Listen Live to Blue Ridge Public Radio from any device
You aren’t tethered to your radio and neither is public radio! Keep BPR News & WCQS with you while you're on the go with the station's mobile apps or stream our live to your computer. Enjoy our programming from anywhere.
Blue Ridge Public Radio has recently changed the way it streams. Rather than using an mp3 stream, we've switched to a .pls file which has redundant streams to insure a more consistent and uninterrupted stream for you. In addition, we recommend using the urls provided here whenever possible over a downloaded version of the .pls file. If you do need to use a downloaded version we suggest you update that file every few days.
Listen to the WCQS Live stream from your desktop with iTunes, VLC, Windows Media Player, or other streaming MP3 players. You can access the WCQS Live Stream and "WCQS presents BBC" stream from any page by clicking on the play button near the top of the page.
From your tablet or mobile device, you can click on play button on the top of the page or download our mobile app to stream your favorite programs on-the-go.
About Web Streaming
After clicking play, depending on your device and configuration, your stream may start playing in your browser or your default audio streaming application or you may download or be prompted to download a file - WCQSFM-128.pls.
If you are prompted to download a file, you may choose to save or open with your preferred streaming application. After download, you can open the file and it should launch in your default audio streaming application. If prompted to choose an application, you may choose a program such as VLC or iTunes to stream WCQS live to your computer.
You may also click on the links below or copy and paste the URL into the stream location bar in your mp3 player:
If you are using iTunes, click on "File" in the menu bar and select "Open Stream..." or use the shortcut "Ctrl + u" to access the "Open Stream" dialog. Copy the stream URL (including the http:// ) from above and paste it into the URL field and select "OK".
If you are using VLC, click on "Media" in the menu bar and select "Network Stream" or use the "Ctrl+ N" shortcut. Copy the stream URL (including the http:// ) from above and paste it into the URL field and select "OK".
Windows Media Player Compatible Stream
As Windows Media Player is not compatible with .pls streams we suggest you use the link below if you would like to listen with Windows Media Player. You can click the link and download the .asx file but we suggest opening the stream with the "Ctrl+U" menu and and copy + pasting the URL below, then saving that stream as a playlist. This will ensure that you always have an updated link for our stream.
Grace Digital Internet Radio Users
WCQS has reached out to Grace Digital in regards to some complaints that we have received from Grace Digital users who cannot stream our station. We have confirmed that our stream is active on their end. Grace Digital suggests that if you are trying to listen to WCQS as a preset on your radio and not able to stream us, you should perform the following steps:
- Perform a fresh search for WCQS
- Try to play the stream from that fresh search
- Save this over the old WCQS preset
If you are having streaming issues that persist after taking those steps we suggest contacting Grace Digital Support
- Why can't I connect to WCQS's stream?
- Why is the stream cutting out and rebuffering?
- When I click on the links to listen, my media player doesn't launch. What should I do?
- How do I launch the stream with a different media player?
- What do I do if I get a message that says "save to disk" or "open from location"?
- I'm having trouble listening at work. What do I do?
- Which media player should I use?
- I have received an error message from my media player. What should I do?
- Can I download and save programs I hear on WCQS?
- How can I make WCQS's Web stream better?
Why can't I connect to your stream?
There are many issues that can cause problems with connecting to the WCQS stream. Some of these reasons could be:
- Check the volume settings in your stream player, on your computer, and on your computer's speakers.
- Make sure your player is installed properly and updated. You may need to reinstall or update your media player if you are having issues with a variety of online streams.
- Windows Media Player is not compatible with .pls files. If you would like to use Windows Media Player, please use the following link: http://playerservices.streamtheworld.com/asx/WCQSFM_128.asx . We suggest you open this stream by using "Ctrl+U" and pasting the link in that window. After pressing "OK" click the "Save List" button on the right side of the screen and name the playlist. This will help ensure you do not need to open the stream by pasting the link in the "Ctrl+U" menu each time you want to listen to WCQS.
- Be sure you are using one of the WCQS stream links listed and have included the http:// at the beginning of the URL.
- When you select a link from above, the stream may automatically launch in your preferred media player. If it does not, you can manually launch the stream.
- If you are listening at work, you may be behind a firewall.
- There may be a temporary interruption due to limited bandwidth on WCQS's streaming server. Please try to connect a few times at different time of the day, is possible.
Why is the stream cutting out and rebuffering?
If your computer is not receiving the stream data fast enough, you will experience drop-outs and rebuffering. The rebuffering occurs when your computer tries to catch up with missed data. Many times this is caused by Internet congestion or insufficient bandwidth. It can also happen when you try to connect to a stream that has a bit rate that is too high for your modem or connection speed.
- You can try increasing your player's buffering setting, closing other applications, deleting temporary files, clearing memory cache, and/or rebooting your computer. You may also try the stream again later, during off peak times.
- Local congestion: local bandwidth (on your computer or local network) is shared between all open applications and the player. Closing applications may reduce buffering. To see what proportion of your available bandwidth you're using, right-click on the Microsoft Windows Media Player status bar and view statistics.
- Internet congestion can slow down the delivery of the stream, make it difficult for you to connect or cause buffering. We suggest you keep trying or try again later. If you repeatedly have difficulty connecting, please notify your ISP -- there are often quick fixes they can make when they learn about your issue.
When I click on the links to listen, my player doesn't launch. What should I do?
Whether or not your player launches automatically depends on how you have configured your personal system and whether or not you have designated a default MP3 player.
- In VLC, select the Media menu and choose the Network Stream option (or use the keyboard shortcut "Ctrl + n"). Type or paste in the appropriate stream file (found below).
- In iTunes, click on "File" and choose "Open Stream" (or use the keyboard shortcut "Ctrl + u"). Type or paste one of the URLs below in the "Open Stream" dialog box and click "OK".
- In Winamp you can type one of the following URL's into the location window to play a stream.
- In RealPlayer, go to the File menu and choose Open. You can then type in the URL you want to use.
Each of these media players may prompt you to select it as the default media player. Once selected, it may launch immediately in the future when you select the link to our stream.
How do I launch the stream in a different media player?
When you install a media player, you will often see pop-up windows asking you to make this player your "default player" (which simply means the player "claims" certain media types and will automatically launch in the future when music or videos of those types are played). Typically, the most recently installed media player will be the default player on your computer for most media types unless you set it up NOT to be. To launch a stream in a different media player, follow these instructions. Once the new media player is open, use the help index to find out how to set the open program as your default media player.
What do I do if I get a message that asks me if I want to "save to disk" or "open file from location?"
Choose "open file from location."
I want to listen at work and may be behind a firewall. What should I do?
Strict firewalls are configured to deny inbound traffic and may block access to an MP3 stream. Some firewalls are sent out on varying ports. Ask your system administrator or IT department to open port 80 and port 8000 which support audio and video streaming.
Which media player should I use?
MP3 streams can be played using iTunes, RealAudio™, VLC, and other media players. Other media players include: QuickTime, Winamp, MusicMatch, Xaudio, freeAMP, MacAmp or MacAmp Lite, Xaudio and mpg123. This list is not complete. Many players exist, so you have the option to use any player you prefer; however, because there are so many options, we are not able to test them all. If your preferred player doesn't work, we suggest you do a Google search or install a different player. All players function optimally when the newest version has been installed.
iTunes is compatible with both Macintosh and Windows. Click here to go to the Apple site's iTunes download page. This page has information about system requirements. For additional assistance, please refer to the iTunes support section or choose the help menu in your iTunes player.
Click here to go to theVLC home page. Once you click on the download link, the player should start to download automatically. If it does not, click the "If not, click here" link and it will attempt to download from a new location.
I have received an error message from my media player. What should I do?
If you are receiving an error message about the file not being found or if it suggests that if your computer is not connected to the internet that you should connect, this is most likely an instance in which our streaming server is at capacity for bandwidth usage. Instances of this type of error are unpredictable.
If you want to stream WCQS and have received this message, it is advisable to try again. If you're not sure whether this is your problem and think that it may be a user-error resulting in your inability to stream WCQS, follow the instructions and hints in the "I can't listen" section of this page.
Can I download and save programs?
This is a live web stream, so you cannot save specific songs or programs, but you can bookmark the stream in your player. To add the stream to your list of favorites, go to File -> Add To Media Library. You can, however, find specific programs as podcasts.
How can I make WCQS's stream better?
You can improve the reliability of WCQS's stream for all listeners by disconnecting from the stream and closing your media player when you've finished listening. This will help limit the amount of bandwidth being used by our streaming server and improve performance for all users. Also, consider making a contribution to WCQS.