How to find perfect subtitles for movies, anime and cartoons

Hollywood movies are popular all over the world, from countries which have no significant film industries of their own, to countries with an active film culture (France, India etc).

However, one problem that comes up is that you may not know the language at all, or you may not know it well enough to be able to follow the movie at a decent clip. The easy way out is to use subtitles.

Now, I’ll be the first person to admit that subtitles provide a less than perfect solution. You will be reading the subtitles and missing some crucial moments of the video you are watching. However, for many people, subtitles is the only way they can make sense of what they’re watching.

Subtitles are not always bundled with movies, and even when they are, it might not be in your preferred language. What you need, in such cases, is to learn the art of finding the perfect subtitles for your movie / anime / cartoon / whatever.

When you want to find subtitles for a movie, head over to your favorite search engine. Enter the name of the movie you are searching for, followed by the language, then “subtitle”. For example, if you’re searching for Avatar English subs, try Avatar English subtitle.

Here’s a pro tip: if you downloaded the movie from some online source, say a torrent, then you should modify your query a bit. In addition to the name of movie, language of subs required and the word “subtitle”, make sure you add the name of the ripper or scene group name – aXXo, FXG, MAXSPEED, REFILL etc.

Better yet, just copy-past the name of your movie file, say “The Sorcerers Apprentice (2010) DVDRip XviD-MAXSPEED”, and delete unwanted parts like the year (since movie names are unique, for the most part), forum links or torrent website names (like in the above example), and separate each word by space (if there are hyphens or other symbols in between).

Thus, the above name would become The Sorcerers Apprentice DVDRip XviD MAXSPEED English subtitle for our query. A bunch of websites will come up, and you should go through each link to see whichever subtitle matches the name of your file exactly, and in the desired language.

Matching name is important, as DVD / Bluray Rip made by different rippers differ in length, and may cause out-of-sync subtitles.

Have favorite subtitle websites you use regularly, or some tips to find good quality subs? Leave ‘em in comments below.

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