The audio clips on this site are presented in two formats, and you have a choice of picking which format you prefer, either MP3 format or RealAudio, which are discussed in more detail below. For either format you need to have the proper software installed. Information on how to install the necessary software is beyond the scope of this document. The links below should be of great help.
RealAudio files on this site may the quickest for you to play, the tradeoff being a compromise in sound quality. If you choose the RealAudio (streaming) option, the clip will play as it is downloading. So, in many cases the clip may start to play almost immediately. This is called "streaming audio".
The RealAudio files on this site were encoded using the 32 Kbps (G2) option or lower, so they should "stream" well over a 56K modem or better assuming no congestion. However, audio encoded at this rate is not what one would call "high fidelity".
To play RealAudio files, you must have RealPlayerG2 or later, available free from RealNetworks.
MP3 files on this site will have much better sound quality, the tradeoff being file size. If you choose the MP3 option, the entire file will download before starting to play. This is not a "streaming audio" option. The file may take several minutes to load.
The MP3 files on this site were encoded using the 160kbps option, with the exception of a few files which are at 80 Kbps. The sizes range from 400 KB to 2 MB.
There are many MP3 players on the market, and many of them are free and available on the internet. A good list of MP3 software and lots of information can be found on the MP3.COM site.Back to CDs and tapes