SRT Tools

Have you ever wondered how your favorite movie displays subtitles at the exact moment the words are spoken by the actors?

Open Captions

Back in the day, videos were created with the subtitles "burnt" into them. There is no way to hide such subtitles as they become a permanent feature of the video. This process of rendering captions is called Open Captioning. While it is still in use, Open Captions have become less popular and given way to Closed Captions.

Advantages of Open Captioning
  • Don't need specialized video player as they are part of the video
  • No need to keep track of subtitle file as the subtitles are self contained in the video
Disadvantages of Open Captioning
  • Complete re-rendering of the video is required to add open captions
  • No way to edit subtitles once they are burned into the video (unless you have the original video without subtitles)

Closed Captions

With Closed Captions the subtitles are contained in separate files such as .SRT. These subtitle files contain the text that is spoken as well as the timings for when they should appear and disappear from the video. Over the years video players have become more powerful and standardized. As a result, most of them support Closed Captioning. Remember how Youtube has the CC button to turn subtitles on/off in videos that support them?

Advantages of Closed Captioning
  • Can be turned on/off via the video player
  • Easy to edit as generally they are just text files
  • Easy to translate to multiple languages
  • Works for audio files & songs
Disadvantages of Closed Captioning
  • Closed Captions only work if the video player supports them
  • Confusion because of several formats available

What are SRT files?

SRT files contain subtitles and their precise timings on screen. It is one of the most popular format to display closed captions for videos. The SRT file format was created for the SubRip software, a program that extracts or "rips" subtitles along with their timings from open captioned video. SubRip uses OCR to convert the burned subtitles in these videos to text.

The SRT File Format

Each subtitle has a unique entry in the SRT file. An entry is composed of 4 parts and spans multiple lines.

  1. Sequence - This is a unique number that indicates the sequence of the subtitle entry in the entire file. Typically, it starts from 1 and is incremented by 1 for each subsequent entry. But, you can also start from 0 or 10 for that matter.
  2. Time Code - These are two timestamps that indicate when the subtitle appears and disappears on screen. The two timestamps are separated by -->. The first timestamp indicates the start while the second one indicates the end when the subtitle goes away. The timestamps are of the format: Hours:minutes:seconds,milliseconds. The milliseconds are rounded to 3 decimal places.
  3. Text - This is the actual subtitle that is shown on screen. It can span multiple lines.
  4. Entry Separator - This is a blank line that indicates that the subtitle entry has ended and the next one is about to begin.

Creating/Editing SRT Files

SRT files have an extension of... you guessed it, .SRT. Typically, they are named as [video-file].[lang].srt. Example: SRT file is just a plain text file and as such it can be edited with any text editor - Notepad, WordPad, TextEdit, Notepad++, etc

SRT Compatible Video Players

The simplicity of the SRT file format is part of the reason why it is so popular. It is supported by a wide variety of media players:-

  • VLC
  • Windows Media Player
  • MPlayer
  • BS.Player
  • KMPlayer

SRT Support on Online Platforms

  • YouTube
  • Facebook
  • Slideshare

Impact of Subtitles on SEO

Having subtitles against your Youtube videos allow search engines to index the textual content of the video. As a result of this, your videos will start appearing on google searches for keywords that are contained in the subtitles. Without Subtitles, your videos are restricted to the title, description and any tags you provided while creating the video.

It is important to note that Open Captions and YouTube's auto-captions (ASR) are NOT indexed by search engines.

Converting SRT Files

Despite their immense popularity, there are still some old video players which do not support the SRT format. Perhaps they support one of the several other subtitle formats. In such a scenario you can convert the SRT based captions to another format. Conversely, maybe you received the subtitles in one of such less known formats and your video player does not support it. You can convert the subtitles to/from SRT format depending on the use-case.

SRT Tools

Given below is a list of all our tools for dealing with SRT files.

LRC to SRT Converter

Convert lyrics file from LRC to SRT (SubRip) format

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SRT to LRC Converter

Convert lyrics file from SRT (SubRip) to LRC format

View Tool

SRT to MicroDVD (Sub) Converter

Convert lyrics file from SRT (SubRip) to MicroDVD (sub) format

View Tool