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This FAQ is a work in progress. Bad language will be corrected soon.
- Short history of Bowie Station:
In May 2015 the former website Mindwarp Pavillion (MWP) went offline after mainly serving the Bowie community for 9 years. That sites admin, Chris Moffet (bewley), sadly passed away in the summer of 2014. A week before the demise of MWP, the moderators made the announcement that the site was probably going down. A few days after MWP went offline, Bowie Station was launched. Jan Erik is the admin of Bowie Station, and with him he has former MWP users as moderators at the site. A full history from the days of Savage Jaw are in the works.
- What is the purpose of this site?
The purpose is to offer all available unofficial recordings of David Bowie for free download. When MWP closed down, it had 1000+ Bowie torrents. When Hungercity closed it also had about 1000 Bowie torrents. At the time of writing this, there are close to 600 Bowie torrents at the site. The aim is to get to 2000 Bowie torrents before the sites 1 year anniversary.
- What can I do to help?
- Upload recordings that are not on the site.
- Seed what you can. One person can't keep 1000s of Bowie torrents alive.
- Take part in discussions about torrents. Write what you think about the torrents.
Constructive criticism is 10 times better than just writing thanks.
- Help out with the BOWSTAT series or the upcoming bootleg discography.
- Do you accept donations?
In November 2015 we moved to a new server. This is a server we have to pay for. The monthly running cost for the site is $97. To keep the site running, we are now dependent on donations. Quite a few "bootleg" torrent sites have recently had their Paypal accounts frozen, so we cannot post the donation address in public. If you like to donate, please send a PM to Steveboy
- What is the BOWSTAT series?
The BOWSTAT series are recordings released at Bowie Station. These recordings are from a private collector that has offered his collection to Bowie Station. All BOWSTAT releases will be upgrades to currently available versions. All tapes have been transferred as 24-96 and there will be various releases of each concert. Some will be remasters and others will be only raw copies of the tapes. All releases will include at least a 24-96 raw transfer and a CD version (16 bit). There will be hundreds of recordings to sort out. The upgrades get released in the BOWSTAT series. Alternate sources get posted without artworks and normally as 16-44.
- Can I help out with the BOWSTAT series?
If you have skills in creating artwork, making remasters or have great knowledge of Bowie live recordings please get in contact.
- What are the future plans for the site?
There will be many more releases in the BOWSTAT series. There is also a bootleg discograpy in the works with information about all available recordings of Bowie concerts along with artworks. The discography will be launched when the Ziggy Stardust tour and the Outside tour is completed. The discography will be fully integrated with the torrents. That means that you can access the discography from the torrents, and download torrents from the discography.
- Will there be an artwork gallery like it was at MWP?
It will not be only a gallery, but a discography with artworks. All the artworks that were at MWP will be included and a lot more. There will also be possibilities to upload artworks when the discography is launched.
- Are other artists allowed?
There are 2 categories for other artists, one for audio and one for video. Other artists will not get the same attention as Bowie. Torrents by other artists will be deleted after being dead for 2 weeks.
When posting other artists, please post artists that Bowie fans probably would like. If you want to post Justin Bieber, please post it somewhere else.
- Which recordings are allowed?
We allow all recordings that are not officially released. If a couple of songs have been officially released we allow it. Collections of e.g. B-sides are not allowed.
- Is it any ratio on the site?
There is no ratio at the moment. We would like to keep it that way, but we might introduce a ratio if there are too many leechers that don't seed back. If a ratio is introduced, it will probably be 10:1. That is that you have to upload at least 10% of what you download.
- Can I upload to other sites what I download from Bowie Station?
If the uploads are re-uploads from other sites, then there is no problem with uploading it at other sites. If it is originally posted at Bowie Station (like the BOWSTAT series), please wait at least a month before posting in at another site, unless you have the accept of the uploader. If posting torrents at other sites, please include the source of the torrent.
- Can I upload to other sites what I download from Bowie Station as MP3?
Please do not do it. Keep it lossless and keep your MP3s to yourself...
- Can I upload an upgrade to what is currently on site?
If you have a recording with better lineage than the one on site please upload. A direct copy from a silver CD is better than a copy of the 10th generation CDR. When upgrades are posted, the old versions will be deleted from the site to avoid confusion about which torrent to download.
- Can I sell recordings I download from here?
If you get caught selling recordings that have its origin from Bowie Station or the former MWP and HC on Ebay or other places, you will be banned from downloading.
- What is a torrent file, and what do I do with it?
Torrents are small files that track many different types of files and programs listed on websites. Your computer uses this tracking info to connect to sources for the files and programs desired. The computer needs a special BitTorrent client application to "read" these instructions and permit downloading of the file or program to your computer.
- Recommendations of torrent clients
The most popular client is µTorrent, and it is available for both Windows and Mac.
It is not recommended to use the latest version since it sometimes causes strange problems.
You can download the latest version from µTorrent or the recommended old version (2.2.1) from Oldversion.com
Other popular clients are:
Transmission (Windows, Mac, Linux)
qBittorrent (Windows, Mac, Linux)
Deluge (Windows, Mac, Linux)
rTorrent is a very powerful client for Linux, that is normally used in combination with RuTorrent.
It is probably the best choice, but the installation and configuration is not out of the box.
- How to use µTorrent
Download With uTorrent (Wikihow)
How to Install uTorrent (Wikihow)
- How to upload
User guide for uploading torrents (not available yet)
- What is Flac?
Flac is an audio codec like MP3, but while MP3 is lossy (reduced quality), Flac is lossless.
When it comes to quality, Flac is better than MP3.
Flac page at Wikipedia
Official Flac Page
What is FLAC and why should you use it?
- What do I need to play Flac files?
In Windows 10 there will be built-in support for flac. For older versions you have 2 options, install a codec to use Windows Media Player, or install an new
media player that supports flac.
For the first solution you can download a codec from Xiph website.
Many media players support flac and we recommend the following:
Foobar2000 (Windows, Linux with Wine)
VLC (Windows, Mac, Linux)
- How do I convert to MP3?
MP3s should only be used for personal use and not distributed elsewhere on the Internet. The only reason for converting to MP3 is that you have a media player that do not support flac like Ipods.
Recommended software for converting to MP3:
MediaHuman Audio Converter (Windows, Mac)
Foobar2000 (Windows, Linux with Wine)
Sound Converter (Linux)
- Why should I use flac files and not convert to MP3?
Flac files are lossless and the quality is better. You should only use MP3 on portable devices that do not support Flac.
- What are lossy and lossless codecs?
MP3 was created to make small files with almost the same sound quality as the original CD. To make the files small, some audio information is deleted. MP3s varies in quality depending on the bit rate,
where the highest bit rate (320 kbps) is very close to CD quality. When you have an MP3 file you can convert it back to a wav file, but it will not be equal to the original. Some quality is lost.
With Flac and other lossless codecs, all original audio information from the CD is kept, but the file size is about half the size of the original wav file. You can convert flac files back to wav without loosing quality.
- How do I rip a CD in the best way?
There is only one program that makes perfect copies of CDs, and that is Exact Audio Copy. It is a Windows program, but it also works with Wine in Linux.
CDex is a widely used Windows ripping program, but it is not accurate as EAC: EAC Vs CDex SecureMode
How to install, configure and use Exact Audio Copy (External Link - Beginners Guide To EAC)
- What is the difference of 16 bit and 24 bit recordings?
Short answer, 24 bit is better, but you can't burn it to a CD without converting it to 16 bit.
As you might have seen some recordings are marked with 24-96, 24-48, 16-44.1. This indicates the sound quality of the recording. 16-44.1 is CD quality, and the only ones that can be burned directly to CD without converting.
The first number is the bit rate. The second is the sample rate.
With digital music, all music consists of only 0's and 1's. 16 bit means that there are 16 0's and 1's that represent the music. On CDs there are 44100 samples of 16 1's and 0's each second. The 44100 or 44.1K is called the sample rate.
The higher bit rate, and the higher sample rate on a recording the closer you get to the original analog recording.
If there are various uploads of the same recording with different bit rate, you should download the 16 bit version if you want to burn a CD. If you want to play it on equipment that supports higher bit rates, then you should go for the one with higher bit rate.
- Why should I use flac and not other lossless formats?
Flac is the best supported lossless format, both with hardware and software. Earlier formats like Shorten (shn) and Monkey's Audio (ape) was quite common, but Flac won the lossless war. If you have a recording you want to upload in
other lossless formats than Flac, please convert it to Flac before uploading.
- Can MP3 or other lossy formats be uploaded?
Lossy uploads are allowed, but lossless is preferred. If you know that the recording only exists as lossy, then it should be uploaded as lossy, but clearly marked as lossy. If you have a recording that you think exists in lossless, please make a request for a lossless version on the forum before uploading.
- How do I burn a CD?
There are a lot of CD Burner programs out there. For Windows, a suggested program is CDBurnerXP. Despite the name, it works on all Windows versions. It is free and easy to use software, and you can burn CDs directly from Flac files.
- How do I convert a 24 bit recording to burn a CD?
24-48 and 24-96 files can be downsampled with Foobar2000 (Windows, Linux with Wine)
A guide will be added later.
- Recommendations of audio software
Audacity - Sound editor for Windows, Mac & Linux
Exact Audio Copy - CD-ripper for Windows and Linux with Wine
CDBurnerXP - CD, DVD, BluRay burner for Windows
Foobar2000 - Media player and converter for Windows, Linux with Wine
MediaHuman Audio Converter - Audio Converter for Windows & Mac
Sound Converter - Audio Converter for Linux
VLC - Audio/Video player for Windows, Mac & Linux
- How do I rip a DVD?
Most DVDs of unofficial material that can be shared at this site do not have any copy protection, and can therefore easily be copied using Windows Explorer in Windows. Please do not use programs like DVD-Shrink to copy DVDs, since they may alter the files.
- How do I burn a DVD?
CDBurnerXP - CD, DVD, BluRay burner for Windows
K3B - CD, DVD, BluRay burner for Linux
- Which video formats are accepted?
The preferred formats are DVDs and Matroska (MKV) for HQ video. As with audio, anything can be uploaded as long as it is not on site or it is an upgrade.
- Recommendations of video software
FixVTS - Fix DVDs that you have problems with burning.
- How do I rip a video from Youtube?
You have 2 possibilities to rip Youtube videoes. Either by a program or online. A suggestion for a program is 4K Video Downloader (Windows, Mac, Linux). A online solution is Keepvid.