Of the 1,500 hosting plans reviewed, we shortlisted the ones that provide sufficient bandwidth for streaming, high uptime, and solid network support.
To determine the top Shoutcast hosting services, we checked this list against our database of genuine reviews from real Shoutcast customers.
What Is Shoutcast Web Hosting?
What makes Shoutcast stand out from other internet radio station solutions like Icecast is its focus on users and its high level of accessibility.
Unlike stations on most internet radio sites, almost all Shoutcast stations and programs are streamed live instead of being queued up for broadcasting ahead of time by either a person or a computer. Hosting providers can offer features and services to enhance your Shoutcast streaming station, such as statistics, control panel access, and 24/7 support.
Shared hosting won’t be adequate for Shoutcast. Instead, look for VPS or quality cloud hosting plans with fast servers and solid-state drives (SSDs). Consider your audience size, too. The best Shoutcast hosting plans can scale as your station grows.
How to Choose Shoutcast Web Hosting
Just because you can use the cheapest option for Shoutcast doesn’t mean you should, especially if you care about your listeners’ experiences.
How many listeners your station has: If your station has a limited number of listeners, you can probably get away with a cheap server hosting plan. But if you need to support hundreds – or more – you should opt for a more high-bandwidth plan.
Customizable hosting plans: Many web hosts have started offering custom Shoutcast plans, allowing customers to choose different parameters and create a tailored Shoutcast host package for their radio station. Hardware and bandwidth requirements can be drastically different depending on what sort of video or audio streaming broadcast you plan to host (such as different bitrate, regional peaks or global reach, talk radio, and 24/7 music).
Dedicated Shoutcast server options: Dedicated plans are the best choice for ambitious users. They usually start with limited traffic and basic hardware, but users can customize and cherry-pick the upgrades they will likely need.
Why it’s best: Lots of support plus world-class technology
Bluehost is our top pick for Shoutcast hosting. A well-known name in the web hosting space and synonymous with performance and support, Bluehost is a brilliant choice for almost anyone.
Some reasons why we like Bluehost:
Full of video and audio streaming features and support
World-class technology powers its servers, so you won’t have to worry about uptime performance issues while streaming your internet radio station
The best option if you want VPS or dedicated server hosting that gives you control over configuration and peace of mind regarding performance
Pros and Cons of Bluehost
Bluehost has over 2 million sites under its care
Lots of hosting options and simple upgrades
Free anti-spam solutions to keep your site safer (easy to configure in cPanel)
Integrated Cloudflare support
All accounts at Bluehost come with digital security tools, including SSL, SiteLock Protection, and options for unique IPs
A 30-day money-back guarantee
99% uptime guarantee
No automatic daily backup
No monthly billing on shared hosting
Longer wait times for tech support
Fee for migrating from another host
No Windows hosting
What customers are saying about Bluehost
It is a reputable provider offering shared and VPS hosting. The company is easy to use, affordable, and has great uptime. It is geared toward entrepreneurs and small online startups. Billing might be confusing, but it has solid customer service for any issues.
Why it’s best: Plans available specifically for streaming audio and video
Hostwinds is another great choice for Shoutcast hosting, as plans are available for users specifically looking to stream audio and video from their website. Its Shoutcast hosting includes:
A fantastic server uptime guarantee
Reliable technical support
Affordable pricing options
Assistance with advertising and marketing
These plans would be ideal if your internet radio station or podcast is brand new and you want time (and room) to eventually scale your server to accommodate traffic growth.
Pros and Cons of Hostwinds
Offers a wide range of payment options and services, including Skrill and bitcoin
24/7 support is available through live chat, email, and phone, plus a great knowledge base
It’s one of the few hosts to offer both Windows and Linux hosting, as well as managed and unmanaged options
SSDs and other features are available on many plans to speed up your website
Hostwinds only has 2 U.S.-based data centers, so your site will not be as fast for visitors internationally
You have to pay extra for SSL certificates, which many hosts provide for free
Refunds have strict conditions and the money-back guarantee only applies to specific plans and services
What customers are saying about Hostwinds
Hostwinds is a web hosting company that receives top marks for its customer service and fast loading speeds. It backs its affordable offerings with a 99.9999% uptime guarantee. The user interface (UI) is easy to use and the Hostwinds include free secure sockets layers with its webs hosting.
Why it’s best: Page load speeds up to 20x faster than standard drives
Finally, we recommend A2 Hosting, one of our picks for the best streaming audio/video hosting. Like Hostwinds, A2 Hosting has plans dedicated to Shoutcast hosting. If security, bandwidth, and ease of use are a priority for your streaming audio site, then this would be a great web hosting option to consider.
As a bonus, since these plans fall under the category of managed server hosting, you won’t have to worry about configuring the server, managing upgrades, or handling other performance monitoring tasks often involved in traditional VPS and dedicated server hosting.
Pros and Cons of A2 Hosting
24/7/year-round high-quality, English-speaking, expert support staff available via phone, email, and live chat
Choose a server location from Europe, the U.S., or Asia
Unmanaged and managed plans with plenty of options
Free SSDs included
Shopper Approved reviews reveal that 96% of the reviews posted on their site certainly would suggest friends and family use A2 Hosting
Mod_perl, Plexum, HTMLDoc, PDFLib, MS SQL, or ColdFusion are not supported
Only two data centers, so if your target audience is in neither North America nor Europe, choose another nearer service provider
Limited plans for Windows hosting
Slightly more expensive than other hosting plans (but prices are still competitive)
What customers are saying about A2 Hosting
A2 is a reliable, affordable hosting company that has fast speeds. The customer service is generally responsive but could use more updated tutorials and documentation.
Shoutcast is a software application that allows anyone to stream audio over the internet. It is commonly used for creating internet radio stations.
Is Shoutcast open source?
No. Shoutcast is proprietary software and uses some proprietary data formats.
How does Shoutcast work?
Shoutcast is installed on a server. It receives an audio source, such as input from an audio application, and converts the audio data into a streaming audio format consumable by anyone connected to the internet. Anyone who wants to listen simply opens the URL in a compatible software client, such as a media player.
Can I use Shoutcast with a shared hosting plan?
Shared hosting doesn’t normally support Shoutcast, mainly because of the bandwidth it uses.
Can I use Shoutcast on a VPS hosting plan?
Yes. Check what the bandwidth limitations are and if there are any fees for exceeding them.
What are the web hosting requirements for Shoutcast?
You can run Shoutcast on Linux, Mac, or Windows web hosting, provided your plan supports it.
How much bandwidth do I need to stream Shoutcast audio?
There is no set limit because it correlates with the bitrate, which will vary depending on whether you’re broadcasting audio or speech. It also depends on how many users are listening.
Do I need a dedicated server for Shoutcast?
A dedicated server is a good idea if you plan to broadcast high-quality audio or build a large audience. It will provide room to grow while giving you complete control over the software. As with a VPS server, check the bandwidth limits carefully.
What are some alternatives to Shoutcast?
Take a look at Icecast v2, or use a subscription service that offers a fully hosted radio platform.