Posted By Paul Kafasis on June 28th, 2018
As you may already know, our internet radio broadcasting app Nicecast was retired back in February. When we made the difficult decision to end development of the app, we knew it would pain users who still relied on Nicecast to power their Internet broadcasts. To help both those users, as well as others looking to stream online, we set out to provide a more modern solution for creating internet radio broadcasts.
Today, we’ve released Audio Hijack 3.5, which includes powerful new broadcasting functionality. Using the new Broadcast block, you can broadcast to Shoutcast and Icecast streaming servers right from within Audio Hijack.
At this time, we strongly encourage all Nicecast users to migrate to a modern Audio Hijack setup for broadcasting. Read on for more details.
Whether you’re new to Audio Hijack or a long-time user, you’ll be able to get started broadcasting with ease. Audio Hijack’s intuitive audio grid provides a pipeline-style view to show exactly how audio is flowing. By adding the new Broadcast block, any audio chain can now send audio to a Shoutcast or Icecast streaming server.
Above, you can see a very basic broadcasting setup. Audio is being pulled in from two sources: a USB microphone and iTunes. It’s then passed on to a remote server, via Broadcast. Audio chains can be much more complex than this, including audio effects, recorders for archiving your broadcast, and more, but even this basic chain will stream audio out.
Configuring the Block
To set up the Broadcast block, you just need to enter your server information in the “Setup” tab, and you’ll be ready to connect.
Once you’ve got the block configured properly, your broadcast will be triggered by running the session in Audio Hijack. As soon as you start your session, the Broadcast block will connect to your remote server and begin streaming.
After downloading Audio Hijack, you should be able to recreate your old Nicecast setup in just a few minutes. Of course, if you have questions or need assistance, our top-notch support team is here to help.
Audio Hijack’s Many Improvements Over Nicecast
Streaming with the new Broadcast block in Audio Hijack offers many advantages over Nicecast. Here are just a few of the improvements and enhancements you’ll find upon migrating your broadcasting setup to Audio Hijack.
Shoutcast 2 support
While Nicecast could only work with Shoutcast 2 servers in their Shoutcast 1 compatibility mode, the new Broadcast block has full support for Shoutcast 2 servers.
In addition to standard MP3 streaming, the new Broadcast block can also stream in AAC/AAC+ (HE-AAC) format. When streaming AAC, Broadcast automatically switches to the superior-sounding HE-AAC whenever possible.
Send to Multiple Servers at Once
By placing multiple Broadcast blocks in one Audio Hijack session, you can create multiple streams for multiple servers. It’s a snap to stream your audio at multiple qualities or in multiple audio formats.
We’ve overhauled and improved the track titles system which originated in Nicecast. You can now select supported application sources to automatically have their information embedded in the stream for listeners to see. You can also customize the exact display, and even manually enter track titles in real time as you broadcast.
A Beautifully Designed Interface
Audio Hijack’s pipeline shows you exactly how your audio is flowing through the app. With an easy-to-understand view of your broadcast, complex audio processing with effects and more is now simpler than ever.
Due in large part to its advanced age, Nicecast had some unfortunate holes in its accessibility, particularly when it came to using to audio effects. Audio Hijack is fully accessible, and great for our visually impaired users. It’s even been awarded a Golden Apple by the AppleVis community, recognizing great and accessible applications.
Audio Hijack will make a fantastic replacement for your older Nicecast setup, and we hope you’ll try it today. Read on for details on making the move to Audio Hijack.
Moving to Audio Hijack
Nicecast is no longer in development, having been retired earlier this year. The last version of Nicecast (v1.11.13, available from our Legacy page) works as expected on MacOS 10.13 (High Sierra) and lower, and should continue to work there indefinitely without needing updates. However, it’s very likely it will experience issues running on the forthcoming MacOS 10.14 (Mojave). Further, due to changes made by Apple, the app will not run at all on MacOS 10.15 and up.
Given the above, we strongly encourage all active users of Nicecast to move to Audio Hijack. Audio Hijack is fully supported and in active development, with frequent updates. The app offers nearly all the functionality Nicecast had1, with many additional features and improvements as described above.
If you already own Audio Hijack, just grab Audio Hijack 3.5 (or newer) to get started. This is a free update for owners of Audio Hijack 3, and re-creating your setup should be quick. If you’re new to Audio Hijack, head over to our Audio Hijack page to learn more and download the free trial.
We’re excited to see how folks take advantage of Audio Hijack’s new broadcasting ability, and former Nicecast users are sure to be a big part of that. We hope to hear you using Audio Hijack to broadcast soon!
There is one difference between the old Nicecast application and the new Broadcast block which must be noted. The Broadcast block does not offer a built-in server, as Nicecast did. We know that the majority of Nicecast users were already using an external server, so this will only affect a minority of folks migrating to Audio Hijack.
If you were previously using Nicecast’s built-in server, however, you’ll need to find remote hosting in order to broadcast. See this knowledge base article for several good options. The more technically inclined can also self-host Shoutcast or Icecast, right on their own server. ↩︎