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Creating Subtitles from Scratch

Gaupol's built-in video player should allow you create subtitles from scratch for a given video and the various tools provided should help if some batch processing is needed. There are many possible work-flows for subtitling – here's one simple approach that can get you started. All the keys referred to below correspond to actions that you can find via the menubar as well, but using the keyboard is necessary to be productive.

  1. Open Gaupol and create a blank document: File · New.

  2. Load the video file you wish to subtitle: Video · Load Video.

  3. Play the video from start to finish (or maybe a scene at a time, whatever feels more comfortable). Press J whenever someone starts speaking a new subtitle length piece. A new subtitle will be inserted with a three second duration and a placeholder text.

  4. To correct for your reaction speed, hit H. If your reaction speed earlier has been e.g. half a second, shift all subtitles -0.5 seconds. If you're working a scene at a time, select the new subtitles and shift only those.

  5. Go over the video one subtitle at a time. Press O over and over again to play video of the selected subtitle as you make changes to the subtitle in question. Note that you don't need to wait for the subtitle playback to finish – whenever you hit O again, playback will resume from right before the subtitle start.

    1. Write down what is said. Hit S and M to split and merge subtitles where needed to avoid too long or short subtitles, or too long pauses within a subtitle.

    2. Use keys Q and W to adjust the subtitle start time so that it matches the video. Keep your right hand on O and alternate between adjustment and play until the match looks good.

    3. Play the subtitle with O. Hit K during playback to set the end time of the subtitle. Adjust if needed with keys E and R, similar to the start time. Note that the end time doesn't need to match when speaking ends, but should instead be visible long enough to be read, although limited by the next subtitle or scene change.

  6. Once a scene or the whole video is subtitled, if you were not careful to avoid it, you'll notice that short subtitles disappear too fast. You can batch-fix that with Tools · Adjust Durations. Set a minimum duration and gap and possibly lengthening to match reading speed to ensure that subtitles remain on screen long enough to be read. Note that automatic lengthening can have adverse effects such as pushing subtitles across a scene change, but for some videos, such as conference presentations, there should be no harm.

  7. Done! Save your file! Share your work! The SubRip format is the most common and compatible subtitle file format and thus recommended for most uses, especially if you share your work for a wide audience.