4 Tips to Remember When Subtitling Videos

Binge-watching straight seasons of television shows or movie marathons has become a common pastime nowadays. Videos on your Facebook feed have subtitles for users who do not want to enable the audio function. Even in video games, players have the option to use the subtitles or not. But the thing is, you don’t always understand what the characters or actors are saying when you watch your favorite television shows or films. Sometimes, the script requires them to speak quickly or softly, so it’s difficult to keep up with the show’s dialogue. This is where subtitles come in. Subtitles help the viewer understand or keep track of the dialogue as they watch. Here are some tips one should know when subtitling videos.

Subtitles should be synced with the audio

The subtitles should appear at the appropriate time with the audio of the video. The video won’t make sense if both the audio and subtitles don’t match, and more so when the subtitles are translated. The right translation should be in time with the speaker and what is originally being said.

On-screen texts should not be blocked by subs

On-screen texts are commonly seen in variety shows or television ads. These texts might be important to the subject of the video. Examples would be product names in television ads or extra texts that appear anywhere on screen on Korean variety shows. Subtitles are usually positioned at the bottom center of the frame. But if the onscreen texts are where your subtitles are, it would be a good idea to reposition them.

Fonts and font size

Sans serif fonts like Arial and Helvetica are used most of the time for subtitling. This font type minimizes the complexity of reading subtitles on screen. This also reduces the chance of a decreased font size in subtitles.

Consider your viewer

There must not be more than two lines present to prevent the subtitle from taking up too much space in the video. Depending on the standards given, there are usually 35–40 characters per line; this is to consider the dialogue and the time it needs to fit the prescribed limit.

Here at Lexcode Philippines, we also offer subtitling services aside from formatting. Let us handle your subtitling needs as we have a team of experts who can deliver high-quality outputs that consider your required schedule.