HQTube

By jaek rich Last update May 14, 2008 — Installed 21,298 times.

Script Summary: Watch YouTube with MPlayer/Xine/VLC/etc (any Mozilla plugin that can play flv and mp4). Dynamically resize the player and use the HQ/MP4 streams when available.



What does this do?

Converts the flash based EMBED tag into one that other more competent media players can play. This version allows users to dynamically resize the player via drag & drop. Also lets you use the HQ or MP4 streams when available (MP4 seems to be enabled for all videos). Besides that, there are utility links to download the video and next/prev links via the related videos list.

Why would I want to use Mplayer/Xine/VLC...?

Why would anyone want to use a separate media player like Mplayer? You thought youtube videos sucked because the limited format? Nope, the format quality isn't actually that bad, the flash player sucks tho. Flash has limited hardware access and consumes a lot of CPU power doing software scaling and still does a poor job at it. Players like mplayer/xine/vlc do such a better job at video playback youtube is a whole new experience.

Requirements

You need a video player plugin for Mozilla that can play flv and mp4 formats (Mplayer, Xine, Vlc). For Windows, it seems that VLC might be your only choice. Please leave a comment if you found another player you can use on various platforms. You also might want to prevent the flash player from loading, using Adblock or something of the sort.

Script installed. Now what?

Hover the mouse over the left, right, or the bottom edges of the video player. The cursor changes and a drag bar shows up. Drag the bars to resize the player. In addition, there are a few menu commands accessible via the greasemonkey menu. Right click on the monkey in your status bar. The menu lets you:

  • Lock the aspect ratio (the default)
  • Unlock the aspect ratio
  • Reset the size to the default.
  • Use default format (~200kpbs mono) always
  • Use MP4 format (~512kbps stereo) always
  • Use HQ FLV format (~900 kbps mono) when available, fallback to MP4

Changelog

2008/05/14
  • Added preliminary next/prev links for series's via the related videos info

Tweaking

Here are some Mplayer settings that worked best for me:

~/.mplayer/mplayerplug-in.conf
...
vo=gl
cachesize=512
cache-percent=5
profile=plugin
...
~/.mplayer/config
...
[plugin]
autosync=0
mc=0
correct-pts=yes
...

This has only been tested with mplayerplug-in on a Ubuntu 7.10 system. This script was once based on Mtube.