Author Topic: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies  (Read 5612 times)

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Offline Truthyness

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2009, 10:18:53 AM »
Or even (:D

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Offline Goober

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2009, 10:59:47 AM »
K, I don\'t want to hog the show but would like to comment on a few of your great points above:

1. WMA Beebotron? Yes please!

BTW, I\'m sure you know this already, but I\'ve noticed that not only are live WMA streams already available for R1-R7 but there are two different ones per station (one high quality (128kbps) and another lower quality (48kbps). These look to be the UK and (expurgated) International streams. Here\'s an example pair just in case it\'s useful:

R4 128kbps feed
R4 48kbps feed

Format follows the same pattern for the other URLs (except R4LW which only seems to have one feed).

2. MP3/AAC streams? I guess you are right but it seems a shame as AAC is (I hear) particularly efficient.

3. Winamp and Real Audio. I\'ve been using Winamp for years and only found the Tara Real widget a couple of days ago! It\'s pretty crude but it works. However, I haven\'t managed to get Winamp to open a RA stream by clicking it in Firefox (only by pasting the URL).

4. Phil Lewis\'s PVR server thingy. I\'ve had a look but I get the impression it only works properly under Linux. Is that right or should I try again with Windows?
--
Terry

Offline Janaru

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2009, 12:41:36 PM »
Got the heads-up posted on the R7 board now, Terry. Thanks again :)
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Offline Kronalias

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2009, 04:17:56 PM »
Quote from: Goober
I don\'t want to hog the show


Don\'t be daft Terry, you\'re helping me greatly! Keep \'em coming!

Thanks for the R4 links - I\'ve opened up a WMA Sandpit phorum, and I\'ll post them over there in a min with some manufactured links to see whether people outside the UK can get the lot.

MP3 and AAC streams - I\'ll bung some stuff in the sandpit on these as well. This will need get_player (with or without Phil\'s posh frontend - heaps better than mine) and I\'ll put something over there on that. And yes, it\'ll work on Windows, apart from the fact that you won\'t be able to stream.

On WinAmp and RealAudio - I think I\'ve done this from Firefox... The box that I\'m using for MythPC was, in a previous life, running Windows and I used WinAmp with a shoutcast plugin to stream stuff. It\'s a while since I did that, as I\'m now using a UPnP server on the box - I\'ll have a little play. Look out for stuff in the sandpit.

Cheers, K

Offline maggie

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2009, 01:25:01 AM »
Oh, my brain hurts!  [insert lolcat photo of your choice]

Terry, it looks like you are going to be a positive addition to our illustrious crew of brilliant Beebonerds.  Welcome and thanks for the ton of info you\'ve provided, now and in the future.  Yes, we know you can time travel!  And thanks to you too, Kron, for offering to set up a place where we will be able to start testing this stuff.  Though it seems it\'s more for folk in the UK at the moment, not outside.

Like Jan, much of the above went over my head.  It did prompt me to start looking into what a poor Ubuntu user will do when all the darn changes happen, since WinAmp is a no go in Linux.  I\'ve also been using Real Player for a long time.  It seems the Linux alternative for WinAmp is Audacious Media Player.  

Eric Fleming, in an article here says that \"Audacious can play more than just music already on your hard drive. Audacious supports streaming via IceCast and ShoutCast servers, in MP3, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC and AAC+ formats, plus any format supported by normal HTTP streaming.\"  I\'m still not convinced since I don\'t see a lot of discussion around radio for this app.

I just installed Audacious, as well as a bunch of plugins & stuff, via my Synaptic Package Manager.  It appears very stripped down, with few visible controls.  IceCast, ShoutCast?  Oy.  My poor brain!  

Does anyone know if VLC player will be able to take over from Real Player when BBC makes these changes for radio?  I\'ve never used is for radio, but it appears to be able to.  It looks like it takes some doing as well.

Another concern I have is with changing preferences for media in Firefox.  I\'m worried if I change radio away from RP, I\'ll always get VLC or Audacious, when I still would like Real for things that will apply to it.  Is there a way to have Real as the default, and the others just for the BBC?  Probably a silly question and poorly worded.  

So this is why my brain hurts.  Hours of googling, juggling, researching new stuff can be fun.  I just need a cook and resident life organizer so I can enjoy it!  It took me over an hour just to write this comment, because I had to research stuff to be able to ask vaguely the right questions.  OK, I\'m going to take a break from all this and come back when the ol\' noodle is rested.

Offline Janaru

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2009, 01:52:53 AM »
Hey Maggie!

Yeah, this change has got me poor old head a spinnin\' like Linda Blair (minus pea soup, blessedly!).

I\'m not sure what version of Real you\'re running at the moment. I think from a previous conversation, it might be Real Player SP (probably not, I\'m such a poopoohead when it comes to my memory), anyhoo, I just upgraded to that version and it plays the Live WMP files fine. The assumption being that when all the Live WMP and Listen Again WMP files come around we should be able to listen in Real as usual. I\'m not sure how the older versions will handle it. They may just need the right codec (or decoder as we normal people would say) to run them.

I have VLC too and it does play the WMP Live streams as well.

I\'m on a laptop using Windows XP and an Opera browser, but most systems have an option to \"Open With...\" when you right click on a file, so you can choose which software you want to run it with. You might play around with a sound file you already have and see how Ubuntu/Firefox works.

Here\'s the WMA Live link for World Service if you want to give it a spin. You may have to paste the link into the \"Add URL\" feature in Real Player (which is what I had to do to check it just now) but it does play there for me.

I hope I didn\'t just add to the confusion :S

Good luck, and if you try it, let me know how you got on with it.

Jan
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Offline maggie

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2009, 03:26:53 AM »
Hey Jan!

I\'m still able to open Play Again shows (that are still listed in Beebotron) in RealPlayer 11 Gold, as well as live BBC World Service and Radio 4 & 3.  

I have noticed that Beebotron is no longer listing Celtic Heartbeat (Radio Wales) and Genevieve Tudor\'s Sunday Folk (Shropshire).  I went to Celtic Heartbeat\'s website and I can listen to the Play Again version in iPlayer, but it tells me that the low bandwidth version is unavailable as of 10/10/09.  The same thing happens for Sunday Folk, same message for low bandwidth dated 11/11/09.  I suspect they might be among the local shows that are no longer available in RealPlayer.  Not sure.  But as mentioned above, we won\'t be able to use RealPlayer at all soon.

A small, but possibly consequential, effect of having to play via iPlayer is that it is more bandwidth being transferred.  It may not sound like much, but here in Canada we are facing down the threat of usage based billing as of November.  It all adds up, believe me.  UBB is insane and will hurt Canada\'s already flailing standing in IT world rankings.  The US just managed to bash down the idiots who proposed it (always the ISP monopolies).

I notice you use \"WMP\"  as well as\" WMA\".  Are they interchangeable?

I haven\'t been able to use VLC for any streaming.  In Linux and Firefox, I don\'t get the \"open with\" choice, not for streaming anyway (only for files on my computer).  What I get is a configuration box.  I get nervous about changing things there in case I want to change them back for other uses.  I\'m not clear how people know what to enter for applications.  I just have Real in for everything at the moment (it\'s not just the title of the app, but the location in my computer).  I looked for VLC in browse in that box, but what I found didn\'t work.  I mostly use VLC for downloaded films & tv shows.  It will open just about anything.  I like Real for radio because it\'s simple to add a URL and save it.

I get confused because some of this discussion is about how this affects listeners in the UK, some for us outside the UK.  

Anyhoo, nice to hear another head spinning out there in Beeboland!  This seem like a good time to again say thanks to Kron and all the other tech wizards here.  They may not agree to the title, but still.

Offline Janaru

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2009, 03:43:47 AM »
No, I told you, I\'m a poopyhead. WMA is what I meant. Sorry about that.

The local stations (Wales, Scotland, etc...) have already stopped using the .ra (Real Player) files, so we can\'t seem to listen to the lower bandwidth through iPlayer (I found that out today too) and the Beebotron isn\'t finding the WMA files. I\'m not even sure if the BBC are creating WMA files for those programs yet.

For streaming your World Service in VLC, you can try:

Opening VLC
Go to Media
Open Network Stream
Paste the WMA link (I think it works with .ra links too) into the address field
And Play

That\'s been working for me....so far anyway.

I love VLC for downloaded movies and shows too. You\'re right, it WILL play anything, but it is confusing. I\'m not a tech head by any stretch and when I see those foreign terms I tend to lock-up, and for the same reason, I don\'t want to kill anything.

But I\'ve tried the above and it should work without changing settings. You might give it a go.
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Offline maggie

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2009, 09:40:16 AM »
Thanks, Jan!  I\'ll try that tomorrow.  (You said poopyhead.  :D)  I hate change.  Well, these kinds anyway.

Offline Truthyness

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2009, 01:40:58 PM »
Hi Maggie,

Thanks for the informative post, just wanted to stick my head over the wall to say hello!

maggie Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> A small, but possibly consequential, effect of
> having to play via iPlayer is that it is more
> bandwidth being transferred.  It may not sound
> like much, but here in Canada we are facing down
> the threat of usage based billing as of November.
> It all adds up, believe me.  UBB is insane and
> will hurt Canada\'s already flailing standing in IT
> world rankings.  The US just managed to bash down
> the idiots who proposed it (always the ISP
> monopolies).

Interesting to note and hopefully such an uber-creative sales-strategy won\'t reach this side of the pond:S
 
> I notice you use \"WMP\"  as well as\" WMA\".  Are
> they interchangeable?

Yes I was wundrin \'bout that too.
 
> I haven\'t been able to use VLC for any streaming.
> In Linux and Firefox, I don\'t get the \"open with\"
> choice, not for streaming anyway (only for files
> on my computer).  What I get is a configuration
> box.  I get nervous about changing things there in
> case I want to change them back for other uses.
> I\'m not clear how people know what to enter for
> applications.  I just have Real in for everything
> at the moment (it\'s not just the title of the app,
> but the location in my computer).  I looked for
> VLC in browse in that box, but what I found didn\'t
> work.  I mostly use VLC for downloaded films & tv
> shows.  It will open just about anything.  I like
> Real for radio because it\'s simple to add a URL
> and save it.

I\'m not (regrettably) on Linux but have had similar problems with VLC, in my case prolly due to an outdated version, but the \"getting nervous\" in case you can\'t backtrack and somehow cock up the current systems set up is an issue that brings me out in a cold sweat.  Needless to say, though, I\'ve none of Jan\'s nor your competence in this domain.

> I get confused because some of this discussion is
> about how this affects listeners in the UK, some
> for us outside the UK.  

That\'s a fair point.
 
Bests,
Tru

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Offline Kronalias

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2009, 01:57:11 PM »
Quote from: Maggie
I get confused because some of this discussion is about how this affects listeners in the UK, some for us outside the UK.


Hello, Canada!

With a bit of luck, Maggie, when things settle down it shouldn\'t matter too much whether you\'re inside or outside the UK. If I\'ve read things right, then when you try to listen to a Beeb WMA stream, then the Beeb will detect where you are and supply you with either 128K (if you\'re inside the UK), or 48K (if you\'re outside). On the basis that we\'re all half-deaf at our age it ain\'t gonna matter too much what you get...

As an example, here\'s the Radio 1 WMA link:
http://bbc.co.uk/radio/listen/live/r1.asx

If you right click it and copy the link, then open VNC, click Media then Open Network Stream and then paste the link into the Address bit and press Play it should... play.

I can\'t get Firefox to automatically open VNC in linux, either - I\'ll bung some other stuff on this in the sandpit.

I\'m sorry about the folky stuff on the other stations that you can\'t get right now other than on iPlayer - the Beeb seem to be in a bit of a mess right now - but as those bugs iron out then with a bit of luck the WMA streams will start emerging.

Cheers, K

Offline Janaru

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #26 on: October 15, 2009, 08:59:22 PM »
Hey, Maggie, at this point we\'re still charged flat rate, so if you can\'t get a particular program, let me know and maybe we can work something out ;)
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Offline maggie

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #27 on: October 16, 2009, 12:11:37 AM »
Thanks, Kron!  Your instruction to open the WMA link works in VLC for me.  That\'s interesting to know.  (Various boxes can be opened in VLC, with rather unclear labels as to what they\'re for.)  At present, I can get the same WMA radio stations in Real.  With future changes coming, I\'m looking to be ready for it.  Now I see why Goober said what he did about VLC being complicated for \'every day\' use.  It\'s more that it\'s inconvenient in 2 ways: it doesn\'t pop up automatically when clicking on radio links, and it doesn\'t seem to be able store URLs for radio shows.  

I don\'t mind a 48K stream, hearing loss notwithstanding.  My computer speakers make the best of output anyway.  Interesting to know that the future format for everyone will be WMA.  At least I know what I\'ll be dealing with.  

There is some connection between VLC and Shoutcast that I keep seeing in my searches.  Do you think it is worth my investigating this for when Auntie makes RealPlayer redundant? I\'m not familiar with Shoutcast and don\'t know if it will solve the instant pop up problem.  

 As mentioned, the other choice is Audacious player, an alternative to WinAmp for Linux.  I\'m trying to wrap my head around how the Beebotron main page will look after this migration period is finished in  March 2010.   That Radio Labs article gives me a headache!  

In other words, my hope is that when we all click on a link on Beebotron, whether we\'re on Windows or Linux, we\'ll be able to open it without having to go through a mess of copy & paste at the end of it all.

Tru -

\"Interesting to note and hopefully such an uber-creative sales-strategy won\'t reach this side of the pond\"
Greed strategy is more like it.  Kills competition too.  Small ISPs like mine are forced to use the main DSL lines owned by these oink-oinks.  

Jan -

Thanks, not to worry.  It seems this is just a temporary thing.  From the Radio Labs article on \"Nations and Local Radio\" - \"In addition to the disruption caused to the Listen Live services, an unforeseen dependency means that the Listen Again service in Windows Media won\'t be operational until November.\"  I\'ve just become more aware of bandwidth even though radio is a small part of usage.  Most people don\'t even know what bandwidth is.  Not all older internetizens are like us! Compared to 99% of users, I\'d say you and me qualify for Mensa.

Offline Janaru

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #28 on: October 16, 2009, 04:18:42 AM »
BWHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Oh my gawd, Maggie!!! Thanks for that, woman ;)
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Offline maggie

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Re: Winamp - an alternative when RealAudio dies
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2010, 07:49:24 PM »