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XM vs Sirius Audio Quality

Discussion in 'Sirius XM General Discussion' started by tedb3rd, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. tedb3rd

    tedb3rd Godfather

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    Feb 2, 2006
    I'm looking for feedback from anybody who has had XM and Sirius in their car. What is your thought re: audio quality (compression ratio) between the two providers?

    I have a Saturn w/factory intalled XM. I installed a Sirius receiver (FM Modulator) a long time ago because I personally liked Sirius's content better. I recently dropped my Sirius service and went for XM, believing that I would get better sound quality with a 'direct connection' (as opposed to FM modulator). However, the compression with XM seems very high and I'm considering switching back to Sirius.

    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Steve Mehs

    Steve Mehs Hall Of Fame

    11,499
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    Mar 21, 2002
    FM modulators suck, especially the wireless ones. I have both XM and Sirius in my truck, both plug and play receivers, used to use the FM modulators, then bought a dual auxiliary input adaptor for my factory radio and have had then hooked up that way ever since. Doing A/B comparisons is very easy, Sirius used to sound better to me, but then when XM updated their processing last summer that changed. I don’t think XM sounds better then Sirius now, while they sound different, but to me neither is ‘better’. At home I have another Sirius plug and play receiver, and I use the built in XM tuner in my Sony home theater receiver, XM sounds more pleasing to my ears, but again, it’s not really better then Sirius.

    To expand this a little, I’ve done A/B comparisons on similar channels. To me, Watercolors on XM sounds better then Jazz Café on Sirius, Classic Rewind on Sirius sounds better then Big Tracks on XM, and so on.
     
  3. jjlawyer

    jjlawyer Cool Member

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    Dec 7, 2004
    I had XM in a GM car and Sirius with a direct sportster or something. I also have Sirius in BMW. I had the GM car first and never noticed any sound quality problem. Then when I got the sportster, I noticed that it sounded terrible. A lot of digital compression, like a 64k mp3. Maybe 96k on the bst channels. In the BMW, the sound is not nearly as compressed. It sounds fine. So i think XM gets the nod from me. None of them sound as good as FM.
     
  4. Hoxxx

    Hoxxx Cool Member/Supporter DBSTalk Gold Club

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    Jun 19, 2004

    My first Sat Radio was XM because it works inside a metal building. Sirius will not work there. So because of that I have been an XM sub .
     
  5. spartanstew

    spartanstew Dry as a bone DBSTalk Club

    12,564
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    Nov 16, 2005
    Wylie, Texas
    I rent cars almost every week. Sometimes it has Sirius, sometimes XM (both are direct input - factory installed). I've never noticed a difference between the two.
     
  6. Marriner

    Marriner Legend

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    Jan 23, 2006
    I have a built in Sirius reciever in an explorer i bought recently. I was disappointed in the sound quality. It sounds like an mp3 incoded at 64k. A lot of compression artifacts.
     
  7. ChrisBMoore

    ChrisBMoore New Member

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    Jul 20, 2004
    I know your question was more in regards to sound quality than reception, but I just wanted to share my input on the reception end. I have had both XM and Sirius and I find that with XM the reception is much more spotty than with Sirius. I definitely lost my signal with both services on some occassions, but sometimes I lose XM signal when there seems to be no reason that I should. I also think Sirius's format is better than XM, but thats more of a personal preference than actual facts of how the sound itself is. :hurah: Just my thoughts
     

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