Creating subtitles for videos manually is a process that becomes increasingly more difficult as the duration of a video gets longer because you have to transcribe each and every word in that video. What’s more, the subtitles have to be perfectly synced with the video and the audio, as subtitle delays can cause a great deal of confusion. On some social media platforms like Facebook, the audio is turned off by default on the News Feed. In this case, adding subtitles to video is more important.
The automatic subtitle generators powered by artificial intelligence offer a quick solution to this problem since they can generate subtitles for an entire video in just a few minutes. So, if you would like to learn more about automatic subtitle generators, you are at the right place because in this article we are going to take you through some of the best options that are currently available online to generate subtitles automatically.
Part 1: Best Free Tools for Generating Video Subtitles
The technologies that are used for automatic subtitle generation are still being developed, and most of them can only produce accurate results in a handful of languages. Furthermore, you will have to go through the text once it is generated, because the way a certain word is pronounced or the speaker’s accent can often cause mistakes. Let’s take a look at the best automatic subtitle generators.
1. YouTube Automatic Caption
Video content producers who already have their own YouTube channel can use the platform’s speech recognition technology to generate subtitles automatically after they upload a new video. At the moment this option is available only for Russian, Japanese, English, Portuguese, German, Spanish, Korean, French, Italian and Dutch languages, and you have to use conventional methods of making subtitles for your YouTube videosif they are not in any of the languages on this list.
The process of generating automatic captions on YouTube is fairly simple, as you just have to upload a new video. Once the upload is complete, you should find that video in the Video Manager. Click on the Edit drop-down menu that is located next to your freshly uploaded video and choose the Subtitle/CC option.
After that, you will need to set up the video language before adding subtitles or CC. Since I set the language to English, so the English (Automatic) feature is available since the platform can recognize the language used in my video. Double click it and then proceed to click on the Edit button in order to start proofreading the automatically generated subtitles. You can go into each of the lines of text and edit the spelling, grammar, and punctuation.
When done, you can confirm the changes you’ve made by clicking on the Publish edits, and the closed captions are going to be displayed next to the title of your video in the Video Manager.
2. Facebook’s Automatic Caption Feature
This tool is only available in US English for advertisers in the US and Canada, and it can be quite useful for Facebook users who often upload videos in this language to their profiles. However, Facebook’s automatic caption feature is not entirely reliable, which means that you have to proofread all subtitles it generates.
Go to Facebook’s home page or to your profile page and click on the Photo/Video option that is located in the Create Post menu. Locate the video you’d like to upload to your Facebook page, insert the video’s title or add a comment about the video and click on the Share button once the video is uploaded.
The video will be displayed on your profile page, and you should click on the Generate button that is located at the top of the post. In case you can’t see the Generate button, you should simply click on the Edit Post button, find the Subtitles&Captions(CC) option and then choose the Video Language.
Go through the captions you’ve just generated in order to make sure that there are no mistakes, and after you’ve made all the necessary edits, you should click on the Save to Video button. Then your video will have subtitles.
VEED is a simple online video editor. One of the most recent features they have added is the ability to automatically generate Subtitles & Captions form video audio using AI. The software takes the audio from your video file and then generates text and timecodes. You can look through the auto captioned text and make edits in the editors, and you can choose from a bunch of text styles. Once you are happy with your video, you can download it, no account required. Below is how it works:
Go to VEED Homepage and click Upload Video, and you will be taken to the edit page. (note: the free version is limited to uploading video within 50MB, and you need to upgrade to Pro version for unlimited upload.) You don't need an account to edit a video with VEED, but I do recommend it so you can save your projects.
Next, click on the Subtitle tool, and you are presented with three options, click on the Auto Subtitle option. Here you can choose the language that you want the video subtitles in, but it is set as US English by default. Next click start and the software generating the subtitles, this should take no more than 60 seconds depending on the length of your video. Now you will be able to see the subtitles that have been generated, and you can make edits to the next and also change the time codes.
They have a bunch of different text styles you can choose from, but I normally just keep it default. If you scroll to the bottom, you can export the subtitles as SRT files, or if you want the subtitles burnt into the editor, you can just click download in the bottom right corner.
Kapwing released a new subtitle maker beta version, which provides the subtitle auto-generating feature. You can paste the video URL or upload it from your computer, or try a video sample to experience this new feature.
Click the Auto-Generate option, and Kapwing will start to generate the subtitles. As it said, this tool is still in the Beta stage, and the generated subtitles are not 100% accurate. You can type the text on the time in the Editor interface to revise accordingly. Besides generating subtitles automatically, Kapwing Subtitle Maker also allows you to upload the SRT file.
This online platform isn't a truly automatic subtitle generator, but it helps its users sync the subtitles with videos. In case you want to create the subtitles by yourself, you can also use Amara to type in the text, but if this process is too long for you and you’re looking for a way to save some time, then you should probably generate the subtitle file using speech to text platforms like Amber Script or Watson.
Once you’ve managed to turn all the narration or the dialogue in your video into text, you should head over to the Amara platform that lets you add a subtitle file to a video. The video for which you would like to create a subtitle file has to be stored online so that you can link to it. In case you don’t have a web server where you can upload the video file, you can use a video hosting platform like Vimeo to store your file online.
Insert the video’s URL into the address box, then click on the Begin button, and the platform will add your video to its subtitling system. On the left side of the subtitle editor, you will be able to see the following question: ‘Already have subtitles for this video? Upload them directly. Click on the ‘Upload them directly’ option to add the text you’ve generated earlier using a text to speech platform, and once the Upload Subtitles window pops up on the screen, you should select the language that is used in the video and in the text file you’re uploading.
Hit the Upload button to add the text file to your video and then click on the Edit Subtitles button that is located on the left side of the editor. The process of syncing the subtitles with your video can be more or less complicated, depending on how long the video is or how much dialogue it has. The important thing is to be patient and detail-oriented because a subtitle delay of just a couple of seconds can totally ruin your video.
Part 2: How to Add Subtitles to a Movie with Wondershare Filmora9
In most cases, you may need to add the subtitle to video manually since most auto-generated subtitles aren't so accurate right now. Here, we recommend you to try Wondershare Filmora9 video editor since it features more than 100+ pre-programmed subtitles, texts, titles and Opening and closed Credits templates.
Steps to add subtitles to a movie with Wondershare Filmora9:
1. Download and install Wondershare Filmora9 by following the wizard below:
2. Launch Wondershare Filmora9, select ‘New Project’ and then hit ‘Import’ to add the desired video file, which requires the subtitle insertion process.
3. Go to the ‘Titles’ menu, which comes with the ‘T’ icon, then choose the desired format in the below screen.
4. Now, you must double click the ‘T’ icon and customize the following attributes like font size, color, format, etc
5. Hit the ‘Advanced’ button to add flavors to your title like animations, effects, text fill, shadow, etc.
6. Finally, You can save the edited title by hitting the ‘Export’ button. In this window, you can select the end file output format, storage location, etc. according to your desire and save it in your computer for further reference.
Even though it is relatively easy to generate subtitles for videos you share on YouTube or Facebook, the voice recognition technologies subtitle generators use are still not entirely reliable. Besides, platforms like Amara don’t have their own text to speech technologies, and you must use them in combination with online platforms that offer this service.
Liza Brown is a writer and a lover of all things video.
Follow @Liza Brown
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