Anybody into Audio Books?

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wot_fan

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Mar 7, 2007
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#1
In preparation for the iPhone I have been converting many of my mp3 audio books into the m4b format. I found a utility (Audiobook Builder) for my Mac that makes the process much easier. In the past couple of weeks I have converted over 450 books :). Including the books I had converted previously, my library now has over 750 books (8,900 hours of content).

Anyway, this got me wondering how many EI members plan on using their new iPhone for audio books. If you are into listening to books, what authors have you been listening to lately? Have any recommendations?

If you have any interest in the fantasy genre, I highly recommend the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan (hence my user name). The series is read by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading. IMHO they do an excellent job. I think all but one of the books are currently available through Audible.com so you can get them at a reasonable price.
 

itsabouttime

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Feb 18, 2007
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#2
Hey wot! I love audio books, my wife says I'm too lazy to actually read the book myself :laugh2: . I have an account with Audible.com and download them to my mp3 player, and I am very excited that my iPhone will allow this feature as well. I am sorta un-educated in this area but, why must you convert your mp3 books to m4b? I don't know the difference between the two formats.
I enjoy Science Fiction and Adventure books.
 

wot_fan

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#3
In the old days, you had to convert mp3 to m4b if you wanted an iPod to remember where you left off (like audible books have always done). Since iTunes has added the "Remember Playback Position" option now, this isn't really necessary. The draw back to using the new option is that books are considered music so they don't appear in an iPods audio book category.

I am converting my mp3 books (ripped from CDs and Tapes) to reduce the number of parts each book is broken into. I find them much easier to deal with that way and when I add cover art to the files it doesn't impact the overall size of the book as much. Since some of my mp3 books are broken into several hundred parts, adding cover art to each mp3 can add a lot of MBs to the book vs adding it to 2 or 3 m4b files.

I primarily listen to sci-fi and fantasy although I will listen to any good book. Do you have any sci-fi books you would care to recommend? I have recently listened to and recommend the Ender Wiggin series and Shadow series by Orson Scott Card, the Dune series (all of them) by Frank and Brian Herbert, the Saga of the Seven Suns by Kevin J. Anderson and Battlefield Earth by L. Ron Hubbard. If you are interested in fantasy then Wheel of Time (mentioned in my OP) and A Song of Fire and Ice series by George R.R. Martin would be my top recommendations.
 

itsabouttime

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Feb 18, 2007
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#4
Thanks for the explanation, since my mp3 player has always saved my location in the book, I didn't realize this wasn't always the case.
Some of the books I have really enjoyed are; "Prey" by Michael Crichton, "Timeline" by Michael Crichton, "Into Thin Air" by John Krakauer.
Those are just a few, I am interested in the "Wheel of Time" series you mentioned and I will check it out.
Thanks Wot! ;)
 

joe

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May 5, 2007
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#5
I like non-fiction audiobooks and am always on the lookout for a good one. It was great when I had a 1h commute to work.
 

wot_fan

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#7
Im about to get a Audible account so I can actually do something useless with my time.;)
You may want to consider getting an iPod at the same time. If you ask, Audible will give you a code that will get you $100 off any iPod purchased from Amazon.com (if you sign up for a year). If you don't need an iPod, you can always sell it on eBay or to a friend ;).
 

archer6

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May 15, 2007
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#8
In preparation for the iPhone I have been converting many of my mp3 audio books into the m4b format.

Anyway, this got me wondering how many EI members plan on using their new iPhone for audio books.
Being new to this forum, I just searched and found this link. I too am an avid audio book user. I have a staggering library thus, a sizable task ahead.

Thanks for all the good tips you have provided in your posts here. They have provided me with just enough info to begin converting my books for use on my future iPhone.

Cheers...
 

wot_fan

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#9
Being new to this forum, I just searched and found this link. I too am an avid audio book user. I have a staggering library thus, a sizable task ahead.

Thanks for all the good tips you have provided in your posts here. They have provided me with just enough info to begin converting my books for use on my future iPhone.

Cheers...
I am glad you found the info useful. I have been collecting audio books for many years now. I can't imagine dealing with my daily commute without a good audio book. If the book is good enough, I will often listen until I go to bed instead of watching TV.

I have a large mp3 library myself (2,500+ books/700+GB) so I understand the task you have in front of you. If you have any questions about converting your library, just let me know and I will help if I can.
 

Martlet

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Jul 11, 2007
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#11
I am converting my mp3 books (ripped from CDs and Tapes) to reduce the number of parts each book is broken into. I find them much easier to deal with that way and when I add cover art to the files it doesn't impact the overall size of the book as much. Since some of my mp3 books are broken into several hundred parts, adding cover art to each mp3 can add a lot of MBs to the book vs adding it to 2 or 3 m4b files.
To just join MP3s, I use Join Together (+ chapter tool) which is just an AppleScript app that uses Quicktime Player to copy all the separate MP3s and paste them together in a single file, then exports the combined file to iTunes.

It uses a command line tool called chaptertool to add chapter breaks at each file it joins.

Free vs. $9.95... your choice.
 

brinky

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Jul 24, 2007
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#12
Im about to get a Audible account so I can actually do something useless with my time.;)
When I had a daily round trip commute of about 3 hours I had a audible account and just loved it. Depending on the book I would show up at work and sit in my car waiting for the chapter to end as I just couldn't stand not knowing how it was going to the end.

Also the biggest problem with audible books is the narrator. Make sure you listen to a sample of a book before you buy as a bad narrator can ruin even the best book.
 

Lincoln

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Aug 11, 2007
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#13
I've only bought one Auidiobook, and I didn't like it much. I prefer just to read books. Listening to them (especially long ones) is a bit odd to me.
 

Sheryl22

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Dec 11, 2007
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#14
I hear ya' (no pun intended). I can well see that audio books wouldn't work for everyone. They always did for me, though. I've grown to like them more and more. Partially, it's just a multi-tasking thing - reading while I'm exercising, making dinner, driving. They do hold my attention and I remember the text in detail, but that has something to do with how my brain works. There are other ways it doesn't work. :laugh2:

(Like, my wife can still hide meaning from me by spelling out a word instead of saying - like when you don't want a kid to understand. I sit there trying to put the letters together. It's like five minutes later before I realize she'd just spelled out "ice cream" or something. It's pathetic, but she gets a kick out of.):)

But audio books, love em. I'll think about doing something with a regular book, too, but there were quite a few giveaways of those on other people's sites. I'll look for a different angle. Maybe when I get my hands on some British Advance Reading Copies...:cool:
______________________________
Here is a website Audio Books Where u can get lots of audio Books;)
 

Contity

New Member
Mar 26, 2010
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#15
Hello fellow audiobook fans!

My new Audiobook & Podcast Player for the iPhone is now available on the App Store!

I love listening to audiobooks and podcasts on my iPhone but I wasn't happy with the built in player on the iPhone. After looking for a while for another player, I decided to develop my own. It has all the features I was looking for. I'm sure you'll like it. (You can read a little bit more about it in my blog post: http://blog.contity.com/2010/03/audi...or-iphone.html)

Checkout this intro clip on youtube:

If you like it, install and try it out for free from the iTunes App Store:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/audio...356817627?mt=8

If you have any features on your wish list that are not addressed by my player, I really want to hear about them. Leave me a comment here or, better still, send me feedback from within the app. Any feedback, good, bad or in between is appreciated!

Thanks,
Judd