How to Add Subtitles to a Movie MP4 AVI Video in Windows Media Player

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Whether if you are watching a movie video in a language that you do not know, or if you just prefer to read subtitles instead of bringing up the volume of the movie video, you can insert any piece of subtitle in any language of your choice into your movie video. This article will show you simple step-by-step tutorial on how to add subtitles (srt, sub, ass, ssa, idx, ssf, usf, rt) to a movie or any other video in file format of mp4, avi or mkv.

While we cannot guarantee it will always work, you will just have to try it yourself. We recommend using SRT format for subtitles and AVI format for videos. It may also work with other subtitles and video formats. The tutorial will take you roughly 10 mins to master the trick, and then you will be able to use it for the rest of your life.

Disclaimer: This post is for if you own the legal copy of the movie or television series video of which you would like to add the subtitles to.

add subtiles to movie

How to add subtitles to movie or add srt to avi?

  1. The very first thing you have to do is to make sure that your movie is in avi file extension. If not, you have to convert it to avi file extension by using any of the free video converters available online that support avi conversion. (Update: With the new codec pack, this method may also work with other video file extensions. Make sure to keep a backup of your original video before trying anything.)
  2. If you already have a piece of subtitle file with you. Move on to step 5.
  3. Otherwise, search and download the subtitle in the language of your choice that match your movie from any of the subtitle sites online.
  4. However, sometimes it will not be easy to find a suitable subtitle for a less popular movie.
  5. Alright, for now you should already have a subtitle in srt format (or any other compatible subtitle format) with you. SRT is the format of a subtitle text file. You can see the contents of the subtitle with any text editor such as notepad.
  6. Place it in the same folder with the movie.
  7. You have to rename the srt file to match the avi file name. Both names must be exactly the same! Simply just copy and paste when you rename them.
    For example:
    – Alvin-and-the-chipmunks.avi
  8. Lastly, you need to download and install VobSub so that your video players learn how to display subtitle while playing a movie (or consider downloading the windows media player codec pack to play mkv rmvb flv mp4 with subtitles).

And that’s it! Your video should display the subtitle if you follow the above steps correctly. You’ve just learnt how to add subtitles to a movie or add srt to avi!

If your subtitle isn’t displaying correctly with your movie, it may be due to incorrect timing of the subtitle file. In that case, you will need to edit the subtitle manually (don’t worry, it’s pretty easy) before they can displayed correctly. Here’s the tutorial: How to Edit or Convert Subtitle.

For Mac Users – How to Add Subtitles to a MP4 AVI Movie Video:

To view .srt files on a Mac, you will need to use a more capable video playing application such as VLC Media Player. It’s a free and easy to use video player used widely across the globe. Once you’re running VLC, go to preferences and deselect ‘automatically detect subtitle files’. Follow step 1 and 2 above until you have a piece of subtitle file on your computer. Then, on your VLC player, choose the subtitle file to be played with your movie using the ‘browse’ button (select both files). It’s not automatic but it should work. Enjoy your movies!

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  • mr crane

    Thanks so much for the help. I didn’t know about the same file names but it’s finally working.

  • kunal

    How can I add subtitle if it is not a movie. I have avi file of private tutorial which I wish to add subtitle. Instead of adding text manually, is there a way for converting voice into text electronically or automatically?
    Waiting for your favorable reply.


    Hi and thanks for the advice. I’ve got a question. How can I make one archive from 2 .srt, because when the first archive ends, the second doesn’t starts. Because they have the same time code, they’re played one over the other.

  • adriana

    I did everything the way it says to and the subtitles are still not showing up. Why can that be my husband had a site that he downloaded and work before with the same way? But, now it’s not working. This does work for divx. Well, if there is any other ideas that may help please get back.

  • joana

    Very helpful, it works perfectly. Thank you.

  • anya_r

    It works! Thank you so much!

  • Jeanette

    Hi, I don’t actually have any pages to add. I just wanted to say thanks for a great tip. So simple, a 3 year-old could do it.

    Best wishes.

  • Ashish Mamgain

    Thank you. I don’t have words for you. Great job.

  • Alvin Nyau

    Thank you very much for your info. Be sure to contact me if you have any trouble that perhaps need my help.

  • Nitish goyal

    Thanks for giving such a wonderful information. It really works!

  • Jonas

    How can i do this if i want to burn the movie with Nero and watch it on my tv/dvd-player?

  • smith

    Great! It works. Thanks. This is the easiest tutorial I found on the web. Strongly recommended for dummies like me.

  • John

    So much thanks for the info. Looking for it for months.

  • Tharindu TdH

    Wow! That is working perfectly! Thank you a lot!

  • Nanni

    Thanks a lot, it’s really working and so simple. Thanks one more time.

  • John

    It seems like it won’t work, do you need to install VobSub into the media player’s folder? (I’m using Windows media player that came with Windows 7)

  • Alvin Nyau

    You do not need to install vobsub into media player’s folder. It is a standalone program. You just have to install it into the default location that the setup suggested.
    I’m afraid the file names of your srt and avi are not matching. Try to check them again.

  • dtriebh

    Hi, there are existing to ways to play subs with avi-container files: 1. softsub-method: like explained yet, you have 2 different files a avi and a srt, disadvantage: you always need 2 files; if the filenames are not equal or if the srt isn’t in the same folder like the avi it don’t work.
    2. hardsub: integrating the srt directly in the avi-file: advantage: you only have 1 file, disadvantage: you only can do it by ENCODING the avi which needs a little bit of time and action (open the avi in e.g. the TMPGenc encoder program, then you go on “filters”, “edit filter list”, add the “subtitles”-filter and open it, mark “enable subtitles” and then “import” the srt-file and encode the resulting avi with embedded subtitles into any format you wish -you also can change any subtitle phrase or time setting manually like you want.)

  • hamid

    Hi, first of all thanks a lot for your usefull hint. By the way I have a problem of the timing of text, (text is 20 secs after the film!). How can I fix it?

  • Bonsikie

    The instructions above are spot on. Thanks a lot.

  • notme

    A simpler way is to use which will automatically rename the found subtitles to match the movie’s file name. You just need to make sure that you put the complete filename in the search box and not just the movie name.

  • Alvin Nyau

    I’m glad it did help you guys out.

  • Rowbearto

    Using a Mac, how do I “burn” the subtitles into an AVI movie? I can view the subtitles when watching movie in VLC as above, but I want to convert to DVD format with the subtitles permanently (or not) burned in. Many thanks.

  • zaland

    Hi. I’ve downloaded the subtitles (srt), but together with them there is also the horrible voice reading them. How to remove this voice?

  • Griff

    I think my question is new. if not, I apologize.
    I have a video that is split into parts (.001, .002, .003, etc.) and I also have an .srt file with the same name, supposedly the English subtitles. I want to put all the pieces together, ending up with an .avi file with the subtitles embedded. I tried to use the HJSplit’s standard joining procedure to merge the .00X files and the .srt file. Not happening. I get an .avi file that plays perfectly, but no subtitles.
    Here’s my question(s): Is it possible to do what I want with HJSplit using different steps?
    If not, I will join the .00X parts with HJSplit and follow the above instructions to join the movie and the subtitles. Will I be able to copy the resulting file to DVD and play on a VCR?
    Thanks for your attention.

  • Alvin Nyau

    WinAVI might be able to help you out. It is a software which you can convert AVI into DVD format (together with the subtitle). So, all you have to do is to convert your video before burning it into your dvd.

    You might have installed a suspicious plugin which does the voice reading. Try to find the particular plugin you have installed and uninstalled it.

    First of all, avi doesn’t need to “combine” with the srt. All you have to do is to install a plugin called VobSub for your players so that they are able to read the subtitle while playing videos for you. Be sure to rename both the avi and srt files into a same name and put them together in a same folder or directory.
    Playing movies with subtitles has nothing to do with Zipping/Unzipping or HJSplit.

  • Irv

    I am trying to add the English subtitles to a mpeg4 movie that is being converted to avi but I only want subs for the foreign language audio not when the actors are speaking English. With the converter I am using Xilisoft Ultimate 5 it only allows me to add a complete subtitle srt file not just parts of it.

  • Alvin Nyau

    Well, that’s not quite possible for you to do that with just a few simple steps or so. If you really want to do that, you will have to delete all the parts in your srt file that you do not want them to be shown using any srt editor.

  • Irv

    Thanks Alvin for the tip. I could try to fool around with something like a srt editor to see if I can figure out how to do it. Can you refer me to an srt editor that is free to download and use.
    I guess a srt editor removes text from the subs but do they indicate who is speaking those lines so I would know if it is the translation that I need and not from the English dialogue that I would have to remove.
    This all very new to me so I am sorry for all the questions.

  • Alvin Nyau

    Please do not feel sorry. I am more than happy to help!
    I believe this article in this page could help you out.

  • Regan

    Thank you so much! I’ve tried almost everything else and it finally worked!

  • Alvin Nyau

    You’re very much welcome!

  • Dessert Mun

    Thanks for the great Tip! It works real fine.

  • Lyn

    I followed the instructions to add the subtitles to a movie for a mac on vlc player but it is not working.

  • Lyn

    I got it to work!

  • Alvin Nyau

    I’m happy to know that you’ve finally got it work!

  • Kayleigh

    Hi, i managed to add subtitles to my film. Will it still be subtitled when I burn it to a dvd?

  • Alvin Nyau

    WinAVI might be able to help you out. It’s a software which you can convert AVI into DVD format (together with the subtitle). So, all you have to do is to convert your video before burning it into your dvd.

  • Brian-ha

    Thanks! Worked fine.

  • Goofy

    I got the easiest solution, no need to add any vobsub thing.
    1) You have to rename the srt file to match the avi file name. Both names must be exactly the same!
    And select both the files and drag to the vlc player.
    It plays very well.

  • Alvin Nyau

    Your prefererd method works only in VLC media player. Some people prefer other players like Windows Media Player. For those of you who use VLC as your default player, this method is indeed the easiest way to add a subtitle to your movie.
    Well, thanks for your info.

  • kamenashi

    Thank you very much, Alvin Nyau!

  • Angel_snowhite06

    The article about adding subtitles was really informative and very helpful. Thanks.

  • Mariahjaneyvicente

    thanks :)

  • Peter White

    Just google search Step by Step Guide on How to Add Subtitle SRT to AVI, ASS to AVI, SSA to AVI, IDX to AVI, SUB to AVI. You will find a simple solution on how to add all kinds of subtitles to avi, infact, it also applies to add subtitles to mp4, mkv, wmv, mov, vob and etc.

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