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Satellite Radio-why?


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19 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Mark Holtz

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Posted 28 November 2004 - 12:00 PM

I will admit it. Some of the products that XM have certainly caught my interest. The MyFi radio and SkyFi2 products look especially interesting especially the instant playback on the SkyFi2. However... it's the sticker shock...

The SkyFi2 appears to be one of the hot products. But, even if I purchase the radio, I still need to purchase a kit in order to mount it in my car. If I want to take the tunes with me, I need the SkyFi boombox. And, if I want to hook it up to my home, I have to purchase a home mount. Can you say ker-ching?

Even if I pay for multiple years of a contract, I can't see the cost-benefit ratio of the service for me. I'm just not in my car that much. I have channels of audio-only service on DirecTV that I don't use.

There are folks who can justify the service. I can't. To me, it appears to be a niceity that I can do without. If I wanted to, I can purchase an audiobug and rip the music stream to a MP3 file, then play it back in my car for a long trip.
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#2 OFFLINE   Paul Secic

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Posted 28 November 2004 - 04:30 PM

I will admit it. Some of the products that XM have certainly caught my interest. The MyFi radio and SkyFi2 products look especially interesting especially the instant playback on the SkyFi2. However... it's the sticker shock...

The SkyFi2 appears to be one of the hot products. But, even if I purchase the radio, I still need to purchase a kit in order to mount it in my car. If I want to take the tunes with me, I need the SkyFi boombox. And, if I want to hook it up to my home, I have to purchase a home mount. Can you say ker-ching?

Even if I pay for multiple years of a contract, I can't see the cost-benefit ratio of the service for me. I'm just not in my car that much. I have channels of audio-only service on DirecTV that I don't use.

There are folks who can justify the service. I can't. To me, it appears to be a niceity that I can do without. If I wanted to, I can purchase an audiobug and rip the music stream to a MP3 file, then play it back in my car for a long trip.

Dump XM, Sirus a depression is coming! Save your money you have DirecTV. Sorry I don't mean to sound crude.

#3 OFFLINE   cjrleimer

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Posted 28 November 2004 - 04:33 PM

Come On Sirius is better they have the NFL And NBA XM has virtually nothing except Baseball and Sirius has Better Music.

#4 OFFLINE   djlong

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 08:12 AM

Without getting into an impossibly fruitless XM vs Sirius debate (honestly, you can't debate individual tastes), there are several reasons to have satellite radio.

Firstly, $10/mo is less than one CD. And the variety I've heard while listening.. I heard more new stuff from groupsI'd never heard of that I liked the first week I had it, than I had discovered in the previous several years. Why? FM doesn't cater to my tastes, that's for sure.

Secondly - MP3's are a pain to rip/edit/partition. (Though the TimeTrax software for the XM Direct makes that simple). First thing I do with every CD I buy is rip it to MP3 - that's easy enough - but doing it from an audiostream is a hassle.

Thirdly - they advertise it as 'the ultimate playlist' and it's true - there isn't enough protable hard drive space to hold everything they're playing.

I have an average hour's commute each way. XM, for me, has been a godsend. I can be stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic and laughing my tail off from the comedy channels (I probably get strange looks from all the other aggravated drivers). When I had a weekly 4-5 hour commute to/from NH/NJ, it was *wonderful* to have stations that stayed with me the entire way.

Now, with the traffic & weather channels, my occasional drives south mean I know what's coming. recently did NH to SC and never had to wait for a traffic report for NYC, Philly, Baltimore and Washington.

#5 OFFLINE   Chris Blount

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 08:34 AM

djlong makes some good points but I also agree with you Mark. There are some serious startup costs if you want a satellite radio in your car, portable AND in your home.

Where do you spend most of your time? At home? Why not buy a satellite radio wherever you spend that time. That way you can test the waters first. Then if you want one in your car, just buy the kit. You don't have to do it all at once.

I would highly recommend the SkyFi2 though. I just love having the 30 minute buffer especially when listening to the comedy channels. If you don't like something, just skip to the next track (assuming there is programming in the buffer).

I don't know what to tell you Mark. Having a satellite radio is a personal choice. I admit that I can live without it but it sure is nice to have if you have the money to spend.

#6 OFFLINE   djlong

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 11:27 AM

Right now, $350 will get you everything you need - the "MyFi" package comes with home *and* car adapters with all the accessories (antennas, etc) in addition to having the save functions, 5 hour battery, etc, etc.

Pretty comparable to a iPod as far as price goes - and the battery will keep it's "rechargeability" for more than 18 months :)

#7 OFFLINE   mainedish

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 11:33 AM

I had Satellite Radio but I did find I did not listen to it that much. My kids now have a dvd player in the car and they watch that while we drive. It is good for some people but it was not good for me.
The start up cost might be a problem for some.

#8 OFFLINE   sikma

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 12:00 PM

Whether you like sat. radio or not (sounds good to me), I remember when home BUD dish programming cost $10-15 a month. Wait a couple of years, your monthly sat. radio bill will start to creep up. The next thing you know, you'll be paying $150++ a month for sat. delivered entertainment (radio/tv).

#9 OFFLINE   Steve Mehs

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 05:34 PM

Two years ago this time I'd never thought I'd be spending $30 a month on radio between the two services. To say one is better then the other is purely opinion based. Both services have a lot to offer and each has it's few negatives. Sirius may have the NFL and NBA, but that doesn’t make them better for everyone. Personally I hate basketball, and football is more of a TV sport. And I do find it aggravating when I want to listen to Sirius Patriot or Sirius Right and normal programming is preempted because of sports, so I flip over to America Right on XM.

If I have learned one thing from getting Sirius, it's bashing or over hyping one of the providers over the other does no good for the greater cause. SDARS is a relatively new industry and Sirius and XM need to work together while stilling being competitive with each other. I still prefer XM over Sirius, but Sirius is a great product.

Why did I choose satellite radio? More of the music I like, no corporate playlists and little to no commercials all come to mind. Satellite radio isn’t for everyone, and admittedly a few years ago when Scott G would post XM news releases or product/service reviews, I would look at the thread, roll my eyes, and say to my self ‘why in the hell would anyone want to pay or radio’. I couldn’t have been more wrong a few years ago prejudging satellite radio and I could have been more wrong in the past few months prejudging and taking shots at Sirius. My black and gold pompoms are now black, gold, blue and white.

My two sources for music were FM radio and Muzak. Between the local FM stations here and Muzak, I heard very little of what I liked and what little I heard was censored and repetitive. I used to listen to Power Rock on Muzak non stop. While it introduced me to some great bands, such as Pantara that get no FM play around here, after a few hours of listening I would hear the same song over and over. After doing some research on the band, Muzak played basically all their big hits. A coworker of mine let me borrow every Pantera CD, and there were only a handful of songs between the 6 or 7 discs that I didn’t care for, yet the entire Muzak Pantera library consisted of the biggest hit off each CD. I noticed the same thing with bands I was more familiar with such as Metallica or Iron Maiden. The thing that did it for me was one day I was listening to Power Rock, and I don’t know if it was a mistake or what, but I heard something weird, looked over at the screen, it was Avril Lavign on Power Rock. I was done. That was the last time I listed to Muzak and what got me thinking about XM.

Getting satellite radio, more specifically Sirius, opened my ear to new styles of music that I never thought I’d like, such as dance, electronica and contemporary jazz. If you don’t listen to a lot of radio, satellite radio may not be worth it, but it is a cool technology. I just wish I would have been more open minded about a lot of things related to this a lot sooner. I listen quite a bit on the weekends and evenings, not enough to fully justify $30, but enough to get a lot of enjoyment out of it and to be a part of a great movement in technology and freedom. I don’t have satellite radio at work or in my car, it’s in my home only. XM or Sirius they’re both good.
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#10 OFFLINE   djlong

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 07:54 AM

Steve, you put it very well. The battle isn't "Sirius vs XM", it SDARS vs AM/FM.

Personally, I'm into NASCAR and MLB - though my XM decision 2 years ago was made when my favorite group was appearing live in XM's studios and I wanted to record the concert. Getting MLB in 2005 gives me mixed emotions - now I'd finally be able to follow my favorite National League team - the Montreal Expos - except now they're moving to DC... Still, all the other stuff I discovered has made XM *more* than worth it. When my wife's friend got Sirius (present from his brother), he wanted XM but is happy with Sirius because they're *both* so infinitely better than terrestrial radio.

#11 OFFLINE   SAEMike

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 08:14 AM

I would just like to be able to get either XM or Sirius radio service
:confused:

I am grateful to Dish, however, that I can now hear the Sirius music stations on my TV. I use that service quite a bit, and have enjoyed it.

#12 OFFLINE   durl

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 09:49 AM

I love gadgets (which is partly why I got satellite TV) and satellite radio is something that I believe I'd enjoy. I guess I still have trouble with the monthly fee. Maybe it's just the idea of having to pay for radio when I can get a decent variety of formats for free. (If I lived in a rural area with limited choices, I'd probably already have it in my car.) I really can't blame my hesitance on the startup costs...I paid start-up costs to get satellite TV and then HD. It comes down to perceived value. I really wanted satellite TV, but I don't believe radio would be worth it to me.

To many, I'm sure satellite radio is just what the doctor ordered. I'm glad it's out there and I may jump on the bandwagon one day.

#13 OFFLINE   genglish

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 02:57 PM

I'm with SAEMike.... I have all 3 of my Dish receivers connected to my stereos, and now listen to Sirius channels quite a bit now that they are included with AT120 and above. Can't take it with me on the road (where satellite really rocks for road trips), but it's great at home when I don't want to watch TV, and too lazy to drag out a CD or connect my iPod. Toughest problem I have is figuring out which genre of music I want to listen to :)

#14 OFFLINE   BobMurdoch

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Posted 30 November 2004 - 05:01 PM

If you MUST have NFL, get Sirius, If you MUST have MLB get XM. Ditto for Howard Stern on S* and Opie and Anthony on X*.

Personally I like the music diversity on X* better (Cinemagic and Upop plus deeper playlists), others prefer the more "familiar" music on S*.

Either way ditching the commercials on "regular" radio sold me two years ago when I first got XM. I've never looked back. Plus, their respective stocks have tripled since I bought them so they are helping with my kids college fund to boot. In ten years I expect both to be as big as E* and D* are, if not bigger, as people get it for their homes, cars, boats, MyFis, etc......
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#15 OFFLINE   pinkertonfloyd

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 10:47 PM

I will admit it. Some of the products that XM have certainly caught my interest. The MyFi radio and SkyFi2 products look especially interesting especially the instant playback on the SkyFi2. However... it's the sticker shock...

The SkyFi2 appears to be one of the hot products. But, even if I purchase the radio, I still need to purchase a kit in order to mount it in my car. If I want to take the tunes with me, I need the SkyFi boombox. And, if I want to hook it up to my home, I have to purchase a home mount. Can you say ker-ching?



It's worth it I've been with XM since near Launch... I have a Pioneer Add-On in my Audi, and my Wife a Sky-Fi. All I can say is when my adapter in my car blew (and I had to wait a week for a new one to ship out). I was going through withdraws from having to listen to... Commerical Radio.

As for Programming. I think XM has a better sound Programming mix. But both are far superior from anything on the regular radio dial.

#16 OFFLINE   TimL

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 11:23 PM

I had Sirius for a couple weeks early last year..I loved the music selection..My tastes vary from Oldies to Old Time Radio to Classic Country..Loved hearing WSM Nashville all day instead of just at night. The problem I had was using the boombox at work.A break room without windows isnt exactly going to work..Also was hard at times finding a open space to place the antenna..took the unit back. Am now seriously thinking of getting XM because of Baseball..And going with the MyFi. Hoping the price comes down by tax time


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#17 OFFLINE   rayydio

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 07:05 AM

I love gadgets (which is partly why I got satellite TV) and satellite radio is something that I believe I'd enjoy. I guess I still have trouble with the monthly fee. Maybe it's just the idea of having to pay for radio when I can get a decent variety of formats for free. (If I lived in a rural area with limited choices, I'd probably already have it in my car.) I really can't blame my hesitance on the startup costs...I paid start-up costs to get satellite TV and then HD. It comes down to perceived value. I really wanted satellite TV, but I don't believe radio would be worth it to me.

To many, I'm sure satellite radio is just what the doctor ordered. I'm glad it's out there and I may jump on the bandwagon one day.


I had the same problem, paying for radio, until I took the plunge. Now that I did (XM almost two years now) I haven't looked back. It's nice on long trips, it's nice around town! There's such a variety that there is something for everyone. I was hooked on the first trip out of town when I did not have to change the station or a CD.

#18 OFFLINE   djlong

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 08:01 AM

If I were just starting out, I'd probably buy a MyFi. That has *all* the accessories and you don't feel like you're getting nickel-and-dimed. On top of that, there are now a lot of places selling it for less than the $349 MSRP.

When you add the home kit, car kit, chargers, adapters, antennae, FM transmitter and memory, it's quite the deal.

#19 OFFLINE   rcbridge

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 09:48 AM

Some of us (who are old enough) probably had a problem with paying to watch TV!!
But look at us now. In my opinion commercial radio has become so predictable and just bad I am thinking about Satellite radio. I am sure some day it will become the norm!!
Just like cable and satellite.

#20 OFFLINE   Pete K.

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 10:22 AM

I agree with you rcbridge. I grew up watching two (sometimes 3) fuzzy black and white tv channels. AM radio was filled with static, and stations faded in an out, especially at night, or on long trips. I thought it was great. I never dreamed of paying to watch or listen. Now, having been exposed to the wonders of satellite, I wouldn't dream of giving it up.




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