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Old 01-19-2005, 03:19 AM
Tomcat is offline
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Prague, CZ
Posts: 2,411

Why does Internet radio sound tinny? Anything to do about it?

I have a pretty fast connection at the offices here (probably broadband- 1 meg files take a few seconds to download). I have been trying the Windows MEdia Player and the radio stations...Damn, they still sound like you are in an aluminum tunnel. Why and what can I do about it?

Old 01-19-2005, 03:20 AM
naita is offline
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Norway
Posts: 6,395
Get better speakers?
Old 01-19-2005, 03:30 AM
don't ask is offline
Charter Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 18,202
Headphones - good headphones.
Old 01-19-2005, 03:53 AM
jovan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Japan
Posts: 2,964
Unless it is, indeed, crappy speakers/headphones, the problem is most likely not your side of the connection. Internet radio broadcasts are heavily compressed, which comes at a noticeable cost in sound quality. In Media Player, you can see the bit rate it's currently streaming at.
Old 01-19-2005, 05:37 AM
MsRobyn is offline
Straight Dope Science Advisory Board
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Between the Moon and NYC
Posts: 13,029
Some stations use a lower bandwidth to save money or get more possible connections out of the bandwidth they have. My station, for example, has 100 connections possible at a bandwidth of 24kbps and a sampling rate of 22KHz. There has been discussion of lowering the bandwidth of each connection to allow more people to listen.

Old 01-19-2005, 06:17 AM
Tomcat is offline
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Prague, CZ
Posts: 2,411
Yeah, the transfer rate is it...20 sounds tinny, 65 sounds fine.

Old 01-19-2005, 07:24 AM
chrisk is offline
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Southern ontario
Posts: 6,588
One odd thing I've noticed when I've been listening to my favorite show on CBC internet radio...

Talking almost always sounds fine. Music generally sounds about right.

Applause usually sounds like it's some weird sound coming out of an electronic synthesizer. (The show often broadcasts recordings of public concerts, which is why there's applause to be heard.)


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