My primary media source for the last few years has been YouTube channels discovered via reddit and other sources. I've discovered a great number of amazing channels on a wide variety of topics. So partly for my own well being and partly to create a resource I can direct people to, I'm going to group my favourite channels into categories and make a nice list for people to discover new channels.

This is only a tiny portion of my actual subscriptions, but I wanted to pick things that most-ish people would be interested in.

The groupings are quite vague, so for example do you put a comedy review of a video game in the gaming, comedy or review category? It's quite difficult.

My top picks for mass market appeal

In no particular order, these are the channels everyone should check out, regardless of what you are interested in:

  1. CGP Grey
  2. How to Make Everything
  3. Half as Interesting
  4. Mike Boyd (Learn Quick)
  5. Smarter Every Day
  6. Vice NEWS
  7. Vox
  8. Every Frame a Painting
  9. Binging with Babish
  10. You Suck at Cooking
  11. c90 Adventures
  12. Soviet Womble
  13. Marques Brownlee (MKBHD)

There are bunch of other channels that really are fantastic, but I think these are all pretty safe bets for being enjoyed by most people.

Educational

These are channels that will really help you understand a topic, some are very funny and/or entertaining, but they are primarily aimed at getting you to learn something.

3Blue1Brown A serious channel that will explain complicated topics in a way that will let you understand. Want to learn how machine learning and blockchain ACTUALLY work?

Business Casual In depth examinations of a well known businesses and the reasons behind their successes and failures

CGP Grey Wonderfully written explanations of topics ranging from geography, technology and politics

Codys Lab Advanced chemistry done at home, a little rough around the edges but you can see how some serious chemistry can be done

Crash Course Has courses on many different topics that are incredibly comprehensive and consumable

Derek Banas In depth "crash courses" in different programming languages

Engineering Explained Looking at the physics and maths behind how cars work, quite serious

How to Make Everything Nicely put together documentary following the hosts attempt to create things COMPLETELY from scratch by himself

Kurzgesagt Nice animated roundups of big topics, usually revolving around social issues

Primitive Technology One man in the woods building things with stoneage tooling. Turn on subtitles!

Standup Maths Great examples of applied maths, finds interesting problems and works them out

Tech Quickie Quick and easy explanations of (new) technology, and what it's for

The Great War A week by week coverage of WW1, it ran from the 100th aniversary of the start of the war, until the end.

The Nature of Science Researchers in Australia explaing how exotic fish work, oddly captivating

The Brain Scoop A look at natural history and taxidermy, can be gorey but often fascinating

Wendover Productions Wonderfully produced explanations of air travel, economics and geography

Edutainment

These are channels that are also aimed at teaching you something, but I would consider to be more traditional and easily consumable in their presentation. The lines between this and the last category are quite blurry though.

Captain Disillusion Debunking viral videos that have been faked, aimed at a young audience so a bit odd

Colin Furze Building wildly dangerous contraptions in his shed

ElectroBOOM How electronics work, with a haphazard presenter

Half as Interesting Humourous short and interesting videos about random topics

Jay Foreman A comedian who explains things from maps to politics

Last Week Tonight The TV show with John Oliver, quite painful style of humour but they do great investigative journalism

Mark Rober Looking at the engineering and physics behind common things in a fun way

Mike Boyd (Learn Quick) He challenges himself to learn a random skill, and documents it

Smarter Every Day A rocket scientist with a high speed camera observing and explaining amazing phenomena

The Backyard Scientist Making dangerous contraptions and testing them very unsafely

Tom Scott Snippets of "Things you might not know", curiosities around the world explained

Social Commentary

These are channels that either discuss or debate world events, or examine human interaction in an interesting way.

Chris Ray Gun Madly edited, looking at mostly internet related news and pointing out ridiculous things people say

Cut A "social experiment" kind of channel that has random people doing all sorts of fun revealing games

Internet Historian A look at crazy stuff the internet has done in real life, usually quite funny, although quite niche

Nerdwriter1 Creates wonderful video essays about media and social issues

Owen Jones Interviews British politicians and general socialst commentary

Oxford Union Uploads full debates from the Oxford Union

Vice NEWS The best news channel, it is delayed due to being broadcast on cable first; however it provides truly global news with much better reporting than you get from mainstream TV networks

Vox A video magazine with fun "articles" based on the news, travel and media

Media Critics & Analysis

These are film and game reviewers and analysts that will either review some media or create a nice breakdown of the techniques used in it.

Every Frame a Painting Superb analysis of how directors and editors make films magical

Zero Punctuation (Escapist) Hilarious animated reviews of the latest video games

Mark Brown (Game Makers Toolkit) In depth discussion of the techniques video game designers use

Now you see it Breaking down films and analysing the writing, directing, editing etc.

Ryan Holinger Pretty standard film reviews, but he keeps them short and to the point

Totalbiscuit Serious reviews for PC games, a trustworthy voice

Your Movie Sucks Often very funny deconstructions of terrible films, or serious reviews of good films

Culinary

These channels teach you about cooking and general nice food stuff.

Binging with Babish Makes food from TV shows, and then shows you how to cook good

Cocktail Chemistry Explains how to make super fancy cocktails

Juns Kitchen A guy from japan who cooks with his cute kitties helping out

First we Feast (Hot Ones) Various foodie segments, but also Hot Ones, an awesome chat show where guests eat extremely hot sauce

Comedy

These are your traditional comedy sketches and animations.

Almost Cool Sketch comedy group

Aunty Donna Surreal sketch comedy group from Australia

exurb1a Existential animations, slightly educational odly

Film Cow Charlie the Unicorn & many other wonderful animations

Internet Comment Etiquette with Erik Looking at the wonderful world of comment sections and taking a surreal response to them

Richard Herring (RHLSTP!) The best podcast ever, funny and interesting, Rich interviews comedians in front of a live audience

Tom Ska Silly animations and skits

You Suck at Cooking The best cooking show out there, really silly and a good laugh

Zebra Corner Mahk from Boston edits himself into TV commercials

Tech Review

Reviews of the latest gadgets and technology

Hardware Canucks Serious reviews of tech, often covers unusual things

Linus Tech Tips Reviewing tech, mainly PC gear in a unique way. Also have become a bit of a meta vlog channel

Marques Brownlee (MKBHD) Incredibly well made reviews of tech

Travel

These are channels that document peoples travels, some are funny, some are serious.

c90 Adventures Ed March goes around the world on his little c90, very funny and epic

Joe Goes An awkward Minnesotan travels around the world making people uncomfortable in interviews

Motorcycle Adventure TV People riding very long ways across places that lack roads

Rare Earth Personal stories from around the world

Riding with Tom A "Motovlogger" who often does big off road adventures

This is Dan Bell (Another dirty room) Goes urban exploring a lot, and has a series with his friends where the investigate the worst hotels you can imagine

Cars & Motorycles

Assorted vehicular entertainment, racing, showcasing, modifying, building; if the focus is wheels it's here.

44Teeth Baron von Grumble (a moto vlogger) and his friend Al (a superbike rider) mess around on bikes. Quite unique and varied content

B is for Build A guy buys crashed cars and fixes them up himself in a super DIY approach, in detail

Doug DeMuro Reviews of cars looking at all their weird little oddities

FIA World Rally Cross All the Rally Cross races get streamed and uploaded here

FortNine Great reviews of motorcycles and gear

Hoovies Garage A man with a problem buying terrible cars and wasting huge amounts of money doing ridiculous things, he legit has a problem

Jay Lenos Garage In depth looks at custom or exotic cars with TV's own Jay Leno

Mighty Car Mods Some Aussies go to great lengths to tune their car, one of them is really annoying, but they do some interesting projects

Motor Trend Channel (Roadkill) A lot of flaff but they have Roadkill on the channel which is where they get some rust bucket and put 600BHP in it and see if it works (it doesn't but they have fun)

Regular Cars Surreal reviews of normal cars

Vlogging

"YouTubers" who document parts of their lives, you get to know them.

Baron von Grumble "Moto vlogger" who is quite funny and gets up to some interesting stuff

Off the Ranch Matt from Demolition & Vet Ranch includes you in his life and makes you feel part of the family. Plays with guns, cars, and DIY.

Steve-O TV Steve O off the TV is doing some cool stuff and is actually quite a good person

Steve Dangle A super fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs documents his descent into madness

Vlog Brothers Hank and John Green share their interesting vlogs to each other

Walteriffic Another "Moto vlogger" who has some fun editing and is willing to risk life and limb to chase a good doggo down through traffic

Gaming

Comedy, analysis and documentaries about games.

Accursed Farms (Ross Scott) Freemans Mind is a hilarious playthrough of Half Life, with Ross voicing Gordon. The Game Dungeon is a FASCINATING in depth look at games that history forgot

Ahoy Great look at how certain guns are prortrayed in games

Noclip Feature length documentaries about the gaming industry, interviewing developers and designers

Nerd3 Very funny reviews and streams of games

Soviet Womble Amazingly edited and hilarious highlights of game streams

Videogamedunkey Funny reviews of games, in quite a unique style

Yahtzee Yahtzee from Zero Punctuation makes a podcast with his friend playing some random games

Specialist to me

If you've come this far the rest of the channels are quite specific things that interest me, and are really only for enthusiasts and people really interested in these topics

Jazz and Swing

Recordings of live bands and dancing

Alice Glick Vidoes of performances from the Arbita Springs Opry

Gunhild Carling A bit creepy but a live jazz show every Sunday night

James Stirling Performances from around New Orleans

Vintage Swing Dance Clips from old movies featuring swing dancing

Firearms

Firearms reviews, discussion and testing

Demolition Ranch Matt from Off the Ranch, plays with guns in a highly entertaining way

Forgotten Weapons Amazing in depth look at the engineering, history and operation of firearms

Hickok45 An old guy gives his opinion on various firearms, in a relaxing conversational way

InRange TV Partnered with Forgotten Weapons, a more practical look at firearm design and real world testing and competition

EDC & Knives

Reviews and discussions of EDC gear and pocket knives

Advanced Knife Bro Quite funny reviews of cheap knives and EDC gear

Blade HQ Trying to sell you stuff, but nice coverage of whats new and discussion on different styles

Bosnian Bill Fantastic place to learn lockpicking and learn about locksmithing in general. I think he works for the CIA or something

Jim Skelton Reviews of VERY expensive knives

Nick Shabazz Fantastic reviews of a range of knives. Covers everything you could ever want to know