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How to Go Frame by Frame on YouTube, Step by Step with Photos

Hi there! Have you ever wanted to really inspect the details of a YouTube video? Well, going frame-by-frame is an easy way to do it.

In this guide, I‘ll walk you step-by-step through multiple methods to advance YouTube videos frame-by-frame. We‘ll look at how to use just keyboard shortcuts, browser extensions, and even external sites.

I‘ll compare the pros and cons of each approach in-depth, so you can decide which option works best for your needs. You‘ll also get plenty of tips to use frame-by-frame effectively in your video workflow.

Let‘s get started!

Why Would You Want to Go Frame-by-Frame on YouTube?

Here are some of the main reasons you might want to go through a YouTube video frame-by-frame:

Video analysis – Sports coaches study footage of athletes frame-by-frame to analyze technique and form. They can identify subtle areas for improvement. Advancing slowly also helps assess injuries and joint movements.

According to a [2021 survey](https://www., over 87% of sports coaches use video analysis to improve player performance. The ability to go frame-by-frame allows much more detailed inspection.

Drawing/animation – Animators and artists can learn new techniques by going through animated videos frame-by-frame to see each drawing. It‘s like getting a personal lesson from the original artist!

For example, Jazza, one of YouTube‘s most popular animators with over 5 million subscribers, offers frame-by-frame drawing tutorials for aspiring artists.

Editing – Video editors and cinematographers rely on going frame-by-frame when inspecting footage to find ideal edit points. It‘s much easier to locate the perfect cut when you can toggle between frames.

According to TechSmith, over 75% of video editors use frame-by-frame analysis for precise editing. Frame-by-frame controls in editing software like Premiere Pro are considered essential.

Tutorials – When trying to learn complex workflows from demonstration videos, being able to go through them slowly frame-by-frame ensures you can fully understand and replicate every action shown.

Viewing Photoshop or video editing tutorials frame-by-frame on YouTube lets you master techniques at your own pace.

Inspection – With time-lapse videos, nature documentaries, and similar footage, going through frame-by-frame lets you catch interesting moments and details you would otherwise miss at full playback speed.

For example, NASA went frame-by-frame through footage of re-entering space capsules to analyze the physics of hypersonic travel.

Timing – When adding subtitles, sound effects, and voice overs, the ability to go frame-by-frame enables editors to dial in timing with frame-perfect accuracy.

According to, 75% of video editors use frame-by-frame control when syncing audio voiceovers to footage. Jumping between frames helps nail the timing.

As you can see, inspecting video frame-by-frame opens up a whole world of useful analysis possibilities!

Why Use YouTube Specifically?

YouTube has unique advantages when it comes to frame-by-frame video analysis:

  • Massive library – Over 30 million videos uploaded daily means endless examples and tutorials to study. No need to source and download separate video files yourself.

  • Playback tools – Features like speed control, looping, and automatic captions further aid close inspection on YouTube.

  • Recommendations – Easily find alternate examples, angles, and tutorials via YouTube‘s suggested videos.

  • Sharing – Bookmark and share specific timestamps on videos to show important moments.

  • Quality – YouTube retains original fidelity, avoiding generational loss from downloading and re-encoding.

Now let‘s explore the various methods available for going through YouTube videos frame-by-frame.

Method 1: Keyboard Shortcuts

The simplest way to go frame-by-frame on YouTube is by using their built-in keyboard shortcuts. Every browser has the same shortcuts to control playback:

  • . (Period) – Advance video 1 frame forward
  • , (Comma) – Go back 1 frame

The steps are:

Step 1: Open YouTube

Start by opening any desktop browser and going to You‘ll need to use the desktop site if on mobile. Sign in if you want access to your full video history and playlists.

Step 2: Find Your Video

Search for your chosen video, or find it through your subscriptions, recommendations, or by browsing your Watch History. Select the video you want to inspect.

Step 3: Pause and Use Shortcuts

Pause the video on the frame you want to start from. Now you can tap the period key to advance forward, or comma to go back one frame at a time. Repeat as needed.

Here‘s a quick demo:

{{< youtube id="5JzvhKQ_318" title="YouTube Keyboard Shortcuts Example" >}}

The main benefits of the keyboard shortcut method are:

  • Simple – No extra software or configuration needed, just use your keyboard.
  • Precise – You have full 1-frame control in either direction. Easy to compare details between frames.
  • Native integration – Works directly with YouTube‘s built-in player for seamless control.

The limitations are:

  • Basic features – No advanced options like variable speed or zooming.
  • Time-consuming – Moving longer distances means repeated key presses. Easy to lose your place.
  • Hard to navigate – No indication of current frame number, difficult to jump to a specific frame accurately.

But for quick one-off inspections, just using the YouTube keyboard shortcuts gives you easy frame-by-frame control.

Next let‘s enhance the experience using browser extensions.

Method 2: Browser Extensions

By installing an extension, you can get smoother navigation and more options when advancing YouTube videos frame-by-frame.

These extensions work right inside your web browser by modifying the YouTube player. Popular options include:

Let‘s install Frame by Frame on Chrome as an example:

Step 1: Open Chrome Web Store

Visit the Chrome Web Store and search for extensions to add.

Step 2: Search "Frame by Frame"

Enter "Frame by Frame" in the search box to find relevant extensions.

Step 3: Select the Extension

Click the Frame by Frame for YouTubeTM result to open its details page.

Step 4: Add Extension

Click Add to Chrome and then Add extension to install it.

This will add the Frame by Frame extension icon to your browser toolbar.

Step 5: Open Your Video

Now open the YouTube video you want to step through frame-by-frame. Pause it on your desired starting frame.

Step 6: Activate Extension

Click the Frame by Frame toolbar icon, then enable Frame by Frame mode on this tab.

Step 7: Use Frame Controls

You can now use the back/forward arrows in the Frame by Frame overlay to advance one frame at a time.

The key benefits of using a browser extension are:

  • Displays current frame number for easier navigation.
  • Lets you manually enter any frame to jump to.
  • Variable speed slider to adjust frame rate on the fly.
  • No need to re-enable for each video viewing session.

Potential downsides:

  • Need to install and configure the extension first.
  • Can‘t use other YouTube player functionality like speed control while enabled.
  • Extra icon clutter in your toolbar.

But overall, a dedicated extension gives you a fuller frame-by-frame experience directly on YouTube.

Method 3: Online Frame-By-Frame Viewers

The third option is using external websites that allow stepping through YouTube videos frame-by-frame in their own custom players.

To use these sites, you enter the YouTube video URL. The site then loads the video into its frame-by-frame enabled video player for smooth control.

Some top options include:

Let‘s try out

Step 1: Copy Video URL

Start by locating the YouTube video you want to view frame-by-frame. Copy its URL from the address bar.

Step 2: Visit

Go to in your desktop or mobile browser.

Step 3: Paste URL

Paste your YouTube video‘s URL into the search box. Hit WATCH VIDEO to load it.

Step 4: Use Frame Controls

You can now use the site‘s frame-by-frame playback controls, like arrow buttons or slider.

Advantages of online viewers include:

  • Dedicated design focused purely on frame-by-frame playback.
  • Support videos from other sites too like Vimeo and more.
  • Mobile-friendly responsive layout.

Potential limitations:

  • Need to copy/paste URL for each new video.
  • Can‘t use regular YouTube tools like speed control.
  • Some sites have intrusive ads on free versions.

But they provide smooth frame-by-frame viewing in a clean interface.

Choosing the Best Frame-By-Frame Method for You

Now that you know several ways to go through YouTube videos frame-by-frame, how do you decide which is best for your needs?

Here are some tips:

  • For quick one-off inspection, use YouTube keyboard shortcuts. No setup needed.

  • If you want variable speed and easier navigation, get a dedicated browser extension like Frame by Frame.

  • For a streamlined mobile experience, try an online frame-by-frame viewer like

  • For intensive editing and processing, download the video and use frame controls in video editing apps.

  • For precision slow motion between apps, use screen recording software.

Think about your frequency of use, type of analysis, and environment. Many users find combining YouTube keyboard shortcuts plus extensions or standalone tools works well. Test different approaches to see which you prefer!

Tips for Effective Frame-By-Frame YouTube Analysis

Here are some pro tips to help make the most of frame-by-frame YouTube analysis:

  • Use maximum zoom to catch tiny details – YouTube allows up to 8X digital magnification.

  • Slow playback speed if advancing too quickly. Some tools let you fine-tune frame rate.

  • Watch sections at normal speed first to understand overall action and context.

  • Toggle annotations off to reduce distractions while inspecting frames.

  • Adjust video contrast to reveal hidden details in shadows and highlights.

  • Video editor frame inspection tools often catch subtleties you can miss frame-stepping.

  • Export interesting frames as images for closer examination offline.

  • Take notes on discoveries so you don‘t lose context when jumping between frames.

Frame-by-frame analysis does require patience. But it enables you to mine incredible insight from complex videos.

More YouTube Playback Tips

Going frame-by-frame is just one of many YouTube playback features. Be sure to also learn:

Playback Speed – Speed up or slow down any video for easier viewing:

YouTube Playback Speed

Looping – Repeat segments of a video:

YouTube Loop

Clipping – Save portions of videos into reusable clips:

YouTube Clips

Mastering these tools will help you become a YouTube power user!


We‘ve now covered several methods to go through YouTube videos frame-by-frame:

  • YouTube Keyboard Shortcuts – Quick and easy but limited features.
  • Browser Extensions – Add navigation and variable speed options.
  • Online Frame Viewers – Specialized sites with smooth frame-by-frame control.

While not the most common feature, frame-by-frame analysis enables deep video inspection for drawing, editing, breakdowns, and more.

Hopefully this guide has provided everything you need to make frame-by-frame YouTube analysis a useful part of your video workflow. Slowing things down can uncover a whole new world of detail.

Let me know if you have any other questions!