About BARD (Braille & Audio Reading Download)

BARD is a free website where you can download audio and electronic braille books, magazines, and more!

Equipment Needed

  • Access to high-speed internet and a valid email address.
  • You cannot listen to audio downloads directly from your computer. To listen to audio downloads you need:
    • A personal mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet with the BARD Mobile app installed (iOS, Android, or KindleFire)
    • or, the Library's loaned Digital Book Machine and a Standard USB flash (thumb) drive or Blank book cartridge and cable. You will also need access to a personal computer or other device that is connected to the internet and can transfer downloaded files onto the USB device for audio playback in the Library's loaned Digital Book Machine.
    • or, an NLS-compatible Third Party Player. Some Third Party Players may require a personal computer or other device that is connected to the internet and can transfer downloaded files to the Third Party Player.
  • To use electronic braille downloads from BARD you need:
    • a Braille display, braille-aware notetaker, or braille embosser (see Third Party Player).
Photo of a record player, a cassette player, and media.

BARD Express

BARD Express is designed to assist users who have personal computers which run on Windows operating systems (XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10) to download books. The goal of the application is to simplify logging in, searching, browsing, downloading, and transferring audio reading material from the BARD website to a cartridge or USB drive. BARD Express does not allow playback of BARD books over the computer (BARD Express is not a replacement for the BARD Mobile app which is meant for personal mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.)

BARD Tutorials

Some tutorials have been compiled by other libraries and include customized instructions or references. These tutorials are meant to be general BARD guides and not step-by-step instructions for our library.

BARD Mobile Tutorials

BARD Benefits

  • Absolutely free
  • No limit on number of downloads
  • Downloads do not need to be returned
  • It's OK to have a friend or family member help you download
  • Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • You can still get books by mail

Getting Started

  1. To download books, you must first Sign-Up for BARD
  2. Once you have submitted your completed application, you will receive an email with further instructions within the next few business days.