UBDFM Android App Version 1.5

Today sees the release of the unofficial UBDFM Android app that allows you to stream the online radio station right from your Android device (requires Android 2.2 and later).

Features:

Note: when listening via headphones, you will hear audio mostly from one side due to the stream from UBDFM not being balanced.

Hope you guys like it and do let me know if you have any feedback or feature requests!

Live Stream Setup for Ran8adidas

So a couple of weeks back we had the honour of live streaming of Ran8adidas (the 8th year anniversary celebrations of Ranoadidas.com) at the International Convention Center (ICC). We share with you how we managed to get mobile video in the field with the ability to add overlays and mix the audio source with any audio source while at the same time live streaming and recording it.

Watch the recorded video from this setup at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/ran8adidas

Our Setup:

  1. WebCamera for iOS (US$2.99) running on an iPod Touch or iPhone to act as video and audio sources out in the field
  2. Mobiola WebCamera (free) on the streaming computer to retrieve video and audio from the iOS device (they show up as webcam video and microphone audio devices)
  3. 3G modem used as an Internet connection
  4. OS X’s Internet sharing to ensure the iOS device and the computer are on the same network
  5. CamTwist (free) to add overlays and text
  6. MacBook Pro line-in port to receive sound from the mixer
  7. A USB sound card to be used as audio out for monitoring
  8. Soundflower was used as extra audio devices to aid the transfer of audio from audio sources to audio outputs
  9. LadioCast (free) for audio mixer/switching between mixer and iOS device audio
  10. uStream.tv (free) to stream and record the live video and audio

Other notes:

  • The video quality wasn’t great and it was a trade-off between faster frame rates vs better image quality and resolution which were limited factors of the WebCamera application (192×144 vs 480×360, but I’m not sure to measure the frame rate). We decided on better image quality as it would be made worse by the spotty 3G connection
  • We tried using uStream Producer (free) but it was inconsistent as it dropped after 30 seconds. I wonder if this could be due to the 3G reception.
  • If you have an Android device you can use IP WebCam (free) to stream the video and audio from the device to a computer. I used 2 different instances of VLC (free) to play the video and audio. The video could then be captured using CamTwist and the audio controlled with LadioCast
  • We experimented with PocketCam for iOS ($4.99) paried together with the PocketControl (free) client software but the delay in video and audio was too great, ~10 seconds.
  • Alternatives to CamTwist (OSX) are ManyCam (Windows / OSX) and WebCam Studio for GNU/Linux (Linux) but CamTwist has quite a few nifty features and would recommend it

This Week in the Life of a Tech Curious Guy: Pilihan FM Online Streaming – Part 1

Hearing the calls of people wondering how to listen online to Pilihan FM 95.9, a national news radio station. Previously there was an online streaming feature but it seems to have broke. I managed to track down the website page that I presumed used to stream online but it just gave a Flash player that did nothing after pressing the “Play Radio” button. So being curious as I am, I took a look at the source of the page to see if there was any hints of the URL that they used for streaming. Sadly there was nothing, just the .swf Flash file, meaning that the Flash file itself has the necessary information to start the stream. What I needed was a Flash decompiler.

A quick Google search and I found flash-decompiler on Google code, which so conveniently is an Adobe Air application and thus is cross platform. Typically tools such as these are built for Linux or Windows, but I’m running OS X so at least I didn’t have to use another computer or boot up a Virtual Machine to use the tool. The decompiler was easy enough to use: just supply the location of the Flash file and click “Parse” and it greeted me with 3 tabs: “Header Section”, “Tags” and “AS3 Classes”. The “Tags” tab seemed to have quite a bit of information so slowly I took a look at it, trying to find what the play button did and if there was any URL that it processed. After a bit of search viola! mms://202.160.15.86/pilihan was found!

I tried to load the stream, but there was no response. So it seemed that this was a dead stream that no longer exists or that the streaming device / configuration just died. So this round 1 of exploration is deemed as a failure results-wise as the goal of being able to stream the radio online was not met.

So what do you do, when services provided by others don’t work? Well you roll your own solution! In the continuation post we shall learn how to stream audio from a device to the World thanks to the wonders of the Internet. Stay tuned!

Streaming UBDFM on iOS Devices

You can stream UBDFM natively, without installing any application, on any iOS device (iPhone / iPod touch / iPad) by

This is shown pictorially bellow and may not be a perfect solution, I heard that it does not play in the background but I’ve tested it on my sister’s iPad with iOS 4.2 and it seems to work flawlessly. Feedback is appreciated =)

Pictorial Walkthrough

  1. Open Safari and go tohttp://bit.ly/ubdfmbrunei or http://202.160.1.55:8000/listen.pls

  2. Add this page to the Home Screen

  3. Give the link a name

  4. Enjoy easy access to stream UBDFM on the homescreen

Streaming UBD FM

With UBD FM recently being featured on ProjekBrunei and EmmaGoodEgg’s tweet I thought this would be an appropriate time for me to post this.

It seems there is no easy surefire way to get the URL’s to play on all platforms. Some players recognize all URLs some recognize only some. The best bet is to try each one I’ve summarized most below:

Hope that helps you enjoy UBD FM on any platform that you may have =)

Application of the Day: VobEdit

VobEdit screenshot - main screen

VobEdit (download link) allows you to extract the audio and/or video files from DVD VOB files. Typically I will use ffmpeg to extract audio or video streams from DVDs, but sometimes the DVD were not burned properly giving ffmpeg an error that prevents the extraction. Here is where VobEdit comes it. Select the VOB file, click the "demux" button, select the stream, select save location and you’re done! Other features include splitting, joining and remuxing VOB files

VobEdit screenshot - extract all audio streams 

Kudos to Doom 9 for providing great resources for VOB tools and many other DVD/encoding/transcoding information