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Wireless FM in car not strong enough signal

Discussion in 'Sirius XM General Discussion' started by hjsiemer, Sep 28, 2006.

  1. bluedogok

    bluedogok Godfather

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    Sep 8, 2006
    I found that was the case in Dallas/Fort Worth, it took me a week to get the FM modulator that plugs in the the back of the head unit and you plug the antenna into the modulator. It has worked great and I would never consider using the broadcast type modulator for anything.
     
  2. dpd146

    dpd146 Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2005
    I think this is Sirius's fix for the reduced strength but I can't find anywhere to buy one.

    http://204.13.105.63/misc/fea.pdf

    Looks like a good idea if they ever become available.
     
  3. wizard19

    wizard19 New Member

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    Jan 1, 2007
    Check this out...A few days ago, I had Best buy install my Sportster Replay with the FM modulator connector. It will only work if I have the FM transmitter "on" regardless of which blank FM frequency I am trying to use. I have a Ford Expedition with the CD changer. It works well but I think it is odd it won't work unless the FM transmitter is "on". I'm not sure if I am getting the benefit/sound advantage of having the FM modulator connector or not.
     
  4. hjsiemer

    hjsiemer Mentor

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    Sep 28, 2006
    Maybe Best Buy did not install it correctly. Unhook one lead of the FM modulator that is connected to the Sirius receiver and leave the FM transmitter on. If the quality without the FM Modulator is the same as when it is connected to the receiver, then Best Buy did not connect it correctly.

    I have always gotten a quick reply from Sirius Tech Support via their webpage form. Go to www.sirius.com, click the link at the bottom of the page marked "Contact Us" and then the link in the first paragraph marked "form". Fill out the form and choose as the subject "Installation" and explain what is going on and what you are experiencing. They will know if the FM transmitter has to be on when using the FM Moduator, and if not what the remedy is so that you can take the vehicle back to Best Buy.

    If the receiver has a problem, tech support will send you another one Fedex overnight and if pressed will prorate your bill, this happened with a guy that I work with that bought the XACT Sirius receiver which was DOA.

    As an aside, Sirius explained to me in a phone call reply that the reason that the FCC made Sirius and XM cut the FM power by 75% and do not allow transmissions below 88.1 mhz is because of National Public Radio complaints that the FM transmissions were interfering with the NPR broadcasts...so much for the "live and let live" philosophy of NPR. :rolleyes:
     
  5. wizard19

    wizard19 New Member

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    Jan 1, 2007

    Here is the "helpful" reply from Sirius: "We are more than happy to help you, what you need to do, is to keep your FM transmitter turned "ON" to get a clear reception." :rolleyes:

    hjseimer - you were more help than Sirius...
     
  6. melmashman

    melmashman New Member

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    Jan 7, 2007
    I returned my Sportster 4 after contacting Sirius Tech Support. I purchased a cheaper unit and have the same problem of poor FR reception. Based on the information in this forum about the 25% reduction in power, I think my only solution is to fix the power button on my older JVC model. I do not have a cassette player or aux input in my auto radio and I do not want to remove the radio and put in an a supplimental part that might solve the problem.
     
  7. Steve Mehs

    Steve Mehs Hall Of Fame

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    Mar 21, 2002
    Why not? It's a process that takes a minute or two and if it solves your problem, what's the harm?
     
  8. bluedogok

    bluedogok Godfather

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    Sep 8, 2006
    Then take it to Best Buy or some place similar.

    I installed it in mine and it took all of 5 minutes with the new style FM modulator which is powered from the unit. I have an older JVC FM modulator with an old Audiovox Sirius radio in my wifes Escape, you have to run power to it, the new one is a piece of cake. I don't even have to think about it now, it just works all the time.
     
  9. dpd146

    dpd146 Godfather

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    Oct 1, 2005
    I bought my old man one of the new sportsters for Christmas and the fm transmitter is ridiculous. Had to stick it on the rear window to get a good signal. After a few hours on the phone with S he was able to get an installation coupon so he could have it hardwired.

    Hardwire is about the only decent option now that they had to reduce the transmitter power.
     
  10. hjsiemer

    hjsiemer Mentor

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    Sep 28, 2006
    What is the difference between the "line out" and the "audio out" jack on the Sirius receivers - is it better to use one or the other (any subtle differences). I would ask Sirius, but if I ask twice, I will probably get two different replies...:rolleyes:
     
  11. Steve Mehs

    Steve Mehs Hall Of Fame

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    Mar 21, 2002
    Which receiver are you talking about? The Sportster Replay Car Cradle has a Line Out and an FM Out. Line Out is used for connecting to an aux input, FM Out is used for wired FM modulators, or the FM mod extension wire, that shipped with older Sportster Replays.
     
  12. mjcatc

    mjcatc Mentor

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    Oct 15, 2006
    Mine was the same way. Mercifully I have a factory radio that has a CD & cassette input. I bought the casette adapter and it outside of having an extra wire on my dash board I've had no problems with it.
     
  13. spykedvodka

    spykedvodka Legend

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    Jan 31, 2006
    Ok my situation???

    I originally had a good receiver from Wal-Mart. It was the Sanyo Car & Home kit. When I say good, I mean that the Receiver was a piece of crap, but the reception was amazingly well, until it died and I went through 4 replacements until they gave me a Sportster Replay.

    Since I had to wait 7 months to get the Warranty Exchange, I called up Sirius and started complaining. They gave me a Sirius One....

    The model of Sirius One I had ROCKED! Yes, it was a very basic design that I dreaded, but I could easily pick this up on a radio 30 ft away from the receiver... NO WORD OF A LIE!

    The Sportster Replay that I finally received? Lets just say the FM Mod in it SUCKS. It is horrible, can barely reach the antenna 3 ft away and even then I have to turn it off after 5 - 10 minutes.... Worst ever I say... So what did I do?

    I bought a new car! LOL. The car had an Aux In input on the front of the Radio/CD Player which wasn't changing my opinion on purchasing the car, but was indeed a huge added bonus. I now have the Sportster installed through the AUX IN and the sound could not be better! It is unbelievable. I love it now, just not using FM.
     
  14. huckhound

    huckhound New Member

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    May 17, 2007
    The FM modulator kit works,I used it.
     
  15. hjsiemer

    hjsiemer Mentor

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    Sep 28, 2006
    I want to get another XACT car receiver that was made before the FCC cut the FM transmitting power by 75%. I cannot find the model that I have (XTR3) in the stores or on ebay - the closest that I could come was on ebay and that model# is XTR3CK.

    Does anyone know if this is a model that has the full uncut FM transmitting power? The seller is of no help as he only used the lineout plug to his FM Car radio. Thanks
     
  16. nhoJ

    nhoJ Mentor

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    Jul 6, 2007
    If you have an input on your head unit, you just have to get the connection wire from the Sirius unit. If you want to replace your head unit, there is a cheap Sony for about $90 that has the input. CC might still have free install with head units $90 and up.

    The next option is to use the FM modulator.

    http://www.tss-radio.com/direct-adapter-wired-relay-p-4082.html

    This can be pretty easy to do, but it depends on your car. Basically you just need to get to your antenna wire, either behind the head unit or at the other end where it plugs into the antenna. Pull the wire out, plug it into the box of the modulator and then plug the wire from the modulator into either the head unit or the antenna and then run the skinny wire to the Sirius unit. The modulator works as a switch that "disconnects" the antenna whenever the Sirius is on. I did this myself and took about 5 minutes. The static is gone and there is no need to switch dead stations. I swear. The only catch is that most American cars and some of the modern imports don't use the standard antenna wire, so you'll have to buy two adaptors, one at each end.
     
  17. stanleyuroy

    stanleyuroy Banned User

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    Sep 24, 2007
    I think this company needs to upgrade their services if not then there is no need for them to keep retailing when customers are not satisfied.However it would be preferrable that they inform customers when they are about to make a purchase
     
  18. paulman182

    paulman182 Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 4, 2006
    Sirius was in violation of FCC regulations with the stronger modulators. They exceeded the legal limits for unlicensed devices.

    I could drive by a Radio Shack and the Sirius from the store would wipe out my XM inside my vehicle! If I was anywhere close to a Sirius listener on the road who was using a nearby frequency, my XM was wiped out.

    I knew it was just a matter of time before they got their wrist slapped on this one. Greedy companies can get away with breaking the law for just so long.
     
  19. Grubby

    Grubby Cool Member

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    Oct 18, 2007
    Try and get your hands on an older model (pre 2006). The signal strength is much stronger since it was before the FCC regulations.
     
  20. hjsiemer

    hjsiemer Mentor

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    Sep 28, 2006
    You are absolutely right. I bought one from someone on Ebay for $20.00 who wanted to upgrade to a Sportster. The key question to ask is does the FM transmitter have a frequency range of below 88.1. If it does, it has the strong transmitter AND you dont have to bother changing the frequency as you drive through different areas. I set my frequency to 87.7 and it works great! :)
     

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