Subtitles generally translate the audio track, but also can be used to supplement the video, such as by providing captions, lyrics, hints, or different perspectives. Some designers create simple graphics by using subtitle image files to add pointers or to mask, highlight, or overlay areas.
You can type subtitles directly into a timeline or the Monitor panel, or import subtitles using scripts. Subtitle scripts can contain the subtitle text or can reference image files. Keep in mind the following information:
Each screen of subtitles appears as a separate clip in the timeline, including subtitles you type in the Monitor panel.
A timeline can include up to 32 subtitle tracks for standard, fullscreen video, and 16 subtitle tracks for widescreen video. However, a DVD or Blu‑ray player can play only one subtitle track at a time.
Subtitles are not incorporated into the video stream. Each track becomes a separate overlay, making it possible to display any one of the subtitle tracks over the same video.
Subtitles are subpictures and have the same restrictions.
Subtitles are limited to three colors, which map to the stroke, the fill, and partial anti-aliasing of the characters.
You define the colors used in subtitles in a timeline color set.
For Blu-ray projects that have video sizes larger than or equal to 1280x720, the gap between subtitle clips must be at least 5 frames.
You may not be able to burn the Blu-ray project if the subtitle clips are placed without this gap.
Using the Monitor panel, you can step through your video and type subtitles where needed. Just as when you type text on a menu, you can enter subtitle text either freely or constrained to a bounding box. If you first create a bounding box for the subtitles, the lines of text automatically wrap to the next line when they reach the edge of the box. You can resize the box to reflow the text. If you enter subtitles without a bounding box, the text is not constrained, and you must use the Enter key to break the text between lines.
Drag the I‑beam pointer to define the bounding box for the subtitle.
Position the baseline of the I‑beam pointer where you want the subtitle to begin, and click to set the entry point for the type. The insertion point appears.
Click the Add Subtitle button at the bottom of the Monitor panel, which opens an empty box with blue corner handles.
To reposition the subtitle text, hold down the Ctrl key (Windows) or Command key (Mac OS) to temporarily activate the Move tool, and drag the text as needed. When you release the Ctrl or Command key, the text tool becomes active again.
Move the current-time indicator to the next frame to which you want to add a subtitle, and continue adding subtitles.
When you click the Add Subtitle button in the Monitor panel, the new subtitle matches the same character and paragraph attributes as the previous subtitle on the track.
Choose the desired color group from the Highlight menu.
Set the desired width option from the Stroke menu. The stroke outlines the type to increase the contrast and improve readability.
Change the duration of the subtitle. (See Change the display time of subtitles.)
In the Alignment box, type a value from 0% to 100% and press Enter. For horizontal text, 0% aligns the text with the top of the bounding box, 100% aligns it with the bottom, and 50% aligns it with the horizontal center of the bounding box.
You can edit subtitles that you typed in Encore or imported from a text subtitle script. You can modify either individual clips, a range of clips, or all the clips on a track.
Subtitle text is either constrained to a bounding box or typed in freely. (Subtitles that you import using a text subtitle script are placed in bounding boxes.) If text is constrained to a bounding box, you can change the line breaks by resizing the bounding box. If text is typed freely, you must manually change the line breaks.
Subtitles imported from an image-based script cannot be changed because they are imported as rendered images instead of text.
In the timeline, move the current-time indicator over the selected clip. You do not need to land on the first frame in which the clip appears; anywhere within the clip is fine.
To select all the subtitles on a track to make global changes (such as changing the font or color group), double-click the track name. Then make the desired changes in the Character or Properties panel. To select several subtitle clips, either Shift-click the desired clips in the track or drag a selection box around them.
- To edit the subtitle, using the appropriate text tool, click an insertion point in the text or highlight the words you want to change. Then, type the new or replacement text.
- To restyle the text, using the appropriate text tool, highlight the words you want to change. Then, select the type attributes you want for the text in the Character panel.
- To reflow the subtitle, using the appropriate text tool, click an insertion point in the text. Then, place the cursor over a handle of the bounding box. When the cursor changes to a double-headed arrow, drag the handle to resize the bounding box. The text reflows as necessary to fit the new bounding box dimensions. (If you do not see a bounding box after you click an insertion point, you entered the text freely without a bounding box. You must manually change line endings in free-flow text.)
Note: Be sure to use a text tool when resizing the text block. If you drag a bounding box handle using a selection tool, it scales the text as if it were an object and the text does not reflow.
- To reposition the subtitle, click a selection tool, and place the cursor over the subtitle text. When the cursor changes to a black arrow, drag the subtitle to the desired location in the Monitor panel.
- To change the color group, stroke weight, or alignment, click a selection tool, and select the clip in the timeline. Then, change the appropriate option in the Properties panel. (These properties apply to the entire clip, not to individual characters.)
Move the current-time indicator to the next subtitle you want to edit, select the subtitle clip, and repeat the previous step.
To move the current-time indicator and select a subtitle clip at the same time, click the Next Clip or Previous Clip button in the subtitle track, or use the Previous Subtitle or Next Subtitle button in the Monitor panel.
Adjusts the gap separating consecutive subtitle clips in a timeline to five frames if the gap is less than five frames.
Encore displays an error if the gap between any two subtitle clips in a timeline is less than five frames. The Auto Fix Subtitle Frame Gaps feature automatically resizes one or both the flanking clips in a manner that the gap separating them is five frames.
However, the feature does not resize subtitle clips shorter than 12 frames in duration. In this case, fix the problem manually. Use the feature for all timelines on blu-ray discs, except for timelines with frame dimensions 720x480.
To use Auto Fix Subtitle Frame Gaps:
Fixing gaps is not required for DVDs. You can successfully burn Encore projects on a DVD even if the gap between any two subtitle clips is less than five frames.
Subtitles that you import into a timeline come with preset start and end times. When you create subtitles in Encore, the default duration is initially set to 2 seconds. You can change the display time by shortening or lengthening a subtitle clip in the Timeline Viewer, using the Trim Subtitle buttons in the Monitor panel, or by editing the Duration value in the Properties panel.
To change the default duration for subtitles, choose Edit > Preferences > Timelines (Windows) or Encore > Preferences > Timelines (Mac OS), enter a length of time for the Subtitle Duration, and click OK.
Drag the end of the subtitle to the desired frame to increase or decrease its length. As you drag, the Monitor panel displays the current frames so that you can judge where to position the clip’s new start or end point.
You can’t increase the length of a subtitle unless there are empty frames adjacent to it.
In the Properties panel, specify a different Duration, In-Point, or Out-Point value.
If you change the Duration value, the Out-Point value increases or decreases, depending on whether you increased or decreased the duration. If you change the In-Point value, the Out-Point value changes automatically. If you change the Out-Point value, the In-Point value changes automatically.
After you create the first set of subtitles for a timeline, you can duplicate the entire track and use it like a template for other languages you need to create. Before you duplicate the track, make sure the subtitles are adjusted properly for each scene. This way, you need to change only the content of each subtitle. All other attributes, such as location in the scene, duration, font, formatting, color and position, will match the original set.