Subtitle guide


How to create/edit/embed subtitles in videos using Jubler and Avidemux under Windows/Linux/MAC OS

Jubler is a tool to edit text-based subtitles. It can be used as an authoring software for new subtitles or as a tool to convert, transform, correct and refine existing subtitles. The most popular subtitle formats can be used. Preview of the subtitles in realtime or in design time, spell checking, translation mode and styles editing are some of the main features. It is open source under a liberal (GNU) public licence. It is written in Java 5.0  (a.k.a. Java 1.5.0) in order to be really multi-platform. Itis available for Linux, Windows XP/Vista and Mac OS X.

Avidemux is a free video editor designed for simple cutting, filtering and encoding tasks. It supports many file types, including AVI, DVD compatible MPEG files, MP4 and ASF, using a variety of codecs. Tasks can be automated using projects, job queue and powerful scripting capabilities. Avidemux is available for Linux, BSD, Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows under the GNU GPL license.

In this guide I will describe you how to create your own subtitles for a video clip using Jubler and after that how to embed them on the clip using Avidemux. Install jubler from your distributions PMS or download it from here and Avidemux from here or again through your distributions PMS.

The following has been tested on Archlinux but since both applications are cross platform you should have no problem running them in Windows XP or MAC OS X.

Lauch Jubler and select either File > New or the New button in the toolbar to start a new project (1).

Next click on the Enable/Disable Preview button to load the clip you want to create subtitles for. Browse to the location you have the clip (1) and click Ok. If you want you can select to use a different audio stream and work with that (2).

As you can see a video preview window has opened (1) along with a waveform visualization of the clip's audio sound (2). You can use the zoom in/out scroll bar to locate the exact time of the movie you want to add subtitles (3) which I will show you later how to do it.

But first we must set some preferences for the subtitles. Click on File -> Preferences and a new window will appear. In the first tab if you are using Windows or Linux select UTF-8 as First Encoding (1), unless you have some special encoding for your language. If you are using MAC OS X set the First Encoding to “MacRoman”. Next click on the Get FPS from video file button (2), or select your clip's FPS from the drop down menu if you know it.


In the Save tab you can select the format you want your subtitles to be saved to. There are many supported formats such as Advanced SubStation, SubStation Alpha, SubRip.  SubViewer (1 and 2), MicroDVD, MPL2 and Spruce DVD Maestro. Here I will use the .srt file format (1).


In the Player tab you can select the player you want Jubler to open to test your subtitled video. In my system it has recognized mplayer on its own (1).


If you are not good in spelling Jubler uses ASpell speller to check what you are writing.


When you have finished with the configuration click on Accept to return to main program window. To start creating your subtitles you must select the part of the waveform in which there is voice. To do so grab the left and right edge of the blue part of the waveform (1). The Start and End time of the subtitles will appear (2) and you can know type your subtitles (3). You can also change the font size/type etc. (4) and color (5) of your subtitles. To test what you have done click on the Test Subtitles from current position button (6).

If your subtitle isn't correctly set close the preview window and drag again the two edges until you have the wanted result. Once you have selected the correct length for your first subtitle click on the New subtitle after current one button (1). The time in which the first subtitle appears on screen will appear as green (2) and the program will select next speech for you (3). Again type the subtitle, move its start and ending point to what you think is good and test. Repeat the whole process as many times as needed.

When you are done click on File -> Save as... to save your subtitles.

If you give your subtitles the same name as your clip's and put them in the same folder when you'll try to play the clip most media players will automatically recognize the subtitles file and open it. However you might want to embed the subtitles on the clip to reproduce them with a program or with a device that doesn't support external subtitles. Here comes Avidemux. Close Jubler and launch Avidemux. Click the Open button (1) and open your clip. Next select Side from the drop down menu (2) to have both the initial and final video in your screen (this is optional).

Next go to Video -> Filters and from the Available Filters select Subtitles (1). Here you should select the format you had previously saved your subtitles to. For me it's Subtitler (2). Click on the blue cross (3) and in the pop up window browse to your Subtitle file (4). You should also select UTF8 Encoding (5) (or whatever you have choosen previously in Jubler). Click Ok and Close buttons to return to the main program window. Here you must be careful the Font (TTF) file to exist in your computer. If it doesn't no subtitles will appear in your final video. So use the browse button to select a font if the chosen one doesn't exist in your system (5).

Here you can choose the video format you want to save the file to (1) (avi, mpeg, xvid, divx whatever) as long as the audio format (2) (mp3, aac, ac3 etc.). You can also use the Play button (3) to preview your video.

Click on the the Save button and the encoding will begin. Wait a while till you have your final video file with embedded subtitles!