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Sirius Channels


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16 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   kstuart

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 01:14 PM

I was enthusiastic about the news that Sirius satellite radio channels are going to be added to Dish in June.

However, a few things have dampened my enthusiasm.

The first is that some people have said that these might only include music channels. IMHO, the unique aspect of the Satellite Radio services is the variety of talk, news and sports channels. Like many satellite fans, I live in the Middle Of Nowhere - with only a couple of very mediocre local radio stations.

However, music is something that is not hard to find - in addition to the several dozen music audio channels on Dish, there are hundreds on the Internet. But, Dish has no audio talk, news or sports channels. Those can be found on the Internet, but they tend to be scattered, and you have to find them. Having a whole slate of them on Dish would be convenient.

Then, I heard that you can audition the Sirius channels on their website, so I did so. First off, unlike the much-maligned Muzak channels, the Sirius channels have constant DJ interruptions. Admittedly, this is not as bad as ads (as found on XM channels), but only in the sense that a punch in the head is not as bad as being hit by a baseball bat. ;) All current Dish audio channels, and most Internet music channels are free of both ads and annoying DJ yammerings.

All of this would be tolerable if the Sirius music channels were particularly compelling. However, they seem similar to the Yahoo! Launchcast channels, in other words, you have a choice of pop, poppier and totally poppy.

For example, despite the vague titles and descriptions, all of the Dance channels are dance pop hits. The so-called "Chill" channel should be renamed "Espresso". :rolleyes:

Similarly, all of the Classical channels are pop classics - no channel exclusively for baroque/chamber music.

The clear emphasis is Rock - which is odd, considering that hardly any Rock is being made nowadays, and certainly nothing musically new. In fact, if you look close at the 30 Pop and Rock channels, what you are really getting is many, many variations on the theme of Oldies.

I suppose this probably makes sense from a marketing standpoint, since the people who are likely to spend time in cars, and have $13 a month to spend, are people whose musical tastes were set during their college days years ago.

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#2 OFFLINE   Sparkman87

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 01:47 PM

I was enthusiastic about the news that Sirius satellite radio channels are going to be added to Dish in June.

However, a few things have dampened my enthusiasm.

The first is that some people have said that these might only include music channels. IMHO, the unique aspect of the Satellite Radio services is the variety of talk, news and sports channels. Like many satellite fans, I live in the Middle Of Nowhere - with only a couple of very mediocre local radio stations.

However, music is something that is not hard to find - in addition to the several dozen music audio channels on Dish, there are hundreds on the Internet. But, Dish has no audio talk, news or sports channels. Those can be found on the Internet, but they tend to be scattered, and you have to find them. Having a whole slate of them on Dish would be convenient.

Then, I heard that you can audition the Sirius channels on their website, so I did so. First off, unlike the much-maligned Muzak channels, the Sirius channels have constant DJ interruptions. Admittedly, this is not as bad as ads (as found on XM channels), but only in the sense that a punch in the head is not as bad as being hit by a baseball bat. ;) All current Dish audio channels, and most Internet music channels are free of both ads and annoying DJ yammerings.

All of this would be tolerable if the Sirius music channels were particularly compelling. However, they seem similar to the Yahoo! Launchcast channels, in other words, you have a choice of pop, poppier and totally poppy.

For example, despite the vague titles and descriptions, all of the Dance channels are dance pop hits. The so-called "Chill" channel should be renamed "Espresso". :rolleyes:

Similarly, all of the Classical channels are pop classics - no channel exclusively for baroque/chamber music.

The clear emphasis is Rock - which is odd, considering that hardly any Rock is being made nowadays, and certainly nothing musically new. In fact, if you look close at the 30 Pop and Rock channels, what you are really getting is many, many variations on the theme of Oldies.

I suppose this probably makes sense from a marketing standpoint, since the people who are likely to spend time in cars, and have $13 a month to spend, are people whose musical tastes were set during their college days years ago.


A couple of points to clear up.

1. Dish WILL only carry music channels from Sirius, no talk, news, or sports.

2. XM has NO ads on its music channels, the ads were dropped 2/1/04.

Sirius & XM are satellite RADIO and radio has DJ's. That is part of the appeal of radio. E* & D* current have music channels and that won't change with the addition of Sirius to Dish. I have had XM for the past year and have found that sports, news, & comedy are all they have that appeal to me. I rarely listen to the music channels, I haven't found a format that I like. & I'm luck that I'm in an area that is well served by FM radio and has 2 stations whose formats appeal to me much more than anything on XM. I would probably like Sirius's music better & I may give it a listen when it's on, but I didn't buy a satellite Tv service to listen to music, I bought it for TV.

From a marketing standpoint, I think this deal will do well for both E* & Sirius. E* subs get a chance to listen & Sirius gets a whole new market to target.

#3 OFFLINE   jasonjpw

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 01:54 PM

So will dish drop MUZAC for SIRUS. How many stations and will it be part of what package if this happens.

#4 OFFLINE   scooper

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 02:03 PM

The question is - WILL E* be dropping Muzak ? Or is Sirius going to be added as additional choices ?
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#5 OFFLINE   Sparkman87

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 02:04 PM

So will dish drop MUZAC for SIRUS. How many stations and will it be part of what package if this happens.

I don't think Dish is droppong Muzak, they have a contract for the next 1+ yrs I believe. Just adding all of Sirius music channels. Read this Dish press release for info:

http://www.corporate...&item_id=494603

#6 OFFLINE   Slordak

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 02:16 PM

Only music, no NPR?

Blech. Who cares then? Doesn't sound any better than what we have today with the Dish CD Music stations. I was hoping this would add more content, not just more music.

#7 OFFLINE   Geronimo

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 02:16 PM

In another forum it was stated that in the retailer chat they explained that the 61 SIRIUS music channels will rplace the extra channels available to AT 120 subs and above. There will still be a basic MUZAK package.
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#8 OFFLINE   rh26

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 02:36 PM

Sirius & XM are satellite RADIO and radio has DJ's. That is part of the appeal of radio. E* & D* current have music channels and that won't change with the addition of Sirius to Dish.


Just because radio HAS DJs doesn't mean radio SHOULD have DJs! What's the value added? Why do I need a DJ telling me

1. That I am listening to Sirius (I *know* that, I pay for it)
2. What station I'm on (I *should* know that, I selected it)
3. What song I just heard (Doesn't all the fancy digital technology put that on the display for me?)

If I am listening to good music while driving, the jarring of a human voice interrupting a stream of music can really mess up my thoughts. At home, if I want background music I *really* don't want a DJ.

I *used* to be excited about the Sirius streams on Dish, now that I know about the DJs, I'll probably not even give them a listen.

However, if we lose the *uninterrupted* Muzak streams in a year or so, that will probably push me over the edge to D* (the enjoyment factor of continuous CD quality was the biggest surprise when I joined Dish; I never imagined how much I would enjoy listening to music for hours on end when there were no interruptions; I never even listened to non-commerical radio because of the DJs).

As an aside, I have also lost *any* interest in signing up for Sirius or XM now...

#9 OFFLINE   Steve Mehs

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 06:20 PM

Sirius and XM are satellite radio providers, not digital jukeboxes. When I want to listen to a jukebox I’ll open my Winamp playlist or turn on one of the Music Choice channels. I used to have Power Rock on all the time on Dish, after getting fed up with the channels crappy playlist and Muzaks censorship I got XM. XM provides me with 3 hard edge rock channels, and has opened my eyes to some of the most amazing metal bands around. I like the DJ chatter in between songs and the station IDs, it makes me feel like I’m listening to a radio (which is what it is), not a jukebox. Satellite Radio isn’t for everyone though, I never thought much of the industry until around this time last year. I got interested in XM, then strongly considered it in the summer, then when I visited Scott G he gave me a full demo of the rock selection, I can’t remember which song, but it was by Pissing Razors, that was the first real dose I got of XM and have been in love with it ever since. That following Tuesday I went to Sears and picked up my SkyFi of my own, now I can’t imagine a day when I don’t spend at least 2 hours listening to Liquid Metal.

I bought XM for one channel, Liquid Metal, then I started listening to da Bone Yard and Squizz, I ocasionally listen to Lucy too. So out of the 68 music channels I listen to a grand total of 4. Those four channels are worth every penny of that $10 to me, Playboy isn't exactly worth $3, but I pay for it anyway. :D
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#10 OFFLINE   Sparkman87

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Posted 09 March 2004 - 07:33 PM

Just because radio HAS DJs doesn't mean radio SHOULD have DJs! What's the value added? Why do I need a DJ telling me

1. That I am listening to Sirius (I *know* that, I pay for it)
2. What station I'm on (I *should* know that, I selected it)
3. What song I just heard (Doesn't all the fancy digital technology put that on the display for me?)

If I am listening to good music while driving, the jarring of a human voice interrupting a stream of music can really mess up my thoughts. At home, if I want background music I *really* don't want a DJ.

I *used* to be excited about the Sirius streams on Dish, now that I know about the DJs, I'll probably not even give them a listen.

However, if we lose the *uninterrupted* Muzak streams in a year or so, that will probably push me over the edge to D* (the enjoyment factor of continuous CD quality was the biggest surprise when I joined Dish; I never imagined how much I would enjoy listening to music for hours on end when there were no interruptions; I never even listened to non-commerical radio because of the DJs).

As an aside, I have also lost *any* interest in signing up for Sirius or XM now...


You sound like someone who should have a multi-disc cd player in the car and just listen. And if I was like you, I'd feel the same way. However, I enjoy the personalities of DJ's when I listen to music. The flow of a good morning show is much more enjoyable to me than hearing a song one more time. In the afternoon I prefer the local all sports station. Probably the only time I listen to music for long periods at a time is the long vacations when I'm in the car for a day at a time. So, as long as your happy with your choices, that's all that matters.

#11 OFFLINE   Jack White

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 08:12 AM

Is this the same Jack White that in the past has sung the praises of his cable company having a much better picture than Dish ? Guess the grass isn't so green now...
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I have to post this reply here because the other thread was closed.
The picture quality of my analog cable is better than the picture quality on standard def channels on Dish.
The picture quality is only reduced on some channels IF I use a splitter and a 100 foot coaxial cable to get the cable signal to my bedroom.
This is a screen cap of the local CBS station I made from analog cable a while ago(see attachment below)
It should be obvious that the picture quality is superior to what locals look like on dbs.
This is what I'd get if I watched cbs in the living room on analog cable.
However, IF I used a splitter and a 100 foot coaxial cable to get the analog cable signal to my bedroom, the picture quality on some channels would be really bad because the 100 foot coaxial cable would kind of act like an antenna and cause interference to the channels that have the same channel number on cable.
For example powerful vhf channels like channels 3, 6, 10, and 12 would cause interference on cable channels 3, 6, 10, 12, etc ONLY if I use a splitter and a 100 foot coaxial cable to get the cable signal to my bedroom.
That's why I say I'll have to use Rabbit Ears to watch Survivor in my bedroom on Thursday night.
When no splitter is used, none of these problems happen and the analog cable picture is near broadcast quality on many channels.
BTW, I never said that my analog cable has perfect picture quality, I just said that it has much better picture quality when you compare it to standard def dbs channels.
I would say that the picture quality on my analog cable is acceptable at best.
For standard def programming, the best sources are Analog C-band/4DTV and a clean OTA signal from a good rooftop antenna is probably the 2nd best after that.
Neither dbs or digital cable or even analog cable have picture quality even as good as a clean OTA sd signal.
Both dbs and digital cable have the capability to produce standard def images that rivial the Uncompressed 704x480 rez Analog C-band picture quality, but in reality, the best analog cable picture will be better than just about any standard def dbs or digital cable image because of the massive overcompression used by both dbs and digital cable.

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  • Analog_Cable_Screencap.jpg


#12 Guest_Timmy_*

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 08:49 AM

I would much prefer hear XM's music stations. Sirius, it is well known, has a much more limited musical selection. Subscribers to Sirius constantly complain about repeats, and too much playing of the "hits".

#13 OFFLINE   Bobby94928

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 09:59 AM

You sound like someone who should have a multi-disc cd player in the car and just listen. And if I was like you, I'd feel the same way. However, I enjoy the personalities of DJ's when I listen to music. The flow of a good morning show is much more enjoyable to me than hearing a song one more time. In the afternoon I prefer the local all sports station. Probably the only time I listen to music for long periods at a time is the long vacations when I'm in the car for a day at a time. So, as long as your happy with your choices, that's all that matters.


I have a Pioneer radio in my car which is XM Ready. It also is an MP3 player. I haven't turned on the XM but I have many MP3 discs that I use, that's my jukebox. That, of course, also works on the PC in the house. I have XM Radio in the house, specifically in my home-office. A little later on, I intend to turn it on in the car. It's great to have it all....
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#14 OFFLINE   TAK

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 10:06 AM

I've been listening to the DISH CD channels quite a lot lately, mainly, Power Rock 961. I admit, its not great, but a lot better than the constant repeats of songs on Modern Rock FM radio (right now I only have one choice in my area and its owned by Clear Channel - eeeek). I admit, I kinda miss hearing a DJ once in a while telling me news about the artists and what not. I think I'd like hearing the DJs on SIRIUS.

I don't think anyone has brought his up: but I wonder how they will split the channels between AT120 and 180. I'd really hate to have to pay 10 dollars more if a few of the SIRIUS channels I'd like to hear are on AT180 than AT120. I hope they use some common sense and put some of the more likely popular channels on AT120 than putting them on AT180. But who really knows what will happen right now. I'm just hoping I can get some of their good rock stations in the AT120 lineup. I also think the fact that SIRIUS doesn't play radio edits on most channels (I'm assuming this is true) is great. Nothing worse than listening to a song and realizing its censored.

#15 OFFLINE   rh26

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 11:35 AM

You sound like someone who should have a multi-disc cd player in the car and just listen. ... However, I enjoy the personalities of DJ's when I listen to music. ... Probably the only time I listen to music for long periods at a time is the long vacations when I'm in the car for a day at a time.


Actually, I have an iPod with about 4 days of continuous music on it. I plug it into my home stereo AND my car. However, isn't the joy of music discovering *new* music? That's why radio, Muzak, etc. are good things. And maybe for short drives, DJ interruption is okay (and the bulk of this argument boils down to preferences and taste) but let me note:

1. At HOME (where I would listen to music on my Dish Network receiver), I typically want music for background, either while doing my "chores" or for a situation like a dinner party. A DJ is not welcome then.

2. (For some genres) *IF* the DJ is giving me useful info about the band, etc. that's helpful, but my observation listening to the Sirius stream is that the bulk of the interruptions are just to tell you that you are listening to Sirius or the name of the channel! WHY!?!?

Unless Dish is getting these channels for free (and probably even so), I predict Muzak will gone once that contract ends. If I no longer have a source of decent, non-commerical, *non-interrupted* music, I will likely move to D*.

#16 OFFLINE   Richard King

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 11:36 AM

You sound like someone who should have a multi-disc cd player in the car and just listen

Another solution to this is to get a DVD/MP3 player in the car (or bring along a laptop that plays DVD's and run it through the car system). Make a single DVD loaded with MP3's and it will play for MANY hours without repeat. I did this a while back as an experiment and was quite pleased with the results, until I got Sirius. :D I like the variety of Sirius and hearing songs that I don't have access to any other way. I haven't tried XM yet, so can't speak for them, but I have been very pleased with the variety and quality of signal on Sirius. As for the jocks, I have no problem with them because they don't spew the garbage that many off air jocks do. They only talk music, informing where acts are appearing on tours, etc. By the way, the quality of the Sirius signal will blow away what you hear on the Muzak services (unless they compress them further).

The announced plan was to add all the music channels to AT120 and higher.
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#17 OFFLINE   Sparkman87

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Posted 10 March 2004 - 02:54 PM

I've been listening to the DISH CD channels quite a lot lately, mainly, Power Rock 961. I admit, its not great, but a lot better than the constant repeats of songs on Modern Rock FM radio (right now I only have one choice in my area and its owned by Clear Channel - eeeek). I admit, I kinda miss hearing a DJ once in a while telling me news about the artists and what not. I think I'd like hearing the DJs on SIRIUS.

I don't think anyone has brought his up: but I wonder how they will split the channels between AT120 and 180. I'd really hate to have to pay 10 dollars more if a few of the SIRIUS channels I'd like to hear are on AT180 than AT120. I hope they use some common sense and put some of the more likely popular channels on AT120 than putting them on AT180. But who really knows what will happen right now. I'm just hoping I can get some of their good rock stations in the AT120 lineup. I also think the fact that SIRIUS doesn't play radio edits on most channels (I'm assuming this is true) is great. Nothing worse than listening to a song and realizing its censored.


My understanding is that anyone with AT120 & above will get ALL of the Sirius music channels.




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