My favorite great online radiostations are Groovetech and NPR. Both satisfy my needs as an end user and are great examples of streaming sites that go the distance to make a lot of unique content available in an easy to navigate, high quality format.
For my interests, NPR.org is the best streaming media website on the net. There are archives going back many years of All Things Considered and Morning Edition, and more recent archives of many of NPR’s programs including This American Life and Fresh Air. I find the site performance is good and despite the breadth of programs, it’s easy to find the show I’m looking for. Finally, all the news programs have text summaries of each story which allows me to use the NPR search engine or Google to find a particular story from years ago.
My only wish is that NPR used better quality audio encoding. Some of their early archives are using older codecs of RealNetworks’ and even some of the newer programs could use the 32kbps voice codec and sound better. However, all in all, this site is a great resource.
has had a great selection of House and Techno music from around the world that is recorded from studios (Groovetech Radio), clubs, radio stations and musicians. It’s all available in a searchable archive.
Groovetechs clips are many hours long – so I can tune in, turn up the volume and get some work done. On the Internet, there is little different between a “live” station and a 7 hour archived clip. I’m more interested in good quality audio (generally 128-192bps is fine) in the background. I hope groovetech will be back online soon.
In any case, both these stations are excellent sites and models for an excellent online radio experience.