Are the “SiriusXM” radios based on Sirius, XM or something else? (1 Viewer)

NGeorge

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May 23, 2004
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Olympia, WA
Hey all—
I recently got a new vehicle with a “SiriusXM” radio and Im trying to figure out if it is based on Sirius or XM technology? Everything I can find says they are a “combination of both” and receive their own packages, while Sirius and XM units receive a SiriusXM signal.

I know there are two satellite radio licenses that they own. Sirius and XM used a different form of compression initially that was incompatible with the other’s radios (PAC vs AAC IIRC). Once the merge happened, they released one radio with both chipsets that lasted a very short time (IIRC it was called the MiRGE) — Sirius also used to run their satellites in a polar orbit that kept them constantly moving, but at a much higher LOS in the sky — they have since brought those down to the same locations as the XM satellites.

So with the “SiriusXM” radios, are they using a third highly compressed technology — or did they just pick the Sirius or XM side and go with it? Or can these radios see both types of compression? I noticed I’m now getting channels in the 300s and 400s I never received with my older Sirius equipment (it topped out just under 200 IIRC)

I wonder at which point they will feel there is few enough subscribers on the “losing” side and start to reduce the numbers of channels available there to make room for higher quality audio or more channels on the merged “SiriusXM” units? It’s been like 12 years now... I’m sure they could slowly start the process in that if you have a 10+ year old car you will start to see channels slowly drop away...

N
 

TRG

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Jul 19, 2007
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The short answer is that the Sirius sats sound like the music is in a washing machine. The XM sats sound pretty decent but with noticeable compression. Knowing the type of vehicle as Juan asked will narrow it down further. They recently added a replacement geosync sat (SXM-7) to the XM system in 2020. The latest Sirius sat was updated in 2013. I'm pretty sure that any new radio's will be based on the XM topography.

 

NGeorge

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
May 23, 2004
168
17
Olympia, WA
What kind of vehicle ?
It’s a Mazda CX-5 — I know Mazda was legacy XM.

So they still haven’t switched all new vehicles to one standard?

I will say that the satellite radio in the Mazda sounds more tinny and compressed compared to my Mitsubishi Eclipse I had before (legacy Sirius). It does pick up channels in the 2, 3 and 400s however m— The Mitsubishi stopped at 184.

That said— I thought that “SiriusXM” radios had the same lineups etc?
 

AntiMoz

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Oct 11, 2005
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"They recently added a replacement geosync sat (SXM-7) to the XM system in 2020."

SXM-7 failed during post-launch testing and is likely not recoverable. SXM-8 is under construction and is scheduled for launch in 2021.
 
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TRG

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"They recently added a replacement geosync sat (SXM-7) to the XM system in 2020."

SXM-7 failed during post-launch testing and is likely not recoverable. SXM-8 is under construction and is scheduled for launch in 2021.
That's right. I remember that now. Thanks for the clarification.
 

jegrant

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Aug 5, 2005
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My impression is that "SiriusXM" radios are based on the XM system, as the legacy Sirius system will eventually shut down. No new Sirius radios are being installed in cars. SXM radios receive everything an XM unit does, plus SXM-only channels aka "SiriusXM 2.0". (SXM radios do not receive the two channels that are only carried on legacy Sirius units, SLAM radio and Canadian Indigenous People's Radio. These channels, though, are available online.)
 

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