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How To Add Subtitles to a Video in VLC

VLC lets you add subtitles to a video using a subtitle file. Here’s how to add subtitles to a video in VLC permanently or temporarily.

For Windows and other operating systems, VLC is the most preferred application for video watching. A couple of the main reasons being its ease of use and a lot of user-friendly options.

As with a decent video player, VLC supports video subtitles. Subtitles help you better understand what is going on in a video. Subtitles are especially helpful when watching videos in non-native languages. To watch a video with subtitles, you first need to add them to the VLC media player while playing the said video. The good thing is, VLC Media Player has several different ways to add subtitles to videos.

Without further wait, let me show you how to add subtitles to a video in VLC in three different ways.

Add subtitles to a video in VLC

Depending on how you want to add the subtitles to a video file in VLC, follow one of the below methods. For example, to add the subtitles temporarily. i.e., while watching a video, follow the first or second methods. To add subtitles to a video permanently, follow the third method.

  1. Add subtitle file to VLC
  2. Download subtitles in VLC and add it
  3. Permanently add subtitles to a video in VLC

Add subtitle file to VLC

If you already have a subtitle file, we can add it in VLC while watching the video using the “Add subtitle file” option. If you don’t know, subtitle files usually have .srt, .vtt, etc., file extensions. Here is how to do it.

First, play the video in the VLC Media Player. While the video is playing, select the “Subtitle > Add subtitle file” option.

Next, find and select the subtitle file in the Open Subtitles window and click the “Open” button.

As soon as you click the open button, the subtitle is added to the video in the VLC player.

Alternative method: Rather than using the Add Subtitle File option, you can make VLC automatically add the subtitle file to the video. To do that, make sure the subtitle file is in the same folder and has the same name as the video. For example, if a video with the name “myVideo.mp4” is in a folder in the D drive, the subtitle file should also be in the same folder with the same name. i.e., “myVideo.srt.”

Download subtitles in VLC and add it

VLC has a neat little feature called VLsub, which lets you search, download, and add subtitles. You don’t already have to have a subtitle file. You can just download it as needed directly in the VLC Media Player. This method is handy when watching movies and other popular videos.

Open the video file in VLC. As the video is playing, select the “View > VLsub” option.

Now, click on the “Search by hash” or “Search by name” button. Generally, the “search by hash” will give better results when watching a movie downloaded from the internet.

The above action will show all the available subtitles for the target video file. Select the subtitle file you think is better suited and click the “Download selection” button.

VLC will download the selected subtitle file and add it to the video when you click the button. You can see that by going to the “Subtitle > Sub track.”

Permanently add subtitles to a video in VLC

You can permanently add subtitles to a video in VLC with just a few clicks. This is especially useful for archiving movies or sharing videos with someone who doesn’t know how to add subtitles, like the elderly. Make sure to have both the video and subtitle files ready and follow the below steps.

  1. Open the VLC Media Player.
  2. Select the “Media > Convert / Save” option.
  3. Click the “Add” button in the File tab.
  4. Select the video file and click “Open.”
  5. Select the “Use a subtitle file” checkbox.
  6. Click the “Browse” button under the “Use a subtitle file” option.
  7. Choose the subtitle file and click “Open.”
  8. Click the “Convert / Save” dropdown menu and select “Convert.”
  9. Select the “Convert” option.
  10. Choose “Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4)” from the Profile dropdown menu.
  11. Click the “Setting” icon next to the Profile.
  12. Go to the “Subtitle” tab.
  13. Select the “Overlay subtitles on the video” checkbox.
  14. Click the “Save” button.
  15. Click the “Browse” button in the main window.
  16. Type a file name, choose the destination, and click “Save.”
  17. Click “Start” in the main window.

As soon as you do that, VLC will start adding the subtitle to the video file. You will see the progress on the seek bar. Once done, you can close the VLC media player. Play the newly saved file to see if the subtitles are correctly added to the video.

That is all. It is that simple to add subtitles to a video in VLC.

I hope that helps.

If you are stuck or need some help, comment below, and I will try to help as much as possible.

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