The subtitling tool allows you to add and edit subtitles directly in the timeline on a special subtitle track or by using the Subtitle window. You can also import (SRT/ASS) and export (SRT) subtitles.

Kdenlive allows multiple subtitles in the subtitle track (only 1 subtitle track is displayed at a time). You can create, duplicate, and delete subtitle tracks with the Subtitle manager.


Four ways to add subtitle

  • Menu

    • Project ‣ Subtitle ‣ Add Subtitle

  • Keyboard

    • Shift + S adds a subtitle.

  • Icon and Mouse

    • Click Add Subtitle icon in the Timeline Toolbar to open the subtitle track in the timeline.

    • Double-click in the subtitle track to add a subtitle.

    • Click Add Subtitle in the timeline ruler context menu.

  • Import

Adding and editing text

Add or editing text either directly into the subtitle clip or in the subtitle window.

Adjust the length of subtitle

Grab the end of a subtitle with the mouse and lengthen or shorten it as needed. Set subtitle in/out can be achieved with the same shortcut as to set clip in/out (left/right parenthesis shortcut).

Split subtitle after first line

With this feature, you can cut the selected subtitle with the Razor Tool after the first line of the current track position. The first line becomes the left subtitle before the track position, and the rest becomes the right subtitle after the track position. It then selects the right-hand subtitle.

subtitle split at line

Subtitle split after first line or duplicate text

To enable this feature go to Menu ‣ Settings ‣ Configure Kdenlive… ‣ Tools switch to Split after first line

subtitle split with Razor-Tool

Subtitle split with Razor-Tool

Select the subtitle in the timeline that contains two lines. Click on the subtitle with the Razor-Tool X.

subtitle split after the split

Subtitle after you have split it with the Razor-Tool

This makes it easier to split up subtitles, where you have a transcription with one subtitle per line. This comes from a couple of situations:

  1. You have put the audio through an external transcription service

  2. You are adding subtitles to a song that you have the lyrics for

Subtitle window

subtitle window

Subtitle window

  • The subtitles window allows easier editing and also makes it possible to easily navigate between subtitles with the < and > buttons

  • With the + button you can add subtitles

  • The scissors are mostly here for dividing subtitles: let’s say your subtitle text is too long and you want to make it two different subtitles. Put the cursor in the text widget where you want to cut and click the scissors, it will split the text between two different subtitle items. The scissors are only working when the playhead is over the subtitle itself.

  • The check-mark button adds the text to the subtitle

Character count and zoom


Character:: Character number at cursor position

total:: Total number of Character

Zoom in: Zoom into the edit window

Zoom out:Zoom out of the edit window

Style subtitle

subtitle style

This is a global, simple subtitle styling possibility. It only allows one style for all subtitles of the project. Accessible through the „T drop“ icon in the subtitle edit widget.


SRT supports markup for: underline and line break.

  • <u>text underlined</u>

  • Line break: Add on the end of each line a <br> (for break). Now the .srt file is stored correct and reopened with the line break. The subtitle in the subtitle window will be all in 1 line after several save but the breaks is working.

Alt+Arrow jumps from subtitle to subtitle.

Import and export subtitle

Importing SRT, ASS, VTT and SBV subtitle file: Menu ‣ Project ‣ Subtitles ‣ Import Subtitle File

Exporting SRT subtitles only: Menu ‣ Project ‣ Subtitles ‣ Export Subtitle File


Encoding: Allow overriding of detected codecs through a list of available codecs, and show a preview to make choice easier.

Create New Subtitle Track: Importing an .srt file in the project, you can create a new subtitle track (an entry in the subtitles combo list) instead of overwriting the current subtitle track.

Spell check

A spell check for subtitle is integrated and shows incorrect words by a red wiggly line. Right-click on the word and you get a list of possible words you can then choose by clicking on it.

Spell check

Subtitle manager

You can create, duplicate, and delete subtitle tracks with the subtitle manager: Menu ‣ Project ‣ Subtitles ‣ Manage Subtitles or on the timeline as drop-down menu in the subtitle track.

drop down menu to the subtitle manager

Open the subtitle manager from the drop down menu

Spell check

Subtitle manager with 2 subtitle tracks

Click on application-menuOptions and select Import Subtitle or Export Subtitle to reach Import and export subtitle.

Only one subtitle can be active. So, rendering will always render using the active subtitle only.