Closed-Captioning Comparisons


I’m currently evaluating Closed-Captioning Services for our in-house instructional videos.  Previously, closed-captioning has been done intermittently by individual instructors or staff.  For ADA compliance, and as a courtesy, we’ll be captioning videos from here on out.

There are several ways to accomplish this.

  • Add subtitles to the video itself during production.
  • Purchase Subtitling software–such as Telestream’s CaptionMaker ($1000)
  • Upload Videos to a Captioning Service such as Cielo24, 3Play, Subply, Rev, or any other ($1-2 per minute)
  • Vimeo’s (our preferred streaming service’s) automatic captioning ($1.70 per minute)
  • YouTube’s automated service or manual tool (free)

I’ve recently tested Vimeo’s automated service and compared it to YouTube’s.  The video I used includes some scientific language, which Vimeo handled beautifully.  YouTube botched it on nearly every term.

Cost for the basic subtitling is $1.70 per minute through Vimeo.  This video was is 5 minutes long, so subtitling this video cost me $8.50.  I uploaded the video, clicked subtitle, entered my credit card information, and went to bed.  When I woke up the next morning, the subtitling was complete.

Here’s the automated captioning Vimeo link for your review:

Predissection Preparation: Coronal Sections of the Human Brain (Vimeo Automated Captions)

For comparison, here’s the YouTube link of the same video: Predissection Preparation Coronal Sections of the Human Brain (YouTube Automated Captioning)

Final Note:

We’re also buying Telestream’s CaptionMaker for individuals that want to create captions on their own.  (It’s good for languages and practicing translations.)

If you’ve used or would recommend another service, please let me know.

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Dann Hurlbert

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