How to Play .SRT Files on a Mac

By Michelle Carvo

Updated October 02, 2017

You can add subtitles to movies.
i text image by Ewe Degiampietro from

Many video files come with extra files included alongside the .mp4 or .mov file such as the .SRT file. You can play these files on your Mac by either converting them to a QuickTime Player friendly format and playing them on QuickTime or by using a third-party app.

How .SRT Files Work

.SRT (SubRip caption) files contain all of the subtitles for a media file. These subtitles may be in just one language or may be in multiple languages. .SRT files are plain text documents so they can be read in plain text on Mac’s Preview app. These files are often included with downloaded movies or TV shows.

Using .SRT Files on QuickTime

QuickTime Player is Apple’s built-in video playback software. Unfortunately, QuickTime does not support .SRT files as QuickTime instead uses QT formatted subtitles for subtitled video playback. You can convert your .SRT file to a QT formatted subtitle by using a converter program like Caption Converter.

Launch QuickTime Player and open your media file. Click the “View” menu option in QuickTime and then click “Subtitles” and then “Open.” Select your QT file and then click “Open” to enable the subtitles on your TV show or movie.

Using .SRT Files on Other Apps

QuickTime Player might not support .SRT files, but many other Mac video playback apps do. If you do not want to convert the .SRT files as we discussed in the previous section then you can instead use another Mac app for video playback purposes.

VLC player is a free playback program. Download it from VLC’s website and then install it on your Mac as you would any other program. Launch VLC and click the “Media” menu option in VLC. Click “Open File” and then select your TV show or movie. Click “Open” and then click the “Video” menu option and then click “Subtitles Track” and then “Open File.” Select the .SRT file and then click “OK” to enable the .SRT file’s subtitles on your video.

MPV is another free Mac video playback program. Download it and then install it on your Mac. Launch MPV and then open your video file. Click the “Video” menu option and then click “Subtitles” followed by “Open File.” Select your .SRT file and then click “OK” to show these subtitles on your video.