Subtitles

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▶ Subtitles

XBMC supports both stand-alone subtitle and embedded subtitles. Most major subtitle formats are supported. XBMC can also search and download subtitles directly from full screen playback.

Contents

1 Changing subtitle settings during playback

The audio options are found under the speaker icon (C).

Various subtitle settings can be changed or they turned On/Off (default is on) via the OSD (On Screen Display) while watching a movie by selecting the subtitle menu or audio options.

Note: To make XBMC turn off subtitles by default: While playing a video, bring up the on screen display and select the audio options -> Turn off "subtitles" -> scroll down and select "save as default for all videos".


1.1 Settings details

AudioSubtitleSettings.png
Enable subtitles
Enable or disables subtitles. Subtitle tracks with the "forced" flag are unaffected by this and should always display.
Subtitle offset
Adjusts how long that the subtitles are delayed in relation to the video
Subtitle
Allows you select which subtitles are displayed
  • As of v12, XBMC will auto select subtitle language based on your global settings. Also - Set as default for all Movies is now Set as default for all Videos. See: Settings/Appearance#International.
Browse for subtitle
Allows you to browse the filesystem for the file used to display the subtitles
Set as default for all videos
Selecting this will make the current settings the default


2 Additional settings

2.1 Main settings

Settings -> Videos -> Subtitles

Settings.videos.subtitles.png
additional settings shown when scrolling down
Setting Description Setting level
Languages to download subtitles for
Preferred Subtitle Language Sets the default subtitles when different languages are available.
Subtitle position on screen Location of subtitles on the screen. This does not effect stylized subs such as SSA/ASS. Options are:
  • Fixed position (default) - Use the position defined in the video calibration screen. By default this is near the bottom of the video.
  • Above video - Place subtitles in the black area above the video when the video doesn't fill the top and bottom parts of the screen (letterbox).
  • Below video - Place subtitles in the black area below the video when the video doesn't fill the top and bottom parts of the screen (letterbox).
  • Top of video - Show subtitles near the top of the video.
  • Bottom of video - Show subtitles near the bottom of the video.
Subtitle stereoscopic depth
Font Font to use for plaintext subtitles.
-Size
Font size for plain text subtitles.
-Style
 ?
-Colour
Color used for plain text subtitles.
-Character set
 ?
Override ASS/SSA subtitle fonts Force the options for plaintext subs on ASS/SSA stylized subtitles.
Subtitle storage location
-Custom subtitle folder
Set a custom directory for your subtitles. This can be an SMB share.
Pause when searching for subtitles
Default TV service
Default Movie service


2.2 Adjusting subtitles position

The position of the subtitles can be adjusted vertically (but not horizontally) in the Video Calibration screen, you can also configure the way that they are displayed though the Subtitles Settings.
Note: This does not apply to DVD subtitles as the DVD itself defines their location.

3 External subtitle files

To use stand-alone subtitle files with video files, put them in the same folder as the video file or alternatively go to the Subtitles Settings and set a Custom Subtitle Directory. You can also choose to manually browse for the subtitle file via the OSD (On Screen Display) Audio and Subtitle Settings. You can configure the way that they are displayed through the Subtitles Settings, and you can adjust where they are displayed onscreen through the Video Calibration Screen.

The subtitle and video files must have the same name, for example:

 Video File: The Matrix.avi
 Subtitle: The Matrix.srt

3.1 Subtitle downloader

Future.png In XBMC v13 "Gotham" the normal subtitles add-on has been replaced by a new system of subtitle service add-ons. See HOW-TO:Setup subtitle services for more info.
  • ActivateWindow(subtitlesearch) can be bound to a remote button using keymaps in order to quickly bring up the subtitle search window.

3.2 Compressed subtitles

XBMC also supports compressed VobSub subtitles. Please note that the subtitles inside the RAR archive still need to have the same name as the video file.

 Video File: The Matrix.avi
 Subtitle: The Matrix.rar 

Where The Matrix.rar containins the VobSub-file The Matrix.sub and the The Matrix.idx VobSub index-file that has been compressed with RAR. If you want XBMC to automatically turn on packed subtitles, you have to turn on the Search for Subtitles in RARs option in Subtitles Settings.

3.3 Using multi language subtitles

XBMC supports the use of more than one external subtitle. This of course is most useful when you have more than one subtitle file, (eg. for more than language).

To use this functionality you need to rename the video file and subtitle files as follows:

 Video File: The Matrix.avi
 Subtitle 1: The Matrix.English.srt
 Subtitle 2: The Matrix.French.srt
 Subtitle 3: The Matrix.German.srt

The dot after the filename but before the extension specifies the language (you can use anything here, mix numbers and and letters or just use one or the other).

You can even mix subtitle formats, eg:

 Video File: Movie Name (2006).avi
 Subtitle 1: Movie Name (2006).Chinese.idx
 Subtitle 1: Movie Name (2006).Chinese.sub
 Subtitle 2: Movie Name (2006).Japanese.idx
 Subtitle 2: Movie Name (2006).Japanese.sub
 Subtitle 3: Movie Name (2006).English.srt
 Subtitle 4: Movie Name (2006).French.smi
 Subtitle 5: Movie Name (2006).German.ssa

4 Advanced options

4.1 Adding fonts

Additional fonts can be stored in the XBMC folder (one level below userdata) at XBMC/media/Fonts/

4.2 Increasing the delay range for subtitle adjustment

If you don't already have an advancedsettings.xml file, it's very simple to make. XBMC uses this file for advanced settings and features that normal users shouldn't modify without first knowing what they do, as well as for experimental features, etc.

  1. Create a plain text file (no rich text formatting, don't use .doc, etc) and save it as advancedsettings.xml. Make sure that the file extension is ".xml" and not ".txt" or ".xml.txt".
  2. Cut and paste this into your new plain text file:
    <advancedsettings>
      <video>
        <subsdelayrange>10</subsdelayrange>  <!-- Delay range for subtitles, in seconds. -->
        <audiodelayrange>10</audiodelayrange>  <!-- Delay range for audio/video sync, in seconds. -->
      </video>
    </advancedsettings>
  3. Change the two values between the tags to fit your situation.
  4. Save this file in your userdata folder
    If you have an existing file, make sure the <video></video> tags, and settings we'll add between them, are between the main <advancedsettings></advancedsettings> tags.

4.3 Using Forced Subtitles

Many movies have subtitles encoded for secondary languages spoken during the film – when these are added to the movie, they are known as forced subtitles and are always visible (despite not being hard encoded). As of Gotham, XBMC recognizes and respects the forced flag for showing subtitles (even if subtitles are turned off by default, the forced flag will trigger them being turned on). This requires that the user have set the default languages in Settings in order to function properly. If there are multiple forced subtitles, XBMC will select the forced subtitles that match the default playback language.

4.3.1 Internal Forced Subtitles

If you are using an .mkv file, the forced subtitles may be included in the file when originally encoded. If so, XBMC will automatically recognize that they are present and will display them at the appropriate times. If they are not included, or if the header was not properly edited, you will need to use external subtitles.

4.3.2 External Forced Subtitles

If you are using anything other than an .mkv file, or if your mkv doesn’t have the forced subtitles properly included, the forced flag can be easily added to your external subtitles. Following the same naming conventions listed above, you can then append the forced flag to the end of the subtitle file name. The forced flag can be either upper, lower or mixed case in the filename and can use a “.” (dot), “ “ (space) or “-“ (dash) to separate them from the name of the movie and language of the subtitles. IE:

Movie Name (2006).English.Forced.srt
Movie Name (2006).en.forced.srt
Movie Name (2006).German.Forced.srt
Movie Name (2006)-Swedish-Forced.srt
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