Native file format for Captionate is FLV (Flash Video). Captionate embeds data into FLV files. Basically, you open a FLV file, enter your data, save the FLV file. You get the data you entered as callback functions from your Flash (SWF) file.
Captionate 2.1 supports three data types with different properties:
Generally speaking, you can implement single language captioning using Markers only. Captions provide multi language support and other properties suited for captioning better.
- Markers: used for entering simple cue points with an optional string label.
- Captions: used for entering multi language (closed) caption, subtitle data.
- Cue Points: Flash 8 cue point format. Cue points have optional variable number of Name:Value pairs and type info as Navigation or event.
Captionate provides a Timeline, which displays a representation of the FLV file and the data embedded. Timeline provides an easy way to enter time values. When an FLV file is first opened, timeline shows the whole FLV. By using zoom functions you can zoom in as much as 1 pixel per millisecond display.
Captionate also has a Video Preview. Video Preview and Timeline works together, though the timeline can work by itself.
When the Video Preview is open, the Playhead - the current time - in the Timeline is synchronized. That means if you cannot seek a time in the video, you won't be able to set the playhead to that time - remember this only applies when the Video Preview is open. In FLV files only key frames can be seeked.
Therefore, Captionate provides options when choosing which video file to use as a preview for the open file. You can use the original FLV, audio only version of the original FLV or select any other file (FLV or any file that is supported by Windows Media Player). Captionate can also process the FLV (if encoding is Sorenson H.263) using FFMPEG so that every frame is a key frame.
Captionate saves your preview selection and asks if you want to cache the file, if the file is newly created, when you close the FLV.
When working with the Video Preview, you'll find the shortcut keys handy:
You can create a Marker, a Caption or a Cue Point in real-time, when the Video Preview is playing, or you can choose to manually enter the time or select from the timeline.
- F5: Go back 10 seconds
- F6: Step back 0.5 seconds
- F7: Step forward 0.5 seconds
- F8: Go forward 10 seconds
- F9: Play/Pause
- ALT+F9: Stop
Captionate 2.1 has limited import options. Still you can import caption text from a plain text file or the Marker, Caption and Cue Point data from any FLV, or import back the Captionate XML file after editing. (Captionate can export data in its own custom XML format). Also, for cue points, import/export in Adobe FLVCoreCuePoints XML format is supported.
Captionate 2.1 and later supports external export libraries (CXL files). An export library provides support for exporting marker/caption/cue point data in a format other than Captionate provides by default. Available export libraries can be found and downloaded at http://www.captionate.com.
If you have multiple FLV files targeted for different bit rates, after you enter the data for one of the files (and save the file), you can now open other files and import the data from that file very easily. Captionate also can export Marker, Caption and Cue Point data as a binary data only FLV file.
For working with multiple FLV files, Captionate also supports batch processing via simple text files.