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XM and Sirius sound quality - Page 2

post #31 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDDVD2344 View Post

yeah i have Sirius in my car and the sound quality is great!

Huh! They must send you the secret higher bitrate channels!
post #32 of 140
I have 6 XM subscriptions, but I still think their sound quality stinks. It is OK for the car, and portable devices, but forget it for the home.

If you have a high quality audio system, then you will dislike the sound of XM going through it.

Too much compression.

I just got a Pioneer Inno and I hate it. Worse sound quality of any portable that I have owned. Looks neat, but sounds lousy.
post #33 of 140
I just bought two new cars, with Sirius capability "built in". I have never had sat radio before but from the advertizing I thought it was CD-quality. I activated the service in one of the vehicles yesterday to try it out.

I also have:

FM/AM
CD
iPod Integration

The results were similar to an earlier poster:

#1) CD
#2) iPod (decent bitrates)
#3) FM
#4) Sirius (no hiss, no mulipath, but still sounds like streaming audio on the internet, quite compressed - sports talk shows were terrible)

I was surprised by the variablity in SQ on Sirius as well. Now for the content vs SQ issue I DO like the content! So in the end I may keep it, but NOT for the SQ which I found to be dissapointing.

HTH,

Dan
post #34 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by syd7890 View Post

Does anyone know how XM and Sirius compare to one another in sound quality, and how it compares to FM stereo. I'm considering Sirius for my home stereo and I'm a little concerened about sound quality. I'm guessing that it's not on par with CD quality or MP3's with a decent bit rate, but I wouldn't want anything less than what you get off the satellite tv channels or FM.

There are a bunch of homers being paid by Sirius to go to forums and brag about how good it sounds. My only experience with Sirius was a free 3 day internet trial which I also did with XM. XM offerred 64 kbps WMA, Sirius offerred 27 kbps WMA. Why does Sirius only offer such a low bitrate on the internet radio? Because they can't offer any better. With the bitrate and audio codec they are using (PAC at 48 kbps or 32 kbps, I've seen claims for both bitrates) they just can't deliver in the sound quality department.

From the honest people on these forums it's clear that XM sounds slightly inferior to analog FM and Sirius sounds like AM radio without all the noise.
post #35 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnewhous View Post

There are a bunch of homers being paid by Sirius to go to forums and brag about how good it sounds. My only experience with Sirius was a free 3 day internet trial which I also did with XM. XM offerred 64 kbps WMA, Sirius offerred 27 kbps WMA. Why does Sirius only offer such a low bitrate on the internet radio? Because they can't offer any better. With the bitrate and audio codec they are using (PAC at 48 kbps or 32 kbps, I've seen claims for both bitrates) they just can't deliver in the sound quality department.

From the honest people on these forums it's clear that XM sounds slightly inferior to analog FM and Sirius sounds like AM radio without all the noise.


You talk about being Honest,
then post nothing but BS......

sirius streams at 128-132kbps online for an extra 2.99 a month...

and saying that sirius pays people to pump it's product makes you sound like a Homer and is laugable at best!
post #36 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by mercury View Post

You talk about being Honest,
then post nothing but BS......

sirius streams at 128-132kbps online for an extra 2.99 a month...

The "CD quality" online service is a new thing. I'm pleasantly surprised by that. It's surprising that they would offer an online service that sounds better than the satellite broadcast. But the online stream isn't going to do any good in your car. Are you suggesting the satellite stream is the same quality? You can measure the bit rate of the satellite channels by the amount of time you get recording to a portable device.

Please tell, what codec are they using for the "CD quality" online stream? I doubt you know what "codec" means.
post #37 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnewhous View Post

The "CD quality" online service is a new thing. I'm pleasantly surprised by that. It's surprising that they would offer an online service that sounds better than the satellite broadcast. But the online stream isn't going to do any good in your car. Are you suggesting the satellite stream is the same quality? You can measure the bit rate of the satellite channels by the amount of time you get recording to a portable device.

Please tell, what codec are they using for the "CD quality" online stream? I doubt you know what "codec" means.


you deliberately gave false information.

desperation I guess!
post #38 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by mercury View Post

you deliberately gave false information.

desperation I guess!

I accidentally gave false information because of a bad assumption - they would never offer internet radio service that sounded better than the satellite service.
post #39 of 140
Stop with the accusations please.
post #40 of 140
Neither service is CD quality, online or on a radio. Also neither service advertises that they are CD quality, they advertise 'digital' quality which may be seen as misleading, but it is true. My cell phone is digital, but the SQ is worst than awful.
post #41 of 140
I made my choice based on programming. Mainstream reviewers often gloss over the programming differences, saying both services offer pretty much the same thing. But XM has a great acoustic rock lineup with XM Cafe, The Loft, and Hear Music. I couldn't find that on Sirius.
post #42 of 140
<-- 07 CTS with XM

3 month sub is about to run out.....and none to soon!!

sounds like MP3 @ 64k/inet streamed audio. Digital audio?!

sure is, don't mean it is GOOD digital audio!!
post #43 of 140
I think one of the important things to remember is you have to take into account the audio systems the sat. radio is going through. Anyone running through an FM modulator in the vehicle is killing their SQ, no matter how the original broadcast sounded.

I cannot speak to Sirius' SQ other than a few demos, but I'm very pleased with the performance of XM in both of my vehicles. My truck has a Pioneer AVHD-P6500DVD Head Unit with the Pioneer XM tuner hardwired (GEX-910 I think, I'm not positive). This is output into my 1400 watt system with 2 pairs of infinity components, separate midbass, and dual IDMAX 12's and I'm very happy with the sound. My car has a lower end Pioneer deck and the cheaper Terk interface with Kicker Components and it sounds very good as well.

Just make sure you are comparing apples to apples. I'm sure both systems sound pretty crappy in stock systems. But everything sounds crappy in those!
post #44 of 140
I need someone to clarify something for me. I stream Sirius from my DishHD recieve into my computer and record some of the shows on Area 33. I have been saving them as 320kbps but was told they are not 320kbps but more like 192kbps, is this correct or am I missing something here? Any info is appreciated.
post #45 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by espresso_1967 View Post

I need someone to clarify something for me. I stream Sirius from my DishHD recieve into my computer and record some of the shows on Area 33. I have been saving them as 320kbps but was told they are not 320kbps but more like 192kbps, is this correct or am I missing something here? Any info is appreciated.


Sounds like you are trying to build a library.... Don't waste your time trying to save Sirius or XM songs.

Reason #1 They run them all together so mp3's sound awful with the breaks at the start and end.

Reason #2 Sound quality is marginal. Get Rhapsody if you want to build a great collection of QUALITY mp3's. 9.99 a month for all you can eat. TUNEBITE lets you locate your downloaded files whereever YOU want to put them.

I think I picked up 1200+ complete CD's in the first 5 weeks. I am now paying for 3 simultaneous Rhapsody subscriptions. I handed them out for Christmas presents. I got tired of my teenagers paying a dollar a song to iTunes or whomever.

I am averaging 1 cent per CD. GREAT sound quality and a most reasonable price I think you will agree.
post #46 of 140
No actually that is not what im doing, I dont collect single tracks but DJ Mixes from Area 33, trance, house etc. but my question was exactly that, I save the mixes through sound forge at 320kbps so is it really 320kbps or 192kbps as it was pointed out to me. The stream is coming from DishHD reciever directly into my computer so the sound, in my opinion is great. Just want to know if I should be saving them at 192 or 320kbps.
post #47 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by bhummel2001 View Post

Reason #2 Sound quality is marginal. Get Rhapsody if you want to build a great collection of QUALITY mp3's. 9.99 a month for all you can eat. TUNEBITE lets you locate your downloaded files whereever YOU want to put them.

You confim what was speculated when this service was announced: that they take the satellite stream and re-encode it to a higher bandwidth stream.
post #48 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by espresso_1967 View Post

I need someone to clarify something for me. I stream Sirius from my DishHD recieve into my computer and record some of the shows on Area 33. I have been saving them as 320kbps but was told they are not 320kbps but more like 192kbps, is this correct or am I missing something here? Any info is appreciated.

Ok maybe I was not clear, what I need to know is the compression of Sirius on Dish Network as I have been told that the recordings I do from Dish network are not 320kbps but more like 192kbps. I record shows from Area 33 from my DishHD reciever into my computer and save the files to 320kbps using Sound Forge 7.0. I have a friend that ran a few spectrum analysis and tells me that my files are not 320kbps but more like 192kbps. So at this point the quality lays from the Dish reciever that im recieving, so if anyone knows anything about the quality of stream that might be coming from the Dish Network, please post any info.

Thanks in advance
post #49 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnewhous View Post

I accidentally gave false information because of a bad assumption - they would never offer internet radio service that sounded better than the satellite service.

Whether it is intentional or not the online streaming and DiSH Network/DirecTV qualities may sound better or not depending on the listener. Sirius and XM aren't intentionally trying to make any particularly delivery platform sound better or worse, but they are trying to get the best they can out of all platforms. Each platform has unique characteristics.

For example, DiSH Network and DirecTV have to convert the signal to Musicam (MPEG layer-2) format. The audio source needs to be processed to take maximum advantage of the Musicam codec or it sounds poorly. A similar processing technique is used for the online WMA stream and the online RealPlayer streams, one tuned for the low bitrate service and one tuned for the high bitrate service. And of course the satellite platform using PAC at different bitrates for each class of channel.

XM Radio has a little more work because they deliver over a couple more platforms: XM Online using WMA at low bit rate, WMA at high bit rate, AOL Radio AAC at low bit rate, AOL Radio AAC on high bit rate, DirecTV using one bitrate on Musicam (MP2). And, like Sirius, the satellite platform on AACplus at different bitrates for each class of channel (talk, niche music, pop music, etc.).

The characteristics of the resultant sound are different from the processing and compression used with the codec used on the satellites. I much prefer the DiSH Network/DirecTV audio quality to any other source but that is entirely subjective!!

You should be interested to know that the online streaming channels are all at the same two bitrates. All DirecTV and DiSH Network channels are at a single 192k (Musicam) bitrate. The satellite radio channels are at different bitrates ranging from 16kbps-64kbps. Each platform uses a different codec so the bitrates are only interesting for the bandwidth consumed. Audio quality is totally subjective at this point.
post #50 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnewhous View Post

You confim what was speculated when this service was announced: that they take the satellite stream and re-encode it to a higher bandwidth stream.

This is completely untrue.
The online stream is source differently. It has nothing to do with the satellite stream except for the audio source.
post #51 of 140
Have Sirius, XM, DirecTV, and broadband ('net streams of both services; hi-quality Sirius option).

In order of perceived AUDIO quality (better music channels):

Sirius hi-q net stream
XM DirecTV (but frequent drop-outs)
XM Satellite (Delphi Roady)
XM subscriber net stream
Sirius Satellite (Audiovox)
Sirius regular (subscriber) net stream
XM AOL Radio (barely listenable)

FM radio fits between the XM satellite and net streams IMO. Real FM, with multipath and negligible dynamics, not what FM could be if anyone cared.

The sat streams are highly compressed and hard to listen to in a high-resolution situation (headphones in a quiet room) but adequate for the car. The DirecTV streams of XM are still easily recognized as compressed, and depending on the music and your ears may not be enjoyable quality-wise.

That said, non-commercial-interrupted humanly-programmed music is so compelling I can't decide which sat radio system to drop.

I find better talk choices on Sirius and much better music programming on XM. But I'm easily bored by the consultant-ed tested never-unfamiliar programming on nearly all FM and 94% of Sirius.
post #52 of 140
IMO

I have XM over Directv.......Digital connection(optical).....poor sound experience through higher end system. My MP3 player sounds as good through headphone jack. I have not been impressed with the play list or the talk,talk,talk.....I know I am listening to XM.

6 month sub /Sirius came with my 06 F150
Stock HU......sounds great......i never listen to FM/AM anymore and rarely listen to the CD player. Some channels sound better than others.....Area 33 , the Beat , Jazz channels sound almost CD quality........70's, Roadhouse country, sound more like FM.

I went ahead and paid for a 3 year sub.

Although not very high quality, I really enjoy streaming online at work.

I would assume that the differing opinions here have to do with the equipment being used and how it is intergraded into your sound system.

XM or Sirius......Dtv or Dish......satellite is my cup of tea
Trebor
post #53 of 140
I have Sirius in my new Mercedes. The sound quality is way way below CD and rather repetitive. Still I'm keeping it since ,although the quality is low with tons of channels to change to, it gives more more variety than I would have without.

Art
post #54 of 140
I have XM Radio and I think the sound quality is quite poor. I have not compared to Sirius. I have noticed that some channels sound substantially better than other channels on XM-- I'm not sure why that is, but overall, the sounds quality is worse the CD, MP3 or FM. Don't pick satellite radio based on sound quality- it loses hands down.
post #55 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by rf75 View Post

Have Sirius, XM, DirecTV, and broadband ('net streams of both services; hi-quality Sirius option).

In order of perceived AUDIO quality (better music channels):

Sirius hi-q net stream
XM DirecTV (but frequent drop-outs)
XM Satellite (Delphi Roady)
XM subscriber net stream
Sirius Satellite (Audiovox)
Sirius regular (subscriber) net stream
XM AOL Radio (barely listenable)

FM radio fits between the XM satellite and net streams IMO. Real FM, with multipath and negligible dynamics, not what FM could be if anyone cared.

The sat streams are highly compressed and hard to listen to in a high-resolution situation (headphones in a quiet room) but adequate for the car. The DirecTV streams of XM are still easily recognized as compressed, and depending on the music and your ears may not be enjoyable quality-wise.

That said, non-commercial-interrupted humanly-programmed music is so compelling I can't decide which sat radio system to drop.

I find better talk choices on Sirius and much better music programming on XM. But I'm easily bored by the consultant-ed tested never-unfamiliar programming on nearly all FM and 94% of Sirius.

Guess you don't have the Hi-Q AOL Radio streams, then? I'm curious where you'd put those.
post #56 of 140
I have Sirius in my new Jeep Grand Cherokee with the upgraded stereo system and on my boat with a customer stereo and I have XM in my H2 with the upgraded stereo system and I have XM in the house throught D*. XM music channels sound much better than Sirius.

To me Sirius has a compressed cheap compueter sound to the treble and XM has a thin sound but much more listenable than Sirius.

Once the free subscription with Sirius is up there is no way I will pay to subscribe although I will miss the NFL channel.
post #57 of 140
I have had both SIRIUS and XM and used the same PIE Interface on the same truck and the XM using a MYFI sounded better than SIRIUS did using a Stiletto 100 and the same goes both with the same set of headphones
post #58 of 140
The main problem is that they are all a little different. I got one of the first XM radios with the Pioneer unit that had the box under the driver seat and an FM modulater in my Xterra. Factory stereo was poor. Sound was not great.

Next I had the Delphi w/FM modulator in my Mitsubishi. Factory stereo was much better. Sound was better.

Delphi connected to my Yamaha receiver. Sounded even better.

Polk XRT connected to my Denon receiver. Sounded great

Polk XRT to my Denon run through my X-Fi Platinum soundcard. Sounds really really good.

JVC DVD-A w/XM adaptor for car (not FM modulator). Doesn't even sound like the same product as my prior car stereo set-ups. Sounds really good.

With the variability in sound in these configurations, I think you would need to do A vs B comparisons with the same equipment. However, different units are going to have different quality FM modulators. There is really a huge difference in sound quality of amplifier units and set-ups. Because of the variability in the sound quality of individual stations and the lack of similar source material to do an A vs B comparison, choosing a better sounding company between XM and Sirius is not possible.
post #59 of 140
Now I'm curious about a related issue. I have read statements by Sirius-heads that XM's satellite broadcast has higher background hiss and some background clicking and popping noises because XM uses cheaper broadcast equipment. Is there any truth to this?
post #60 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnewhous View Post

Now I'm curious about a related issue. I have read statements by Sirius-heads that XM's satellite broadcast has higher background hiss and some background clicking and popping noises because XM uses cheaper broadcast equipment. Is there any truth to this?

It's true, the "Sirius-heads" would say that for sure! LOL
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