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· Cool Member
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The vehicle that it is all installed in is a 2001 Ford Explorer Sport Trac. I opted to go the route of using the Pioneer IP Bus connections instead of the FM modulated. I never thought the sound quality of FM modulation was quite up to par, using FM modulated CD changers in the past. For this I needed to put in a Pioneer XM ready Head unit. I chose the DEH-P9300 because I liked the way it looked and the way it all worked. It has 3 RCA pre-outs on it, which were helpful in hooking up my amplifier. The buttons on this head unit make for quick, easy access to all of XM's channels and abilities. I paid around $400 shipped to my house from a Audio shop somewhere in New York.

The XM tuner I have installed is the GEX-P900XM. It has 2 IP-Bus connections on it, one for the signal to my head unit, and another pass-through type that I have my CD changer hooked up to. It is a dual mode tuner, meaning that it can get the signal right from Rock or Roll, or it can use a terrestrial repeater when one is available. I do not know when a repeater or the satellite is being picked up, as there is never a change in quality of the sound. I paid around $200 at Circuit City here in Chesapeake, VA last October.
In order to pick up the signal, I went with the Pioneer XM antenna, model number AN-90XM. It looks very similar to Sony's antenna. It has two, color coded plugs on it that plug into corresponding plugs on the XM tuner. I had thought of going with the Terk Glass mount or the other Terk antenna, but I really liked the way the Pioneer looked. The Terk through Glass is a great idea, but it is so big!! Maybe if one that is smaller comes out I would try that. The pioneer antenna mounts one of two ways. It comes with a bracket so that you can attach it to a trunk lid, or a hood even, or the method I used is simply the magnetic base. It stays put through whatever I have thrown at it. Extended periods of 75 MPH on the highway don't budge it, plus when I go through a car wash, I simply pull it off and place it inside on the back seat. (One time I forgot to remove it, but it stayed right in place) The antenna was also purchased at Circuit City the same time as the tuner. Cost was approx. $90
I installed all of the equipment myself and it took approx. 5 hours from start to finish, but I placed the XM tuner in a difficult to get place (for security, as well as to keep it from getting dirty. I placed it on the back wall of the cab of my Sport Trac, and it would take me about 2 hours to take a photo of it, so all I have is a photo of the box it came in (sorry).
Overall, I am very pleased with the function of all this equipment. I do occasionally loose the signal for a second or two when passing under a highway overpass (but only the same one, same place, everyday) and near some Radar Equipment at work (I'm an Air Traffic Controller, and parking close to the radar tower can't really be good for much any radio reception...) The only feature I wish that the Pioneer system had that many of the others do is the scrolling title bar. It will only show however many letters it has room for. It is usually enough to figure out who is singing or the song title though. I would rate this 4 1/2 out of 5 stars, only due to the lack of scrolling title bar.
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