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Recently, the subtitles in YouTube were changed to a very low-contrast, illegible white on grey colors:

enter image description here

This doesn't happen in Firefox or in a new "Private mode" Chrome.

What's causing this, and how can I get high-contrast subtitles in YouTube back? I tried disabling all my Chrome extensions, but this did not help.

3 Answers 3

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You can change fonts and colors and such via Settings gear > Subtitles/CC > Options

Screenshot of options

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  • 1
    You can revert to default settings if you scroll to the bottom and click "reset".
    – Stevoisiak
    May 13, 2017 at 22:54
  • Thanks for the Reset trick. Until I did that. despite putting 100% opacity, my "white" subtitles where kind of dark grey instead and vert low contrast. Thanks!
    – Pat
    Jun 8, 2020 at 10:35
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Found the answer to this. You have to change the font opacity setting. Its under the gear on the bottom of the video. Then click Subtitles, then options, then scroll to the bottom, and you'll see it right above Reset. Change it to 100% and you should be good.

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I finally figured out the root cause and a (quicker) alternate solution:

I must have unwittingly hit YouTube's keyboard shortcuts that change the appearance of subtitles/captions:

  • o Rotate through different text opacity levels
  • w Rotate through different window opacity levels
  • ? Shows this onscreen guide with all the keyboard shortcuts:

enter image description here

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