I imagine it is perversely appropriate that high quality audio Internet radio appears to have arrived in conjunction with air-tight copy-protection. BlueBeat.com:
- The service features over 400,000 tracks of near CD-quality in over 100 genres and 320 channels, covering more than a century of music, and streams secure MP3s at 320k per second, using MRT’s proprietary secure MP3 format X1 SeCure Recording Control.
“The real clincher in Online and Digital Radio is good sound quality and file format, and conversely, the lack of meaningful content security & copy control. So far, few online broadcasters have opted to go beyond a bit rate of 128k / second, mainly due to piracy and copying concerns. Because it has been so easy to convert, ‘rip’ or save just about any audio stream on the Internet, the content owners and rights holders have wanted to keep the audio quality fairly low so that no one would want to engage in such an activity within the hundreds of digital radio channels that are currently available on the Net.
“This has led to a very poor music listening experience, in terms of fidelity. Bluebeat.com uses MRT’s X1 SeCure technology which makes it next to impossible for an average user to save, record, convert or otherwise ‘transcode’ the audio streams on the Bluebeat.com site, and this fact allows us to broadcast at near-CD quality without running the risk of copyright infringement by tech-savvy users,” says Hank Risan, Founder of Bluebeat.com, and CEO of Bluebeat’s parent company Media Rights Technologies, Inc.
A cursory look at the site reveals some nice programming – you can pick “vertically and horizontally,” that is by era or genre, and they have plenty of features:
- Featured Artists:
Mississippi Fred McDowell
The Music Machine
The Ultimate Collection…
by Tennessee Ernie Ford
Endlessly-The Best Of
by Brook Benton
Greatest Hits (Stax) Vo…
by Johnnie Taylor
I Don’t Want To Grow Up
by The Descendents
That’s a lot of width and breadth – it’s a shame none of it can be copied. As far as I know you can still record the radio – yes, I realize the key phrase is “near-CD quality” – but still…
The service is free until September 30, so it’s well worth checking out. Let me know what you think.