Dune / MKV / Subtitles

Discussion in 'Video Streaming Boxes & Services' started by prof yaffle, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. prof yaffle

    prof yaffle
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    Jun 11, 2002
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    Thought I'd share how I've gone about getting subtitles from my MakeMKV MKVs working on my Dune - & also see if anyone has a better method...

    I have the Dune set (via Subtitle option) to default to External subtitles - i.e ones with the same name held outside the MKV wrap. For DVDs this means a pair of SUB/IDX files; for BluRay a SUP file. I only care about English subtitles covering non-English speech in movies - e.g French/etc in Bourne films, alien language in District 9, etc. YMMV.

    With this set-up, if you get the right subtitles held in SUB/IDX or SUP format alongside the MKV file then they magically appear automatically at the right point when playing a movie without needing selecting.

    (A) For DVDs which have a separate VOBSUB subtitle file for just the foreign language subtitles it's easy. (1) use MakeMKV to create MKV with all English VOBSUB streams (2) use VLC (or equivalent) to identify correct VOBSUB (3) use MKVExtractGUI-2 (part of MKVtoolnix family) to extract the right VOBSUB as a pair of SUB/IDX files into folder alongside MKV (4) tidy-up SUB/IDX filenames as needed to be same as MKV (5) confirm works on Dune. Happy days.

    (B) DVDs where the foreign language subtitles are listed as Forced subtitles within a VOBSUB which otherwise contains subtitles for the whole movie are trickier. For these all speech is subtitled, inc spoken English - but flags in the VOBSUB indicate to compatible players which subtitles are forced & hence should be displayed. As far as I can tell, the Dune doesn't know about Forced subtitles - so displays everything (Angels & Demons or Da Vinci code good examples). And for DVDs, although MakeMKV includes details of the Forced flag in the VOBSUB extract, it doesn't - unlike for BluRays - break just the subset of Forced subtitles out into a separate stream. Here I use Handbrake to help. (1) use MakeMKV to create MKV with all English VOBSUB streams (2) use VLC (or equivalent) to identify correct VOBSUB [or use trial & error] (3) use Handbrake to create a 2nd MKV; video setting is irrelevant, but critically on Subtitles tab, select to Add the identified VOBSUB, set Forced Only=Yes, Burned In=No, Default=doesn't matter - save the Handbrake MKV into the same folder as the original with a modified name e.g _subs (4) use MKVExtractGUI-2 as above to extract the SUB/IDX files & rename them to the same as the original MKV (5) test on Dune that the process has worked & hasn't thrown the subtitles timing off [I've not had any problems yet] (6) delete the Handbrake created MKV as no longer needed. Happy days (eventually).

    (C) I've spent less time on BluRays so won't post thoughts on those yet, other than to say that things seem - now MakeMKV supports Forced Subs - marginally easier than DVDs as MakeMKV will break-out Forced subs within an overall subtitle stream (like (B) above for DVDs) into a separate subtitle track. Only issue is that unlike DVDs where the IDX file gives you timecodes to check that the subtitles have worked correctly, BluRay SUP files have no such info - so you have to flick thru the movie to find a good spot to test.

    Two things to wrap up. One, hope the above is helpful - if I'd found it when starting on this process it would have saved me a ton of time. Two, really interested if anyone can suggest a quicker workflow for (B) above [...other than waiting for MakeMKV to bring the same splitting of Forced subtitles to DVDs that it has for BluRays].

    Best to all.

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