Now that YouTube is going HD, I need more room!

What? You haven’t heard that YouTube has HD video? Well, then this post will serve two purposes. First, the news is not officially out of the bag yet, but you can watch videos on YouTube in a true HD format! That would be a 1280×720 pixel video in glorious h.264 quality. YouTube has also gone widescreen, but that is all that has been officially announced. Now, you can only watch HD video if the source was uploaded in HD, and you’ll be watching a scaled version of the movie. It will be something like 640×360 pixels.

So what do you need to do to watch the HD videos? When you’re watching videos at the YouTube site, look for text just below and to the right of the video that says “watch in high quality”. Click that link and if there is a high-def version, you’ll see it load up. It will take longer to load than the standard flash version that is the “normal quality” version.

Another way that will allow you to go directly to the HD version is to tack on “&fmt=22” to the YouTube URL, for example:

That will send you directly to the “Where the Hell is Matt” video that is served up in high-def. You can also embed these videos in your own site by using a specially modified version of the the embed code.

The normal code would look like this:

<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value=""></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

To embed the HD quality code, try this:

<object width="630" height="380"><param name="movie" value=";ap=%2526fmt%3D22&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src=";ap=%2526fmt%3D22&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="630" height="380"></embed></object>

The key is adding &ap=%2526fmt%3D22 to the end of the URL in the code.

So the low quality version looks like this (click the play button to see the video):

And the HD version looks like this (click the play button to see the video):

So now we’ll embed another example of HD video:

For the second purpose of this post, now that I’ll be embedding widescreen HD video into my blog, I’m going to need a new theme to accommodate the bigger videos. I’m using the Paalam theme by Sadish Bala, creator of the famous Misty Look theme, among others. Now to record some HD video and upload it to YouTube!

UPDATE: The second movie that I had embedded in this post was removed from YouTube so I have inserted another. It was made before YouTube made the high definition videos available, so that’s why the guy in the video says “Oh my god, YouTube is in HD! Well, not really.” Well, now, yes, really!


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