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post #151 of 174 Old 02-22-2014, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfm View Post

Simply baffled by all of these "sounds good" comments in reference to Sirius... I have an upgraded sound system in my '13 Audi which is only ok (sorry but IMO there is no such thing as a good sound system in a car) and mp3's from an ipod/memory card or a good FM station sound significantly better than the crap from Sirius. Needless to say (though I will) I did not renew Sirius once the "free" subscription expired.
Same situation here. I have a 2013 Audi. Sirius XM is far worse sounding than my iPhone (bluetooth and hard wired), HD FM radio, and my SD memory card. It's not even in the same league as standard FM radio. It sounds muddled and lacks detail. They keep sending me promotions to reactivate my account for $25 (for 6 months of service), but it just isn't worth $5/mon to me. I get aggravated with anything other than talk radio programs on Sirius XM.

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post #152 of 174 Old 02-25-2014, 06:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Gary J View Post

Yes they need a trip to the Bandwidth 'R Us store.

Sums it all up right there... I'll give 'em $5 a month for it. That's about it.

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post #153 of 174 Old 02-27-2014, 03:29 PM
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Once again, they're not able to just buy more bandwidth. There is only a certain amount of bandwidth allocated for satellite radio in the US, and Sirius and XM already have all of it. They need to better utilize the bandwidth that they have by shutting down Sirius. They were supposedly going to do this, but nothing much has happened.

http://xmfan.net/viewtopic.php?t=115557&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0
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post #154 of 174 Old 02-27-2014, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by rc05 View Post

Once again, they're not able to just buy more bandwidth. There is only a certain amount of bandwidth allocated for satellite radio in the US, and Sirius and XM already have all of it. They need to better utilize the bandwidth that they have by shutting down Sirius. They were supposedly going to do this, but nothing much has happened.

http://xmfan.net/viewtopic.php?t=115557&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

If I read that thread correctly, they were discussing shutting down Sirius TERRESTRIAL. Not the satellite. Couldn't do that, anyway, without losing half of the subscriber base. I don't see them replacing every existing Sirius radio. Sirius radios will not tune XM. The two transmission formats are incompatible. And shutting off around half of the satellite radios would pretty much bankrupt the company.

Walking the fine line between jaw-dropping and a plain ol' yawn.
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post #155 of 174 Old 02-27-2014, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

If I read that thread correctly, they were discussing shutting down Sirius TERRESTRIAL. Not the satellite. Couldn't do that, anyway, without losing half of the subscriber base. I don't see them replacing every existing Sirius radio. Sirius radios will not tune XM. The two transmission formats are incompatible. And shutting off around half of the satellite radios would pretty much bankrupt the company.

If you look at the 2015 Goal at the bottom, you'll see that the "Sirius Platform" is phased out and "Sirius 1.0 Tuners No Longer Compatible" (which refers to all Sirius radios). You're absolutely right that they would have to replace every existing Sirius radio, which is why they probably aren't going to do this anytime soon. They're still selling Sirius radios and putting them in cars today! But in the context of getting more bandwidth, this is pretty much the only feasible option outside of acquiring and getting approval for more bandwidth elsewhere and making new radios anyway.
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post #156 of 174 Old 02-27-2014, 04:15 PM
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With a given amount of bandwidth better channel quality can be achieved with less channels. Marketing people have known for a long time (just as for TV broadcast) that people prefer more channel choices to channel quality. as unpopular as that may be on this forum.
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post #157 of 174 Old 02-27-2014, 05:00 PM
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Yeah, XM launched with only 100 channels and they sounded great! I doubt they're gonna axe channels though frown.gif. During last baseball season (I think) they had to switch some of the music channels to mono temporarily cause they were out of bandwidth.
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post #158 of 174 Old 02-28-2014, 02:45 AM
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If I remember correctly, the shutdown of the Sirius side turned out to be more rumor than fact, granted, a widely spread rumor that I believed at the time as did plenty of others.

They are letting the Sirius satellites finish up their service and not replacing them in their polar orbits. All of the new sats are going to be geosynchronous which I think is unfortunate. I'd have much preferred that they keep both because geosynchronous works well for home receivers while the polar orbit works really well for mobile receivers.

They could, theoretically, double their bandwidth by replacing all of the Sirius radios with new radios that receive from both spectrums (XM & Sirius) and then just transmit XM on the normal XM spectrum and something like "XM+" on the old Sirius spectrum (same codec as XM - just on the old Sirius Spectrum). Then they could offer new radios that could see both Spectrums, understand that some channels come from "XM" and others come from "Sirius" and use the same codec for both.

I don't see them doing that.

As it is, and I think someone mentioned this above, you're still seeing Sirius tuners in new cars. You can still buy Sirius PNP units at the stores (somewhere in the back in the clearance section next to the XM radios - it's funny how they're no longer front and center).

My guess is that they'll just keep the status quo for the foreseeable future. They have their subscribers. They'll just (mostly) simulcast across the two spectrums.
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post #159 of 174 Old 04-09-2014, 11:50 AM
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Hey Everyone - back to my BMW 428 XM vs Sirius thread (see previous posts) - I got the new car two weeks ago - and what do you know? The sound is day and night. Again - it is not CD quality clearly, but it's incomparably better now than it was. To remind all: originally the car was shipped without Nav/technology package and had a standalone Sirius unit installed which sounded like **** on 16 Harmon Kardon speakers. The new car has the navigation (and the technology package) and SiriusXM sounds MUCH better now. The issue: in BMWs - if you get the navigation - sat radio is just a circuit board within the head unit (vs. if you don't get the nav - it's a standalone sirius device). Apparently - that unintuitive thing makes a huge difference in sound. I know that Gary J and others wanted the follow - so here it is! smile.gif
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post #160 of 174 Old 04-09-2014, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamchur View Post

Hey Everyone - back to my BMW 428 XM vs Sirius thread (see previous posts) - I got the new car two weeks ago - and what do you know? The sound is day and night. Again - it is not CD quality clearly, but it's incomparably better now than it was. To remind all: originally the car was shipped without Nav/technology package and had a standalone Sirius unit installed which sounded like **** on 16 Harmon Kardon speakers. The new car has the navigation (and the technology package) and SiriusXM sounds MUCH better now. The issue: in BMWs - if you get the navigation - sat radio is just a circuit board within the head unit (vs. if you don't get the nav - it's a standalone sirius device). Apparently - that unintuitive thing makes a huge difference in sound. I know that Gary J and others wanted the follow - so here it is! smile.gif

Thanks for the follow up. Hopefully you can find that Bimmerfest thread also. It all goes to show Sirius sound quality can be quite good but it can depend on a few different things. Some you would not even figure on.
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post #161 of 174 Old 08-20-2014, 03:25 PM
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Actually READ this thread.

If I read correctly: My Sirius Stiletto 100 would be better served, SOUND QUALITY WISE, while in it's HOME DOCK, to use my ISP for "Satellite Radio", because it sends out those streams at 128Kbps, as opposed to 32-64Kbps being sent out through the Satellites?

Is this right?

My Stiletto 100(using wireless-B. That is laughable. Wireless-G was around in 2006)) receives my Wi-Fi fine(2 bars as opposed to 3 bars on satellite). I mainly use my Stiletto 100 to record H. Stern in the morning.

I know I cannot record the Internet Streams, but do they actually sound better? When I connect, I do get INTERNET PREMIUM on the BOTTOM LINE of my Stiletto 100. It it is then replaced with the time.

P.S. I have the SIRIUS SELECT PACKAGE ONLY
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post #162 of 174 Old 03-20-2015, 07:13 AM
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Update

Hey guys. I posted more than 2 years ago about my 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee which had a Sirius radio, and how the sound quality was terrible. Since then I have done a LOT of research and have found what most are saying on this forum. To those who aren't familiar, please head my caution, even though Sirius and XM are now one company, they still make both Sirius and XM hardware separately. The issue is that anyone using Sirius hardware gets the terrible sound quality, those with XM hardware get the good audio quality. Sirius radios use different satellites than XM, and also use a different decompression algorithm, therefore causing the degradation in audio quality.


I couldn't stand the audio quality so much, that I ended up trading in my 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee for a 2014 model. Chrysler was smart, and decided to start putting the new "SiriusXM" tuners in their radios (which utilize the legacy "XM" satellites and decompression). Audio quality is now 100x better, not "tinny" underwater sound anymore.


I'm now in the market for a 2015 Ford Expedition (please leave your judgment at the door) and have yet to test drive one. I know that Ford has always used Sirius tuners in their radios, and they still appear to as all the 2015 Ford literature indicates that you get the "Sirius All Access" package with your radio.


Now, my question is this. Has Sirius quality improved at all? Am I going to end up with terrible sound quality in the 2015 Expedition too? I know I need to go test drive one to see for myself, but wanted everyone's opinion here as well. For example, I know the gentleman on this forum some time ago claimed that once he traded in his BMW for a more advanced model (with NAV), his Sirius audio quality increased and was actually good. After some research I know that BMW still uses Sirius hardware...so wouldn't the sound quality still be poor?


Anyway, hoping to revive this thread, as I think it's important we bring this issue to light to the consumerist public.
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post #163 of 174 Old 03-20-2015, 07:33 AM
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Nonsense. The Sirius in my BMWs is quite good. Of course the speakers are not by Ford or Jeep so I expect a quality difference between those important components. Example - there are 12" subs under each front seat.
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post #164 of 174 Old 03-23-2015, 06:18 AM
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@atc1989 :

I think you're hearing the differences but your conclusion is wrong.

I've had Sirius since 2004 and XM since around 2006. Various radios with both. I've heard Sirius sound great and XM sound muddy and then XM coming back and sounding great and Sirius sounding tinny, or whatever over the years. I remember early on, before they really started trying to cram in as many channels as possible, when sound quality for both was actually quite good.

There are a few factors involved:
- compression (digital): I don't have any numbers to back this up but, just from my observations, I'd say that both sides are roughly the same now. It certainly doesn't sound as good as it used to but it does sound OK
- tuners: I think that this is probably where the largest difference lies in that some tuners, regardless of the platform, sound better than others.

I have both Sirius (Directed SCC1) and XM (SiriusXM Onyx Plus) in my car currently, all feeding through the same amp and speakers and I'd say that they largely sound the same. Probably the biggest difference is that there appears to be more audio (not digital) compression coming out of the Onyx Plus. It does make the Onyx Plus sound better (punchier) but it's more a trick of the tuner than anything.

I think that most of the factors in good sound quality, at this point, really come from: tuner, stereo, and environment and it really isn't as easy as saying that one sounds better than the other.. It's more like saying, "This particular tuner using this particular platform sounds good/bad in this particular environment."
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post #165 of 174 Old 03-29-2015, 01:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Just stumbled upon this thread doing some googling. Can't believe it's still going 3 years later.

I understand there are differences in the compression algorithms used but how can the XM side be sounding better when all the new channels are on the XM network? All the Xtra channels and the "SiriusXM" channels are broadcasted from the XM satellites.

I know of last three satellites launched two (FM-5 and FM-6) were both originally designed to be on the sirius network. Maybe they operate on both frequencies?

I wish they would invest in the tundra orbit satellite model that the original sirius birds use. Seems like it gives better signal penetration from directly above instead of geosynchronous birds that XM and the latest satellites use. The XM network has a large array of ground repeaters to provide signal in areas where you dont have a clear view of the southern horizon.

With the decommissioning of sirius's tundra orbit satellites in the near future coupled with a lack of ground repeaters us sirius listeners are about to have some pretty poor reception.

Current SiriusXM satellites-
FM-1 - Orignal Sirius satellite, tundra orbit. Lifetime expires in 2015
FM-2 - Orignal Sirius satellite, tundra orbit. Lifetime expires in 2015
FM-3 - Orignal Sirius satellite, tundra orbit. Lifetime expires in 2015
FM-5 - Sirius satellite launched 2009, geosynchronous orbit
FM-6 - Sirius satellite launched 2013, geosynchronous orbit

XM-1 - Orignal XM satellite, geosynchronous orbit. Lifetime expires 2016
XM-2 - Orignal XM satellite, geosynchronous orbit. Lifetime expires 2016
XM-3 - XM satellite launched in 2005, geosynchronous orbit.
XM-5 -XM satellite launched in 2010, geosynchronous orbit.

Saw this in another thread about the technical reasons for the move to XM. I dont have enough posts to post links

Quote:
* XM uses an audio codec known as HE-AAC, or aacPlus v1. It's designed to deliver higher quality audio at bitrates lower than 96 kbps (192 kbps MP3). Sirius uses a less efficient codec called ePAC, which takes more data to deliver at the same quality as HE-AAC. XM also uses the AMBE codec for its voice only data channels, aka the robot voice channels, which uses a mere 4 kbps.

* XM's infrastructure has the ability to move bandwidth around at will, turning channels on and off as needed and turning bandwidth up and down. Sirius channels stay on all the time, unless they're permanently deleted. They find ways of preserving bandwidth using a system like Statmux, where a group of channels have varying bitrates based on what other channels need. Satellite TV uses this too.

* XM is able to alter the channel information on its units at the push of a keystroke. If a channel is replaced by a new one, they can simply change the channel name and logo on the units. Sirius is unable to do this without shutting down the entire system and rebooting it, which causes all units to go dark for a few minutes. For a while this was routine, but Sirius hasn't done a reboot for over two years now.

* While all XM units can receive all channels, many Sirius units have a limit of 135 channels, and this includes a LOT of OEM radios. This is why XM has been adding several Sirius channels to its platform but Sirius has hardly added any XM channels. Sirius has mainly added XM channels to its Best of XM premium package, which brings the platform total over the 135 channel barrier, so the limited Sirius units have simply been deemed Best of XM incompatible. This is also why the newest Sirius XM channel, Spice Radio, has a full time channel on XM while existing part time on Sirius, sharing channel space with Sirius XM Stars Too.

Last edited by satradio91; 03-29-2015 at 04:04 PM.
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post #166 of 174 Old 03-31-2015, 08:16 PM
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Anyone using the new SIRIUSXM APP?

They have a setting within the ME/USER menu where you can choose the sound quality you can use for STREAMING or DOWNLOADS.

You can either choose NORMAL, HIGH, or MAXIMUM. Anyone know what each setting is set at(bit rates/kbps rates)?

Just wondering if anyone knew what they are playing back at, and if there really is any sound difference.

The new app is actually not nearly as good as the old one. You cannot just listen to downloaded stuff OFFLINE at all anymore, which stinks. Hope they change that.

Also download times of content even at NORMAL setting is SLOWWWWWW!! Much slower than the old app.

The new app is not good at all. They should have left well enough alone.

This is with the app available on APPLE products. The Android/Google app is an older version still(2.6.6 as opposed to 3.0 for APPLE), and works 1000 X better.

Get to work APPLE, and/or SiriusXM, and fix the new version. IT IS TERRIBLE!!!

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post #167 of 174 Old 04-01-2015, 03:59 AM
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Spotify has the 3 settings and lets you save 3000+ songs to your device. Nice.
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post #168 of 174 Old 04-01-2015, 03:17 PM
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Excellent info guys. In the early days of XM Radio (only), it was a joint effort w/ AC Delco. Most of the time it will not sound good in the German automobiles?
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post #169 of 174 Old 04-08-2015, 07:38 PM
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I'm pretty sure the bit rates on the new app are Normal 64kbps High 128kbps and Maximum 320kbps.

If a movie or concert video or a TV show isn't on blu ray it darn well should be.


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post #170 of 174 Old 04-09-2015, 01:40 PM
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I was complaining about the sound quality 10 years ago, not to mention the repetition in the stations ... the sound quality was never really better than FM.. it would be interesting to get a live feed of the satellite service, rip it to my PC, and see what frequencies are cut off.. I've heard people say there's nothing below 300HZ and above 8000 HZ. People would tell me I was full of it and it was my speakers.. nonsense. These are probably some of the same people who say that the human eye cannot detect over 24FPS and tell me I'm mistaken, that I really can't.

I'm spoiled by my FLAC files now... no going back. Storage is cheap and my collection is to the point where I no longer need playlists to discover music unless it's new stuff.

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post #171 of 174 Old 04-09-2015, 02:11 PM
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Got ESPN in your playlist? CNN, weather, traffic?
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post #172 of 174 Old 06-26-2015, 10:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockwiz View Post
I was complaining about the sound quality 10 years ago, not to mention the repetition in the stations ... the sound quality was never really better than FM.. it would be interesting to get a live feed of the satellite service, rip it to my PC, and see what frequencies are cut off.. I've heard people say there's nothing below 300HZ and above 8000 HZ. People would tell me I was full of it and it was my speakers.. nonsense. These are probably some of the same people who say that the human eye cannot detect over 24FPS and tell me I'm mistaken, that I really can't.

I'm spoiled by my FLAC files now... no going back. Storage is cheap and my collection is to the point where I no longer need playlists to discover music unless it's new stuff.
The master library at Sirius is coded at 256MPEG2... That is how it was originally built. I don't think they have converted any of that to 44.1/WAV yet. Just doing that would greatly improve how it sounds after it hits the second CODEC. I do know that the audio files they use are full sprectrum rips. If they are rolling off lows and highs, it's prior to going into the MUX or Uplink. I don't think they roll off the low end. It's easy to hear on the Hip-Hop & R&B channels that they are going down to at least 80HZ.

While I enjoy some of the formats, I did not renew. That audio literally hurts my ears. I'm very sensitive to audio and video compression. I hear it quickly and see it too. Definitely a blessing and a curse. I also program two FM radio stations and my music library for both is 44.1/Linear audio. Going from SiriusXM to one of my stations on FM shows you just how horrible it is. My iHeart streams at 64Kbs sound way better than the medium quality of the SiriusXM feeds. When I had Dish network, that was the only time I could stand Sirius. Dish has a fiber link and it isn't compressed on the Sirius side.
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post #173 of 174 Old 06-27-2015, 03:38 AM
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Quote:
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I'm very sensitive to audio and video compression. I hear it quickly and see it too.
You hear and see audio and video compression? Amazing stuff right there.

And 64Kb is plain wrong.
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post #174 of 174 Old 06-27-2015, 07:04 AM
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My advice would be to listen to the internet stream if the compression on the satellite feed bothers you[the internet feed at the 320kbps aka maximum level has little to no noticable compression......just listen to one of the live concerts off the board on the Grateful Dead channel for proof or even one of the shows on the Pearl Jam channel].

If a movie or concert video or a TV show isn't on blu ray it darn well should be.

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