Do you like the animations of Cyriak

Easily convert YouTube video to GIF animation online

There are often times when you want you to be able to turn a video into a GIF file. Maybe you want to run a short clip around the office without firing anyone who's been watching YouTube. You might want to create a great icon for an avatar. Or maybe you want to create the perfect GIF for your Tumblr. There are many reasons to try it, but most people just don't realize how easy it is.

There are many free tools you can use online to convert a YouTube clip to GIF animation. It is really very easy to do and you will be making many of your own clips in no time.

1. Download the YouTube clip

There are many ways to download YouTube clips. Here at MakeUseOf, we've posted over and over again about our favorites including MiniTube MiniTube - A Whole New Way to Watch YouTube [Mac & Linux] MiniTube - A Whole New Way to Watch YouTube [Mac & Linux] Read More, DownThemAll, and BYTubeD How to download all videos from a YouTube playlist How to download all videos from a YouTube playlist Want to watch YouTube videos offline? We introduce you to five apps and tools with which you can download a complete YouTube playlist with just a few clicks. Read More, KeepVid Capture Streaming Video From Any Website With These 5 Tools Capture Streaming Video From Any Website With These 5 Tools Much of today's internet traffic consists of streamed video. However, streaming video can be expensive with data caps. The solution is to capture streaming video and download it to your computer. Read on, Kiss YouTube and V Downloader How to Download a YouTube Video on Windows Media Player How to Download a YouTube Video on Windows Media Player Read on. You can even jump straight to step two and use Zamzar to take both steps if you like.

My current favorite YouTube downloader is Easy YouTube Video Downloader for Firefox (also known as Best Video Downloader), so I'm going to talk you through the whole process with this extension.

The clip I'm grabbing is from Cyriak, called Cows & Cows & Cows. We get the video in FLV format as it can be easily converted to a GIF. The YouTube Downloader really does it for you. If you don't like this extension or don't use Firefox, just try one of the many other options mentioned above. They are all equally easy to use.

2. Convert the FLV movie file to a GIF animation

This is another easy process that can be done using free online tools. The easiest online tools for the job are Zamzar and GifNinja.

Both Zamzar and GifNinja allow you to upload your FLV movie file and convert it through their web interface. There is no need to download any program. Just tell him which file to convert and tell Zamzar what format to convert to and what email address to send the download link to.

In fact, you can even use Zamzar to get the video straight from YouTube by just plugging in the url. This saves you from downloading and uploading the file, but since many people have good reasons to choose their favorite downloader, like quality, want to download entire playlists at once, or want to keep a copy to themselves, this step is gone.

Now just wait and GifNinja or Zamzar will create your GIF animation. Zamzar will send you the link to your GIF download, which usually only takes a few minutes.

More about video conversion

We love converting videos here at MakeUseOf, so a lot has been written on the subject. Here are some other ideas you might want to try to convert to other formats.

  • Say Goodbye To Flash Video Blues With SWF & FLV Toolbox [Giveaway] Say Goodbye To Flash Video Blues With SWF & FLV Toolbox [Giveaway] Say Goodbye To Flash Video Blues With SWF & FLV Toolbox [Giveaway] Read More
  • Converting a Movie to an Animated GIF Using Windows Movie Maker Converting a Movie to an Animated GIF Converting a Movie to an Animated GIF Read More
  • How To Make An Animated GIF With GIMP How To Make An Animated GIF With GIMP How To Make An Animated GIF With GIMP Read more
  • How To Make Animated Gifs From Images And Videos With GifNinja How To Make Animated Gifs From Images And Videos How To Make Animated Gifs From Images And Videos Read More

Tomorrow Dave will show you how to make GIFs with an iPhone app.

What do you use GIF animation for? What do you usually convert and why?