Easy macOS workflow to add subtitles to your videos in FCPX WITHOUT using YouTube.

Hi folks,

It’s always been important to make your video content accessible but even more so now that many folk end up watching videos on social media with the sound turned off.

So you need to generate subtitles…without having to do it all one at a time manually — who has time for that?

I’ve seen various workflows described that try to use the YouTube tools to generate subtitles for your videos. I’m not a big fan of those workflows so I went looking for alternatives.

First stop is speedscriber.

This is a macOS App that’s currently in Beta but you can sign up for early access.

This will analyse a video clip (or an audio file) by uploading it to the cloud of course and produce a machine generated transcript of the speech, even trying to identify different speakers.

The transcript is machine generated so it’s never perfect but the ‘touchup’ tools in SpeedScriber are really fast and let you fix any mistakes really quickly.

UPDATE: I should mention that Speedscriber currently has support for American, British or Australian English (yes they are all different!) only.

I guess other languages may be added in future.

Then you have a transcript of the video which, among other things you can import back into FCPX and use to search for ‘who said what when?’ but our focus here is subtitles so..

Next we export an .SRT file.

This is a text file containing the text and timing of all the speech.

Finally we use Spherico XTI Subtitle importer (macOS App) to bring the .SRT file back into FCPX as actual factual titles inserted at the right time

There are lots of parameters you can play with in XTI, but have a look at the tutorials.

So you end up with graphic titles sitting in a secondary storyline in your FCPX project that exactly match the speech for very little effort!

Of course, this workflow is NOT free.

Speedscriber will charge you per minute for it’s cloud transcription service — at the moment it’s about $0.5 (50 cents) a minute, which compares pretty well with online transcription services. The more time you buy the cheaper it gets.

XTI Subtitle Importer is donationware and they are asking for a 40 EUR donation which seems pretty fair if you want it to be supported and developed in future.

So there you go — a nice straightforward way to add subtitles to ALL your FCPX videos in future.

You’re welcome.

DISCLAIMER: I am a beta tester of SpeedScriber but I have not been paid to promote either of these products — just doing it in case it helps anyone. All views are my own and not those of my employer.

Dave

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