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Traveling with SIRIUS radio, do they work good in the car ? How does weather affect the signal ?

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Dec 7th, 2004, 11:26 AM
  #1
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Traveling with SIRIUS radio, do they work good in the car ? How does weather affect the signal ?

I am considering a Sirius radio system, and am interested in the units you can use at home and in the car. Does anyone have any experience with these units or the system ? I gave up cable tv long ago and I don't miss it, but listen to the radio alot and the programs they offer seem like a good thing...I have never had a satellite based unit so I am not sure ho reliable they are in weather, with trees, etc ? Thank you in advance for any info you can offer.
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Dec 7th, 2004, 11:35 AM
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I have Sirius radio and absolutely love it. I'm in the car a lot and was getting so discouraged by the volume of commercials on our local stations. My husband got the Sirius radio for me as a mother's day gift.

I haven't been on a cross country trip with it yet (but will in Dec.) but have been on trips here in Colorado. I had Sirius radio reception all through a Colorado pass that does not get any regular FM stations. It was great!

The only place that I do not seem to get reception is under the awning at the bank drive-thru.

We've never had it affected by weather or trees. I get reception all through the forest area to my home where I do not have any cell phone coverage.

Hope this helps...
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Dec 7th, 2004, 11:41 AM
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Thanks ajcolorado, just the answer I was looking for
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Dec 7th, 2004, 11:46 AM
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I have XM which works the same as SIRIUS (satellites). The basic idea is that your antenna has to be able to "see" the satellite. My reception is generally excellent but there are occassions when I lose my signal. Typically this is in parking garages, in tunnels and when I am TRAVELING on hilly roads where the hills stand between my vehicle and the satellite. I have found that some of the "dead spots" will increase in the spring and summer and decrease in the fall and winter. I am not sure whether that is due to the foliage on the trees which is known to block the signal or the angle of the earth relative to the satellite or both.

I also use docking stations for my receiver unit with my music systems at home and a boom box which takes my receiver unit at work. At home, I had to locate my antennas near a window. At work I am on the 21st floor of an office building and get excellent reception without any special antenna orientation.

I recommend you also take a look at XM as it is cheaper than Sirius and offers pretty much the same programming.
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Dec 7th, 2004, 12:12 PM
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We have XM radio also and like Craig experience outages in tunnels, heavily wooded areas and such.
Now, I get to listen to Fox and Friends all the way to work and sing the "blues" all the way home!
It's really great...I'm not sure why DH decided on XM over Sirius, but I know he looked at and priced them both.
 
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Dec 7th, 2004, 12:15 PM
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DH and I have XM, and we have had it for 3 years. We do not have the separate home/car dock, but we did have the basic one that you could move between cars fairly easily (i.e., not in-dash). The coverage is great and consistent. But I will disagree that the only place that we have lost reception is only under a bank awning.

We frequently drive from DC to NC, and there is a section of 95S just south of DC where we often have spotty reception for a couple of miles. There are no trees overhead - just power lines, so I really don't know why. Also, going under overpasses and driving through tunnels and parking garages can mean an interruption in the reception. Finally, I've found at times that being right next to a semi truck can disrupt the signal.

All in all, the disruptions are quite brief - not long enough that you'd even change over to a regular radio station or a CD - simple, momentary interruptions.

I recommend XM - my DH loves his and prefers it to the regular radio. I'm sure Sirius is great, too.
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Dec 7th, 2004, 12:18 PM
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Just found a relevant article for you...
http://money.cnn.com/2004/12/06/tech...adio/index.htm
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Dec 7th, 2004, 12:47 PM
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We LOVE XM, but you need to get used to shifting the FM channel choice from time to time -- I assume Sirius does this the same way XM does. In other words, in your car, you may have the radio set to 88.3 FM to "receive" and "broadcast" the signal. That's fine as long as you aren't too close to a station that happens to broadcast on that same frequency.

With XM, you can switch to 881., 88.5, 88.7 or 88.9 -- spouse's set can also use 87.9, wish mine did.

If you are on a long trip, you may lose the signal sometimes due to weather or obstruction but MUCH more often you get interference from stations crowding your selected frequency. First time we traveled, we didn't know we could switch. It makes a difference.
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Dec 7th, 2004, 01:20 PM
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soccr - that problem sounds unique to your situation - when I have the XM unit on it pretty much wipes out everything else on the FM band - I can't tune in to "normal" stations unless the XM unit is turned off. I use 87.9 and TRAVELED last July from CT to NY, NJ, PA, MD, VA, NC, SC, GA and TN with no problems.
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Dec 7th, 2004, 01:34 PM
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thanks for all the info, I'll keep researching both systems !
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Dec 7th, 2004, 01:53 PM
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We have XM in our car and love it! We don't have the portable, but wouldn't be surprised if Santa brought one of those, too. The brief signal loss seems minor. My husband has programmed a few voice commands for changing channels, to keep to more hands-free. We love many of the music channels and the comedy ones are a nice change.
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Dec 9th, 2004, 04:40 AM
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Just got my new co. car with XM and it rocks! However, i can't find any stations with totally Christmas; anyone familiar with one?
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Dec 9th, 2004, 05:24 AM
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I am so glad to see this! I have purchased the XM Roady2 for my husband for Christmas. However, I have been TRAVELING from store to store trying to find a home dock in stock. I got a gift card since I bought the Roady2, so I guess my husband can TRAVEL back to the store after Christmas when they are back in stock!
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Dec 9th, 2004, 08:07 AM
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Since XM is affiliated with Clear Channel, it gets loaded up with Clear Channel programming.

That's why I will be getting Sirius for my car...!
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Dec 9th, 2004, 08:43 AM
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Ellen Griswold - XM channel 83 is all Christmas music.

reneeinva - check out the Circuit City website:
http://www.circuitcity.com/rpsm/oid/...oductDetail.do
If you input your zip code the site will tell you what stores have it or just order on line.

rjw - So far XM has not "loaded up" on Clear Channel programming.
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Dec 9th, 2004, 09:32 AM
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I have both XM and Sirius. I listen mostly to XM due to the fact that Sirius interrupts their programming relentlessly with "DJs" talking about the music. This is at least as annoying as listening to commercials. XM doesn't interrupt their music programming as often and only has commercials on their talk and traffic channels.
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Dec 9th, 2004, 09:48 AM
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To each his own...I like the Sirius DJ's, b/c the "canned" quality of CD's and those all-music cable channels gets to me after a while; I like the interruption of a talking human voice from time to time. And Sirius has NHL and NFL and NPR; XM has only MLB. Channel selection was the main reason we went with Sirius, although it seems XM has superior gadgets. (IMO, Sirius will catch up and win this race in the end.)

We have Sirius and love it--absolutely no problems in the car except in tunnels and under some (not all) gas stations awnings. As long as the antenna can "see" the sky, even a little, it works great. At home, the antenna sits on a window sill and gets decent reception except on windy days; if we were to take the trouble to mount it outside the window frame, I'm sure the problem would disappear. (It's fine to put outside even in frigid temps.)

For road trips, sat radio rocks!
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Dec 9th, 2004, 10:15 AM
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RBCal and E - I don't know how "relentless" the DJ's on Sirius are but I should point out that many (not all) of the channels on XM do have DJ's. They are pretty low key and interrupt about every 1/2 hour. My favorites are George Taylor Morris and Earle Bailey of "Deep Tracks" - they make me feel like I'm back in my youth listening to my favorite progressive rock station of the early 70's, WNEW-FM in New York. On the other hand "Lucy" has no DJ's - just 24-7 alternative classics. Both are great.
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Dec 10th, 2004, 12:50 PM
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Wow! All i can say since playing with new XM all week is WOW. Its just too cool and no 'E' its not non-stop music w/out dj's. I actually use 'band' on the wheel to avoid the dj's.

Craig, thanks for the christmas station. Check out 32 also for christmas music. What are your other faves? I'm enjoying 08 (eighties!) 20, 46, 50, 67 - added to the comedy and commentary stations, it sure makes working on the road alot more fun!
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