Distortion On Streaming Audio

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Fudge, Oct 18, 2004.

  1. Fudge

    Fudge Guest

    Most stations received on streaming audio using the Windows Media Player are
    distorted. This is readily apparent when I look at the scope setting on the
    visualizations page on the Windows Media player. Some signals are severely
    clipped and almost appear as square waves. This occurs with both my
    computers. One runs Win 2000 ME and the other runs Win XP Home. One
    particular Australian radio station sounds superb as there is no "Flat
    Topping" on the signal. One possible explanation is the Aussie audio
    engineers know what they are doing and have cut back the audio level whereas
    the rest don't know what they are doing and are transmitting excessive audio
    levels. Another explanation is that these are free transmissions and when
    you cough up a few bucks for a subscription, then you get undistorted audio.
    Any comments on this? Any other streaming audio players exhibit this type of
    distortion?

    Farmer John
    Fudge, Oct 18, 2004
    #1
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  2. Fudge

    Art Guest

    I listen to streaming audio from all kinds of sources daily, on several
    different computers, using WinAmp, Real Player, DivX player, and Windows
    Media Player, and I have not noticed this happening, other than the natural
    distortion of low bit rates and the occasional radio station streaming by
    plugging a cheap boom box in to a poorly grounded PC.

    If you're listening to very low bit rates, like 16k stereo, it's going to
    happen. But it doesn't sound like that's the kind of distortion you're
    talking about.

    Something in your own chain is too loud. If you're using powered speakers,
    you're probably driving them too hard.

    Start at the beginning. Get a stream going, click the speaker to open up
    your Windows mixer, and turn down the levels til you find the one the stream
    is coming from (called wav or mix or something, likely). Turn it down a
    couple notches. If your far left master is up all the way, that's OK.

    See if that clears it up. No matter where, down the line, the segment is
    that's too loud, lowering the first volume in the chain should beat it.

    If you still have clipping, try lowering the master too.

    The only likely complication with all this is that your powered speakers (or
    your connection to the stereo amp you're using) can get some hum in it, and
    when you turn up your final volume control (on the speaker amp) to
    compensate, you might bring the hum up.


    "Fudge" <> wrote in message
    news:zsQcd.35653$...
    > Most stations received on streaming audio using the Windows Media Player
    > are
    > distorted. This is readily apparent when I look at the scope setting on
    > the
    > visualizations page on the Windows Media player. Some signals are severely
    > clipped and almost appear as square waves. This occurs with both my
    > computers. One runs Win 2000 ME and the other runs Win XP Home. One
    > particular Australian radio station sounds superb as there is no "Flat
    > Topping" on the signal. One possible explanation is the Aussie audio
    > engineers know what they are doing and have cut back the audio level
    > whereas
    > the rest don't know what they are doing and are transmitting excessive
    > audio
    > levels. Another explanation is that these are free transmissions and when
    > you cough up a few bucks for a subscription, then you get undistorted
    > audio.
    > Any comments on this? Any other streaming audio players exhibit this type
    > of
    > distortion?
    >
    > Farmer John
    >
    >
    Art, Oct 18, 2004
    #2
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