With iCaption, creating video subtitles or captions from scratch is made easier, even without prior experience in subtitle or transcript creation. Its interface utilizes timeline-based editing with audio visualization. The subtitle formats currently supported are SubRip .srt (the most widely used soft subtitle format over the past decade) and YouTube .sbv.
What are soft subtitles? Soft subs are files stored separately from the video file. They are called soft, because they are not hard-encoded into each video frame; they are rendered in real-time as you play the video. This means that you can have multiple languages per video file, which you can switch or turn on and off during playback. The downside to soft subs is that you need a video player which supports them, but most modern video players support soft subs, including YouTube.
If you are expecting subtitles to be mixed down into the video file, or to have control over font formatting (soft subs cannot do this but video players which support them typically have global font options), then hard-subbing is your safe bet and iCaption probably isn't for you.
Features and Capabilities:
- A user interface designed to visualize audio and subtitles throughout time.
- Powerful timeline editing capabilities, with or without a reference video loaded.
- Dynamic multi-resolution waveform visualization in real-time; no audio processing/load times.
- Scrub through the reference video using the subtitle timeline markers.
- Shortcuts for adding subtitles to the timeline in real-time while the movie is playing.
- Automatically determine the subtitle duration.
- Real-time checking and visualization for overlapping subtitle times.
- Easily adjust all subtitle times by one offset value.
- Search subtitles allows you to filter the subtitle list.
- Previewing allows you to test subtitles without an external viewer.
- Create, edit, open and save YouTube (.sbv) files.
- Create, edit, open and save SubRip (.srt) files.
- Convert SubRip to YouTube format and vice versa.
- Complete abstraction from the subtitle file formats.
- Support for opening subtitle files with various types of text encoding.
- Search an online database for known translations.
- Preferences for user customization.
- Up-to-date documentation.
Note: the developer isn't notified whenever a review is written, so if you are unsatisfied, run into any issues, or just have ideas to make the app work better for you, contact the developer directly with your concern (using the Support link, or the Support menu item in the application's Help menu).
Providing your feedback directly can be more helpful in getting you what you need out of the application. The developer is always looking for constructive criticism and back-and-forth discussion in order to improve on, what he believes, an already quality product.
Of course not every feature suggestion can be met, but there are already several features in the application which were made by request from the customers.
Another reason to contact the developer directly before reviewing, is that Apple does not allow developers to respond to these reviews, so we can't help ease your frustration, which might have an easy solution.
- Use TouchBar to scrub through the currently opened video.
- Change layout of Help file for better compatibility of the newer Mac OS Help viewer window size.
Ratings and Reviews
I teach a class where being able to put captions on video clips is essential. In the past I've used Inqscribe. I bought this because I thought students might like less expensive.
However, when I tried it I had a terrible time. It doesn't seem possible to easily move around by sliding through the bottom the way you can in Movie Player. I found setting start and end points cumbersome. I probably didn't understand its interface but I kept having to go back to the beginning to play through to try and pause on an end point. I imagine this would get better if I used it more but it didn't have the clean, transparent way of moving through the clip that I expected.
Inqscribe exports a self-contained move with the captions wherever you want (I typically put them under the clip) and you can adjust font and size, etc. (though you can't add bold or italics). iCaption produces a separate file that you have to load with you clip into your movie player (I use QuickTime Player 7). I couldn't figure out how to do this. Again, there is probably a clear simple way but I gave up.
For the past several days I have been frantically searching for a usable subtitling program for Mac. Nothing I downloaded worked at all. I even created my own spreadsheet which, at least, did the job, but it was cumbersome to use. Then, just about two hours ago, I searched FreeCode (the successor of FreshMeat, for those who might remember that). After some fiddling, I suddenly saw iCaption for the first time. I was directed to the Apple App Store, and within about 15 minutes I was fixing the errors in my prior, not-very-accurate .srt file.
This program just makes it easy and fun. Thanks to the author for doing such a great job on this.
My only suggestion is to get the word out, somehow or other, because I needed this badly and it took too long to find.
Wait, I do have one other suggestion: Like Play, Preview could turn into a Stop or Pause button while video is running. That way I could stop the preview without having to look at the screen or move my mouse.
Good luck, and I will make a donation.
Works great, simple to use!
I've been searching for a simple to use subtitle editor that can export an .srt file for months. Most utilities will allow you to add an existing .srt file to your video, but don't let you create the subtitles on the fly.
This tool works perfectly - it accepts any video format Quicktime understands, allows you to quickly and easily make subtitles, and allows you to preview the subtitles without having to leave the program.
I would like to see a couple of enhancements in the next version:
- audio scrubbing and use of left/right arrow keys for frame-accuracy in subtitle placement.
- drag and drop re-ordering of subtitles in case a sentence is missed (I know manual correction of Start/End times would be required).
Overall, really good product for the money!
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.