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Luxi

History podcasts and audio books at Ximalaya Fm (喜马拉雅FM)

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Luxi

XimalayaFM, has several hundreds of podcasts and audio books that are excellent for listening comprehension practice.  Most the ones I've tried are clear and free of noises, canned laughter and loud background music.  I find them easier to understand than news broadcasts or modern readings or talks full of slang, and much more interesting to listen to than academic lectures.   

People with a Chinese phone number can download the episodes to their phones, outsiders need to find a round-about way to get the mp3s for repeated listening.

 

As a sample, I can recommend 2 I've been listening to lately. Both seem relatively easy to follow, and an upper intermediate level may be enough to get something out of them if one looks around for other sources of background information.

 

One is 明朝那些事儿   

"Those things about the Ming Dynasty" (my clumsy translation)

 

http://www.ximalaya.com/4782286/album/245403

 

It's based on a set of books with the same title telling the whole history of the Ming Dynasty in a rather light way with simple, direct language. These podcasts are in a Micro-channel called JOE用灵魂述说.

 

Although it's not a word by word reading of the text, the podcasts seem to be fairly close to the book, at least in the chapters I've listened to so far.  

I found the e-book for the whole set in Duokan at 13.99 Yuan, quite a bargain for so much reading. 

http://www.duokan.com/book/38656

I think Amazon.cn has it too.  

 

The other podcast is one I discovered yesterday and will probably keep me interested for a while, as it's about the Three Kingdoms

It's called 三国 and is in the 谢涛听世界 micro-channel.  

 

http://www.ximalaya.com/8889234/album/3703879?page=2  

 

It's not a reading of the famous novel, but rather a historical account of the Three Kingdoms based (I think) on a compilation from several books. I haven't been able to find a text or transcript but the podcast sounded clear enough to get the gist with some background knowledge of the story.  

 

There are many more to explore, so if anyone has any recommendations to add, please post.

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Luxi, that's great! Many thanks. I'm on board.

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eddyf
People with a Chinese phone number can download the episodes to their phones, outsiders need to find a round-about way to get the mp3s for repeated listening.

 

There's an iOS app which lets you download podcasts in advance to listen to offline. It's all within the app (you don't get an mp3 file). It works perfectly fine on my US phone.

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Luxi

That's very useful to know, eddyf,  The app will be very handy for several podcasts I'm trying to follow and keep on missing.

 

Though in this case, since these are very long series, I like to have mp3s to play in the car or an mp3 player. And also the media player I use in Windows allows slowing the speed and repeated play, which I can use to see if I can pick up a few more words.

 

The round-about way I use is amazingly simple and effective. I might just as well share. After trying sophisticated apps like Audible and the like, I realized only recently that most mp3 players have a 'Record' function that produces nice and clear mp3 files (unless one lives in a very noisy place). So now, I just record the podcasts and get mp3s to listen to again and again until I understand. 

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Angelina

There are many more to explore, so if anyone has any recommendations to add, please post.

 

 

 

Don't miss 牟宗三

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LiMo

I don't have a Chinese phone number but I still managed to download podcasts. I listen to them through the app offline. It's pretty much as convenient as having the mp3.

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艾墨本

This is great! Thank you for sharing. 

 

Downloaded it and giving the first episode of 三国 a listen. 

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Luxi

If you have the Ximalaya app installed in your iPhone or iPad, go to page that lists the episodes in the series, all you have to do is click on the little box on the right hand side. It will download the episodes you want  to listen to offline, but will not download mp3s. I don't think there is a good free app to save the podcasts directly as mp3s (be careful with any free ones because they may have malware).

You could get mp3s using the Voice Recorder function in an mp3 player (or some other recording decive). Most players, even cheap ones have a Record function and the recording quality is fairly good if done in a quiet place.

 

If you don't have the app, you can download it from the App Store - I think I had to type XimalayaFM in Chinese to get to the right app. If not follow the links on this page

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Dan71

tks for reply,

 

than yesterday i found the App and I was able to download ( within the app ) the episode and listen offline :-)

 

but today i have click some button /option and when i want download an episode come out this advise ! ( see first pic ) ,

but i don't understand and i can't copy it for google translate :-(

 

i have also this page that i haven't yesterday (see second pic) 

I try to delete the app and than re-download the app but don't change anything ..

 

what i have to do ?

 

IMG_5895.jpg

IMG_5896.jpg

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Luxi

@Dan71, in case you haven't found out yet, the warning in the first picture says: the saved data (lit: databank) is lost, reboot your device and try again. The 2nd page is a normal welcome page with an 'Enter' button. Perhaps you were trying to save too much all at once?

 

Good luck.

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Dan71
On 27/1/2017 at 6:36 PM, Luxi said:

@Dan71, in case you haven't found out yet, the warning in the first picture says: the saved data (lit: databank) is lost, reboot your device and try again. The 2nd page is a normal welcome page with an 'Enter' button. Perhaps you were trying to save too much all at once?

 

Good luck.

 

Hi Luxi,

than i have found a solution, i have delete the app and re-install the app.

now I'm going to use the app every day, is very useful :D

 

maybe do you have found a solution for download the mp3 ? 

 

tks

 

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Luxi

 g t, I'm glad you found the solution.

 

Quote

 

 have found a solution for download the mp3 ? 

 

 

Not really a solution, more a way-around. I record the podcasts I want using the Voice Record function in my mp3 player placed a few cms away from the source. The recorded mp3 file can then be uploaded wherever else I want to use it. The recorded mp3 quality is quite good, but you need a noise free place to record.

 

 

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luc9999

does that app have transcriptions of the audio ??

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Jan Finster

I wonder if you have listened to any audiobooks from Ximalaya? I am just listening to the first book and the quality is not ideal. In some tracks there is quite a lot of annoying background noise (traffic, other noise, distant speaking...). I wondered if the speaker simply records the audio on his phone at home rather than in a studio?🤔

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Luxi
2 hours ago, Jan Finster said:

I am just listening to the first book and the quality is not ideal.

 

Everyone can post recordings in Ximalaya,  The quality varies a lot, especially in the older productions, but there are also fully professional studio recordings. You must have been quite unlucky with your first audiobook, was there only one recording/speaker for the book you wanted? Often there are multiple versions of the same book, and you can try and choose the best. Ximalaya's search is a great help for that.  The overall quality has improved since they started the subscription system, even the free amateur podcasts are better now, but the old stuff is still there.

 

The VIP subscription gives better choice and includes many more professional recordings, also lecture series. It isn't too expensive, especially the annual option. But you have to consider whether it offers the audio material you want, they offer a free month trial. Besides there's really plenty that is 100% free and good quality. Nothing much wrong with this audiobook, is there?

【动物凶猛】有声小说在线收听_喜马拉雅FM (ximalaya.com)

 

Here's an example of a professional recording in the VIP section, they always include a few free episodes

张爱玲全集有声剧|第一炉香、倾城之恋、金锁记原著-喜马拉雅FM (ximalaya.com)

 

 

2 hours ago, Jan Finster said:

I wondered if the speaker simply records the audio on his phone at home rather than in a studio?

 

Many speakers do just that and speak with the microphone so close to their mouths they're almost swallowing it, not to mention the loud intrusive music 😁

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Jan Finster
8 hours ago, Luxi said:

Often there are multiple versions of the same book, and you can try and choose the best. Ximalaya's search is a great help for that.  The overall quality has improved since they started the subscription system, even the free amateur podcasts are better now, but the old stuff is still there.

Thanks! 

This is a 1 year old recording of a translation of a New York Times bestseller. There is only one speaker. Hey, it is free, so I should not be complaining! I am just used to Audible audiobooks and the quality there is impeccable IMO.

 

Thanks for the link to this interesting book (ferocious beasts). That audio is definitely better.

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Luxi
3 hours ago, Jan Finster said:

the link to this interesting book (ferocious beasts).

 

【动物凶猛】有声小说在线收听_喜马拉雅FM (ximalaya.com)

 

Expanding a little as this audio-book may be of wider interest. The book is 动物凶猛  (been translated as Ferocious Animals) by 王朔 (Wang Shuo). Wang Shuo is an interesting author,  he was all the rage in the 1990s. He is one of the 'hooligan writers', outrageously irreverent but managing to fall short of 'subversive' - so his books were surprisingly not banned. There is an excellent short introduction to Wang Shuo in this Wikipedia page.

 

动物凶猛 is a novella, easy to read and also quite good for 听力, the free recording in Ximalaya is very clear and nicely read. Try it! The actual book is easy to find in various forms, electronic or paper, as well as for online reading. There is even a 漫画 version of it - if you can find it and spare $115 .

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