With a growing internet radio market and a new market now being born for radio automation to be carried out directly from a studio computer which will you choose? We have compiled a guide of the most popular software which works in conjunction with our servers.
It is possible that we have missed something out in this guide, and so if your software is not on this list, it is important that you find out wether the software supports “shoutcast” server technology. This is the platform which we use, and anything which has the shoutcast option will connect and broadcast via our servers.
1. Winamp & SHOUTcast plugin
The king of all broadcasting tools. The official shoutcast dsp plugin is the most stable and resource friendly encoder available. With an easy to set up interface, abundant information and help available via shoutcast forums this really is the way to go if you have a windows computer, and do not require special automation features. This is as basic as it gets, buts its free and easy to set up.
2. BUTT (Broadcast using this tool)
Compatibility: PC, Mac
A perfect tool for those who do not have a windows computer, BUTT is the leading and only free encoder for a Mac. The only downside is that it does not come with anything to play your music from, however that is not a problem at all, because you can play your music from any audio source that you like, iTunes, vlc player, real player, or even from your web browser using a service such as spotify or deezer. BUTT comes with a fully working encoder compatible with both v1 and v2 shoutcast servers, and it provides the option to select which audio source you want to broadcast from.
3. SAM Broadcaster
We mentioned that winamp and shoutcast dsp are the king of encoders. Now SAM is quiet simply the king of radio automation. This fully featured product should be installed on the computer of any professional radio broadcaster. With features to scream for including complete scheduling, audio pipeline configuration, playlist automation, and the use of multiple encoders at the same time, this quiet simply is the best radio broadcasting tool for any windows broadcast enthusiast and professional.
4. Nicecast – OUR RECOMMENDED SOLUTION FOR MACS
Nicecast is another stand alone encoder for the Apple Mac. This encoder comes with the choice of selecting the exact source of audio. You can select any software to broadcast from, so for example if you are playing music from your iTunes library, and talking via Skype, you can simply select the audio source to come from just those two applications. This simplicity and ease of use comes with a price tag, and for $59 it sure is worth it.
5. Virtual DJ
Compatibility: PC, Mac
Virtual DJ is a virtual studio for DJs who like to mix their music. It is a complete studio tool without as much automation when compared to SAM broadcaster, however with the added bonus of mixing and “beat matching” your tracks. The software features virtual turntables which is great for broadcasters of electronic and dance music. Virtual DJ also includes shoutcast encoders which means its good to go out of the box to connect to our servers. For those of you who do not want to pay $299 virtual DJ offers a monthly subscription based licence for $19 per month.
6. Radio DJ
Radio DJ is developed as a free to use and complete radio automation system much like what SAM offers however it is completely free. Though we have not used it or spoken to many of our own clients using the software, we think it is ideal for those starting out and who require scheduling for the live broadcasts. Being free it may be buggy compared to software which you pay for, however lets not judge. Its there for free and if you do not have $299 to invest in radio automation then Radio DJ is the way to go.