Here's a summary of the audio and video specifications you need for the best results on YouTube. For further details, please read the information listed directly below this summary.
Video Resolution Recommended: Original resolution of your video - for HD it is 1920x1080 (1080p) or 1280 x 720.
Bit rate Because bit-rate is highly dependent on codec there is no recommended or minimum value. Videos should be optimized for resolution, aspect ratio and frame rate rather than bit rate. Frame rate The frame rate of the original video should be maintained without re-sampling. In particular pulldown and other frame rate re-sampling techniques are strongly discouraged. Codec H.264 or MPEG-2 preferred. Preferred containers FLV, MPEG-2, and MPEG-4 Audio Codec MP3 or AAC preferred Preferred containers FLV, MPEG-2, and MPEG-4 Sampling rate 44.1kHz Channels 2 (stereo)
YouTube recently began offering users an option to view content in high definition- 1080p resolution (when the source upload supports it). Please note
, we are currently experimenting with this feature and optimizing it accordingly, so we can't guarantee that your videos will always be transcoded into this format with this user option present.
For an example of a video being streamed in 1080p resolution, please click this link
and then click on the text toggle "watch in HD" located beneath the right hand corner of the player.
For best results, ensure your video and audio lengths are the same. If you're using an editing package, make sure that the file you upload to YouTube does not have edit lists. Take a look at this Help Center article
to learn more.
How to best upload widescreen videos
- Originals Please!
The less a video is re-encoded prior to uploading, the better the resulting YouTube video quality. We encourage you to upload your videos as close to the original source format as possible, with a minimum of intermediate re-encoding steps. Each re-encoding can generally degrade the quality of your video and create some specific problems too, which we'll address below.
- Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio of the original source video should always be maintained when it's uploaded: Uploaded videos should never include letterboxing or pillarboxing bars.
The YouTube player automatically adds black bars so that videos are displayed correctly without cropping or stretching, whatever the size of the video or the player. For example, the player will automatically add vertical bars (pillarboxing) to 4:3 videos in the new 16:9 widescreen player size. If the player is re-sized (when embedded on another website for example) the same process takes place, so that 16:9 videos are letterboxed (black bars top and bottom) when the player is sized to 4:3, for example. Similarly, anamorphic videos will be automatically letterboxed when shown in either 16:9 or 4:3 sized players. The player can only do this if the native aspect ratio of the video is maintained.
If letterboxing is added to a video before it is uploaded (to create a 4:3 video from a 16:9 master for example), the widescreen player will add pillarbox bars too, resulting in black bars all around the video (windowboxing) and a bad viewing experience (see the diagram below).