanquest for $19

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Some More Laps of Assetto Corsa in the Fiat 500

Since there was an update to Assetto Corsa I decided to take it for another spin around the track to see how I faired. This time I jumped behind the wheel of the Fiat 500 Arbath Edition and did my best to keep up with the pack and not send myself sailing off into the ditch. It didn’t all go according to plan. I still have some serious issues with cornering and braking. I can’t seem to get around the turns correctly and the amount of tire squeal is just about deafening. Even the Fiat, with it’s light weight and what I assume is pretty good handling, has no grip in the corners. It slides like it’s on the ice and I have to damn near come to a complete stop in order to make the turn. This just doesn’t seem right to me. Am  doing something wrong here? I’m just not used to being so delicated with a car in the turns. I don’t see this in Grid, F1, The Run, or Next Car Game. Is this just something unique to Assetto Corsa or do the other games just take too many liberties?

Still, the game looks great and the catalog of cars is pretty impressive. If this is the way it drives then I’ll just have to get used to it. I really like the progession of this game. When it first came out and I all but ignored it, there was a single car on a single track. Now we have plenty of cars in the stable from the Fiat 500 to the Pagani Zonda and lots of courses to snake our way around. This is going to be one badass game when it’s done. I love Early Access!!!

Brother can ya spare a clue?


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Time for a Lap in Next Car Game – Sandpit Showdown

Bugbear Entertainment has just released a new update for Next Car Game titled – Sandpit Showdown. There was a very nice sale over the Easter weekend so I hope you got a chance to buy a copy. For this latest update we have two new areas, the Sandpit Demolition Derby Arena and the Sandpit Race Course. I’m not very good at Demolition Derby yet so I clearly more time behind the wheel in that event. But the course is nice and open with dozens of cars slamming into each other with total disregard for safety.

Next we have the Sandpit Track with is quite a bit longer and more technical than the other tracks we’ve raced so far. There are some severe turns that not only lead to flying off the track, but also slamming into the  many dirt mounds that line this new course. Not only do we have some heavy duty concrete barriers, but construction equipment lining the track. As you’ll see in the video below you have to serpentine between the two of them and then set up for the hard right turn at the top of the blind hill. I miscalculated that damn turn just about every time and paid dearly for it. The course became littered with smoldering cars that took that turn too wide or took the time out of their busy schedule to smash every billboard in the game.

It’s a wicked track! I dialed it up to 10 laps just to see if I could make it that far. I’m lucky to have survived that long. It’s a brutal course and I made dozens of mistakes. But it was damn fun!

I’ve seen a lot of people complaining about Next Car Game and that the price is too high for an Early Access game and one without multiplayer.

Really? $20 is too high for a racing game? Compare that to Need for Speed Rivals that debuted at $50 or Nascar 14 at $40 or Assetto Corsa at $40 or MotoGP 13 at $40 or F1 2013 at $50. $20 is half the price so saying it’s too high is just a weak excuse. Just because it’s Early Access doesn’t mean you should get it for $5. Come on now.

And as for multiplayer, that just another weak excuse. I’m not a huge fan of multiplayer or at least it’s not the determining factor when I buy a game. Sure, I think Next Car Game will be an awesome multiplayer game where you can sneak up behind your friends and spin them out into the wall or flat our nail them in the side in the Demolition Derby, but to me, that’s icing on the cake. The last multiplayer games I played were Diablo and Diablo II and that was with guys from work. It was great fun, but I spent dozens if not hundreds of hours just playing the game on my own. Multiplayer really adds to a great game, but to be honest, I’m sick of jumping into those sorts of games only to hear some foul-mouthed 10 year who stole daddy’s computer. People said the same thing about Call of Juarez Gunslinger and that game was hilarious.

Get passed this multiplayer fixation and just have fun with a game why don’t ya?


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