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By Kayla Collins - Last Updated: Contact Author

Best Video Format for YouTube - Handy Checklist for Uploaders 2020

When was the last time you tried to upload videos on YouTube and ended up receiving an error message? You might start wondering What is the best video format for YouTube?

Some of the videos often retain good detailing even being viewed in lower resolution whereas the others become too pixilated to watch. Improper video format could be a culprit behind video uploading errors. Today we are going to discuss about this issue in detail, and deal with questions like 'Does YouTube give higher preference to a particular video format?' and 'Does the entire thing depend on the video quality prior to upload?'

Part 1. Things To Consider While Uploading A Video On YouTube

To better understand video format for YouTube, a little information on codec, container, resolution, aspect ratio and frame rate would be helpful. However, if you are not interested in all these details, you can head straight to the quick and easy solution to make video suitable to YouTube.

A coder-decoder enables faster transmission by compressing data and decompressing it again at the receiving end. YouTube has recommended the following encoding settings for getting best results out of video uploads:

Audio Codec: AAC-LC
1. Channels: Stereo + 5.1 or Stereo
2. Sample rate 48khz or 96khz

Video Codec: H.264
1. Progressive scan without interlacing
2. 2 consecutive B frames
3. High Profile
5. Closed GOP. GOP of ½ frame rate.
6. Chroma subsampling: 4:2:0
7. Variable bitrate with no requirement for bitrate limit.

Resolution & Aspect ratio
YouTube supports standard aspect ratio of 16:9 on desktop. But if you proceed with other aspect ratios such as square or vertical, then there will be black bars surrounding your video. To avoid black bars, 16:9 is the safe way to go. You can choose these resolutions that have an aspect ratio of 16:9.










Maximum resolution for YouTube video uploads in HD



Minimum resolution for YouTube video uploads in HD



Standard Definition



Traditional Website Resolution



Minimum YouTube Video Size



Frame rate
For getting best results from YouTube video uploads, you need to encode and upload in the similar frame rate as it was recorded. Some of the most common frame rates are 24, 25, 30, 48, 50 and 60fps. However, you can also proceed with other frame rates of your choice. Users also need to make sure to deinterlace videos prior to uploading. A 1080i60 content for example needs to be deinterlaced to 1080p30, i.e. use a capable video frame rate converter to transcode 60 interlaced fields per second material to 30 progressive frames per second.

Part 2. Best Video Format for YouTube FAQ

What Are The Supported YouTube Video Formats?

At present, MP4 having AAC audio codec and H.264 video codec is the most recommended settings according to YouTube support. H.265 HEVC is also supported by YouTube and gains momentum now. An MP4 file can help you deliver a high-quality video without going overboard with the file size for fast streaming.

Plus, YouTube is experimenting with the royalty free codec AV1, which would improve video efficiency by 30% or more than HEVC once implemented.

What Is The Recommend Resolution to Upload Videos to YouTube?

Considering both the factors of high quality and fast streaming, 1080p or 1920x1080 is recommended for a standard YouTube video, you can also upload 4k and even 8k if high resolution outweighs streaming speed in certain cases. You can also proceed with other resolutions depending on your specific requirements.

Can I Upload Video Longer than 15 Minutes?

By default, YouTube supports videos having a length of 15 minutes. You can however upload longer content after verifying your YouTube account. This is done by linking your phone number by logging on to https://www.youtube.com/verify and performing all the mentioned steps.

What is the Maximum Upload Size?

It is either 128GB or 12 hours, whichever is less. For videos exceeding maximum upload size, you can compress videos or trim out some parts for successful uploading.

Part 3. Make The Most Out Of YouTube Video Uploads With VideoProc

Aspiring YouTubers can be seen recording 4K footages for their channels using HD cameras, action cameras or their smartphone. Such high-definition video can increase your file size beyond the permissible limit of 128GB and herein lies the importance of a video editor for compressing the files without succumbing to any quality loss.

VideoProc is a powerful video-editing software which can help you convert recorded videos to an array of other formats which are supported by your device. The best thing about VideoProc is its simple interface which can cater to even novice users who are trying out video editing for the very first time.

How to Convert Video to Best Format for YouTube 1080p/4K via VideoProc

Step 1. First you need to choose the video or multiple videos by clicking on the +Video button.

VideoProc Video header toolbar

Step 2. Choose the desired format at the bottom of the interface.

VideoProc Video footer toolbar

Step 3 (optional). Set a new destination folder by clicking on Browse.

You can now initiate transcoding by hitting the RUN button.

How to Resize Video for YouTube

• Load your video, click option and change to desired resolution.
• Click cut on the horizontal bar to trim and cut off part you don't need, thus reducing video file size.
• Choose different codec and convert video into more efficient format.

Resize Video

How to Change Aspect Ratio To 16:9 Using VideoProc

Step 1. Within Video screen, drag your file and click options (gear icon).

Step 2. Select 16:9 from the drop-down list and ultimately click Done.

Tips: You can enable fast conversion speed by toggling the Hardware Acceleration.

Enable Hardware Acceleration

Step 3. Click Run to initiate the process.

Free download VideoProc to convert video for better YouTube uploading and streaming.

Final Words

What is the best format for uploading videos to YouTube depending on how you define "best". If the criteria are having the smallest amount of data uploaded while maintaining video quality to some extent, then H.264 video with AAC audio could be the best choice. If for instance you have 360 degree 8k video at hand, you would want to upload it as HEVC. We hope you find answers in this article regarding best file format for YouTube (1080P or other resolution). Let's get started to make the most out of VideoProc and convert your videos to YouTube compatible formats without breaking any sweat.


Kayla Collins

Kayla Collins, a senior member of Digiarty software for 5 years, knows a thing or two about digital devices & video processing software like GoPro, DSLR camera, Drone, iPhone iPad, iMac, iMovie, etc. and is glad to share her knowledge to help people out of trouble. She's also deeply passionate about yoga, jogging, roller-skating, handcraft, reading, music, movie and more.

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