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Old 7th April 2012, 20:03   #1
www.maxa.es
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Feature Request : lossless or hybrid brodcasting like Wavpack, Wav or Flac

Hi, I'm michael. French guy. New here.


I would like to give a feedback and ask a feature for the future.

So, I would like to know why it's not possible with Shoutcast to have more ways to broadcast, in particular a way to broadcast in lossless quality, or in hybrid quality (like wavpack). in 2012 everybody had high speed Internet, even Mobiles had 4G now (even in france in few months !), and MP3 is a very old codec.

AAC isn't a great alternative for high quality stream, and AAC isn't well supported by flash.


So, why you don't allow users to had more possibilities, like wav, wavpack or flac broadcast ? AAC is up to 448 kbps, and I estimade wavpack to 608 kbps, if we reduce wav 1411 from 58% (wikipedia say we won 58% of space with wavpack).

If we broadcast in "hybrid", we probably can have a wonderful quality for 456 kbps (3/4 of 608 kbps).

So it's not so far than 448 kbps, and it can be a great improvement in the quality of the streams.

I don't know if we can talk about Icecast here, because it's a conccurent of ShoutCast (!), but I think Icecast accept ogg but not flac. if someone know a wav (edit: a way, sorry for the lapsus !) to broadcast in flac (easily because I'm not milionary !), I will be glad to read that !

have a nice day,
michael
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Old 8th April 2012, 21:11   #2
DrO
 
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broadcasting in lossless formats requires a mass of extra bandwidth and most of the formats you've referred to are not ideal for being sent in smaller packets from the server to the client.

Quote:
in particular a way to broadcast in lossless quality, or in hybrid quality (like wavpack). in 2012 everybody had high speed Internet, even Mobiles had 4G now (even in france in few months !), and MP3 is a very old codec.
that is not true, it may be for you but there are masses of people on limited / restricted internet access and there is still a long way to go before it is not the case. also no network ever achieves the maximum data rate claimed. not forgetting in the 4G case who it would be very easy for someone to go through their allowance (since unlimited is never really that) without hitting it or having their access throttled back making a lossless stream unbearable to listen to.

mp3, aac and ogg are generally used since they provide reasonable audio quality, can be streamed easily without excessive bandwidth usage and have reasonable device support (in the order i've listed them).

the only issue with AAC and Flash (or with some of the browsers which have AAC support) is due to the use of AAC-ADTS with SHOUTcast streams rather than being in an MP4 container. that is something which can either be handled on the player's side to embed into an MP4 container frame or with changes made on the DNAS server's side based on how the stream is accessed.

-daz
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Old 9th April 2012, 14:34   #3
www.maxa.es
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lossless stream can be additianal to the regulars streams, of course, the users will had the choice.

I think the lossless codecs are in VBR, and because bitrate is very variable from one song to another, we will need :
- rework an hybrid open source codec for an cbr version (wavpack seems to be the most appropriate codec for this)
- or use wav 1411 kbps cbr (at condition wav can be a streamable format).


but no one windows software allow a lossless format for streaming, and I think it's an important point for some audiophiles/broadcasters.

lossless or hybrid lossless cbr bitrates can be provided by the broadcasters like a "premium" option (beacuse 256 kbps an mp3 premium payd stream is not a "super high quality", like as the Digitally Imported Radio's guy says !)
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Old 9th April 2012, 15:10   #4
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i know where you are coming from but as i've tried to explain, there are reasons why lossless is just not suitable for streaming unless the format is able to be split into packets easily - that is one of the main reasons why MP3 is still the main format used for streaming because it is well suited to it.

lack of player support for lossless formats, poor quality output on devices which nullify the effect of high bitrate / lossless output and most stations are not going to be able to afford the massively larger amount of bandwidth used even if sold as a 'premium' service just don't make it viable for lossless streaming. and there's also nor forgetting that lossless streaming makes it so much easier for stream-rippers just makes it a legal quagmire that i doubt anyone would want to attempt to go down.

maybe it will happen one day but as things currently stand, it is not something which is generally viable for pretty much all streams out there.

-daz
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Old 9th April 2012, 15:16   #5
dotme
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A 448kbps stream used by just a small number of office workers would bring a business internet connection to its knees. Not going to happen.

Perhaps when everyone has fiber and 100Mbps connections, but that's not reality today.

Digitally Imported serves thousands of concurrent listeners. A higher quality stream is pointless if the listener hears constant rebuffering due to constrained bandwidth on their side.

While there are audiophiles out there, the vast majority of listeners are tuning in using a $50 computer speaker set. How much better can the quality get when you're using PC speakers to listen?
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Old 9th April 2012, 19:34   #6
www.maxa.es
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Yes, it's true, for $50 speakers it's useless.

But even if it's not lossless, shoutcast let only the choice between mp3 and aac.

mp3 is a destroyer of quality, and aac is good only for low bitrates.

a lossless or hybrid solution could be provided only on the website of the radio station, and help to generate trafic with a "special thing".

maybe only 5 or 10 % are interested or capable to receive it, but others listeners stilll can listen on regular mp3.

in fact if 90% of listeners use regular mp3, a few lossless slots for real music lovers can't be too expensive for a webradio.

and I don't speak about webtv. I watch eurosport france, they had 2 500 kbps streams and less listeners than some webradios. but they need a lot of bandwith for video. And they can exist also.

I understand that lot of people isn't interested, don't had bandwith or speakers.



I just saying that, in 90's, we had mp3, poor quality, in 2010, we had eaac+, worse quality ever.

technology progress, but only in the way to save bandwith, not in the way to won quality. is it normal ?

listeners who had poor speakers or poor bandwith are probably happy, but there are some listener also who buy 1 500 $ super high quality speakers and who maybe don't want to listen mp3 with it !

personnaly I just have a jack cable to had pc sound on my hi fi stereo. everybody has an hi-fi stereo, and a jack cable isn't more than 5 €.

so, I'm agree with you but I also want to defending the opposite opinion : If I have 15 megabits and super speakers, why I still listen mp3 ?

Last edited by www.maxa.es; 9th April 2012 at 22:25.
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