How Dubformer performs AI dubbing on Nebius infrastructure

Dubformer is a secure AI dubbing and end-to-end localization solution that guarantees broadcast quality in over 70 languages. The company manages two of its most resource-intensive tasks on Nebius AI: ML itself and the deployment of models.

Dubformer mainly utilizes two of Nebius services: Compute Cloud, which manages virtual machines with GPUs, and Object Storage, which houses data for model training.

Here are some technical highlights from Dubformer’s training experience on Nebius AI:

Content localization made easy with AI dubbing

In a world of constant media content production, breaking language barriers to reach a global audience is a significant challenge. Traditional text translation tools can highlight key parts and discard the rest, but such algorithms often fall short in handling the complexity of video content. AI localization with neural networks stands out as the only viable solution.

Dubformer addresses communication gaps with its advanced AI-driven, end-to-end video localization service, blending human expertise with AI efficiency in over 70 languages. To thoroughly understand the technology that powers Dubformer, let’s look at it step by step.

Step 1. Intelligent transcription

Transcription quality plays a crucial role in content localization. Dubformer’s AI models recognize speech, structure words into sentences, and insert punctuation, all while accounting for context and intonation.

Step 2. Speaker designation and labeling

In multi-speaker videos, identifying who said what is essential for preserving the intended meaning. This is done by Debformer’s specialized algorithm.

Step 3. Context-aware translation

High-quality subtitle translation isn’t just about looking at isolated sentences. Dubformer’s translation neural networks must also ensure accurate flow, consistency, and contextual understanding.

Step 4. Neural speech synthesis

Dubformer doesn’t stop at subtitles: the company uses its own neural dubbing technology to deliver studio-quality voice-overs. Here, the algorithms eliminate the original voices and select appropriate voices for the dubbing track, ensuring a seamless auditory experience.

Step 5. AI mixing

To achieve broadcasting-level quality, it is necessary to integrate the synthesized audio into the final track. This involves working with the music and effects (M&E) track or utilizing AI to generate one in a process called smart voice removal. Dubformer also automatically adjusts volume balance and aligns the result with industry standards.

Human touch

While machine translation technology can be impressive, it isn’t flawless. For example, when a character in an English-language film suddenly switches to Latin, the AI algorithms can get confused.

Recognizing these limitations, Dubformer uses a human touch model, incorporating professional translators and native speakers to verify each localization step. This approach ensures unparalleled precision, particularly in nuanced scenarios like the one we mentioned.

As you might guess, Dubformer’s AI models require substantial GPU computing power and significant storage capacity to store training data.

How speech synthesis and recognition work

To train its models, Dubformer employs a fleet of virtual machines maintained within the Nebius AI infrastructure through the Compute Cloud service. Some machines come equipped with NVIDIA A100 Tensor Core GPUs, while others are outfitted with the even more powerful H100s.

High-performance graphics cards are essential for training complex speech synthesis and recognition models — integral parts of Dubformer’s product. A massive volume of data must be loaded into each GPU’s VRAM to train these models. For a better sense of scale, consider this: speech synthesis models train on thousands of hours of audio recordings, and speech recognition models train on hundreds of thousands of hours. When it comes to data capacity, we’re talking about hundreds of terabytes — which is comparable to or even exceeds the amount of data required for LLM training. That’s too much for any virtual machine’s disk to handle. Using regular disks also goes contrary to Dubformer’s inherent need to distribute data across many VMs instead of storing it on standalone machines. Thus, any data accessed during model training or hypothesis testing is streamed to the GPUs from Object Storage — one of the key services within Nebius AI.

Dubformer models undergo training 24/7, so these compute resources are always in use. To utilize them effectively, the team at Dubformer maintains a queue of dozens of experimental tasks. Speech recognition models can take months to train — most experiments take place in voice synthesis. Hypotheses are either tested on Nebius AI’s virtual machines in parallel with production workloads or remain in the queue until their turn comes up — depending on the data volume at any given time.

The trained models themselves are not very large — they can easily fit into the VRAM of just one graphics card. Nevertheless, the team at Dubformer prefers to simultaneously use eight GPUs on an SXM board — an additional server board that connects to the motherboard. The graphics cards communicate with each other through NVLink. You can learn more about these hardware technologies in a dedicated article.

Models to perform real-time dubbing

Dubformer hosts several types of models in the cloud:

  1. Most of the models in speech recognition use the CTC (Connectionist Temporal Classification) algorithm, which is especially popular in audio and pattern recognition.
  2. Voice synthesis uses models such as VITS (variational inference with adversarial learning for end-to-end text-to-speech), FastPitch (parallel text-to-speech with pitch prediction), and a Tortoise analog, fine-tuned in-house by Dubformer engineers. The team’s goal here is that the synthesis is controllable, meaning it must be technically possible to transform the voice on the fly.

This powerful combination of computational resources of Nebius AI and Dubformer’s innovative models has led to high-quality dubbing and voice-overs, significantly reducing costs and turnaround times. This achievement has not gone unnoticed, with Dubformer’s AI-dubbed content gaining traction on television and leading OTT streaming platforms worldwide.

Nebius AI team

Services utilized by Dubfromer

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