Author Topic: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing  (Read 16716 times)

Offline Maceart

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Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« on: February 15, 2012, 01:08:20 PM »
Regarding Hi10p - Our official stance is that the disadvantages of Hi10p far outweigh its advantages. The main problem with 10-bit is the lack of general hardware support. We believe that the point of fansubbing is to allow the maximum number of people to watch what you sub. 10-bit is not conducive to that goal. Therefore, our releases for the foreseeable future will still be in 8-bit.

A comment on fansubbing in general, by Ladholyman - All you need to fansub is Notepad.exe, SubStationAlpha.exe, plenty of time, some Japanese knowledge, and genuine love for the show you translate. You dona't need fancy karaoke, pre-timing bullshit, or complex encoding derpiness. That is how this group is still alive and kicking after 6 years. If your fansubbing group leader is not a translator, or if the number of encoders and editors exceed the number of your translators by a factor of 3 or more, then youa're doing it wrong. I guarantee you won't last through 2 seasons.

A comment on timing, by Maceart - 99% of audience do not give a shit about fine timing, nor do they give a shit about karaoke timing. Pre-timing is the worst thing you can do, since you constrain the translator to set phrases and lines which probably wona't make much sense afterwards. Rough (Sharp) timing is pretty much all you need, since fansub watchers could care less whether a line a'latchesa' on to each scene or has exactly the same lead in and lead out. They just want lines to appear at the right time when spoken. Timing should take at most 30 minutes for a 300 line episode. Any more, and youa're doing it wrong.

Another comment on fansubbing, by Maceart - Fansubbing should technically require only 2 people: A translator, and someone who does everything else. That, we believe, is the fastest and the most efficient way to fansub. Also, editors are irrelevant if your translator actually knows how to type in 4th grade level English.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2015, 11:25:19 PM by Ladholyman »
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Offline mike_art03a

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2012, 11:43:09 PM »
I would also like to add that you guys also need a rock solid web junky to help keep your site running smooth. Otherwise you're gonna have to put up with a lot of spam if you use a site like blogger, wordpress.com, etc. to host the group site!

Offline Jeffery Mewtamer

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2012, 12:56:35 PM »
While I appreciate everything Mike has done keeping the website going, I am thinking that a group site is really secondary. Putting the torrents on a reliable public tracker is really all the promotion that is necessary if the series being subbed is in demand.

Still, the ride since Doremi-Fansubs started would have been a lot more boring without the forums or the old chat boxes.

Also, small question: what does SubStationAlpha.exe do? It is unlikely I will ever sub anything, but if I ever do, I would like to take the same minimalist approach Doremi has been employing.

Offline Maceart

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2012, 04:30:36 AM »
Substation Alpha is basically the simplest timing program out there. The only limitation (well, multiple ones since it hasn't been updated since 2000) is that you can only load 8-bit mono wave files to time from in there.

Left click to select start time, right click to select end time, "G" key to grab the timing for a line. Simple as pie. Rinse and repeat 300 times to finish timing an episode in less the time it takes to watch it.
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Offline JimShew

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2012, 12:14:37 AM »
Substation Alpha is basically the simplest timing program out there. The only limitation (well, multiple ones since it hasn't been updated since 2000) is that you can only load 8-bit mono wave files to time from in there.

Left click to select start time, right click to select end time, "G" key to grab the timing for a line. Simple as pie. Rinse and repeat 300 times to finish timing an episode in less the time it takes to watch it.
Aegisub, although it has a slightly steeper learning curve than SSA, also has keyboard/mouse shortcuts that are useful for timing. It also has a more recent update (a couple of weeks ago) than SSA.

Aegisub has no problem with 16-bit stereo audio, but the previous version had a tendency to crash when fed the newer 24-bit/sample audio files that Audacity likes to record by default.

Jeff, in answer to your question, SubStationAlpha was one of the first subtitle timing programs produced. It was originally written for the 16-bit Windows 3.xx around 20 years ago. Its output is a fixed-format script textfile with extension "SSA" that is understood by the rendering software of media viewers. (if the script file is given the same pre-extension name as the video file, the script will be used as softsubs when the video is played)
« Last Edit: February 19, 2012, 01:38:39 AM by JimShew »
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Offline Jeffery Mewtamer

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2012, 01:50:08 PM »
In other words, SubStationAlpha really is not necessary, but saves a lot of time compared to manually addin


Offline JimShew

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2012, 03:52:50 AM »
In other words, SubStationAlpha really is not necessary, but saves a lot of time compared to manually addin
Yes, it *is* possible to use Notepad to write a timed script, but because each dialogue line of an "SSA" file consists of nine comma-delimited fields, using a program is a *lot* faster and less error-prone than that insanely tedious method.  (Although the specification *does* allow for a different field count/layout, only one rendering engine pays attention to the "format" line, the remainder assume it's the usual nine)

Both Aegisub and SubStationAlpha give a graphical way of positioning the start and end times of the dialogue subtitle line to 0.01 second resolution, allowing us to concentrate on less tedious parts of the process.
Information presented in the form of "derivative works" represent the seeds of new academic discoveries. Therefore, the USA has outlawed their own academic processes with the wording of their DMCA.

LittleMissAlias

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2012, 06:10:43 PM »
I love how you guys are posting all this techinical stuff while I'm just scratching my head going, "Say what now?" Clearly, being the daughter of an IT Geek does nothing for my understanding of technology :P.

Offline JimShew

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Re: Founders' Rant on Fansubbing
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2012, 10:22:08 AM »
I love how you guys are posting all this technical stuff while I'm just scratching my head going, "Say what now?" Clearly, being the daughter of an IT Geek does nothing for my understanding of technology :P.
Both SubstationAlpha and Aegisub are free computer "apps" that are used behind the scenes for "timing": the placing of the translated subtitles on the screen at the proper time.  Unless your "IT Geek" parent also does subtitling of video, they would probably be unfamiliar with those particular programs.

The stuff about the format is essentially "it is viewable in Notepad, and each line consists mostly of a bunch of numbers separated by commas followed by the subtitle text". The Wiki article about SubstationAlpha I linked in my Feb 19th message shows examples of the files produced.

Apologies for confusing you by going so deeply into the innards of the file format. As an "IT Geek" myself, I sometimes tend to forget that not everyone is interested in that level of detail.  The point I was trying to get across to Jeff was, that although one *could* write this type of file in Notepad, a typo can result in anything from a mispositioned subtitle to (if you're really unlucky) giving the computer a "conniption fit" when the subtitle file is used. (that last is fortunately now very rare unless one makes an error doing esoteric stuff with the script)

By esoteric, I'm referring to the scripts capability to do *much* more than just subtitles. For example, you could add subtitles to a silent "Dracula" movie, and have the script also control the playing of spooky organ music. (on an actual MIDI-controlled keyboard)
« Last Edit: February 23, 2012, 12:16:07 AM by JimShew »
Information presented in the form of "derivative works" represent the seeds of new academic discoveries. Therefore, the USA has outlawed their own academic processes with the wording of their DMCA.