How to Convert Caption File Formats

December 12, 2018 BY JACLYN LEDUC
Updated: June 11, 2019

There are many different types of caption file formats, and sometimes you need to convert from one type of file to another. It seems that every application requires a different format, but it can be surprisingly tricky to convert file formats as needed.

To address this problem, 3Play Media created a free web tool that converts between all of the major caption formats. In this post, we’ll show you exactly how to use our Caption Format Converter so that converting files is a breeze.

Check out the caption format converter tool - it's free

How the Caption Format Converter Works

The Caption Format Converter works instantly to make converting captions quick and easy.

In the drop-down menu next to “Output Format,” select the file to which you would like your current caption file to be converted.

Next, open the original SRT or SBV caption file in a text editor like Microsoft Word, then copy and paste the text of the caption file into the space provided next to “Paste Your SRT/SBV File.”

Click “Convert My File,” and in moments your converted caption file will download to your computer with the correct formatting.
Repeat this process as many times as you need.

Caption Formats Explained

Below are descriptions of significant caption file formats. The good news? You can use the Caption Format Converter to convert to many of the following file formats.


This is a common subtitle/caption file format for broadcast media. Cheetah International developed it.


XML format used for encoding captions into Flash video. It originated in the caption-embedding software Captionate.


This is a common format used for captioning Flash video. It’s a timed-text format that was developed by W3C and stands for “Distribution Format Exchange Profile.”


This is a common subtitle/caption file format for PAL broadcast media. The European Broadcast Union developed it.

Caption file format conversions supported by Caption Format Converter tool: DFXP, Flash Captionate XML, Quick Text, SMI, SRI, STL, SCC, WEBVTT


Apple developed caption this format which is used for QuickTime video or audio.


RealText captions for RealMedia video or audio.


Used for Windows Media video or audio. Developed by Microsoft, SAMI stands for “Synchronized Accessible Media Interchange.”


This is a YouTube caption file format that stands for “SubViewer.” It’s what you get when you download captions from YouTube. It’s a text format that is very similar to SRT.


A popular standard used for Line 21 broadcast closed captions, web media, DVD, as well as iTunes, iPods, iPads, and iPhones. Originally developed by Sonic, SCC stands for “Scenarist Closed Caption.”


This is the most common subtitle/caption file format. It is a text format that originated in the DVD-ripping software SubRip and stands for “SubRip Subtitle” file.


Used for DVD Studio Pro. Initially developed by Spruce Technologies, this file is also known as “Spruce Subtitle File.”

Additional Caption Formats

If you need to convert to other caption formats not included in the Caption Format Converter, our caption import tool allows you to do just that. With over 50 caption formats to convert to, this tool allows you to upload caption files you already have and manage them with the full suite of tools available from your 3Play Media account. Some of the format options include:

  • ADBE – Adobe
  • Apple XML – Apple XML Interchange Format
  • CCA – MacCaption
  • ITT – iTunes Timed Text
  • WMP.TXT – Windows Media
  • and much more!

Ready to start converting your caption files using the caption import tool? Learn more about 3Play Media’s Pro plan.

This way to captioning success - learn more about our Pro Plan.

This blog was originally published on September 13, 2010, by Tole Khesin and has since been updated.

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