Here to help...
Coleen, FBA Team
Sangharakshita, Birmingham, UK
Kuladharini, Glasgow, UK
Padmatara, San Francisco, USA
Viveka, San Francisco, USA
Suriyavamsa, Glasgow, UK
Colum, London, UK
Buddhasiha, Ipswich, UK
We hope you'll find our site easy and enjoyable to use. If you are experiencing problems, please read the information below, which should help with most of the issues that can arise. If things still aren't working, feel free to contact us and we'll do our best to assist you.
To listen to a track or talk before downloading, just click the red play button beside it. The mp3 file should play in almost all web browsers, on almost any computer. If it doesnʼt on yours, get in touch and weʼll try to help. Weʼve compressed these preview versions a lot so people with dialup connections can use them too – but the quality is fine and should be clearly audible.
To download an individual track from any talk, simply right-click the play button and choose 'save linked file as'. On an Apple computer, optionclick the play button to start the download. This will be in the same compressed mp3 format as the previews.
At the bottom of each talk page, youʼll also see various download links:
The first allows broadband users to download a high quality mp3 version of each talk (around 21 MB for an hourʼs talk).
The second is for dial-up modem users and is much smaller (around 7-8 MB for an hourʼs talk – about 40 minutes to download on a normal 56k modem).
These smallest files (.m4a) are a little punkier than the others, due to the level of compression involved – but they should also be perfectly audible. You'll need to have software installed that can play them: iTunes and Quicktime (version 6.4 or later) will work, and are available for free. You can also use Real Audio Player, or Winamp, both of which are also available for free.
You can listen to a whole talk online using the third link at the bottom of each talk page. This connects you to an mp3 stream, which will play through your default mp3 software (usually iTunes or Windows Media Player).
When the download is completed, you’ll have an audio file on your computer, or more likely a .zip file containing the tracks in a 'zipped up' folder. Your computer will probably just unzip the .zip file for you when you double-click it. If not, and you are using a Windows PC, look here for help. There are several free programs available for unzipping. If you need more help, try here.
If you're experiencing an issue where your Windows computer is unable to unzip your download properly, the problem is likely to do with the file names of our tracks being longer and more detailed than normal (this helps with searching for information on your computer later on). It may be that this - combined with all of the folder names that make up your target destination - is too much for Windows' memory. (See also the Windows support site.)
Not all computers have this issue, but to get round it try extracting the talk to somewhere where the folder structure is less complex. For example, create a folder on your desktop simply called 'new talks', and set this as your download destination in the web browser. If the problem still exists after you move the downloaded files to your preferred destination (e.g. your 'My Music' folder), you can always change the filename to something much shorter and then try moving it again.
The recordings in our catalogue were either digitally recorded (after the mid 1990s) or digitally re-mastered from the original source-tapes. Please be aware, however, that all of our talks were given publicly or to an invited audience, and that none of the recordings were made in a professional studio. As a result, the quality of the original recording is not perfect and, in some cases, quite poor (often with very low volume levels), particularly on older lectures. We have tried to indicate where specific instances of poor quality were encountered and can be heard on the files concerned. And we’ve turned up the volume where possible! All of the talks should now be clearly audible, and we have tried to preserve as much of the ambience of the original occasion as possible.
Please note that all of the views expressed in these talks are necessarily provisional! They are also not necessarily those of anyone connected with, or employed by, freebuddhistaudio.com.
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