View Full Version : OT: XM Satellite Radio
05-27-2006, 02:13 PM
I'm looking for someone who has an XM Satellite Radio that can give me a little helpful advice.
My DH won the XMSkyFi2 and the vehicle kit that goes with it. I'm trying to figure out whether or not the vehicle kit is really what we want, or whether or not we should see if we can exchange it for a home kit instead.
We have a power converter in our car that alllows us to use 12V power adaptors, plus the XMSkyFi unit has an FM modulator that allows you to "broadcast" wirelessly through the FM stereo. So, I'm thinking that it would be nice to have the flexiblity to use the thing in the car *and* at home, and so the home kit would be more versatile for us.
Anyone got feedback on this idea of mine? Or am I just confusing everyone?! (Cause, really, I don't know what I'm talking about yet. This is all new technology for me.)
Jan in CA
05-27-2006, 02:53 PM
We have a Honda Accord and XM came with it. If you listen to the radio a lot at home it would be worth switching or adding. DH and I like it when we have to travel to AZ (or any long trip). No commercials and we can listen to the comedy channel, discovery, or music. It helps break up long trips. I don't listen to the radio at home much myself it would be wasted on me here. ;)
Here's a website with programming.
05-27-2006, 03:12 PM
i have both the car kit and the boom box for home and i have to say that the boom box is just collecting dust. i rarely am home long enough to listen to the radio so i almost never listen to it. i do listen to it almost every day in the car. i generally only listen to Air America and that was the reason i bought it. i agree with Jan, if you listen to the radio a lot at home then it is worth the money...
05-27-2006, 07:58 PM
:thinking: Hmmm ... well now I'm not sure what to do. I don't generally listen to the radio at home all that much. The kids and I will sometimes turn on our favorite Cont. Christian station while we're working, but that's usually all I ever listen to. I'm wondering if I would listen more, though, if I had a variety of choices.
I'm also wondering if I understand the home kit well enough. I'm thinking that w/ the power converter in our car that I'll be able to use the home kit inside the car, but that antennae looks quite large. I don't know whether or not I could be happy having that on the dash.
05-27-2006, 10:27 PM
You'd probably end up listening more.
My bf gave me an XM radio last year and I re-discovered my love for 40's music, opera, classicals and just about anything I found, hehe.
I do have a car kit, which he installed, but since I drive mostly from home to work or for groceries, I don't spend that much time in the car to actually listen to it.
05-27-2006, 10:48 PM
I have XM in my car with the broadcast kit. I love it. when we travel long distance I plug in my headphones and I can listen while everyone else sleeps or does his own thing. If you use headphones, get the kind with volume control as you cant really adjust XM and drive!
I never bring it inside as I thought I would when I purchased it.
Oh, and I discovered that when it rains, water drips in my car where the antenna comes through the car door weather stripping. My antenna is a super magnet that goes on the roof top and then you bring the cord inside the car and under the floor mat. Kind of a pain.
Hope this helps!
05-27-2006, 11:02 PM
yeah i have the majority of that ridiculously long antenna wire tucked into the glove box in my car. i had it going out the door or window but every time someone opened the door it dragged the magnet and scratched my paint. i put it up through my sun roof and it has worked great. i suppose i should just break down and have it hard wired but i just don't wanna spend the money and this is working fine so i leave it! ;)
05-28-2006, 12:30 AM
Hi Julie. :mrgreen: My husband is an over-the-road truck driver and has an XM radio. Because he has one, I get to listen to it on-line all I want. It is the only music we listen to in the house, so we enjoy it and appreciate it quite a lot. We listen to the Contemporary Christian music as well as the one called Watercolors, which is light jazz, and also the '70's channel every now and then.
It's convienent because we just click on this link, sign in and listen!
05-28-2006, 08:49 AM
Wow! Thanks everyone ... I guess we've been missing out by not having one of these, huh? :lol:
Robin -- I discovered the online broadcast yesterday while I was searching for information on the subscriptions. It's pretty cool, especially since I already have a cable to plug my notebook computer into our surround-sound stereo. The only disadvantage I see is that only about 1/2 the channels are available online.
And IllinoisMom -- What is the "broadcast kit?" Is that the same as the vehicle kit?
Also, I read a review on Amazon where someone said they were going to install the antennae through a window as instructed, but discovered that it received just fine next to their stereo. I'm wondering if the same would be true in a car -- does it really need to be outside??
05-28-2006, 10:09 AM
i believe all the music channels are available online. you just don't get the talk channels and comedy and such. i have never looked that close but that is my impression. i think the difference is that all the talk channels DO have commercials on them but the music doesn't and they probably can't run the commercials over the internet? like Air America also broadcasts on regular radio in some areas and their commercials have to coincide with those radio stations commercial times too. Like if i stream one of the shows live on my computer i mostly hear music during that commercial time and none of the commercials.
are you thinking of putting the antenna and stuff from the home kit into the car? i don't have the regular home kit because i don't have a regular stereo right now but you would need something to plug into the cigarette lighter to power the radio and a method to make it play so you could hear it. the FM modulator (i think that was what it was called) does both in mine but there is also a kit that comes with a cassette-like tape that has a wire going into it as an adaptor and it plays that way (i found it did not work well for me when it was very cold outside so i switched to the modulator.) either way though it won't work unless you have something plugged into the cigarette lighter for power. I did throw my little antenna into the dash window when i first got it, but it slid around a lot going around corners and it just became irritating so i put it out the window. it did work when it was on the dash just not quite as well as once i got it outside.
05-28-2006, 04:13 PM
My DF and I listen to xm online all the time. We have broadband and the computers are always on, so it's not a big deal for us. Basically you have to figure out where you want to listen to it the most. But I would use the car kit.
05-28-2006, 11:27 PM
Well, Jules, I have Sirius myself. BUT, I would suggest both the vehicle and home kit. I have the boombox and I listen to it pretty often, but I definitely get more use out of the car kit (in fact, I have 2--one in my car and one for my squad ;) )
Chris had originally bought me the home kit, but I returned it for the boombox, because it comes in handy on trips (I brought it to Disney and we listened to Howard every morning--can't do that with the mounted home kit).
05-30-2006, 08:29 AM
We have XM virtually everywhere possible!!! Two cars w/integrated XM, one with car kit, a boom box (that DH uses often while working outside - he's an avid gardener and woodworker), and home dock for both main house and summer house. Now that we get XM via Direct TV, we don't use the home dock here much. If you haven't already decided, I'd choose whatever gives you the most flexibility.
Once you get used to satellite radio, it's REALLY hard to listen to regular radio!! The only exception for us is an awesome public radio station that we listen to at our summer place.
05-30-2006, 10:08 AM
We have XM in all of our cars. We have a home kit for one of the modules out of my dad's truck, and it is hardly ever used. If we want XM in the house, instead of having to go unhook his from his truck, bring it upstairs, hook it in, etc. We just turn XM on on the computer. So, I would just use it in the car, and then listen to it online in the house. :thumbsup:
05-30-2006, 10:43 AM
<sigh> Part of me wants to just say "Go w/ the vehicle thing," and another part of me wants the home kit. Maybe I'll buy the home kit for DH Father's Day, and then we'll have both. :roflhard:
05-30-2006, 02:43 PM
We have XM in our vehicles (both DH and I) and a home kit AND a portable walkman kit. We both paid to have the car thingy hardwierd into our vehicles, so we don't have wires all over the place and stuff. The only thing you'd need to worry about with the home kit is the fact that the antennae needs to be in direct line of sight with the sky, and your stereo has to be in direct line of site with the antennae. We had to move furniture around to get it to work. :rollseyes:
I got him the car kit for Christmas, and we got the other kt for me, the home kit and the walkman thingy afterwards. We listen ALL the time!
05-30-2006, 02:56 PM
I would say that having satellite is like having a DVR. You just don't know how much you'll appreciate it, until you have it. Or until you have to go without. OH THE HUMANITY! I went without the DVR this weekend. I thought I might die. The commercials!
05-30-2006, 03:32 PM
DF got XM hardwired into his car, so we listen to it in the car all the time. We don't have any commute less than 30 minutes, so it works for us. (We live in the woods).
All our favorite channels are available online as well as on the radio. We listen to mostly progressive rock and metal, but there's also a techno station, a new age station, and a comedy channel that we listen to.
If I didn't have the mp3 player that I plug into my car all the time, I would get xm for my car, but I love my mp3 player.
HTH. Let us know what you eventually decide to do!
Oh, and whomever is getting a leak in their car ceiling from the wire? I have a leak in my sunroof because my car is old and likes to drip on me. I actually use ultrathin maxi pads to plug it, and they work fantastically! Now I tell people that my car gets its period when it rains. :rofling:
05-31-2006, 12:48 AM
Now I tell people that my car gets its period when it rains. :rofling:
:shock: :roflhard: :roflhard: :roflhard:
And I think we've decided to just keep the Vehicle Kit & nix the home kit for now. I tried to exchange the vehicle kit @ Best Buy today, and they wouldn't take it because they don't package theirs the same way. OH well. Saves me the agony of a decision. :lol: