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icecreamiie 2011-04-19 01:32

.mkv on HDTV
i just recently got a new sony hdtv
when i plug my hdd into the usb port and play .mkv animes, the file plays perfectly, but the subtitles do not show except for the karaoke
is there anything i can do to get the subtitles to show, preferably by converting the whole file

Stealthtank 2011-04-19 05:35

Gah... sooooo vague. Going on what little info you've given I understand that you have a modern Sony HDTV capable of playing media files (MKV's) but is unable to display subtitles (not surprising) for your particular file. The karaoke subtitling does show however. The video and audio playback for your file is perfectly fine too. I'm going to have to go on a limb and make up everything else. I have practically no experience with subtitles so you're going to have to work with me here. Here I go...

I assume the karaoke is "hard-subbed" on to the picture meaning it is part of the video and not stored in a separate subtitle stream. The rest of your media file is "soft-subbed" meaning the subtitles are in a separate stream and thus can be turned on or off in a capable media player. Your TV is unable to read the subtitle data which might be in .saa/.ass format although it's not like I know if your TV can read any subtitle format. So the "simplest" solution to have subtitles shown on your TV or any other media player is to hard-sub your file.

Here is how I would approach this if all the above were to hold true:

1. Download and install the appropriate Aegisub on your computer.

2. Run the program and from the File menu click on "Open Subtitles..." and open the media file you are trying to watch. The file may have multiple subtitles tracks so pick the appropriate one. Aegisub will ask in a pop-up window if you want to load/unload the associated files. Err... pick no. Now from the File menu click "Save Subtitles as..." and save the file (probably .ass) somewhere. Now you have extracted the subtitle data from your media file.

3. Download and install the appropriate Avidemux.

4. Run the program and from the File menu click "Open..." and open your media file (the .mkv). If a pop up window says H.264 detected then click no... I guess. Click yes to build the index. To the left of the picture are drop-down menus for Video, Audio, and Format. In the Video drop-down menu choose "MPEG-4 AVC". Leave the Audio on "Copy" and in the Format menu change to "MKV". In the Video menu on the top menu click on "Filters...". From the available filters click on Subtitles and in the next tile(?) presumably you should click on the ASS option then click on the plus (+) icon below. In the pop-up window open the subtitle file you saved earlier with Aegisub. Click Ok and close the available filters window. In the File menu go to Save and then click on "Save Video...". Choose a location, name your file and add the .mkv extension then click save. Now Avidemux is encoding a new media file and how much time it takes depends on your hardware.

Note: The video quality will very likely be diminished because you are re-encoding the video. You could try configuring the settings but I have no clue there.

5. Finally, try playing your newly encoded hard-subbed file on your TV (you could watch it on your computer first) and hope everything works the way it's supposed to.

So there you have it. I have only a modicum of knowledge with this kind of thing so there may be other, simpler, ways of doing this. Honestly it'd be much easier to just play the file from a laptop with an HDMI output and display it on your TV (it definitely has a HDMI port) if that's an option. I just really hope everything I've written is the solution to your problem.

matteas 2011-04-24 14:53

I have a Sony HDTV at home too and when I want to watch some anime on it, I do it exactly as Stealthtank mentioned in his last paragraph. It's probably the easiest and the most reliable way to replay a fansub release on a TV display. If your PC doesn't have a graphics card with an HDMI output, you might consider getting a new GC as they aren't very expensive these days and you can also use them for hardware acceleration of video decoding in case the video is too demanding for your CPU.

SeijiSensei 2011-04-24 16:28

First, if your computer has an HDMI connector, just connect that to the TV. Depending on the hardware in the computer, you might also get audio over that cable, or you may not.

if your computer's graphics card has a DVI connector, you can get a converter cable to connect it to the HDMI port of the TV. You probably won't get audio this way, though.

If you don't have HDMI audio, you might be able to run an audio cable from the computer to the TV.

Next comes the problems with subs. As Stealthtank mentioned, there are two kinds of subs. "Hard" subs are encoded directly into the video. Most karaoke are subbed this way. "Soft" subs are decoded along with the audio and video streams and displayed by your media player. If you can't see the soft subs, your player probably doesn't have the right software to handle them.

Rather than re-encoding the video, how about just getting a player that will show everything you need. I'm going to guess you're using Windows, but if you're using Linux I'd give you the same advice. Install a copy of smplayer; here is the Windows version; most Linux distributions have smplayer in their repositories so just install it with your package manager.

If you're using a Mac, you might want to try this player. If you need help, take a look at this thread.

Random32 2011-04-25 16:01

TV's that can play files off a USB/etc still can't play everything. the support for softsubs tends to be something that tends to be lacking.

I would suggest using handbrake to turn them into hardsubs

Subtitles (tab)
Choose subtitle track you want
Check burn in
Click Add

spikexp 2011-04-25 18:59

You could also look for a media player like the WD TV live plus.

mukansa monkey 2011-04-27 14:12

I have a Sony HDTV, couple years old, and I'm quite successfully using the method SeijiSensei suggested.

One of the HDMI ports on the back of the TV has an associated pair of RCA audio inputs. DVI to HDMI cable and 1/8" headphone jack to dual RCA cable are connecting my laptop to the TV. The lappy sees the TV as an external monitor, the audio is routed to the sound system... bam, any video I can play on my computer, I can watch on the bigscreen. Oh, and I ordered the cables online. Got both of them, made into a single cable with a wrap, for less than what most retail stores charge for just an HDMI cable. If you can get your hands on any kind of device with video out, this is the way to go.

If that just isn't happening for you, go the Handbrake route (or similar software). Will convert your mkvs to regular TV format, takes care of all the pesky details.

kyosak 2011-04-30 16:51

my TV is not a sony but i had a similar problem.
it wouldn't play the subtitles on my MKV files, but when i extracted the subtitle file from the MKV container, it would work (had to be converted to SRT though).
oh, and the name of the subtitle file had to match the video file name and be placed in the same directory.

i used a program called 'MKVextract'

zrdb 2011-05-04 18:39

Or you could ge a Popcorn Hour A210-it plays 98% of the fansubs I throw at it.

Inu_Sess__ 2011-05-05 14:01


Originally Posted by spikexp (Post 3587038)
You could also look for a media player like the WD TV live plus.

Do these have good support of mkv with styled subs now? I was looking to get one a few years back, but it supposed had a ton of problems with fansubs.

zrdb 2011-05-05 14:45

You're probally thinking of the PCH A110-it didn't support ssa/ass effects at all-the PCH A210 does a pretty good job of supporting effects. If the effects get really fancy (read processor intensive) it won't support all of them. But on the whole it does an excellent job with ass/ssa subs.

sneaker 2011-05-05 18:18

People might wanna hold their investments in standalone boxes for now - they'll be rendered useless as soon as fansub groups start adopting 10bit encoding, which may happen sometime this year. (HT)PCs are probably a better investment.

zrdb 2011-05-05 18:38

I don't think it's gonna happen, for one thing there'd be too many pissed off fans and the potential gains are minimal compared to the risks. And what makes you think that media palyers couldn't handle it?

sneaker 2011-05-05 18:55


Originally Posted by zrdb (Post 3600860)
I don't think it's gonna happen, for one thing there'd be too many pissed off fans and the potential gains are minimal compared to the risks. And what makes you think that media palyers couldn't handle it?

Many groups have shown in the past that they don't care about compatibility. Remember when weighted p prediction was introduced to x264 and it broke playback for all those CoreAVC users? You can't know for sure whether it will happen or not, but I'd keep it in mind. It just might happen.

Why I think media players wouldn't be able to handle it? Because their decoders don't have 10bit support, of course. It's not something that can simply be added by a firmware update, unless the decoding is done on a general purpose cpu. And even then it's not likely to be added - there isn't even any free playback for solution on the PC for it currently.

zrdb 2011-05-05 19:23

Sorry-you're dead wrong-the Sigma 862x chips series do support 10 bit decoding. And BTW-do you know what a fucking pain in the ass htpc's are?

sneaker 2011-05-05 19:51


Originally Posted by zrdb (Post 3600888)
Sorry-you're dead wrong-the Sigma 862x chips series do support 10 bit decoding.

They do? If that's true I never said anything...
Do you happen to know whether you can already use it in any consumer player or is it just an unused feature?


Originally Posted by zrdb (Post 3600888)
And BTW-do you know what a fucking pain in the ass htpc's are?

They are. But barely compatible standalone players can be, too.

zrdb 2011-05-06 09:22

If the firmware for the media player supports it-and the PCH units do. I've messed around with htpcs and media players-for me the media player is a much more elegent and simple alternative.

sneaker 2011-05-06 12:05


Originally Posted by zrdb (Post 3601574)
If the firmware for the media player supports it-and the PCH units do.

Did you test it yourself or can you point me to any source? I couldn't find any info on this on a search.

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