On Ubuntu I use SMPlayer or SubDownloader, which both reliably retrieve subtitles from opensubtitles.org. SMplayer even does this automatically for the file you are currently viewing.

So far I've tried SolEol, FileBot, SubDownloader (which is a bit behind on versions for Mac OS; seems like the API URL for opensubtitles.org changed) and Undertext. None of them work reliably, some of them not at all.

9 Answers 9


I know this is an old question, but I was searching for this same answer, and found a great solution.

Subliminal will allow you to set up a cron job, (or manually enter from CLI) whole directory trees, and download subtitles. You can also set it up as a post processor for SABNzbd or SickBeard or CouchPotato.

It's working great for me.

  • Looks like there is a typo in your markup. For some reason the site won't let me edit it, but try [Subliminal](https://github.com/Diaoul/subliminal) instead of what you have now.
    – D.W.
    Aug 12, 2012 at 5:34
  • Is there an easy way to install subliminal on OS X? How did / would you do it?
    – myhd
    Nov 9, 2012 at 14:29
  • Sorry, Formatting doesn't seem to be working, I hope you can figure this out. I'm using periscope now.. There is a very easy way to install it on OSX --- sudo /usr/bin/easy_install BeautifulSoap --- sudo /usr/bin/easy_install periscope --- then.. --- periscope [*/filename] -l [2 letter language code] --- You can cron this up to do your media dir, or use it in post processing from SB or CP. Nov 11, 2012 at 7:45
  • Periscope seems to have stopped working for me, so I have gone back to subliminal. To install, just download the gir repo (or clone it) and then run sudo "pyton setup.py install" and it will install. Nov 29, 2012 at 5:37
  • I am trying to install subliminal with 'python setup.py install'. But get the following error: 'error: Installed distribution six 1.4.1 conflicts with requirement six>=1.5' any idea how to fix this (i do not know python) May 28, 2015 at 19:06

I found Subtitles recently. It looks nice and clean and seems to work quite well (I had lots of problems with Unicode support in subliminal).

  • 1
    Although not completely automatic (one have to drag and drop a file into its window), Subtitles is a great option!
    – motobói
    Oct 28, 2014 at 19:11
  • 1
    Subtitles is great. However, the last update (I think 2.3) made it non-free. May 7, 2015 at 20:17
  • Paid solution, next! Jul 23, 2016 at 18:33
  • @SergioTapia so what is wrong with a developer creating an awesome tool and wanting some money in return? Do you have any idea how much work goes into even a simple app? Or do you expect everyone to work and create awesome things for you for free? Just continue on if you don't want to pay for something, don't be so negative about it.
    – Blizz
    Jan 11, 2017 at 7:11

I developed a free app to download subtitles on the Mac.


You can download it from here.

It downloads from OpenSubtitles.

It is not a signed application (I'm not willing to pay Apple two times, as I develop for iPhone and not for Mac), so you have to allow it to run through System Preferences → Security & Privacy.

  • Thanks for disclosing your affiliation with the product you are promoting in your answer. Please see the help center regarding self-promotion if you haven't already.
    – grg
    May 22, 2015 at 19:00
  • Thanks for sharing your FREE app. If this is 'self-promotion', then keep up the good work.
    – hmj6jmh
    Nov 14, 2017 at 2:57
  • Unfortunately the app does not do anything. There is no interface at all. There isn't even a Quit menu item. I had to force quit it.
    – hmj6jmh
    Nov 14, 2017 at 4:53
  • Although drag-n-drop doesn't work, I really appreciate it, works as intended.
    – Vitim.us
    Nov 23, 2021 at 0:51

I, too, have made a free utility for this purpose.

You can grab it fresh here: Sublime.


Subsmarine from cocoawithchurros provides a commercial solution.

  • 2
    Welcome, @joao. We appreciate a link, and a short description of the app. Answers that are just one line of text, or one link, are discouraged. Thanks for your cooperation. Jul 1, 2011 at 3:53
  • Probably he was "hardly" trying to promote this commercial software.
    – sorin
    Oct 8, 2011 at 22:47

I am using SPlayerX. It is a media player can auto download subtitles depending on the video you playing.

  • Would you buy a software that has a description only in Chinese in Apple Store? About the same with the company website :p
    – sorin
    Oct 9, 2011 at 10:11

I use XBMC and it works like a charm!


I recommend Subtitles Wizard Plus for this use case.


I wrote a Python Script myself to download Subtitles. First I wrote a Python Script to download subtitles using thesubdb API, then I used automator to create a service. Installation is really painless. Installation instructions and source is on my GitHub page.

Right Click, Services, Get Subtitles, Done!!


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