In cases where the audio is good enough, you can rely on machine transcription to automatically create subtitles.

1. Creating subtitles 

First of all, we advise you to create and review the transcript using the Transcriber Application as explained in the appropriate section. Once you are happy with your transcript, open up the subtitle editor. It should look like this:

The subtitler app already fills out the language in the top box, in our case 'Dutch'. Also, the upper box, "Take text from the Dutch transcript and generate timing via spotting rules" is automatically selected. Press 'Generate' and the subtitling workflow will start, and the screen changes to

Automatic subtitling might take a while depending on the length of your material. You don’t have to keep the page open for the automatic subtitling to continue. When the automatic subtitling has finished, the right side of the screen will be populated with subtitles, like shown below.

Note: If you have to wait too long for the subtitles to appear, you might try to refresh the page.

The controls at the bottom of the screen change to the subtitle editor controls. 

Note: It is also possible to start automatic subtitling without using the Transcriber application. Behind the scenes, this first creates a transcript in the Transcriber application and then creates subtitles out of those. Because automatic speech recognition isn’t flawless, and the Transcriber is better suited to correct these mistakes, we advise you to always use the Transcriber first, and only afterwards generate subtitles.

2. Edit existing subtitles

To edit an existing subtitle, simply click it in the list on the right and it will go into edit mode. Clicking outside the subtitle will save your changes. Pushing the Esc key on your keyboard will abort your changes.

2.1 Change appearance and disappearance time

While editing a subtitle, the appearance and disappearance time of the subtitle are shown at the top of the subtitle. You can type in a new timecode, or use the arrow keys to change the timecode one frame at a time.

But the best way to change the timing is to move the playhead to the desired location in the video and press the little green circle

next to the timecode. This will copy the current playhead position into the timing field. This is the same as clicking the SET IN (F9) or SET OUT (F10) buttons.

Note that you can use the “Play IN to OUT” button (F8) to preview the time range!

2.2 Change the subtitle position (top / bottom region)

By default, the subtitle is rendered in the bottom region. As an alternative, the subtitle can be rendered in the ‘top region’ by clicking the region button. The icon of the button will change, and the subtitle shown over the video will change its position to something like the example shown below:

2.3 Change the text colour

Select some text in the edit box, and press the button with the brush icon. A menu with text colours will appear. In the example below, we changed the text colour to green. If no text is selected and you change the colour, the entire subtitle will change colour.

2.4 Delete a subtitle

Press the button with the trash can to delete a subtitle.

2.5 Subtitle warnings

While editing a subtitle, you might see an exclamation triangle appear on the subtitle. This means you are violating one of the subtitle specifications set in the production configuration. 

2.5.1 Too many characters

The example below has too many characters on a single line and too many words for the subtitle duration.

The subtitle will be verified while editing.

2.5.2 Subtitle overlap

The icon might even turn red, which means you are in trouble. A red icon means the subtitle overlaps other subtitles, which will prevent the subtitle from saving. For example, this subtitle overlaps the next subtitle:

If you try to save this subtitle, the subtitle will turn orange and inform you of the overlap:

You can either press ‘back’ to manually solve the issue, or press ‘fix’ to shorten the subtitle automatically.

3. Subtitling Status

3.1 Mark subtitles completed

Once you are happy with your subtitles, click the button ‘Mark Completed’ at the top of the Subtitle Editor. This will change the subtitling status on this clip to completed. Why would you bother doing this? Because in the Flow Library, it is possible to filter on the subtitling status of a clip. This makes it easy to find all clips which have no subtitles yet, or for which subtitles are completed:

Note: you can always revert the status to ‘editing’ if you marked a clip ‘completed’ by accident.

3.2 Reset subtitles

If for any reason you want to restart your subtitling work, click the small arrow button next to ‘mark complete’ and you’ll be presented with a menu like below. Click ‘Delete Subtitles’. Note that this will remove all your work and reset the subtitling status to ‘not yet started’.

4. Change your work area 

At the top right corner of the application, you’ll find the help buttons and some toggles to show or hide panes in the application.

Go ahead and try clicking some of the buttons. Click the button again to revert the action. For example, you can show the transcript alongside the subtitles.

The help button on the far right will show a menu with a ‘talk to us’ option. Click it to get in touch! We will help you out if you get stuck for some reason, and we would like to hear your experiences with the application!

5. Download Subtitle Editor Cheat Sheet

Download the cheat sheet, print it, and hang it on your wall!Download Subtitle Editor Cheat Sheet