5 comments on “Free DIY internet radio recorder

  1. I created another batch file that will chop the 2-hour mp3 into 8 15-minute mp3s, just the way DAR.fm presents it if you subscribe to their service.

  2. The free foobar2000 fixes the track lengths in the VBR header of the 8 mp3 files (they are usually off by a number of seconds after the chop file is run):

    1. Download foobar2000 media player (http://www.foobar2000.org)
    2. Open foobar2000 and add the new folder.
    3. Right click on the files and navigate to Utilities > Rebuild mp3 stream
    4. Click “Yes” to continue.

  3. Windows Task Scheduler notes for DIY Internet Radio Recorder:

    Create Task (not Basic)

    General Tab:
    Name: Use .bat file name, minus the “.bat”.
    User account: Mine, not admin.
    Run whether user is logged on or not.
    Run with highest privileges.
    Configure for: Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2.

    Triggers Tab:
    Weekly at 10 pm every Saturday of every week, starting 7/4/2015.

    Actions Tab:
    Browse for path to the bat file

    Conditions Tab:
    Parenthetical actions optional

    (Start the task only if the computer is on AC power.)
    (Stop if the computer switches to battery power.)
    (Wake the computer to run this task.)

    Settings Tab:
    Allow task to be run on demand.
    (Run task as soon as possible after a scheduled start is missed.)
    Stop the task if it runs longer than (1 hour beyond).
    If the running task does not end when requested, force it to stop.

  4. KWGS’ engineer said: “I’d recommend our listeners use our new 64 kbps AAC-format stereo stream for best fidelity recordings. It’s the “Public Radio 89.5 (stereo)” option found on our Listen Live page:” (Both AAC+ and MP3 streams are 56 kbps as of 1/26/2016. The AAC+ squeezes more quality out of the bandwidth…Mike@TTM))


    After tweaking the VLC command line code in my Windows .bat file that records “All This Jazz” in .mp3, I found a way to record the higher quality AAC stream as an .m4a (aka .mp4); (changes in boldface):

    “C:\Program Files (x86)\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe” http://www.publicbroadcasting.net/kwgs/ppr/kwgs_aac.m3u –sout=”#std{access=file,mux=mp4,dst=C:\Users\TulsaTV\Music\1AllThisJazz\ATJ%DATE:~10,4%%DATE:~4,2%%DATE:~7,2%.m4a}” –run-time=10800 –stop-time=10800 vlc://quit

    All the same caveats as above:

    Use the free Notepad++ software to copy/paste/edit the code;

    Alter in the path to your own AllThisJazz folder;

    Double-check the path to vlc.exe on your computer after installing VLC, and alter if needed;

    Alter the four double-quote marks to be the straight up-and-down kind, not the slanted ones (it happens when you copy text from a web page like this).

    Replace the apparent dashes immediately in front of sout, run-time and stop-time with double hyphens from your keyboard.

    There should be only a space between each string of code. I count 6 strings and 5 spaces between them. The 3rd string is a long one, starting with –sout and ending with .mp3}”. If you have it right in Notepad++, you will see solid shading around the whole “paragraph”.

    10800 is 3 hours in seconds (the show expanded an hour on 7/4/2015).

    The Plex software can deal with .m4a. This is great, I will be able to listen to the recorded show in stereo anytime, anywhere! My first recording attempt is this Saturday.

    (I noticed that the online .mp3 bitstream is now at 56 kbps (1/26/2016: as is the new higher quality stereo stream). Checked back in my recordings and found that it was 48 kbps on 7/18/2015, 64 on 7/25, then 56 on 8/1. Spot checks suggest that it has been the same since. The KWGS engineer verified that they had done some experimentation with different bitrates to provide a higher-quality (but affordable) internet signal for listeners.)

  5. Recording KWGS’ new stereo online stream as an .m4a file succeeded. It sounds much better than .mp3, but…

    (Tech talk alert!)

    Some devices I want to play it on (Roku boxes, smartphone) have Plex clients that do not support the HE-AAC v2 (aka AAC+ v2) advanced audio coding format.

    I find that Plex transcodes the .m4a file for the Plex smartphone app pretty well, though not rendering it in stereo. The Roku boxes I have (LT and original N1000) don’t play it at all. I don’t believe the newer models will, either.

    PleXBMC on the Raspberry Pi is the only Plex client I have that will play it as a stereo streaming file. A phone app ($5 Yatse or free Kore) is the best way to control the Pi for this purpose, since you can jump directly to the time you want to start at. (Needed with a 3-hour long show!)

    Previously with an .mp3 recording, I segmented the 3-hour file into 15 minute segments for ease of use when streaming to Pi or Roku. I did this with a Windows batch file that calls the free ffmpeg command line program.

    My attempt to segment the .m4a using ffmpeg’s native AAC encoder resulted in playable segments, but they lacked both stereo and higher frequency sounds. That is because HE-AAC v2 is not supported by that encoder.

    While it is possible that configuring ffmpeg with the FDK AAC software library would make it work, I went a simpler way for now:

    I transferred the full 3-hour stereo file directly to the smartphone.

    Running the free Filezilla FTP server on my Win 7 laptop lets me use the free FtpCafe app on the phone to grab the file. (I recently added a 64GB microSD card to the phone for storage of media files.)

    To play the recording on the phone itself when at the gym or elsewhere, I added the free VLC media player app. It handles the AAC+ v2 format, so you get stereo and the high frequency enhancement. It lets you easily jump to the spot you want to start listening from by dragging the pointer on the seekbar. I keep a memo of where my listening left off on a Notepad-type phone app.

    I am still recording the .mp3 file as well, but may phase this out, as I am getting spoiled by the better stereo sound!

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