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Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by jcsromeo, Feb 5, 2016.
Any concerns with AM radio reception? Just purchased a car, seems to be poor. I live in Michigan.
It awful, use TuneIn. It pretty much has every station you want and the sound quality is excellent.
I don't use AM, but FM and it sucks. Such a basic thing, too. I don't get it.
I don't have any issues with FM, but I live in a rather flat area without much topography that would complicate reception.
What is AM radio?
The Model X drivers won't worry about not having AM, until they see the road signs that ask them to tune to AM Travelers' Information Station (TIS) or a Highway Advisory Radio station.
Travelers Infomation Stations Search | Federal Communications Commission
I'm a dummy -- how do you use TuneIn?
Since getting the Tesla, I don't listen to the radio at all. I stream music and radio stations. Even "local" radio stations come in better on streaming (I live in a mountainous area) than over the air. Between Slacker and TuneIn... you're covered.
TuneIn just says "Could not play station" for local AM stations that come in fine thru AM tuner. I have never actually listened to anything via TuneIn so far.
I can't get my 8-tracks to fit. I'm plugging them in beneath the screen, but they flop around.
To me, while we can make fun of the AM and MX situation, my personal opinion is Tesla is pushing the envelope eliminating something ahead of its time. It can't cost a whole lot to maintain AM access in new vehicles, and there are still very valid reasons where being able to quickly get to an AM station as you approach an airport parking lot or some sort of road situation suggesting you tune to an AM station may be important -- beyond specific AM programming some individuals I'm sure care about. Trying to get to a new station on-the-fly via TuneIn takes longer and your attention from the road, and from my experience TuneIn does not have 100% of all the stations that transmit on AM or FM, as not all stations offer a streaming service for it or a web user to connect with.
I am OK not having a physical CD and even DVD player in my MS -- even though my former Lexus and MBZ had them, as do current 2016 models. Tesla was ahead of the most of the competition in that regard. I'm disappointed not having physical iPod/iPhone/MP3 connectivity in my MS like most other mfgrs provide -- especially with the problematic and capability-deficient USB Media Player Tesla offers to perhaps replace what those capabilities provide those of us who care about playing our own non-streaming high-quality music libraries. Slacker and TuneIn do not replace or have all the music and podcasts I listen to. While I don't use AM often, it's a basic capability I expect to still be in any luxury vehicle I own. As Tesla moves into more mass markets with M3, I personally don't get why they think they need to be a leader eliminating another (older) media source. It WILL matter to some number of potential owners. IMHO if Tesla wants to lead in things like that, do it after they truly have the volume sales they desire to have a few years from now.
Indeed, I believe AM is very useful for road condition info on trips. I use it often when entering national parks. I haven't checked if TuneIn has 100% of them listed, but searching for TuneIn stations from the car is a big pain. There is no way to search by typing, and going through categories is near impossible while driving.
(The only way I really use TuneIn is to search for stations on my computer in advance, add them to "Favorites" in my computer, and then play from "Favorites" in the car)
Besides, in my experience, very often when I need to use AM, there is no 3G (I don't have LTE) signal to use TuneIn anyway.
I did find the AM quality to be terrible, but I always assumed it was because of the transmitter power, rather than the car. I have never used any regular AM station on the car, and I have never tuned to a road conditions AM station on another device/car. So I have no point of reference for comparison.
I just checked the Tunein site on the computer. Searched for National Park, and only one appeared, and it's channel doesn't work.
If you are traveling in a Model X to the National Parks, be sure to have a portable AM radio handy if you want to listen to those 10 watt AM information stations.
I tested a small portable FM transmitter and it worked okay, so audio connectivity to the Tesla sound system could be accomplished easily with that method. A FM transmitter could also work nicely with an iPad so a cellular phone can remain connected to Bluetooth when passengers are enjoying music or a movie in the rear seat area.
Ordered a higher rated Destek 5V/2.4A FM transmitter and a SRF-M37W SONY radio with digital readout. I can provide some comments about these choices later.