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Subtitles

Q:How do I make the subtitles load and display automatically?
A:

All you have to do is give your subtitle files the same filename as your movie file. The part of the filename up to the first dot must be identical. If you do that, the subtitles will automatically be detected and displayed.

For example:
This is some cool movie.avi
This is some cool movie.srt

You can add something after the first dot, for example the language of the subtitle:
This is some cool movie.English.srt
This is some cool movie.German.srt

Common subtitle file formats are: srt, idx/sub, idx/rar, smi, ssa, sub

Q:Embedded subtitles are not displayed
A:

Right-click on the white Haali Media Splitter icon in the system tray (right-bottom of your screen). There you can select the subtitle that should be displayed.

If a subtitle is selected, but still not being displayed in Windows Media Player, then try enabling the option "Autoload VSFilter" in Haali Media Splitter. You can do that here: Start > Programs > K-Lite Codec Pack > Configuration > Haali Media Splitter > Options > Compatibility.

If you are using Windows Media Player 12 on Windows 7, then you may need to apply some tweaks to make WMP use the codecs from the pack. By default WMP12 uses Media Foundation codecs for playback of certain file types, such as MP4. You can disable Media Foundation with the Win7DSFilterTweaker tool that is included in the pack.

Q:How can I hide the subtitles?
A:

You should see a green arrow shaped icon in your system tray (right-bottom of your screen). That is DirectVobSub. Right-click on that icon to enable or disable the subtitles.

If you don't see the green arrow icon, then you are probably using the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic. You can enable/disable the subtitles through the menu of the player: Play -> Subtitles.

Q:How can I configure DirectVobSub to load the subtitles but hide them by default?
A:

Go to DirectVobSub configuration. On the tab 'Misc', enable 'Hide subtitles'.

Q:How can I select a different subtitle?
A:

See below.

Q:How can I switch to a different subtitle language in MP4, MKV and OGM files?
A:

There are several ways to select your desired audio and subtitle streams.

Media Player Classic:

When using LAV Splitter or Haali Media Splitter you can select embedded subtitles here:

Menu -> Navigate -> Subtitle Language

When the internal subtitle renderer of MPC is active and it has loaded external subtitle file(s), then you can select the subtitle here:

Menu -> Play -> Subtitles

Haali Media Splitter:

When Haali Media Splitter is used for a file, you should see a white icon in your system tray (right-bottom corner of your screen). That icon belongs to Haali Media Splitter. Right-click on the icon to choose between the audio and subtitle streams that are embedded in the file.

DirectVobSub:

When the DirectVobSub subtitle filter is active you should see a green arrow-shaped icon in your system tray (right-bottom corner of your screen). Right-click on that icon to select a subtitle.

If you are using Media Player Classic and you don't see the DirectVobSub icon, then the internal subtitle renderer of MPC is active. See above on how to select a subtitle in that case.

Automatic selection:

Both Haali Media Splitter and LAV Splitter have options to configure your preferred languages for embedded audio and subtitle streams. See this FAQ page for detailed instructions.

Q:Windows Media Player shows no video when a subtitle file is present
A:

Update your graphics driver.

Q:Is it possible to display the subtitles below the video?
A:

Yes, that is possible!

How you can do it depends on with method you are using for displaying the subtitles. Usually that is one of these three methods: Media Player Classic internal renderer, DirectVobSub, or ffdshow. If you do not know which method you are using, then read the other FAQ topics on this page for more information about them. Below you can find the settings for all three methods.

Media Player Classic internal subtitle renderer

The internal subtitle renderer of MPC works differently from the other subtitle filters. Instead of merging the subtitle image with the video before it gets send to the video renderer, it sends the subtitle image to the video renderer separately from the video. The video renderer is then responsible for merging it with the video. The disadvantage of this method is that it only works with certain video renderers. The advantage is that the subtitles can be placed anywhere on the visible screen. There is no need to enlarge the video frame.

Subtitle placement options can be found here:
MPC Options -> Subtitles -> "Override placement"
MPC Options -> Subtitles -> Default Style -> "Screen Alignment & margins"

If you uncheck (or half-check) the option "Position subtitles relative to the video frame", then the subtitles are positioned relative to your screen (= video plus black bars). Positioning them relative to the screen thus allows placing the subtitles in the black bars that you see during full screen playback.

It is usually enough to adjust the positioning to be relative to the screen. The black bars are almost always high enough to fit the subtitles with the default vertical placement of 90%.

To enable the internal subtitle filter:
MPC Options -> Playback -> enable "auto-load subtitles"

To select a compatible video renderer:
MPC Options -> Playback -> Output -> DirectShow video

DirectVobSub and ffdshow

With these two subtitle display methods, the subtitles are merged on top of the video frame. Placing the subtitles below the video is only possible by enlarging the video frame. This is done by adding black bars to the top and bottom of the video. These black bars will also be visible when the video is not in fullscreen. They are different from black bars that are only visible during fullscreen playback. Those are not part of the video frame and thus can not be used to put the subtitles onto.

So two steps need to be taken: (1) enlarge the video frame, and (2) move the subtitles down a bit. Step 1 is the most important, step 2 is often not even needed.

Below you will find instructions for configuring DirectVobSub and ffdshow. You only need to configure the filter that is responsible for displaying the subtitles. Usually that will be DirectVobSub, unless you explicitly configured ffdshow to handle the subtitles.

DirectVobSub settings

(1) DirectVobSub options -> General -> Vertical Padding -> Extend to 16:9
(2) DirectVobSub options -> Main -> Override placement

ffdshow settings

(1) ffdshow video decoder configuration -> 'Subtitle' page -> Enable 'Letterbox' with value 16:9
(2) ffdshow video decoder configuration -> 'Subtitle' page -> Vertical Position

Values that you should use for DirectVobSub and ffdshow

Extend and Letterbox 16:9 means that the video height will be enlarged so that the ratio of the video width/height becomes 16/9. A different ratio may be more optimal depending on your monitor/tv. Some indications:
Monitor with screen resolution 1600x1280, 1280x1024, 1280x800 -> use 16:9
Monitor with screen resolution 1600x1200, 1024x768, 800x600 -> use 4:3
HDTV -> use 16:9
PAL TV -> use extend to 576 lines
NTSC TV -> use extend to 480 lines

Both filters have a default vertical position of 90%. To move the subtitles further down, increase this percentage with a few %. Don't make it too big, otherwise the bottom part of the subtitles may fall outside of the visible video area.

Q:Karaoke subtitles are displayed as static subs
A:

You need to enable the option called "Allow animation when buffering" in DirectVobSub and/or MPC.

DirectVobSub options -> Misc tab
Media Player Classic options -> Subtitles

In old versions of DirectVobSub the option is named differently. Then it was called "Pre-buffer subpictures" and you need to disable it to get animation.
In old versions of Media Player Classic the option was called "Sub-picture buffer". Set that value to 0 to get animation.

Q:No subtitles are displayed in Media Center but they do display in other players
A:

Enable the option "Auto-load VSFilter" in Haali Media Splitter options.

Q:Subtitles are not displayed in Windows Media Player on Windows 7
A:

On Windows 7, both Windows Media Player and Media Center make use of the Media Foundation framework instead of DirectShow for playing certain file types. As a result, DirectShow subtitle filters like DirectVobSub are not used. Media Foundation lacks native support for many common subtitle formats.

Media Foundation is used for the following file types: AVI, WMV, MP4, MOV, 3GP, M2TS.

In case of AVI files, subtitles will be displayed if DirectVobSub is installed. Media Foundation has a special workaround to make that possible.

For the other file formats mentioned above you need to disable Media Foundation in order to be able to get subtitles. You can do that with the Win7DSFilterTweaker tool that is included with the codec pack. Instead of disabling Media Foundation, what also works in most cases is to disable the Microsoft DTV-DVD Video Decoder. You can also do that with the Win7DSFilterTweaker tool.

If you have trouble getting DirectVobSub to load for external subtitles when ffdshow or LAV is set as preferred H.264 decoder, then try setting the preferred decoder back to Microsoft. That may help. The recommended setting in Win7DSFilterTweaker is USE MERIT. That allows using ffdshow or LAV, because they have a higher merit as the Microsoft decoder, while at the same time allow loading of DirectVobSub.

We recommend using Media Player Classic for video playback. That is capable of displaying subtitles without the need for all kinds of special workarounds.

An alternative for DirectVobSub would be the Local Subtitles for WMP plugin for WMP12. That also works with Media Foundation. We have not tested it so we can't provide any support for it, nor can we say how well it works. Don't forget to disable DirectVobSub (with the Codec Tweak Tool) to prevent double subtitles in some situations.

Q:Subtitles are not displayed in Media Player Classic on Windows 7
A:

Two solutions:

  1. Make DirectVobSub a preferred filter:
    MPC Options -> External Filter -> click "Add Filter..." -> select "DirectVobSub (auto-loading version)" and click OK -> choose "Prefer"
  2. Enable the internal subtitle filter:
    MPC Options -> Playback -> enable "Auto-load subtitles"

Solution 2 is required if you want to use DXVA hardware accelerated video decoders.

Q:What is the difference between DirectVobSub and the internal subtitle filter of Media Player Classic?
A:

They are largely based on the same code, so they have similar abilities. The main difference between the two is how the subtitles are merged with the video.

DirectVobSub merges the subtitle image with a video frame before that video frame gets send to the video renderer. The advantage of this method is that it works with all video renderers.

The internal subtitle filter of MPC sends the subtitle image to the video renderer separately from the video. The video renderer is responsible for merging them together. The advantage of this method is that it is compatible with DXVA video decoders. That are video decoders that use your graphics card to assist in the decoding process. Such decoders need a direct connection to the video renderer, meaning that intermediate filters such as DirectVobSub can not be used. A disadvantage of the internal subtitle filter of MPC is that it only works with certain video renderers.

When the internal subtitle filter of MPC is enabled it will automatically prevent DirectVobSub from being used. That way you won't get double subtitles.

Q:External subtitles are not loaded when playing .mkv files in WMP11 on Windows Vista
A:

This is the fault of Windows Media Player. In certain situations it prevents intermediate filters (such as DirectVobSub) from loading.

An alternative method for displaying the subtitles is to activate the internal subtitle filter in ffdshow. You can enable/disable subtitles through the red ffdshow video decoder icon in your system tray.

If you always want to use ffdshow for the subtitles, then don't forget to disable DirectVobSub with the Codec Tweak Tool. Otherwise you might get double subtitles in some situations.

Q:DVD subtitles are not displayed in Media Player Classic
A:

Make sure you have enabled the DVD subtitles. You can enable the subtitles through the "Navigate" menu in MPC. There you can also select the subtitles language.

If no subtitles are displayed, even when you have enabled them, then try the following solutions:

  • Enable the internal MPEG-2 decoder in MPC. You can do that in MPC Options -> Internal Filters.
  • Disable DXVA hardware acceleration in the Cyberlink MPEG-2 Decoder. You can do that through: Codec Tweak Tool -> Various Tweaks.
Q:Subtitles flicker rapidly in Media Player Classic on Windows 7
A:

This problem can be solved by disabling subpicture buffering.

MPC Options -> Subtitles -> set "Sub pictures to buffer:" to 0.

The only negative effect of changing this setting is a slight increase in CPU usage.

You may also try to increase the buffer size to at least 4 or higher. That may solve the problem as well.

Q:Which methods are available for displaying subtitles?
A:

There are three ways to display subtitles using the components that are available in the codec pack. By default either DirectVobSub or the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic is used.

DirectVobSub

This dedicated subtitle filter works with all players.

It gets placed in between the video decoder and the video renderer. It merges the subtitle image with the video. This filter is not compatible with decoders that use DXVA, since those need to be directly connected to the video renderer.

ffdshow video decoder

ffdshow has an option for displaying subtitles. If enabled, then by default it will only be active whenever ffdshow is used to decode the video. If you also want to use it together with a different video decoder, then you need to enable "Raw video" in ffdshow.

Internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic

This subtitle renderer has the advantage that it is compatible with video decoders that use DXVA hardware acceleration.

This renderer works differently then DirectVobSub and ffdshow. It does not merge the subtitle image with the video before the video reaches the video renderer, but instead it sends the subtitle images to the video renderer separately from the video and instructs the video renderer merge them with the video.

The above is possible because Media Player Classic has control over the video renderer. The internal subtitle renderer only works with specific video renderers.

To enable and disable the internal subtitle filter:
MPC Options -> Playback -> enable "auto-load subtitles"

To select a compatible video renderer:
MPC Options -> Playback -> Output -> DirectShow video

Q:How can I see if DirectVobSub is being used?
A:

You should see a green arrow shaped icon in your system tray when DirectVobSub is active. The system tray is located in the right bottom corner of your screen.

Media Player Classic can show you which filters are being used during playback. Right-click on the video and select Filters. You should see DirectVobSub in the displayed filter list when it is active.

Q:How do I enable the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic?
A:

MPC Options -> Playback -> enable "Auto-load subtitles".

You also need to select a compatible video renderer. Compatible ones are: VMR-7 (renderless), VMR-9 (renderless), Haali video renderer, EVR Sync, EVR Custom Presenter, and madVR.

MPC Options -> Playback -> Output -> DirectShow video.

When the internal subtitle renderer is active, it will automatically prevent DirectVobSub from being used. So you do not need to uninstall or disable DirectVobSub.

Q:How can I adjust the font, color and size of the subtitles?
A:

It is only possible to adjust the font and color of text based subtitles. Subtitles that are based on images, such as idx/sub, can not be modified.

Instructions can be found below for each of the subtitle display methods that is supported by the codec pack.

DirectVobSub

DirectVobSub configuration -> Main tab -> Text Settings -> click on "Arial". There you can choose the font, colors, and font size.

ffdshow video decoder

ffdshow video decoder configuration -> Subtitles -> Font. There you can choose the font, colors, and font size.

ffdshow video decoder configuration -> Subtitles -> VobSub. There you can adjust the size (scaling) of image based subtitles.

Internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic

MPC Options -> Subtitles -> Default Style. There you can choose the font, colors, and font size.

Q:How can I adjust the subtitle delay for the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic Homecinema?
A:

MPC-HC works with a delay interval (default: 500ms). Press F1 to substract this interval from the current delay. Press F2 to add this interval to the current delay.

For example, press F1 twice for a delay of -1000 milliseconds. Press F2 three times for a delay of +1500 milliseconds.

The delay interval can be adjusted here: MPC Options -> Subtitles -> Delay interval.

If you want to use a specific delay value, then you could use set that value as the delay interval (as a positive value!). After that you will only need to press F1 or F2 once to activate the delay.

Q:Is it possible to make the subtitles less blurry when displayed in full screen?
A:

Yes, that is possible by increasing the resolution of the texture upon which the subtitles are rendered. This will however result in a small increase in CPU usage.

DirectVobSub

DirectVobSub configuration -> general tab -> adjust the "Resolution" setting

Internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic

MPC Options -> Subtitles -> adjust "Maximum texture resolution"

Q:The subtitle menus in Media Player Classic are greyed out
A:

Those options are only available when using the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic. They are disabled when using an external subtitle filter, such as DirectVobSub.

Q:The video starts stuttering whenever subtitles are displayed
A:

This is a performance issue and can be solved by disabling subtitle animation. Animation is rarely used, for example for karaoke effects in anime videos, so disabling it is no problem for videos with regular subtitles.

  1. Go to: Media Player Classic options -> Subtitles
  2. Uncheck "Allow animation when buffering".
  3. Set "Sub pictures to buffer" to 4.
  4. Do the same in: DirectVobSub options -> Misc tab
Q:Subtitles show weird symbols
A:

This may happen if the subtitle language requires a different code page than the language of your Windows locale settings. You can solve it by adjusting the code page settings.

Media Player Classic options -> Subtitles -> Default Style -> Click on "Default (1)" and change it to the correct setting.

DirectVobSub options -> Main tab -> Text Settings -> Click on "Arial" -> Click on "Default (1)" and change it to the correct setting.

This problem may also occur if you have Logitech Gaming Software installed. Remove or disabling that software will solve the problem.

Q:How can I get subtitles when using a video decoder that uses DXVA hardware acceleration?
A:

You need to use the internal subtitle renderer of Media Player Classic. It is not possible to use DirectVobSub in combination with DXVA, because the video decoder needs a direct connection to the video renderer.

If you are using a different player, then your options are limited. You can get subtitles when using ffdshow DXVA video decoder if you enable its internal subtitle functionality. Enable the "Subtitle" checkbox in ffdshow DXVA decoder configuration. You also need to enable post processing on the "Hardware acceleration" page in ffdshow settings. Be aware that this subtitle display method may significantly increase CPU usage.

Q:Subtitles reset to beginning when seeking
A:

This is caused by the DivX Plus Codec Bundle. You can solve it by uninstalling DivX.

 

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