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XM reception around Seattle

Discussion in 'Northwest' started by brianman, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    I get a lot of hiss/cut-out in XM in Bellevue and Redmond (haven't driven much in Seattle proper yet).

    I presume it's just cloud cover or whatever, but it's bad enough that I just can't stand to listen to XM because of it.

    How is XM faring for other people in the area? I'm wondering if I should have service take a look or not.
     
  2. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    Never had any issues with Sirius here in our Audi or BMW, except the inevitable dropout when going under an overpass and driving up in the mountains under heavy tree cover. Normal day to day driving it has always been rock solid, even in heavy rain.

    I hope Tesla didn't compromise reception in hiding the antenna.

    Maybe a difference between Sirius and XM, which while merged still operate on different satellites I think.
     
  3. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Good to know, EA. Thanks for sharing.

    Anybody else have data to contribute (Model S or otherwise) on XM reception in the area?

    Thanks.
     
  4. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    According to one of my Tesla contacts, apparently Model S ships with only a 1 week trial of XM radio. Problem solved: screw XM.
     
  5. Mycroft

    Mycroft Life happens

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    Same as with EarlyAdopter, Sirius works well in my Mercedes all around Seattle. Cuts out when going under some over passes, but other than that, it's good. No experience with XM though.

    BTW, if you're willing to walk, you can negotiate very low rates. I'm paying $25 per six months of service, which is pretty much what I'd be willing to pay at most.
     
  6. JackA

    JackA Member

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    Take it in for service. I have XM in two vehicles and never experience reception issues except as noted in other posts. It is digital, it is either ON or OFF so there should be no hissing or even very many drop outs in service as the Seattle area is covered by ground based booster sites.
     
  7. EchoDelta

    EchoDelta Member

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    I have great reception of XM in Bellevue/Redmond/Seattle/Mercer Island other than in the obvious situations (under bridge, tunnel, or very rarely between tall buildings). Unless others start complaining I'd ask service to take a look - especially if you don't have spots & orientations that are reproducibly bad.
     
  8. olanmills

    olanmills Member

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    I feel like the reception actually got worse sometime after XM merged with Sirius, but I'm not sure. The signal also cuts out for me in a lot of places, and I don't remember havingtha tproblem five years ago.

    It always breaks up when I'm going northbound on 405 on the S-curve just before Coal Creek Pkwy (I don't know about southboud because I usually go a different way). That's just one example. There are other areas where I regularly have problems too, and I'm not just tlaking about in tunnels and such.

    @JackA The "hissing" is an artificial sound produced by XM radios when the lose they signal. I think it helps because it's familiar, it makes it very clear that you are having a reception problem (vs a problem with the channel operator sending dead air or something) and it also makes the transition less jarring.
     
  9. JackA

    JackA Member

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    olanmills; interesting about the intentional "hissing" neither of my GM OEM XM radios exhibit this characteristic. Each of them simply displays "No Signal" when blocked or signal is lost. Perhaps mine are older as one is in a 2004 CTS-V the other in a 2006 Trailblazer.
     
  10. olanmills

    olanmills Member

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    Interesting. Yeah, my radio is from 2008. I have my Model S now, but I haven't transferred my XM account over to it. I'll let you know if it still hisses. I'm assuming it does per brianman's post, though he wasn't explicit about the Model S being the XM radio he's talking about.
     
  11. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Yes, I was referring to my Model S's XM reception in the OP.
     
  12. olanmills

    olanmills Member

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    Yup, I definitely experienced the hissing today. The XM reception seems to be no better or worse than my old car. I found the same dead spots.
     
  13. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    I went ahead and enabled XM for my car and definitely notice more drop around driving around town than I did with Sirius in my Audi. Light tree cover seems to impact it much more.
     
  14. Bob Jordan

    Bob Jordan Member

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    You are not alone. Satellite radio is a "line of sight" proposition. If the antenna can't "see" the satellite (parked over Kansas) you're going to lose the signal. I experience drop outs in the same exact location(s) daily during my commute from Magnolia to Belltown. The signal from the satellite is also weaker in the PNW as we are near the edge of the satellite's 'footprint.'
     

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