How to Download YouTube Audio on Mac | Best Methods To Extract Audio From YT Video

DID YOU KNOW? As of January 2024, YouTube has more than 2.7 billion active users worldwide. This means, over 51% of Internet users access the video and audio streaming platform each month. And, YouTube Shorts alone garner an average of over 70 billion daily views.

As a casual user, extracting and downloading music from YouTube Shorts has become an incredibly convenient way to enjoy your favorite songs and trending audio files offline. This way, you can easily incorporate extracted audio into your short-form content. This becomes especially valuable for content creators, influencers, or presenters looking to craft new reels or enjoy songs on the go or in areas with limited network connectivity.  

In this article, we’ve curated a list of “Easiest Ways to Download & Save YouTube Songs on MacBook.” So, without any further ado, let’s check them out!

Before proceeding, you might find this post useful: 15 Best Video Player Apps For Mac

How To Download YouTube Music On Your Mac Running macOS 12 & Above (2024 Edition)

All the below-mentioned methods can be easily followed and implemented by both amateurs & advanced computer users. Please choose any of them according to your convenience for downloading MP3s from YouTube on your Mac.

METHOD 1 – Use A Professional YouTube Audio Downloader Software

One of the most convenient and easy-to-use ways that let you download audio from YouTube and save it as MP3 or other audio file formats is through YouTube Audio Downloader. The market has a plethora of options for choosing a reliable YouTube MP3 Downloading Software. One of our recommendations for this purpose is iTubeGo, which lets you download your favorite YouTube videos in an audio file format. Besides YT, it supports 10,000+ video & music sites, including Vimeo, Dailymotion, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram, and more. You can rely on the software to download HD/4K/8K videos, songs, playlists, channels & subtitles in a couple of clicks.

Not only this, with iTubeGo YouTube Downloader, you can even convert videos to popular audio file formats like MP3, AVI, MOV, MP4, and more. The application is compatible with macOS, Windows, and Android phones. It even offers a 30-day money-back guarantee!


Read: Learn The 30+ Most Useful YouTube Keyboard Shortcuts & Tips

METHOD 2 – Take The Help Of YouTube To WAV Converter For Mac

In this workaround, we’ll suggest you convert your YouTube videos to WAV file format on Mac. Since WAV (Waveform) is one of the most popular file standard formats for digital audio, converting your YT videos in the same format will result in plenty of benefits in terms of professional, high-fidelity recording applications and more.

To mass convert YouTube to WAV on Mac, we recommend using Cisdem Video Converter for Mac. The application is packed with numerous functionalities related to downloading content from streaming sites, converting them into popular audio/video file formats, and later editing them to have ideal output. You’ll be amazed to see multiple quality options for conversions and the ability to Rip DVDs to transfer or backup movies & songs with high quality.


Step 1: Launch the application and find the download button.

Launch the application

Step 2: Copy your YouTube link and paste it on the bottom in the tool. 

Copy your YouTube link

Step 3: Now select the audio format and then click on the download option to download it on your Mac.

audio format

METHOD 3 – Use The Best Tool To Capture YouTube Sound On Your Mac (Recommended)

Another great alternative to downloading audio from YouTube on Mac is Camtasia by TechSmith, a professional utility. It enables you to record video and audio from YouTube in a few clicks. With this YouTube audio recorder, you can easily capture your favorite music videos via webcam in the highest quality possible to enjoy crisp and loud songs on your Mac/PC. It even offers a huge library of royalty-free music and sound effects to insert into your recordings.

As soon as you launch the software, make sure you toggle on the option ‘System Audio’ to effortlessly record and save audio from YouTube on Mac via microphone. Besides video/audio capturing, Camtasia offers dozens of assets to customize your videos/audio to add a professional touch. You can even import saved videos, audio files, or images from your Mac, PC, or mobile devices and add them to your captured recordings. Additionally, you can find an excellent blend of annotation tools to add callouts, arrows, shapes, and sketch motion to highlight significant parts of your video.


Must Read: Must-Have Audio Recording Software For Mac

METHOD 4 – Choose VLC Media Player To Download Audio From YouTube On Mac

If you are looking for a free way to download audio from YouTube on Mac, consider using the VLC Media Player, which also works as a solid YouTube audio ripper. The only downside with this method is that the procedure is time-consuming and comparatively complicated compared to other tips and tricks mentioned here. If you’re all set to download sound from YouTube on Mac:

STEP 1 – Launch your VLC Media Player on your MacBook and navigate the Open Network option under the File tab at the top menu.

STEP 2 – Now, you will see a VLC analysis box, where you need to copy and paste the YouTube URL you wish to download. Hit the Open button and let the media player analyze the YouTube video information.


Note: In certain countries and regions, YouTube videos might not get analyzed if you haven’t enabled a VPN service on your Mac. Hence, if you face any hiccups, try installing and activating a reliable VPN on your device and choose the country where YouTube services are natively supported. You can go through our top software recommendations for VPNs, right below:

STEP 3 – As soon as the analysis gets completed, VLC Media Player will autoplay the video. Head towards the top menu bar, click on the ‘Windows’ tab, and choose ‘Media information’ from the drop-down menu.

STEP 4 – Now opt for the full URL from ‘Location’ and copy it. Next, you need to open the copied YouTube URL in your Safari browser and right-click on the YouTube video. Hit the option ‘Save Video As’ and choose a file destination where you would like to save the YT Video.

STEP 5 – At this point, you need to utilize the VLC’s video converting feature to transform your saved video into audio. Relaunch VLC Media Player and hit the ‘Convert/Stream’ option under the Media tab from the Menu bar.

STEP 6 – Simply drag and drop the downloaded YT video to VLC and select the output format as audio like MP3.

That’s it! VLC Media Player will begin the extraction process, and you will be able to download sound from YouTube on Mac.

METHOD 5 – With An Online YouTube Video/Audio Downloader

Last but not least, using an online YouTube Video/Audio Downloader, you can easily download audio from YouTube on Mac, PC, Android, or iOS. One of the best web apps I’ve been personally using to download and save YouTube videos in MP3 file format is y2mate. Go to the YouTube video you wish to extract, save the sound, and copy its URL. Now go back and paste it onto the field shown below on the y2mate website.


As soon as you paste the link, the YouTube downloader begins analyzing the content and will show you the potential options to download it in MP4 or MP3. Since we want to download the audio from YouTube on Mac, we choose the .mp3 extension. Click the Download button to initiate the process!


METHOD 6 – Using youtube-dl with Terminal Commands

Youtube-dl is another of the tools to help you rip audio from YouTube on Mac. It is recommended to the advanced users of Mac, as it requires you to enter commands on Terminal. Also, this will only help you download the YouTube video in MP4 format in some cases and later needs to be converted into an audio file.

STEP 1 – Download youtube-dl on your Mac from the link below –

STEP 2 – Launch Terminal app on your Mac from the Launchpad 

STEP 3- Now drag the youtube-dl program file into Terminal.

STEP 4 – Next, copy paste the link of the desired YouTube video on Terminal followed by –x

STEP 5 – Now press Enter to run the command.

STEP 6 – The audio file will be downloaded in M4A.

METHOD 7 – Record YouTube Audio On Mac

If you don’t want to get into the hassle of extracting or ripping audio from YouTube videos, you can just consider recording the audio file using QuickTime Player, Apple’s built-in app to play, record, edit, and share audio and video files.

Follow the steps shared below to save YouTube audio on Mac using QuickTime Player:

STEP 1 – Navigate to YouTube and locate the video from which you want to extract the audio track.

STEP 2 – Now launch QuickTime Player and head towards the “File” tab. From the drop-down menu, simply select the “New Audio Recording” feature.

New audio

STEP 3 – From the next pop-up window, choose the Microphone type and the audio quality as per your needs and preferences.


STEP 4 – At this point, you need to play the YouTube video and come back to QuickTime Player to hit the “Record” button.

STEP 5 – Once the video is finished, click on the “Stop” button!

You can further save the recorded file and export it as YouTube audio in MP4A file format.

Our Take

This post shared 7 best methods to download, extract, rip, and download audio from YouTube on Mac. Each method has its advantages. However, if you want to make things simpler, you can consider recording audio using a microphone from the YouTube website directly using QuickTime Player. And, if you know any other workarounds that can help to download and save YT audio on MacBook, feel free to share your suggestions in the comments section below!

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Frequently Asked Questions:

1. How do I download audio from YouTube to my Mac?

There are multiple methods you can consider to download audio from YouTube on Mac. For this, you can either use a dedicated YouTube audio downloader for Mac iTubeGo, take the help of an audio recording tool like QuickTime Player, or use video to audio converter like Cisdem Video Converter for Mac to get the task done.

2. How do I rip audio from YouTube to VLC on Mac?

Follow the step-by-step process to rip audio from YouTube to VLC on MacBook:

STEP 1 – Install and launch VLC Media Player on your Mac.

STEP 2 – Navigate to the “File” tab and select “Convert/Stream” from the drop-down menu.

STEP 3 – Select the option “Open Media” and locate the video from Finder.

STEP 4 – Choose Profile > select Audio – MPR (MP4) to complete the task.

3. How do I download high-res audio from YouTube?

To download high-resolution audio from YouTube, you can try the following workarounds:

1. Use professional audio/video YouTube downloader software.

2. Take the help of an online YouTube audio downloader like Y2mate, 4K YouTube to MP3, Converto, and more.

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