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XM radio?

Old 05-02-2007, 10:41 PM
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XM radio?

hey iv been looking into xm radio caus im just sick of listening to the same cd's over and over. iv talked to a guy at futureshop but im not sure he knew what he was talking about surprise surprise... a coupple questions.
how does the sound quality compaire to say a MP3 format cd?
what can i expect to pay for a basic level plan and how many channels will that generaly give me?
and are any perticular brands or models better than others, id realy like to keep my spending under 150$ but im keeping my options open.

thanks for any coments

oh and sorry for any confusion i ment satalite radio in general, not too sure y i typed xm...

Last edited by alti117; 05-02-2007 at 11:45 PM.
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Old 05-02-2007, 11:06 PM
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for the most part the quality is a little less than an mp3 cd, some stations are a little better quality than others (not sure why) the music stations don't have commercials, the others do, lots of stations (check their site) but very few of each catagory, i went with Serious because of their metal station and Howard so i basically listen to two stations total yet i still feel its money well spent.... for the unit to buy get the one with the features you like but try to get one to integrate with your head unit if you can.
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Old 05-03-2007, 07:19 PM
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If you have one of the big aftermarket decks (Pioneer, Sony, Alpine, Kenwood) you will have your choice of either xm direct plug in or sirius direct plug in boxes. They run about that price of 150. Make sure not to get some FM modulated peice of trash that look like a growth on your windshield. The sound quality sucks compared to the direct boxes.
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Old 05-03-2007, 08:56 PM
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Siruis Comments...

I've been a Sirius subscriber for a year or two, and as far as I'm concerned, it's great. The sound is, to my ears, CD quality (when using a line-out/line-in connection). Having it in the truck is what has been driving my car stereo interest this time 'round.

The integration of the head-unit specific receivers is nice, but if it's the only receiver you've got you wont' be able to listen anywhere but in the car. Each receiver needs a separate subscription (although units 2 through 5 cost less than the first one), so being able to move receivers around turns out to be a big plus - you'll want to listen at home too, trust me.

I'd suggest spending as little as possible on the receiver - all three of the radios I've got sound exactly the same. While I recently saw the ultra basic SV1C at The Source for $20.00, they don't seem to list them on their site any longer. Mine has withstood much use and it still works fine. The more expensive units have more 'features', but you can get the same music and sound out of any of them. Some of 'em (Sportster 4) are pretty nice from a form-factor point of view though - I'll modernize eventually.

Use the direct line-out on the receiver, into your HU's aux in. The built-in FM modulators will work, but you'll miss out on much of the sound quality. Handy for use in 'any' car though (rentals, family, etc.).

Get a both home and car kits for your receiver when you buy it - like I said, you'll want to listen at home too! With the older receivers, the home power supplies are all the same, as are the home antennas. I'm not sure about the newer stuff - some of the receivers that use 'docking stations' might be a bit more picky, but I have seen a 'universal' dock as well.

On my run to the cottage last year, I had continuous coverage from Ottawa to Parry Sound (via Algonquin Park/Huntsville). Here in Ottawa, coverage seems very good, but indoor reception can be a bit tricky if there are no windows near by. No real problems at home, but the steel framed building where I work is too much of a Faraday cage so I'm limited to the Internet streams while working. I've never really spent any time listening to Howard, there's just too much good music to listen to instead!

I doubt you'll regret it if you take the plunge - Happy listening!

Terry McG
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Old 05-04-2007, 05:44 PM
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Ok ive researched satellite radio a fair bit because i wrote a essay on it for a communication studies class but this is what i have discovered. In canada both xm and sirius run about $14.99 per month but if you by like a year subscription or larger it gets cheaper. Second the actual recievers start about 75$ and up although they can be found cheaper (i got my xm roady xt for $68. The reciever you pick is up to you but you generally get what you pay for. The more you pay the more things the reciever will come with and the more things it will do but the basic one has the same audio quality as the more expensive ones. As for the actual choice between sirius and xm radio it is completly up to you. I would recommend going to each of their websites and signing up for a 3 day trial on your home computer and listen to both. They both have music, talk and sports channels but xm is more into the music and sirius is more into the talk shows. As for sports they both cover different things but some are the same so check that out. As for the quality the build in modulator in most puts out better than radio sound but if you direct connect it is almost as good or is as good as most mp3 songs you download off then net.
Both Sirius and XM are pretty well identical just a different name a few different channels but in about 2 years you will not have to pick between either because they are combining. I think its going to be called Siriusly XM radio or something like that so you will have a reciever that can pick up both signals or something to that extent. If you have any questions just PM me.
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Old 05-04-2007, 08:51 PM
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I have the direct connect Sirius plugged into my Eclipse deck and I can honestly say that I am very dissapointed with the sound quality. Unlike you, I did not research properly before buying and I expected the sound quality to be at least as good as the radio. IMO, FM radio sounds a lot better and CD is still by far the best. I find the Sirius sound quality so unnapealing that I only keep it for the comedy channels because my wife likes listening to them. Obviously, the sound quality is not as big of an issue with some other forum members so as always, you need to listen for yourself and then decide... If sound variety is your key concern the satellite is a good choice because of all the stations available.
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Old 05-05-2007, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by fatty matty
Obviously, the sound quality is not as big of an issue with some other forum members so as always, you need to listen for yourself and then decide...
FWIW, I made my comments based on both in-car and 'at home' listening and while my home stereo equpiment might not be "audiophile quality", it isn't crap either. Nor am I deaf.

So I really am puzzled by the perceived difference...

Last fall things got a bit weird for a few days, but otherwise, it's been my only music source for months. I suspect that not all channels are equal, bit-rate wise, and I don't listen to many... What does the blues channel (74) sound like via your setup? Did you ever find your way over to the Sirius Backstage Forums ?

Maybe it's just the channels that I'm listenting to, or maybe I'm just psychoacoustically challenged, but it works for me .

If sound variety is your key concern the satellite is a good choice because of all the stations available
And how - it's at least supposed to be a large variety/high quality audio service.

Terry McG
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Old 05-06-2007, 12:44 AM
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I too found the SQ of sat radio to be severely lacking. In my car it sounded somewhere between am and fm radio.

The only reason I would ever renew my subscription is if they changed their crappy compression methods. IMO my 30gb ipod is way better than sat radio.
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