Voiceover, Subtitling and Dubbing

Localization of Videos

The post-production process of translating a video into different languages or adapting it for a specific country or region is known as video localisation. The 3 most common methods of doing this are as follows:


Subtitling is a method where captions are displayed at the bottom of the multimedia that transcribe, translate or localize the dialogue or narrative. These captions are timed according to the start of the dialogue and stay on screen long enough for adequate readability.

Localization of videos by using subtitles/captions for the spoken dialogues aijid narratives in the video, and then translating the subtitles to the required languages. SDH subtitles are created for people who are hard of hearing. These will include subtitles for dialogues as well as subtitles for sound cues that are plot relevant.

When we are presented with a request to subtitle a video, it could either be an English audio video, or a foreign language studio video. These are the steps we follow during the process of subtitling:

  • Transcription and timing of English file
  • Review of English file
  • Translation
  • Review of translation
  • Conversion/Delivery

We have the capacity to deliver subtitle files in various formats like SRT, Doc, RTF, SSC, TXT, STL, SUB, ASS, SSA, etc.

Subtitles can even be hard coded into the video, and the video can be delivered in formats like AVI, MP4, MPEG, FLV, WMV, MOV, ASF, 3GP, etc.

Before starting the important thing to note here is that whatever is requested, we first need to create an English subtitle file. Language will be translated from that. SDH file is also prepared from the English subtitle file. Let us discuss English audio videos. In this case, we may be requested to provide one or more of the following:

  • English subtitle file – Standard English subtitle file
  • Language subtitle file/s – Localized version of the English subtitle file
  • SDH – English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Placed SDH – Subtitles for deaf and hard of hearing with placements for ease of understanding


Voiceover is a method where the dialogues in a video which are spoken in the source language are transcribed and localized into the target language. A voice actor then speaks these localized dialogues which are then recorded over the original audio.

In this method, the viewer hears the original audio in the background in the source language, while the voice actor interprets. The volume of the voice actor is much louder and lags about a second behind the original audio track. The voice-over technique is useful because it allows the viewer to both hear and understand the speakers’ words at the same time.


Localization of the videos by using translated voice overs to replace the spoken dialogues in the video. Subtitles will still be needed to translate the narratives. Dubbing a method where the original speakers’ audio track is replaced entirely by the localized voice actors’. Contrary to voice-over which preserves the original track underneath the voice actor, the dub must be carefully timed and synchronized to match the speakers’ lips, meaning, and even intonations. This process is lengthy.

1.  Transcription and timing of English file
2.  Review of English file
3.  Translation
4.  Review of Translation
5.  Recording of voice overs
6.  Layering of voice over audio on the video
7.  Review
8.  Conversion/Delivery