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Author Topic: streaming audio (creating an internet radio station)  (Read 2845 times)
superboyac
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« on: December 19, 2011, 11:32:11 PM »

I'd like to create a website or server (or both) that will stream audio just like a radio station.  I'm having trouble figuring out how it all gets configured together.  I've done my google searches, but I'm not figuring it out so I need help.  I know there are the expensive ($500-1000) packages like wirecast, but that's beyond what I'm trying to do.  There's also ustream software, which is ok, but I don't really want to use ustream right now.  There's Shoutcast which I'm familiar with from years ago, but I don't know how it has evolved or if it is still a popular option.

As you can see, I don't really have any direction right now, so I'm interested in hearing your thoughts and advice.  I'd like to be stream the audio on a website, but I'd also like it to be something accessible through other sources like smartphones.  That's why something like Shoutcast is interesting, it's a link that can be pasted into shoutcast players which then plays the stream.  So you don't need to play it through the browser.  So I'd like to be able to cover all the bases.

I've seen people with Android phones use these radio apps to search a bunch of stations, I'd like to broadcast to those as well.  So there are several components involved here.  It would be nice if one software covered them all, but I doubt it.  So I'm all ears.  What broadcasting tools do I need? What recording software?  server software?  If I record on my desktop, and the website is hosted on a separate server, will that work?  My desktop ISP connection doesn't have great upload speeds, but the server does...so how do I take advantage of that?
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40hz
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« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2011, 04:01:02 PM »

Icecast and Shoutcast have been the two big open source internet radio platforms.

Lots of pro and semi-pro 'stations' used to tie it all together with a station manager package (also open source) called Campcaster.

It looks like Campcaster has been superseded by a new (or renamed) application called Airtime by Sourcefabric which is available in free and as inexpensive hosted 'pro' editions. They have their manual up online which should give you a good idea of what's involved. Read it here. Installation uses an 'easy installer' script which is designed to run on a Ubuntu Server.

Looks like pretty straightforward a project. More journeyman than apprentice level, but nothing super difficult to deal with or learn about.
 Thmbsup
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Curt
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« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2011, 04:36:07 PM »

How to create an internet radio station:
http://www.korokithakis.net/tutorials/icecast/ :>>The programs I use are Winamp for playing, oddcast DSP for broadcasting to the server and Icecast for serving. You can use Winamp’s own Shoutcast plugin and server, but I prefer to broadcast in Vorbis because it’s smaller and has much better quality than MP3.<<

-----
about.com: How to Create Your Own Internet Radio Station
-----
http://techcrunch.com/200...radio-station-ubroadcast/

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superboyac
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« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2011, 09:21:39 PM »

Thanks guys!  I'm trying those suggestions out.

Today, i was messing around with icecast and "butt".  Here's what I've learned.  Icecast is the "server" that makes a radio station.  It doesn't really do anything other than set everything up for something else to provide the content.  That's where BUTT comes in.  BUTT is one of the few GUI hosts (or clients, I don't know) for windows I could find.  It's really pretty easy, although the fields to fill out have no real documentation.  This is expected with all this f-ing open source stuff.  Sorry, I have a love/hate relationship with all this.  Great software, but be prepared to spend hours reading majorly technical geek jargon.  Anyway...

I just put up a test setup.  I love it!  I can totally do what I'm imagining (sorry, secret for now).  I was able to speak into a mic and have it streamed.  I was also able to record the mic.  The only problem I'm having is RELATIVE volume control.  The mic sounds great, but it's a good stage mic and I'm using a mic preamp (same mic I used for our business).  The other pc sounds are BARELY audible in the recording, even though while it's playing it's plenty loud.  But I have all that going through my amplifier and speakers and what not.  So here's the problem:

While recording:
My talking into the mic doesn't play in the speaker, which is a good thing.  But I hear all the other stuff playing on my computer, like my music.

After recording, listening to the recorded file:
All you really hear is what I said in the mic.  The rest of the computer sounds don't get recorded other than what the mic picks up.  That's because it's not recording it off of the source, it's recording it playing through the speakers and being picked up by the mic.


So how can I mix it all up?  Be able to capture my computer sounds, AND record on the mic?  Maybe Airtime can help with that.
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superboyac
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2011, 10:54:43 PM »

OK, now I understand the problem.

The icecast thing, it records the mic input because, well, it's an input device.  But when I play music on the computer, that's an output.  I need to somehow turn that output into an input, while still being able to listen to it...AND recording the mic while NOT hearing it live.  I guess that's why all the radio hosts have headphones, one of those inputs is playing in there (mic? or music?).  So I'm not sure how to do that yet.  I have all the equipment here, I think.  I have two sound cards (a normal, and a pro audio), I have a mixer...so I should be able to do this.
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app103
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« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2011, 04:09:34 AM »

The icecast thing, it records the mic input because, well, it's an input device.  But when I play music on the computer, that's an output.  I need to somehow turn that output into an input, while still being able to listen to it...AND recording the mic while NOT hearing it live.  I guess that's why all the radio hosts have headphones, one of those inputs is playing in there (mic? or music?).  So I'm not sure how to do that yet.  I have all the equipment here, I think.  I have two sound cards (a normal, and a pro audio), I have a mixer...so I should be able to do this.

It's not hard, but it's also not obvious.

Go to Sounds and Audio Devices in Control Panel.

Click the Advanced button here:



Click Options here, then select Properties:



Select your input device and it will switch to recording. Then check all the boxes.



When you click OK, you will see a volume control panel that looks a bit different than the other one you saw before. It may have more controls than mine, but the one you should be most concerned with in your case is the Stereo Mix. Make sure the Mute on that is unchecked. Adjust the volume on that one to make it louder and it should solve your problem.





« Last Edit: December 21, 2011, 04:58:18 AM by app103 » Logged

superboyac
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« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2011, 10:19:52 AM »

Thanks app!  I tried that just now and it didn't seem to work.  I think I understand the settings you've shown, but I don't see how it routes the playback sound to an actual input.  Am I missing something?
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app103
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« Reply #7 on: December 21, 2011, 05:24:53 PM »

I tried that just now and it didn't seem to work.

You said you have 2 sound cards. Are you sure you adjusted for the correct one?

If you are running Vista or Win7, you may also have to do this: http://www.happy-karaoke..../vista_audio_recorder.htm

I think I understand the settings you've shown, but I don't see how it routes the playback sound to an actual input.  Am I missing something?

The settings on that set of volume controls is for recording volumes, which are the same ones that would control the volumes used for the sources of your broadcasting.

The first one is the master volume, which you would adjust if everything was too loud or quiet. The others are for the actual input sources, individually.

I can't explain all the ones you have on yours, since I can't see them but I can explain each of the ones on mine.

Line volume: This is the line-in source on the back of my pc, for if I was to connect something to that, like perhaps a turn table to spin some vinyl.
Front Mic: This is for a mic connected through the front panel on my pc.
Mic volume: This is for a mic connected through the back of my pc.
Stereo Mix: This is for input coming from within my pc, like from any media player software.
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JavaJones
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« Reply #8 on: December 21, 2011, 07:11:24 PM »

You need "loopback" or "listen to this device" (Win 7). I only have Win7 to test on, so hopefully you're using that. Wink Go to the settings for recording devices, click on the mic, go to Properties, there should be a "listen" tab, go there and enable "listen to this device". Warning: if you're using speakers and not headphones, you may get feedback.

- Oshyan
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superboyac
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« Reply #9 on: December 21, 2011, 10:21:52 PM »

You need "loopback" or "listen to this device" (Win 7). I only have Win7 to test on, so hopefully you're using that. Wink Go to the settings for recording devices, click on the mic, go to Properties, there should be a "listen" tab, go there and enable "listen to this device". Warning: if you're using speakers and not headphones, you may get feedback.

- Oshyan
Thanks!  Yeah, I noticed the same thing today (yes I have win7).  I thought about this all day today.  I even put together a detailed diagram of my audio setup.  I have a really nice mixer (Mackie Big Knob) and all I need to do is route the wires properly.  Initially when I did it, I was just using whatever cables I had handy and got it to work.  But upon closer inspection, if I do it right and take advantage of the features, I can route everything that I'm asking for perfectly.  Furhtermore, the mixer allows me to turn on/off all the inputs with the dedicated buttons and everything, including the headphone connections.  It's fantastic.  So, in the end, my problem was doing a hack job with the wiring.

By the way, for any audiophiles out there, these "monitor stations" like the Big Knob and a couple of others are sooooo convenient.  It's one of my most favorite purchases, next to dual monitors and monitor arms.  For some reason, it makes the quality of my computing experience so much better.  It's hard to explain, but I couldn't live without it anymore.
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