Subtitle file formats refer to the format of the subtitle file itself, meaning the text file. Formats for output are described in “Subtitle Transmission formats”. A subtitle file format is basically; Text and Timecode! Then different formats add text formatting and other informational fields. It’s not an underestimation to say that there are simply too many formats in our industry. Sometimes the different formats overlap and sometimes they don’t. And with more complex formats, some users use only one part of attributes/information, other users use a different set of attributes/information and the result is that same file format cannot be transferred between different users and operators. Examples of different subtitle file formats are; .STL, .SRT, .890, .CIP, .PAC, .SCC, .SUB, XML.
There are many subtitle file formats. Cavena’s proprietary formats are 890 and CIP. The EBU exchange format STL is also frequently used as well as formats from our colleagues in the industry.
The Cavena Toolbox is used to convert between different formats of subtitle files as well as between different time code standards and positioning systems. The EBU file format originally designed for teletext subtitles have been used for exchange of subtitles between stations in Europe. Other formats range from simple text files containing only the subtitle text together with time codes to modern more complex formats based on XML etc.