How to watch movies with subtitles in Mac OSX

In a previous post we looked at where to find subtitles for Chinese movies, but once you have the subtitles you need how can you use them? In this series we’ll look at the best media players on Mac and Windows for watching movies with subtitles. Starting with Movist on Mac OSX:

Movist Subtitles

Loading the Subtitle File

To automatically load an external subtitles file, simply ensure that the name of the subtitle file matches the name of the video file. For instance if your movie is named “movie.avi”, then your subtitle should be named “”. When you load the video file into Movist, it will automatically search for a subtitle file of the same name and subsequently load that too.

If for some reason the subtitle file has a different name than the video, or you have multiple subtitle files of different languages for the same video and so don’t want to rename, then you can specifically choose to load a subtitle file. All you need to do is select “File > Open Subtitle Files…” from the menu, navigate to the subtitles you would like to use and open them.

Open Subtitles

Subtitle Language Encoding

Something that Movist won’t do is detect the language of the subtitles file, so this is something you need to set yourself. As previously mentioned, when downloading subtitles you can choose the Simplified or Traditional Chinese version. Since you know which version subtitle you have, all you need to do is go into the Movist options and select that encoding. The menu option is “Subtitle > 1: External Subtitle > Reopen with Encoding“, you will see a huge list of file encodings. I have found that for Simplified Chinese that the encoding “Chinese GB18030” works most of the time, and for Traditional Chinese the “Traditional Chinese (Big 5)” seems to be most reliable. Though if one doesn’t work then try another, one of the UTF encodings might also be worth trying if you don’t have any luck with other encodings.

Subtitle Encoding

There are other media players available for OSX that support external subtitle files and we’ll cover those in upcoming posts. But in the meantime, if you have a favourite programs that you like to use for watching movies with subtitles or manipulating subtitle files then let us know below.