New Editor Feedback

Amara is in the process of switching to a new subtitle editor that is easy to use and also very powerful for professional work.  It is currently in beta but will become the primary editor soon. Take a look below to see how it works, and what's to come!

Advantages and features that will be available in the released version.

(most features are available now!)

  • Side by side comparison of any language / revision with your working vision.
  • No more artifical line-length limitations on upload.
  • Support for HTML5 video (mp4, webm, ogg), Youtube, Vimeo, and Brightcove videos, oga and mp3 audio formats.  (Currently dailymotion users will need to use the legacy editor.  Wistia users should add the html5 (mp4) url)
  • Localized interface.
  • Functionality from  the old editor (magical autopause may be delayed)
  • Clickable shortcuts
  • Additions keyboard shortcuts and help.
  • New reset functionality, for timing or text.
  • Ability to revert to the last saved revision.
  • Auto-save (every minute)
  • Ability to copy subtitle timing from reference to working version.
  • Ability to lock reference text with target translation.
  • Style guidelines (team configurable) available in editor view
  • Better cleaner and clearer dialogs
  • Improved recovery (in the case of a save error)
  • Help gutter for each subtitle showing the number of lines and characters / line and reading rate (characters / second).
  • New user help prompts at the start of each subtitling stage.
  • Button to switch back to legacy editor.


Help prompts for subtitling staging:

Amara Style Guidelines (configurable for Teams)

Add a new language dialog

To use the new Amara editor:

  1. Find a video without subtitles or add any supported via the front page of
  2. Click ‘Add a new language’ on the video page.

  3. When the editor opens, look for the link to ‘open in beta editor’ on the bottom right.  

  4. This will open the video in the new editor.  

Navigating in the new editor:

  • Use the Tab key to start and stop playback
  • Use hot keys "Shift + Control + ," to skip backward 4 seconds
  • Use "Shift + Control + ." to skip forward 4 seconds
  • Use "Shift + TAB" to quickly jump back 2 seconds
  • Click on a subtitle line to edit it.
    • The active sub displays on the video
    • A helper tray displays for active sub, showing:
      • start + end time
      • number of characters
      • character / second rate
      • characters / line if a multi-line text

Editing subtitle lines:

  • Click + to add a subtitle below the current line
  • Click x to delete a line
  • Type ESC to delete a selected blank subtitle line
  • Shift-enter will add a <br /> in your text - to split lines of text

Once all the text is typed into subtitles, click Yes, start syncing, to go to step 2, where you will add times to the subtitles.

Syncing the subtitles to the video

In step 2, play the video and press the down arrow to insert the subtitle at the right moment.

Syncing controls:

  • Down arrow to start sync
  • Up arrow to end sync
  • Down and hold to move start time of current sub
  • Helper prompts remind you of the action and display current location.

 The right side panel indicates when all lines are complete and synced.


Once all lines are timed, and there are no blank lines, you can move to the next step by clicking Start reviewing

Watch the video again, adjusting the timing using the timeline and fixing any typos.

Click Complete when done to save the completed version of subtitles.


If you need to exit the editor before subtitles are completed:

  • Clicking Exit will NOT save changes
  • Clicking Save, WILL save a new version of subtitles.
  • Both Exit and Save give you the option to return to the full (old) editor.

Adding a new translation:

  • When you open the new editor to make a translation, you can see the original language on the left side of the screen and the space to translate it on the right, below the video.
  • Use the menu on the left side to select the reference subtitles language and version.

  • The translation controls are the same as the transcription controls described above.
  • You can add and remove lines as well as change the timing as appropriate.

Keyboard Controls:

  • Tab key will start and stop playback
  • Shift + TAb to skip back 2 seconds.
  • Use hot keys "Shift + Control + ," to skip backward 4 seconds
  • Use "Shift + Control + ." to skip forward 4 seconds
  • Shift + Enter to add a line break. 
  • Enter to add a new line (in fast typing mode, timeline hidden)

Working Offline:

• Download the subtitle version that you want to use for offline work

• When editing be sure your edit confirm to the standard for the subtitle format type you are using.

ex: for srt format subtitles, italics are denoted as <i> italics </i> and you must properly close the tag. Unclosed tags won’t be parsed properly.  Lines with * italics * will remain unchanged.  

• When you have completed the editing, upload the subtitles via the amara ui.  

If you have removed lines from the translation choose  

in the upload dialog.  Otherwise your subtitle timings will be offset by the blank lines.

After uploading a new version carefully check your subtitles for any errors before continuing.  It is much simpler to correct errors before further edits are made and can prevent you from losing work.

1 person likes this

Hi SafeTex

Could you please tell me what cpu stands for? My ignorance on that makes it difficult to fully understand your message, sorry.

However, I believe I was thinking on the same general lines yesterday, as I was making subtitles to be re-used in a YouTube video, where line length is shorter than the default 42 characters in Amara. So I ignored Amara's warnings about line length, and made one-line <75 characters subs that will wrap in YT anyway.

But I agree that it woud be great if each user could set the aimed-at line and subtitle length, and line number. Shall we make a ticket for that? If you make it, I can read it, whereas if I make it, you won't be able to.





Yes, I meant to say cps of course

The present system of alerts is of no help if you are on under any other instructions than the standard ones
Ridiculous when you look at the varied instructions from job to job.

The cps rate changes whatever we do so that is fine but the warnings are of no use if I'm at 25  cps and not 20

Another thing is different sorts of characters when you are struggling to follow all the other rules
Is it so bad if I'm one character over and that character happens to be a full-stop.

This too needs to be programmable.

This is why I"m not so hot as you on the new editor. Certain things have got much better like alignment but Amara has really taken off and the editor has not managed to stay up with such changes.

This remark also links with my suggestion to try to 'bolster' it with add-ons perhaps rather than from the Amara platform at times

Ok, I'll try to make it a ticket for an improvement




1 person likes this

 I've subtitled about 4 videos on amara. I took a long time to subtitle first video.
But it wasn't difficult to understand how to subtitle a video using great UI of amara.

But I'd like to suggest improvements: (to make subtitling a mouse-free process)

#1. Most needed: a keyboard shortcut to make a new subtitle with all the text after the cursor (to be placed in the new subtitle)
You could use any shortcut, say Ctrl+Enter. Like Shift+Enter saves a lot of time.
But I need to do a lot of cut & paste to acheive this Ctrl+Enter functioning that I want to achieve most of the time.

I'd say introduce this shortcut & I'd not ask for the below shortcuts. Just kidding!

#2. Navigating between the different subtitles: Like pgup (for previous i.e. upper subtitle on the page) & pgdn keys or any keys you prefer. But one request if a person presses pgup, then the cursor should be at the last of the subtitle. & if a person presses pgdn key then the cursor should at the start of the subtitle.

#3. Like we get to see total number of characters in each subtitle line. It would be helpful if it could also tell the cursor (at current position) has completed "this many" characters.

#4. A keyboard shortcut to merge the current subtitle with the previous subtitle.

#5. A keyboard shortcut to merge the current subtitle with the next subtitle. (I think less use as of now but some person may find it useful)

#6. You can see this photo that the information on the right hand side (that shows the number of subtitle lines,etc) is placed a little bit below than it should be.
So to see this information, I've to scroll up everytime.

I've made a form here, you can also fill that.

1 person likes this
Login or Signup to post a comment