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  1. #1

    Buffering on BBC stations

    I've had this problem a couple of years ago. Over the last few months all the BBC stations I listen to keep buffering, sometimes about every 30 seconds, then I may get a longer period of 2 - 3 minutes where it works ok. Sometimes it shows that the connection is lost, then it re-connects. It's very frustrating. Both Booms do it, but only where BBC is the source. It doesn't occur on a cheaper Kogan internet radio I have. it really is infuriating, and would appear to be a Logitech server problem.

    Does anyone have a solution or know the reason?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Youhave no details of your setup (uk / non UK, LMS ior mysqueezebox.com, wifi or wired) nor what URLs you are using to play BBC station.

    Assuming your are using mysqueezebox.com and the Shoutcast BBC URLs MP3 format. BBC are not commited to supporting in the long term so I believe they could have capacity problems at peak times or during maintenance. These streams are live stream so the only difference between players will be the amount of data buffered and that will depend on your mysqeezeboxbox.com Player/Buffered Radio station seconds setting. If it is currently 3 I suggest increasing it to say 10 secs - it will delay start of play back but with live stream that is the tradeoff.

    The other possibity is local network issue if using Wifi. Older SB player WLAN cards age, they initially become a bit faulty - perhaps with BBC there is a combination where faults show up.

    edit:
    Is Kogan radio playing the BBC's HLS streams and not the Shoutcast one ?
    Last edited by bpa; 2018-02-06 at 02:53.

  3. #3

    Buffering on BBC Stations

    Thanks for the reply. My location is Margaret River in South West Western Australia. I have a powerful Broadband Wi-Fi modem supplied by Telstra. I guess the server comes through my squeezebox.com. Both SBB's are connected by Wi-Fi. One is situated a metre away from the modem. The Kogan is about 12 metres away in another room. No idea how to find URLs. Is that the long line I see when I access "Manage Favorites"? I have just noticed that if I choose say BBC Radio 4 and keep scrolling to the right, I get a screen saying "Tunein Radio Options" > Now Playing> BBC Radio 493.5

    The BBC is listed as being one of my "Apps", and I have always assumed that is what is used by the SBB when I have searched for BBC stations. I would think the Kogan is using HLS streams, but then I really don't know. I simply search for the stations I want (much easier than in the SBB) and they pop up. There are instructions about how use "Frontier Silicon Radio Portal", but I've never done that as far as I can recall.

    I'll try increasing the buffering to 10 seconds. I reduced it a year or so ago when I had similar problems and that seemed to fix it until recently. I'll re-set one SBB, and see if it is an improvement. Maybe I should do a factory re-set if all else fails.

    Thanks again for the advice,

    Allen

  4. #4
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    MP3 streams are 128kbps
    HLS streams are 50kbps and 100kbps

    In either case the HLS stream doesn't need as much capacity as the MP3. This may be the source of the problem. HLS can dynamically drop down to slower speed if there is not enough bandwidth.

    On Boom you're using the Shoutcast 128kbps MP3 stream which will go straight from BBC server to Boom. Increasing the buffered Radio second is the only tweak available.

    I don't know the specs of the Kogan radio. I'm guessing the Kogan radio is based on a Frontier Siliocn chipset since you are using Frontier Silicon Portal and other radios with Frontier Silicon Venice 6.5 chips play BBC HLS streams so I think the Portal supplies URL for the HLS.

    If the Kogan radio tells you the audio format of the stream is AAC - then you are playing HLS. WOuld be good if you can check if your are playing a 50kbps stream or the 100kbps.

    AAC is a better audio format. A 96kbps AAC stream is supposed to sound as good as a 128kbps MP3.

  5. #5
    [QUOTE=bpa;906140]MP3 streams are 128kbps
    HLS streams are 50kbps and 100kbps

    Ah! Thanks for the explanation. But how do I (a) know or find out which I'm on and (b) how do I change from one to the other, assuming it's possible.

    I have changed my 2nd SBB to a 20 second buffer as a trial, and it has only buffered once just after opening, so maybe that's the solution, and I'm listening at 0730 GMT to BBC R2, which must be somewhere near peak time. All good so far. Will now adjust the other SBB and see how that goes.

    Thanks again.

    Allen

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    [QUOTE=Allen;906208]
    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    MP3 streams are 128kbps
    HLS streams are 50kbps and 100kbps

    Ah! Thanks for the explanation. But how do I (a) know or find out which I'm on and (b) how do I change from one to the other, assuming it's possible.

    I have changed my 2nd SBB to a 20 second buffer as a trial, and it has only buffered once just after opening, so maybe that's the solution, and I'm listening at 0730 GMT to BBC R2, which must be somewhere near peak time. All good so far. Will now adjust the other SBB and see how that goes.
    Peak time depends on the station - a few year ago I monitored R4 and I found peak was 16:30-19:00 Mon-Thu, and Sun 11:00 - when Archer's omnibus was played. For R2 mornings used to be their peak - don't know now.

    I don't know the Kogan radio and you haven't given a model so I can't research it.

    Boom is an older player and cannot play AAC natively so for Boom to play other format BBC streams you need a local LMS server and BBCiPlayer plugin. The LMS server should also be able to provide a bit more buffering. A side benefit of the plugin is that you'd get to access to "Listen Again" programs. The typical minimal LMS server is a Raspberry Pi (about GBPú50) running piCoreplayer which is a complete prebuilt system on a card.

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