SimulTrans Localization Blog: SimulTips

File Formats for Video Localization

[fa icon="calendar"] October 19, 2017 / by Niall Curran

File formats for video localization.jpg

There has been an increased rise of video in digital marketing. If you have marketing videos in English and want to publish them into other languages (to supplement website translation or share with global audiences), but you are not sure how to do it, don’t worry, here is some help!  

What file formats are needed?

For Audio Localization

If you’re looking to have an audio file localized, then you would need to provide your localization agency with the audio file in any of the file formats below:

  • mp3
  • wav
  • aif

For Video Localization

If you’re looking to have a video localized, then you would need to provide your localization agency with the video file in any of the following file formats:

  • avi
  • mov
  • mp4
  • wmv
  • flv 

Video files use different codecs to encode and compress video data. You would need to specify any audio and/or video codecs specific for your own videos. 

On-Screen Text

If On-Screen Text (OST) within the video needs to be localized as well, then you must provide the Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, or similar project used to create the original video. 

And don’t forget to send details of the fonts used for the On-Screen Text (OST) and any trademarks symbols, etc.

If possible, provide two videos:

  • The original video
  • The video where the On-Screen Text (OST) has been removed 


For both audio and video projects, you need to provide an audio script in one of the following file formats:

  • Excel
  • Word
  • PDF
  • TXT 

Don't Have a Script?

Your localization agency can transcribe the spoken audio to create a script before localization starts. 

Time coding of script

This is where a time stamp is given to each spoken sentence in the script. This is needed only if the audio needs to be time coded to match the length of the original audio.

  • Example: 00:01:29 -> 00:01:42. The audio spoken here starts exactly at 1 minutes 29 seconds into the audio file, and finishes at exactly 1 minutes 42 seconds.


If you want to add localized subtitles, then the script needs to get localized first, and then the translation incorporated into the videos with the right company font, logos, trademarks, etc. 

I hope you have found this information helpful. More information about the basics of video localization and translation services and best practice approaches here.

Start your video localization by getting your Video Script Translated for free.

Free  Video Script  Translation

Topics: Marketing Translation

Niall Curran

Written by Niall Curran

With over 20 years in the localization industry, Niall has gained extensive expertise in Software, Documentation, and Multimedia localization. As part of the Engineering team in SimulTrans, Niall is involved in file analysis, production, and provides support to vendors and clients alike throughout the localization cycle.