Audio book options

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LearningAlot
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Audio book options

Post by LearningAlot » Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:19 am

I enjoy listening to books. Was wondering what the best options are for good selection and low cost.

Thanks in advance!

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Raybo
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Raybo » Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:29 am

Check out your local library.

My local library (San Francisco) has thousands of downloadable and CD-based audio books for free. Some libraries allow you to become a member without living in the area. For the San Francisco public library you only have to live in California.
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phantom0308
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Re: Audio book options

Post by phantom0308 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:29 am

Audible is a giant in the audiobook space. A membership will save you a bunch over buying the books individually.

Many libraries have a service called Overdrive that allows you to borrow audio books.

Librivox has free audiobooks, but the selection isn’t very good.

Another alternative is podcasts. There’s far more quality content available than time in the day.

Yiewsley
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Yiewsley » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:33 pm

Your library probably has one or more of the following: Overdrive, Hoopla, Cloud Library, and RBdigital. Look on the library website for downloads or eLibrary.

They all have apps you can use on your phone and they all work a little differently - for example, you might have to put a popular book on hold using Overdrive, but all the Hoopla books are available all the time.

alex_686
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Re: Audio book options

Post by alex_686 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:40 pm

Library is my first choice, lots of good downloadable stuff there.

As a alternative, there is Libriavox, which has free public domain stuff. Quality is variable since is is volunteer run.
https://librivox.org/

Rupert
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Rupert » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:44 pm

Public libraries have the best selection (new books, not just classics) at the lowest price (nothing). Note that they lend them out like books, i.e., they'll only have so many copies of digital books to lend at a time, so you may have to get in a queue for new releases (just like you would new, popular books).

Katietsu
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Katietsu » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:45 pm

Watch for Audible sales to pick up specific books that your library does not carry. I have signed up a couple of times when offered the service for $5-$7 per month for the first 3 months. I think there has been one associated with prime day in the past.

regularguy455
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Re: Audio book options

Post by regularguy455 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:52 pm

+1 for Audible. It's relatively inexpensive ($15-$23/mo) which includes 1 or 2 books/mo, respectively. The convenience of it is high and all the productions I've listened to have been excellent. They also offer a few free books monthly you can listen to.

The library is an interesting option but I find being able to research, download and listen to an audio book from one device is worth the price tag.

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wageoghe
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Re: Audio book options

Post by wageoghe » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:56 pm

Another vote for Audible.

I will note that Audible also carries The Great Courses. You can get them for 1 credit, which puts your price as low as $14.xx, depending on your membership level. Considerably cheaper than buying from The Great Courses (although, of course, not cheaper than you could get from your local library - if they carry the courses that are of interest to you).

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deanbrew
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Re: Audio book options

Post by deanbrew » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:57 pm

Yeah, your public library is a good choice. I download books using Overdrive. They seem to be switching to Hoopla.

If my library doesn't have something I'm looking for, I also buy used audiobooks on CD from ebay and Amazon. After I listen to them, I donate them to my local library.
"The course of history shows that as the government grows, liberty decreases." Thomas Jefferson

SuzBanyan
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Re: Audio book options

Post by SuzBanyan » Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:59 pm

regularguy455 wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:52 pm
+1 for Audible. It's relatively inexpensive ($15-$23/mo) which includes 1 or 2 books/mo, respectively. The convenience of it is high and all the productions I've listened to have been excellent. They also offer a few free books monthly you can listen to.

The library is an interesting option but I find being able to research, download and listen to an audio book from one device is worth the price tag.
I use the Libby app on my smart phone to borrow audiobooks from the library and then I listen to them on the same device.

Rupert
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Rupert » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:00 pm

SuzBanyan wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:59 pm
regularguy455 wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:52 pm
+1 for Audible. It's relatively inexpensive ($15-$23/mo) which includes 1 or 2 books/mo, respectively. The convenience of it is high and all the productions I've listened to have been excellent. They also offer a few free books monthly you can listen to.

The library is an interesting option but I find being able to research, download and listen to an audio book from one device is worth the price tag.
I use the Libby app on my smart phone to borrow audiobooks from the library and then I listen to them on the same device.
Me too. I don't understand the comment suggesting that the library option would not permit doing everything on one device. Why wouldn't it?

regularguy455
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Re: Audio book options

Post by regularguy455 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:02 pm

SuzBanyan wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:59 pm
regularguy455 wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:52 pm
+1 for Audible. It's relatively inexpensive ($15-$23/mo) which includes 1 or 2 books/mo, respectively. The convenience of it is high and all the productions I've listened to have been excellent. They also offer a few free books monthly you can listen to.

The library is an interesting option but I find being able to research, download and listen to an audio book from one device is worth the price tag.
I use the Libby app on my smart phone to borrow audiobooks from the library and then I listen to them on the same device.
I didn't realize you could check out audiobooks from the library on an app! I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

yeahman
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Re: Audio book options

Post by yeahman » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:30 pm

There are only 2 options: Your library and Audible.

sksbog
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Re: Audio book options

Post by sksbog » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:36 pm

LearningAlot wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:19 am
I enjoy listening to books. Was wondering what the best options are for good selection and low cost.

Thanks in advance!
as JB used to say, recognize the obvious. local library these days are big on lending digital books in audio and readable formats.

HoosierJim
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Re: Audio book options

Post by HoosierJim » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:38 pm

Another vote for Library - you and all your neighbors are paying property taxes - might as well use it.

All my ebooks and audio books have been done without ever stepping foot in the library (already had a card from way back)

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CAsage
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Re: Audio book options

Post by CAsage » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:49 pm

Totally your library! I would expand that thought... to include every library in your state that you can get to. I have found several excellent options in small local city libraries and county - they serve smaller areas, but all are available to anyone within (your) state. Widen the net, and you are more likely to find anything you are looking for. They do seem to be investing more in e-audiobooks, but many libraries have deep shelves of CD or MP3 audio books.
Salvia Clevelandii "Winifred Gilman" my favorite. YMMV; not a professional advisor.

Herbert
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Herbert » Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:49 pm

Another vote for library!

My wife and I take advantage of our local library for not only books, but audio books when we are planning on being in the car for a trip. There is a very good selection in our local library and we have done this over the last several years. Listening to an audio book for me while driving makes the hours tick by much more quickly! :D

gretah
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Re: Audio book options

Post by gretah » Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:23 pm

Another library fan here!

I sometimes choose titles from my smartphone but prefer to choose them while on my computer. It's easier to make certain I listen to book series in chronological order, track my place on holds, etc.

When I want to listen or read a new book and the library does not have it, I put in a request for them to buy a copy. 80% of the time they do and let me know via email when it's on order so I can be first in line when it arrives.

GUtiger
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Re: Audio book options

Post by GUtiger » Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:26 pm

By far the library is the best option. You already pay for it, so you should use it! My wife and I go through at least 100 audiobooks per year. If we were purchasing those it would be terribly expensive. The only downside is having to wait for popular books to become available, but in general I have 10 or so holds out at a time, so there's always a new book popping up ready each week for me.

ccieemeritus
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Re: Audio book options

Post by ccieemeritus » Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:28 pm

+1 audible. In addition to the “subscription” which gives me 1 book credit per month for $16?-ish, I have the option to buy 3 extra credits for $30. So I’m averaging about $12 per book.

startwithtruth
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Re: Audio book options

Post by startwithtruth » Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:47 pm

GUtiger wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 8:26 pm
By far the library is the best option. You already pay for it, so you should use it! My wife and I go through at least 100 audiobooks per year. If we were purchasing those it would be terribly expensive. The only downside is having to wait for popular books to become available, but in general I have 10 or so holds out at a time, so there's always a new book popping up ready each week for me.
+1 If you listen to a lot of books, membership at a library with a large digital collection can save a lot of money over Audible. My local library has a decent collection (Overdrive/Libby and Hoopla) but paying $50/year for an out of state Brooklyn Public Library card gives me access to many more books. They allow up to 10 books on hold at a time (a limit I hit recently!).

I've been an Audible member for years and they have an amazing selection, but $50 only covers 4-5 Audible credits (depending on your Audible plan) vs listening to dozens of books for the same amount at BPL.

prairieman
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Re: Audio book options

Post by prairieman » Thu Jan 17, 2019 9:58 pm

wageoghe wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:56 pm
Another vote for Audible.

I will note that Audible also carries The Great Courses. You can get them for 1 credit, which puts your price as low as $14.xx, depending on your membership level. Considerably cheaper than buying from The Great Courses (although, of course, not cheaper than you could get from your local library - if they carry the courses that are of interest to you).
This is essentially what I was going to say! Great Courses at Audible is hard to beat.

seatac
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Re: Audio book options

Post by seatac » Thu Jan 17, 2019 10:04 pm

Another vote for your libraries.

I use overdrive.

With overdrive, I use four different library systems ; mine (2), father and mother-in law(out of state).
As long as you have the correct logins, overdrive lets you use multiple systems easily regardless of location.
This is widen your choices significantly.

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Will do good
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Will do good » Thu Jan 17, 2019 10:25 pm

My library has a tie-in with Libby and Libby has thousands of audio to borrow for free. Many of the latest and popular books.
I also has Audible and notice I use it less and less since Libby.

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Watty
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Re: Audio book options

Post by Watty » Thu Jan 17, 2019 11:57 pm

In areas I have lived in the libraries are run by the counties.

If you work in a different county than you live in you may be eligible to also join that counties library for free because your employer pays taxes in that county. That can give a better selection of audiobooks through that counties library.

My wife listens to audiobooks all the time and she has also joined the library in the next county over by paying a fee of around $40 a year to join as a non-resident since she listens to several books a month from that library.

If you car still has a CD player then many libraries have audio books on CD too.

The few portable CD players that they still sell are pretty junky and often(always?) do not have the feature where it will remember where you were in a book which makes them pretty useless for audio books. If you want one of those your best bet is to find and old one at a garage sale or thrift store.

vbdoug
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Re: Audio book options

Post by vbdoug » Fri Jan 18, 2019 1:22 am

Hoopladigital.com is the best. Lots of availability, easy renewals and totally FREE. I walk/hike a lot and have listened to scores of books on my iPhone. Highly recommended!

RudyS
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Re: Audio book options

Post by RudyS » Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:55 am

yeahman wrote:
Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:30 pm
There are only 2 options: Your library and Audible.
True for visually-abled people. For those who are legally blind, free books are available from the government. National Library Service for the Blind. https://nlsbard.loc.gov/

This is not for the OP, but I thought I''d share it for those who have friends or family in this situation.

SuzBanyan
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Re: Audio book options

Post by SuzBanyan » Fri Jan 18, 2019 12:11 pm

For those shopping for a better library, the Libby app allows you to search for digital materials for libraries even if you don’t have a library card. Based on information on this thread that the Brooklyn library is available to out of state residents for $50/year, I searched their resources. My conclusion was the LA public library — which I can use for free— has better availability.

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