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Old 06-10-2015, 12:44 AM   #1
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Sirius / XM -- how do you like it?

For those of you who have the Sirius / XM satellite radio service, how do you like it? I frequently find myself in areas where there is no TV or AM/FM radio service, so I'm tempted by satellite radio, even though I don't have cable TV or other subscription-based service at home. So-- please review Sirius / XM for me. Thanks.
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Old 06-10-2015, 01:14 AM   #2
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For something less than $10/mo, I like it. Easy to flip to a variety of channels that am/fm can't provide.

Can get repetitive, but the playlist seems to change about every two weeks. At least for my stations.
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Old 06-10-2015, 01:17 AM   #3
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Have it in my GMC and just love it. I like my 50's and 60's oldies. I wish I had it in my work truck and shop but I think you have to buy a separate subscription with each radio. I could be wrong on this. Where it really shines is going across the country. Also, a friend told me to call and negotiate with them when your subscription comes up, and they do. Knocked about $90 off for the year. I just have the basic service. Loren
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Old 06-10-2015, 01:22 AM   #4
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I had ETI install the antenna puck but I don't use it yet. They ran the wire out the fridge vent and stuck that on the roof a couple of inches away.
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Old 06-10-2015, 01:40 AM   #5
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I believe I actually pay $17 a month. It gets billed to my Visa once a year. It used to be a couple dollars less, but then they bundled internet access ( which I didn't have before ) and satellite and increased the price.
I mainly use it when camping where I can't get AM or FM radio. I understand that you can suspend your subscription over the winter for instance, but I've not done so.
If I wasn't so lazy I would just subscribe to free podcasts, download them to my iPod at home and then listen to them at my leisure. Most of my favourite CBC programs are available on iTunes for free. I expect the same is true for NPR.
If the receiver I have quit working, I'm not sure that I'd buy a replacement. That said, I love listening to oldie radio mysteries and cop shows like Dragnet when out in the boonies. Makes you feel warmer than a campfire.
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Old 06-10-2015, 02:25 AM   #6
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We're glad for anyone who feels SiriusXM suits their taste well, but after two month-long trips with satellite radio, we're pretty disappointed with the quality of the content.

The problem isn't that our interests are narrow. We love a wide variety of musical styles, and go to lots of live concerts and festivals each year. The trouble is that in our view the Sirius music channels mainly play a mixture of decent music that's been so overplayed on radio for years that it's stale, and obscure music and artists that are perhaps cheaper for Sirius to license.

Also, one of the main reasons we got Sirius was so we could receive the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation when travelling out of broadcast range in the USA, but on our recent trip to Utah our favourite, CBC Radio One, was unavailable for some reason.

From now on we will load up some memory sticks with playlists from our Apple devices, our big CD collection, podcasts from the CBC and other sources, and audio versions of books we've both wanted to read.

Anyone thinking subscribing to SiriusXM would be wise to get the 90-day free trial and make sure the content is to their taste before ponying up the money for a subscription.
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catchlight View Post
We're glad for anyone who feels SiriusXM suits their taste well, but after two month-long trips with satellite radio, we're pretty disappointed with the quality of the content.

The problem isn't that our interests are narrow. We love a wide variety of musical styles, and go to lots of live concerts and festivals each year. The trouble is that in our view the Sirius music channels mainly play a mixture of decent music that's been so overplayed on radio for years that it's stale, and obscure music and artists that are perhaps cheaper for Sirius to license.
I agree. Regardless of the channel you choose, seems like the same content gets repeated after about 40-50 songs. I grew up in the heyday of FM radio, and it was just wonderful how diverse it was. I remember a station I used to listen to from Salt Lake, that played an entire album at a time or "album rock", and it was usually an album I didn't have - which exposed me to lots of music I otherwise would never have heard. Maybe its just the genres I pick, but I've heard it all before and way too many times. Its probably a licensing thing, but many of the stations variety on Sirius leaves a lot to be desired. Give me a good FM station or a good mp3 playlist any day. Of course, a decent FM station is nowadays pretty hard to find, because they've been bought up and are owned by just a few companies, who insist on playing the same stuff all the time.

The other issue is that if you're an audiophile, Sirius sound quality is pretty bad. The compression they use to broadcast via satellite greatly reduces the dynamic range and clarity of the music.
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:31 AM   #8
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I agree that we need more competitors with Sirius/XM. After listening to it for 17 days non stop, I can tell you I listened to "Calendar Girl" at least 6 times, sometimes at the same time of day. I guess there are not that many records available to prevent duplication avery 24 hours.
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Old 06-10-2015, 07:51 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Catchlight View Post
The problem isn't that our interests are narrow. We love a wide variety of musical styles, and go to lots of live concerts and festivals each year. The trouble is that in our view the Sirius music channels mainly play a mixture of decent music that's been so overplayed on radio for years that it's stale, and obscure music and artists that are perhaps cheaper for Sirius to license.
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I agree. Regardless of the channel you choose, seems like the same content gets repeated after about 40-50 songs.
My take is very similar. I have never purchased it, but have had the free 3 month trial on a few vehicles, and have listened when they broadcast free, like the weekend of the Escape Rally.

I find I tire of any station quickly, not just because of repeated songs, but because the genres they play seem way to specific, and I don't like to listen to the same style song after song, as my tastes are WAY more diverse.

I have over 8,000 songs on my phone, and we mostly just listen to it on shuffle while driving, or when wanting music sitting around camp. In 10 hours of listening time, it would be rare to hear the same song twice, plus it is filled with lots of music and artists I love.

My favourite radio station by far is CKUA, a public broadcaster here in Alberta, that relies mostly on listener support for funding. There is no advertising, other than the mention of a company that might support an hour of play. They play a very diverse range of music, and their DJ's really know their stuff. I would highly recommend giving them a try. They broadcast across Alberta and parts of BC, are available on most Canadian cable networks, and are available on the net at CKUA Radio Network - Original RadioCKUA Radio Network. We are more than happy to donate annually to this station. It is so great to be able to find good quality, from a station that supports music so much. I have discovered 100's of great musicians and bands there, both new upcoming talents, great coffee shop type musicians, and music that their DJ's bring forward from around the world. Sure, there is the odd bit of programming I tune away from, but I am always quick to go back later. There is none of the crap that other stations have, like advertising and endless babbling. Give it a try.
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Old 06-10-2015, 08:07 AM   #10
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I have XM Radio. I purchased a receiver that can be "Decked" and have 3 decks one in the tow vehicle, one in the trailer and one in the stick built house; I move the receiver to which ever I want to listen to.

I purchased it because there are parts of the country where there is no cell coverage & the only radio stations seem to be religious or country. Since I prefer CBC & NPR talk radio, the XM radio is about the only way to get those stations under those conditions. I listen to about 5 channels, 2 regularly. I have a full membership, however I threaten to leave every year when they send me next year's bill, get switched to their retention people. I end up getting the next year for a little under $100.00.

By the way, if you start with them, don't give them your credit card; request that they bill you. Many have complained about XM/Sirius continuing to charge cards even after you quit, and if they bill you, you get the chance to talk to them about quitting/retention, etc for the lower price. While they state they have a $10.00 billing fee, I've never been charged it.
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