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Inactive Discussions > Audio books versus print books

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 24, 2014 05:53AM) (new)

Many members use audio books and the information is scattered in different threads and tends to get repeated so I thought it would be useful to gather everything together in one place.

The feedback I'd like from other members is what sort of devices do you listen on? I've started downloading audiobooks from my local library and haven't found my mini iPad ideal as I tend to listen to take my mind of domesticity while I'm moving around the house. As yet I'm not sure that I'll buy that many but of course once you get a new piece of technology you use it ways that you hadn't expected. So, which device would you recommend?


message 2: by Paul (new)

Paul I've only ever used my phone and its been fine


message 3: by Emma (new)

Emma Flanagan (emma89) Presumably Theresa of you can listen to them on your phone too. I haven't done much with audiobooks yet but I know audible let's you download the file and listen to it on an ipod. They also have an app which let's you listen to them on your phone. I'd have said phone or mp3 are the most convenient same as music.


message 4: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 24, 2014 06:45AM) (new)

I've got an iPhone, last year's model; but I dont (obviously) have an iPod or MP3 player but am thinking of getting one. How are phones on memory? Presumably then there's no need to get an iPod/MP3? This could be cheap!


message 5: by Paul (new)

Paul An iphone takes a memory card so you if memory gets tight you can save books on a memory carx


message 6: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 24, 2014 06:49AM) (new)

A memory card! Is it compatible with anything else, for example I don't use a Mac computer? I only got the iPhone a couple of weeks ago and haven't set it up properly yet. There's clearly a lot to learn about it. Thanks, Paul and Emma.


message 7: by Paul (new)

Paul The usb for the phone can link it to any computer ☺


message 8: by Allan (new)

Allan Theresa, if you're downloading from your library, I assume that you're using the OverDrive app? If you have an iPhone, even an old one (I was using an iPhone 4 until a couple of weeks ago), there's ample space on the phone. I tend to download an audiobook using Audible, listen to it, then delete it, but all your titles are saved on their site and can be downloaded as many times as you like.

Personally, I listen to audiobooks, and indeed do all of my posting on here, via my phone. I used to listen to audiobooks via the iPod before I had a smart phone, but far fewer features are available than via the various apps for the phones.

The most useful feature I find on these apps btw is the varying speed option-I tend to listen to audiobooks at 1.5x speed, as I find the narrators really do read slowly in comparison to myself. I wonder if I'm the only one who does this?


message 9: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (bdegar) | 4626 comments Allan wrote: "Theresa, if you're downloading from your library, I assume that you're using the OverDrive app? If you have an iPhone, even an old one (I was using an iPhone 4 until a couple of weeks ago), there's..."

I sometimes listen at 1.5 speed but sometimes find it a bit distorted. It's great for super long books and was how I listened to Outlander (33 hours!). I definitely read much faster than audiobook speed.

I used to use an iPod for audiobooks until I got an iPhone - handed down to me by a friend. I haven't tried Overdrive recently. My first attempts didn't work, and the librarian at the reference desk who are there to help was clueless about everything digital. Time to try again.


message 10: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 24, 2014 07:43AM) (new)

Thank you, Allan, I was looking forward to hearing your opinion as you as such an aficionado of audio. My phone is an iPhone5.

Between the MOOC and other things I hadn't even noticed that the phone had a USB cable, Paul, which makes me sound technologically challenged. :(

I use the Overdrive app for library ebooks and have used it once for audio. Allan, I see what you mean about using Audible's site as Cloud for your personal library, so between Audible and borrowing from the local library there isn't a memory issue at all. Presumably those who listen to music on their phone do the same. The next step clearly is sorting out the Overdrive app for my phone......Thanks. :)

Out of interest, if phones are so good for this, why does anyone bother with the iPod/MP3?

The only book I've listened to was narrated at great speed by Eliott Gould and I'd've been lost if it was any faster! It was The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler and I'd highly recommend it as ideal for listening to rather than reading. It was superb.


message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

Barbara, does this mean that you do all your listening on your phone and that you only use Audible?

How do phone batteries stand up to listening? Does it run them down quickly?

BTW next week I am two handed again so will be able to knit and listen :)


message 12: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Theresa, I haven't notice my iPhone losing too much battery when listening to a book. The extra usage is minor in comparison to when using the browser or 3G.


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks, Kevin, that's reassuring.

Well, that's me sorted out. I've downloaded the Overdrive app, found a book and am listening to Stoner by John Edward Williams, narrated by a name I don't recognise: Robin Field. His pace is quite leisurely so I'll probably speed it up.

The only person who is likely to be a bit nonplussed about this easy solution is the engineer who thought he'd sorted out a birthday present for me. Audible tokens perhaps.

Thanks everyone :)


message 14: by Allan (new)

Allan Theresa, if you have an iPhone 5, then you're elected-you'll have no issues space wise or battery power wise. Re your question about why do people still bother with iPods, I'd suggest that most people probably don't. I have a mate who has a massive music (illegally obtained) music collection, for which he has an iPod classic with a silly hard drive space, but I'd say most people use the likes of Spotify for their music these days, and stream their music. Oh, and I have to say that I used the usb cable to connect my iPhone to the laptop about twice in the two years I had it-there's really no call these days to worry about such things.

Re your book choice, being an academic, I'd say that you'll appreciate Stoner on another level again to us 'mere mortals'-I know that Barbara recognised some of the internal politics at play in the novel. It looks promising that your library has such books in stock on audio-it's mostly thrillers and romances available in the NI library catalogue. I'll probably go for Augustus by Williams with one of my credits due next week, along with Nora Webster, particularly after reading Barbara's glowing review.


message 15: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks, Allan. I'm already on chapter 2 of Stoner and loving it. The library selection is strong on crime, including McKinty, but mostly stuff I don't read. There are Some excellent books like Stoner but you have to hunt them out. I used the Recently Returned section fo find it. North Yorkshire is the biggest and most rural county of England and with so many of our libraries closing or depending on volunteers perhaps it's economic to have a strong download catalogue. Either way I'm happy and domestic chores don't feel so bad now :)


message 16: by [deleted user] (new)

Next I'll have to look into Spotify....


message 17: by Allan (new)

Allan I think that Spotify is now free on smartphones as long as you have a wireless connection-I spend a tenner a month, which gives me everything on the go as well, which is a pretty good deal, considering that prior to having the iPhone, my iPod held around 80gb of music-it was the only alternative for me once I lost that storage.


message 18: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks, Allan, I'll look into it. And my birthday present is going to be some good earphones as the ones that come with the iPhone fall out of my little ears all the time LOL


message 19: by Emma (new)

Emma Flanagan (emma89) Spotify is free on your phone but you can't really skip songs. I pay for it because I now use it a lot between commuting and the gym.

I've found its not worth paying more than €50 for headphones. I now people who've bought the expensive Bose ones and the break just as quick as the cheaper ones.


message 20: by [deleted user] (new)

Thank you Emma. The attraction of something like the Bose ones is that they come sized, but I'll look around.


message 21: by Emma (new)

Emma Flanagan (emma89) Almost all in ear ones come with 3 different sized buds that you can change to the size you require.


message 22: by [deleted user] (new)

Yeah! :)) I can't keep the present ones in. I had the same trouble with the ones that the guides used in Russia :(


message 23: by Emma (new)

Emma Flanagan (emma89) Ah the cheap ones the tour guides use are always crap. The ones you get with phones often aren't much better.


message 24: by Barbara (last edited Oct 25, 2014 08:55AM) (new)

Barbara (bdegar) | 4626 comments Theresa wrote: "Barbara, does this mean that you do all your listening on your phone and that you only use Audible?

How do phone batteries stand up to listening? Does it run them down quickly?

BTW next week I a..."


I do most of my audiobook listening driving back and forth to work (about 2 hours a day). I picked up a cue from Allan though and sometimes listen at home while doing chores. My car has a jack so I listen through my iPhone - also at home and when walking. But I sometimes use my mini iPad when I'm home. I do find it eats battery power but am usually OK. I am also able to charge my phone while driving.
Sorry to hear your libraries are cutting back. They did that in this area but have started expanding hours a bit. It is especially important in my area as many school children and high school students use the library for school work. This is mostly true of lower income families.

Theresa wrote: "Barbara, does this mean that you do all your listening on your phone and that you only use Audible?

How do phone batteries stand up to listening? Does it run them down quickly?


BTW next week I a..."



message 25: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (bdegar) | 4626 comments Forgot to add - glad you'll be knitting again. I watch tv more often than listening to books when knitting but audiobooks are very popular with knitters including my BFF (best fiber friend).


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