iphone 3G - streaming internet radio, pandora, etc. questions on bitrate/sq

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by brucemac, May 6, 2009.

  1. brucemac macrumors newbie

    May 5, 2009
    i've been wanting an iphone for a while, but have been waiting for my current contract to expire so i can switch carriers (to ATT).

    i have some questions with regards to streaming audio over the iphone with 3G (NOT Wi-FI).

    so, i've been searching and reading quite a bit the last week or so and haven't really found any solid answers to my questions and quite honestly, i'm getting tired of wading through all the dribble, so here goes.

    1. is there any decent app that allows streaming shoutcast or other internet radio stations at a decent bitrate? when i say decent, ideally i mean 128kbps stereo. how does the connection hold up with decent signal? lots of re-buffering or reconnects? can you please be specific in terms of which apps you are using and why as well as how it sounds?

    2. what is the bitrate of simplify music's iphone app for streaming itunes library over 3G?

    3. is pandora's bitrate still <64kbps mono over 3G?

    i really like the idea of being able to stream radio, specifically a few shoutcast stations, radio stations and possibly my home library through my future iphone into my car and boat, but honestly can't get too excited about it unless it's at least somewhere near 128kbps stereo. i could maybe settle 96kbps or maybe even 64kpbs if it was stereo. is the technology/bandwith just not there yet? i know sq is very subjective, but to maybe put it in to perspective, sat radio was a huge disappointment to me when i first got it and listened to it in my car. the quality imo, just wasn't all that great and was the main reason i never sprang for putting it in my boat.

    appreciate all replies, advice and suggestions.

  2. brucemac thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 5, 2009
    wow 52 views and not a single reply?!

  3. TheReplica macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2009
    I've been using Tuner Internet Radio from the appstore for months and stream Chronix Radio over 3G all over the city while driving around and I never have issues.

    I use the 128KB stream.

    You should be fine, unless you have lot of 3G dead spots in your area.

  4. zhenya macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2005
    Pandora has had an advanced setting for some time that allows you to turn on 'high quality audio'. I'm not sure what bitrate that equates to, but it is stereo, and sounds markedly better.
  5. mikey2004 macrumors regular


    Apr 15, 2009
    Portadown, Norn Iron
    I Use Fstream app, I can listen to Talksport, BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 5 Live in the UK.
  6. stevedc3 macrumors newbie

    Aug 20, 2009
    Pretty surprised nobody replied to you here... the situation is much more complicated and I think people just don't get it. almost all streaming radio applications for the iPhone are RESTRICTED. They play at reduced very poor quality bit rates over 3G -- Pandora, AOL Radio, Slacker, Shoutcast, etc etc.

    WHY? because Apple cripples these apps at the beset of AT&T. There is no 'setting' in Pandora to unlock high bit rate music. For their desktop music service, there is a PAID service for $35 or so a year that streams high quality music.... But for iPhone this absolutely does not exist.

    However there IS a workaround which is really amazing. You need to jailbreak your iPhone and use a program such as 3G Unrestrictor which allows ALL apps to behave as if they are connected to a WiFI network. The apps I mentioned above all have better music streaming capabilities -- i.e. higher bit rates -- when connected via WiFi. The difference is very discernible.

    Very surprised no one has a clue about this and so little has been written about it. Super simple solution, but one almost no one is aware of. We really have lost fidelity as a society that people are willing to put up with 64 kbps mono music which is compressed at awful rates.
  7. ngenerator macrumors 68000


    May 12, 2009
    USG Ishimura
    Yup, check out my necromancing abilities:)

    I just have to say that I'm kind of embarrassed that I didn't realize how effing amazing 3G Unrestrictor+Sirius/XM is! It's amazing what 3G Unrestrictor can do when it comes to music. I originally only had it on YouTube and figured that it would take longer for a video to load. I was half-expecting a constant buffering when it came to streaming music, but that is definitely not the case.
  8. rom134an macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2012

    I enjoy exercising to music but when jogging/running, you're forced to use the cellular signal instead of wifi. Since my cell provider (Verizon) is limiting data usage, this really hinders how much Pandora music I can listen to when I am not on a wifi signal before I exceed my monthly allowance. In an ideal world, I would be able to listen to high quality music but for now I have to settle for subpar quality just so I can listen to it for a longer period of time. I e-mailed Pandora and this was their reply:

    Here are some specs regarding audio quality on Pandora:

    Free Pandora is 64k AAC+ on the web.

    Pandora One subscribers get the option of 192k MP3 on the Web and when using the AIR Desktop App.

    Most Home-listening devices get 128k MP3 – whether the account is free or paid.

    Cell phones get anywhere from 24k to 64k in mono or stereo, depending on the phone, carrier, connection type, and in some cases the user setting.

    I hope this answers your question. Thanks for writing.
    Listener Advocate
    PANDORA® internet radio
    Need help? http://help.pandora.com

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