You can listen to radio stations that stream over the Internet by using your computer. To listen to live streaming audio on your computer, you will need an Internet connection. Any reliable broadband connection is good enough, including WiFi, and reasonable results can be obtained even with dialup connection speeds as slow as 28K. You will also need speakers or headphones connected to sound card hardware inside your computer, and one or more audio software applications installed on your computer. There are no subscription fees or contracts (beyond the cost of your Internet connection) when you tune in on your computer.
Once you have used these Allegro! Web pages to identify a radio broadcast service that is streaming a program that you would like to hear, follow the link to that service's Streaming Audio Feed page here on the Allegro! site. In the box in the center of that page (see the example), you will see the text "Listen now to this broadcast service in" followed by one or more links to audio streams. Which stream format to choose? If you are using a Microsoft Windows computer, you probably already have the Windows Media™ Player installed, so the Windows Media™ format will probably work for you. If you are using an Apple Macintosh, you probably already have QuickTime® or iTunes® installed, so the MP3 format will probably work. Click on the link, and your audio application should launch and begin to stream the broadcast signal.
If you would like to try other formats or software, continue reading. If you are having connection problems, see the Connection problems page.
If you would like to share the audio that you are hearing on your computer with a nearby audio system or set of powered speakers, see the page about how to listen with a WiFi Radio, Internet Radio Adapter, or Wireless Music System.
Several audio feed file formats are being used to send streaming audio feeds over the Internet. Many radio stations provide their feeds in multiple formats at the same time, so you can choose among them.
Formats in wide use include:
You'll need to have one or more Internet media software applications installed on your computer ... but you probably already do. Some of the available applications will play more than one of the streaming audio feed file formats.
Software applications in use include those listed below. If you need an application or would like to try one that you don't have, follow the links below to obtain the software. With some of these applications, only freeware versions exist. With others, the developer encourages you to buy a full-featured version of the software, or accept a temporarily-free trial, but a free version of each is very likely available; you may just have to look very closely on the Web pages you reach to find a link to it.