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How to get the best quality recording of radio3 stream


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Hello

At the moment I am recording radio3 stream with vlc media player and wondered

if there was a way to get better quality. Vlc records to an mp4 file I would prefer

a flac file. Does anyone know of a better program, preferably freeware.

Thanks

thyristor44

Hi thyristor44

 

Not sure what you're trying to achieve here. I've just tested recording the internet radio station using the latest version of VLC (2.1.5) on a Windows computer with its default settings and it is capturing the raw stream perfectly. The file produced contains AAC audio at 320kbps, exactly as the original broadcast stream. AAC audio is usually stored in an mp4 container file, hence the reason why VLC is storing the AAC audio in an mp4 file. Apple also use an mp4 type container for AAC, but give it an m4a suffix (for mp4 audio).

 

Is your music player not able to playback AAC properly?

 

John

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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OK you folks are from the UK like me.

The best method I've found is to use my Panasonic HD/DVD recorder that has a TV tuner, and program it to save any Radio 3 music that looks interesting. I'm not sure of the exact bit rates stored but these are certainly better than those of the corresponding DAB radio transmissions. In my experience the TV tuner feed sounds as good as the live stream. Those performances that take my fancy I transfer to DVD-RW, edit on the computer and store the resulting files in my music library. Pro is I can edit levels (usually very low for live performances) and remove announcements, applause etc; Con is I can sometimes miss the end of a live performance if it over-runs the allocated slot.

ALAC iTunes library on Synology DS412+ running MinimServer with Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet running BubbleUPnP for control >

Hi-Fi 1: Airport Extreme bridge > Netgear switch > TP-Link optical isolation > dCS Network Bridge AND PS Audio PerfectWave Transport > PS Audio DirectStream DAC with Bridge Mk.II > Primare A60 > Harbeth SHL5plus Anniversary Edition .

Hi-Fi 2: Sonore Rendu > Chord Hugo DAC/preamp > LFD integrated > Harbeth P3ESRs and > Sennheiser HD800

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AFAIK the AAC 320 kbps internet radio feed is the highest quality one the broadcaster streams the station at. Certainly, the DAB feed is a lower quality one. It's possible that they are using the same high quality feed for their digital TV broadcasts of the radio station, as they are for the internet.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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Hi thyristor44

 

Not sure what you're trying to achieve here. I've just tested recording the internet radio station using the latest version of VLC (2.1.5) on a Windows computer with its default settings and it is capturing the raw stream perfectly. The file produced contains AAC audio at 320kbps, exactly as the original broadcast stream. AAC audio is usually stored in an mp4 container file, hence the reason why VLC is storing the AAC audio in an mp4 file. Apple also use an mp4 type container for AAC, but give it an m4a suffix (for mp4 audio).

 

Is your music player not able to playback AAC properly?

 

John

Yes it is a bit of confusion on my part. I wasnt sure if an mp4 file also contained video information, I read up about that. VLC will record and replay on the pc into a dac and into the amp without problems. My Marantz cd player will also play the mp4 recordings from a memory stick soI dont need pc.

 

PS How can you see that aac does contain 320kbps.

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Yes, VLC doesn't display the vbr (variable bitrate), only the sample rate - which was 44.1kHz for both the recorded file and the original radio stream, BTW. I got the AAC 320kbps indication from my Pioneer streamer's display when playing back the recorded file, which of course matches what it displays when playing the actual internet radio station.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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I know the OP is on Windows, but if anybody reading this is on a Mac, there's an app called Snowtape that detects the stream parameters and captures the audio with no resampling or bit rate loss. (Didn't know VLC might do this too; gotta check that out, but does VLC do timer recording?) Check it out, hasn't been updated in awhile but developer just sent out a survey about feature requests for next version.

 

For fans of "The Beeb's" excellent 320K AAC stream, I stumbled upon another classical station with an excellent sounding 320K AAC stream: KWAX-FM in Eugene, Oregon. Listening to that more than BBC3 lately.

 

Wish I could find a good jazz station with the same level of SQ...

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I know the OP is on Windows, but if anybody reading this is on a Mac, there's an app called Snowtape that detects the stream parameters and captures the audio with no resampling or bit rate loss. (Didn't know VLC might do this too; gotta check that out, but does VLC do timer recording?) Check it out, hasn't been updated in awhile but developer just sent out a survey about feature requests for next version.

 

For fans of "The Beeb's" excellent 320K AAC stream, I stumbled upon another classical station with an excellent sounding 320K AAC stream: KWAX-FM in Eugene, Oregon. Listening to that more than BBC3 lately.

 

Wish I could find a good jazz station with the same level of SQ...

Fantastic site that db Cooper, thanks.

I havent tried to get vlc to do a timer record yet but would be usefull.

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If using a Mac you could also use Get iPlayer Automator to download the streams from iPlayer. That way you don't need to record in real time.

 

I think similar exist for Windows.

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I've just tested recording the internet radio station using the latest version of VLC (2.1.5) on a Windows computer with its default settings and it is capturing the raw stream perfectly. The file produced contains AAC audio at 320kbps, exactly as the original broadcast stream. AAC audio is usually stored in an mp4 container file, hence the reason why VLC is storing the AAC audio in an mp4 file. Apple also use an mp4 type container for AAC, but give it an m4a suffix (for mp4 audio). --John

Any advice on how to record the following FLAC broadcast stream in a lossless format?

http://195.113.161.81:8000/cro-d-dur.flac

 

In VLC I've tried transcoding on and off and every possible container format, but audio player programs produce error messages saying the container format is erroneous or unrecognizable.

 

Does VLC fail to write a necessary header to the file when you click the Stop button?

HQPlayer (on 3.8 GHz 8-core i7 iMac 2020) > NAA (on 2012 Mac Mini i7) > RME ADI-2 v2 > Benchmark AHB-2 > Thiel 3.7

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