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YouTube Center – free browser plugin gives you YouTube the way YOU want it [Freeware]

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We all love YouTube, silly little girl that it is. But I don’t know about you, there are times when I wish it would be a little more obedient and let me set things up just the way I like. It’s boring having to reset image quality, size and layout each time I access a video on there. And I would also love it if it buffered properly like it used to.

Well wa-hay, here we go. YouTube Center is a free browser plugin that gives me the ultimate control over how my YouTube experience rolls. There’s a huge list of functions that the plugin brings to the party, but among the most important are the ability to download videos (in various resolutions), setting a default size which is much more flexible than the standard YouTube offerings, setting my buffering preference (great if you have a lousy connection at home), cinema mode with the lights out and much much more.

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There’s also some really cool hover effects, which include an animated thumbnail so you can preview any video without clicking through, plus a highlight which shows the max resolution of the video, as well as the number of likes and dislikes. It’s really cool stuff because it means you can quickly scan through a large number of videos looking for the best quality etc without having to laboriously click through.

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The app lets you repeat a video, prevent auto playback, hide the progress and control bar and even set the theme of the player…basically the amount of options is manic. You access everything from the YouTube Center Settings page which you’ll find under the ‘gear’ icon, which is top right on the YouTube page.

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It’s clean and very easy to understand, although the sheer number of options can be more than daunting when you first fire it up. But basically the story is, if you’ve ever wanted to tweak YouTube to give exactly the look, feel and operation you want, then this is the tool for you. No question.

The app is available for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, Maxthon and even Internet Explorer, and you can get it in a vanilla userscript version for anything else. Highly awesome software. More here.

Nigel is the managing editor of the Red Ferret, as well as a freelance columnist for the Sunday Times newspaper in London. Loves tech and fancies himself as a bit of a futurist, but then don’t we all?

Nigel – who has written posts on The Red Ferret Journal.


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