Most PC speakers suck. Things that'll (greatly?) increase your enjoyment of streaming music:
1. Quality speakers - especially those with a sub-woofer, that can generate sufficient bass. The market for quality PC speakers has boomed, and many companies now offer several grades of excellent speakers. MidiLand comes to mind, but there are many others .. too many to list. The good thing about buying a good set of PC speakers is that, once you make the initial investment, you're set for many years. You don't have to keep upgrading them like you do with CPUs or graphics cards.
2. Headphones - there are situations where it's not feasible to use speakers .. (like when the kids wanna play Counterstrike at 2AM and you're trying to sleep =D ). This is where headphones come in. A few brands come to mind, but you should always try before you buy:
I have Sennheisers (model
cuz they're the most comfortable - like slippers for your ears .. but
they don't come cheap. Note that (like speakers) you don't have to keep
upgrading headphones. Once you have them, you're set for a long time.
B. Grado. They offer excellent quality at attractive prices. But I heard they can become uncomfortable after a couple hours (Grados sit directly on your ears). Their SR-60 and SR-80 are favorites of many. I read that they've developed special, soft pads that make them more comfortable.
C. Sony. They makes a million different types of headphones.
D. Koss. Good value.
E. The site HeadWize is dedicated to head phones, if you want more info.
3. Bandwidth. Higher bit-rates contain more (audio) information, which yield better audio fidelity. Having a broadband connection (Cable/DSL) is like a having a microwave or VCR .. you wonder how you ever lived without it. It makes a huge difference. I could carry on for a long time about the benefits of a broadband connection. Let me just conclude by giving it my strongest possible recommendation. It's life changing. If you already have broadband, you know what I mean.
4. Quality sound card. More on this later.
5. DSP Plug-ins like DFX .. more on these later.
I rip songs with Exact Audio Copy and encode MP3s with Lame. For more info, see the Radified Guide to Ripping and Encoding CD Audio.
Whenever I hear a song that's especially hot, I jot down the name of the title & artist (to buy later). Some of these online grooves are like nothing I've ever heard before.
I don't actually have/own these songs (yet), and you can't listen to them here. I'm merely noting which grooves I especially enjoy. Music is a personal thing, but if your preferences are anything like mine, you may also enjoy these tunes.
Most people have never heard of these artists - myself included .. until recently, that is .. thanks to streaming sites like Shoutcast & SomaFM. If I could get a CD (or two) that includes these songs, I'd buy it in a heartbeat. From what I hear, it won't be long until we'll be able to do this.
For some cuts, I'm not sure which is the title and which is the artist. Special thanks to Rusty at SomaFM for filling in the blanks with some of the artists I couldn't identify. He also said that they have a medium-term goal to start working with companies providing satellite digital radio services. How cool would it be to get Groove Salad in your car? Also a special shout out to the Doc, who introduced me to streaming MP3s back when I didn't even know what an MP3 was.
The following is my list (grouped in no particular order):
Bug Powder Dust - Kruder & Dorfmeister
Bomb the Bas - John Digiweed (bedrock)
Nights Introlude - Nightmares on Wax
Wilson's Million - Funky Porcini
Mermaids - Fila Brazillia
Subtle Body - Fila Brazillia (?)
Baby Mammoth - Ebb & Flow
Pollo De Palo - Fila Brazillia
The Aperture - Harold Budd & Hector Zazou
Post Houmous - Live at T
Now for us - Jose Padilla (Cafe Del Mar series)
Midnight in a Perfect World - DJ Shadow
Unite - The Sixth Sense
Seeya Later - Boards of Canada
A Positive Life
Hedfunk - Dark Blood
Beanfield - Abstractions
Eyes of Love - Jaziac Sunflowers
Sounds from the Ground - Seven Sisters
Hydroponic Groove Sessions - DJ Mark Farina
The Sheriff - Fila Brazillia
Snake Ranger - Fila Brazillia
Esperanca - The Herbalizer Band
Pick me up - Deadbeats
Weather storm - Massive Attack (Protection)
Parallel Life - Starseeds
Dual Tone (Thievery Corp?)
Alpha Phase - Global Communications
Wake Up (Mushroom Dive)
Piano Grand - Tony D
Give Thanks & Praise
Les Nuits - Nightmares on Wax
Modifications part 2
All Right for Now
Moodswings - Ltj Bukem
Argha Noah - Nightmares on Wax
Pulse Dub - Chris Zippel
Still Dreaming (Anything Can Happen)
Young American Primitiv
Back to -> Page 1