Sometimes YouTube videos have awesome thumbnails that we want to know more about. More often than not, they are very small and if we can’t quite make out the picture it can be frustrating, so how do you find YouTube thumbnail source? Don’t worry, we can help. Here are a few easy ways for you to find them.
Use The Video ID
One of the fastest ways to view a YouTube thumbnail is by utilising the video ID. This is something that all YouTube videos are embedded with, so you won’t have an issue finding it. Firstly, open the video that you want to see the thumbnail for, you will see that at the end of the address there is an 8-digit alphanumeric code. Copy this code and input it into this URL where is says ID https://i.ytimg.com/vi/ID/maxresdefault.jpg. This will open up a new page in your browser and will show you the thumbnail in high resolution! Simple as that.
If you are trying to develop your HTML knowledge, or for some reason the code above hasn’t worked for you, you can source the thumbnail through the sourcing page on your PC. YouTube has recently changed its HTML, so be warned that this way may take a little longer than the process described above.
Firstly, go to the YouTube video that you want to see the thumbnail for, and the click control U if you are using a windows PC or Command U if you are using a Mac. If using keyboard commands doesn’t work, right click anywhere on the screen (aside from on the video itself) and simply select ‘view source’. From there you will see that it opens the source page that you will need in order to find the thumbnail. Once this is open, you will need to open your find function, you don’t want to be scrolling through thousands of lines of code just to find the thumbnail, so this will make your life easier. Once you have the search function open, simply type in ‘hqdefault.jpg’ and this will take to you the line of code you need. Once you are there, you will see that it is punctuated by slashes. Remove them so it looks like the URL’s you are used to seeing and then copy and paste it into the URL box, this will bring up the image for you!
Failing all of that, or if you are in a rush, you can also use a thumbnail grabber. These are often hit and miss with their results and their quality can be lacking. But all you need to do is copy and paste the YouTube URL into the box and it will provide you with the thumbnail if it can and the associated meta data if it has it available. Sometimes these thumbnail grabbers do work, but if you want to be sure of your results, try the first two methods first as they will give you guaranteed results.
Reverse Image Search
Once you have found the image that you wanted to look at, you can go one step further and attempt to find out where it came from. Before you start this, make sure that you have saved the thumbnail to your laptop or computer so that you can upload it into the search engine. As you are searching for a thumbnail from a YouTube video, you won’t be able to upload a URL of it, so you will need it saved to your device.
From here, open up google and click images. On the right-hand side of the search box you will see a camera, click that icon and you are given two options, you can upload from your files or you can drop in a URL. Upload the file from the save thumbnail you have found and then hit search. Google will return the photo and the list of places it is being used and found. If you want to find out where the image originated, simply work through the list and hopefully you’ll get a result.
Finding the source from a thumbnail may seem like a protracted experience, but once you have worked through the methodology once, you will find it far easier to do next time. Depending on your capabilities and the amount of time you want to dedicate to finding it, you can use any of the three methods that we gave you, but it is worth noting that option 1 and 2 will provide you with more accurate results as the thumbnail grabbers can be hit and miss. Once you have found the image, simply run it through a reverse image search and hopefully you’ll be able to find where it came from originally!