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Is your SIRIUS Sat. Radio sound worse than FM radio?

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Is your SIRIUS Sat. Radio sound worse than FM radio?

 
Old 11-05-2007, 12:52 PM
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Is your SIRIUS Sat. Radio sound worse than FM radio?

I got C300 4Matic Luxury with P2/MM last week. My wife and I are amazed by this car!

except one strange thing:

After I actived the SIRIUS Sat. radio that come with 6 month free sub, I noticed that the sound quility was not as good as local FM radio. I was expecting better and richer sound quality from SIRIUS than local radio station. After I tried to listen several different stations from SIRIUS raido. I realized that the sound was coming out in mono like AM, not Stereo like FM. For example, there is no seperation between Vocal sound and instrument sound. All sounds are coming out centered and narrow. When I switch to FM, I can definatly feel wide and rich sound all around me. So, I called SIRIUS tech support and she said that she had heard that problem before with Mercedes and I need to talk to dealer to correct the problem (she mentioned some chip need to be replaced or something). So I called my dealer and he said that he had never heard that problem before but he would do more research on it.

Has anyone had similar problem with your SIRIUS radio in your C??

Thanks

Last edited by kimyoung_k; 11-05-2007 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 11-05-2007, 03:10 PM
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My Sirius works great, no problems.
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Old 11-05-2007, 03:36 PM
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Mine works fine, too - I'm very happy with the sound quality.
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Old 11-05-2007, 04:19 PM
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some stations sound great for me, but not quite as good as cd... others sound worse then my FM radio... depends on the broadcast content of the current station...

i am impressed by content, but definitely not quality.... my mp3's and cd's still sound better than sirius...

too bad they could not find a way to make satellitle radio cd quality
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Old 11-05-2007, 04:23 PM
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Mine sounds great. I'm assuming you've set up the sound settings independently for all the different radio bands.
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Old 11-05-2007, 04:45 PM
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all sound stages are optimized... it sounds good, but i am just an audiophile and can tell the difference
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Old 11-05-2007, 05:05 PM
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yes, with xm and sirius its quantity, NOT quality..
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by kimyoung_k View Post

Has anyone had similar problem with your SIRIUS radio in your C??

Thanks
I'm with you on this. The sound quality is not quite what I had expected. It sounds like a 96kbps MP3 file, and at times is pretty annoying. Having reviewed this in a few different venues, it's def the service not your car.

I'm not surprised at the replies in this thread... as for the most part, the general consumer doesn't notice the difference. I'm not knocking anyone who replied here... I work as an audio professional, and its my job to notice this kind of stuff. We are a society of compressed media... so we learn not to notice it. I mean, how many people carry around an iPod with songs on it that tout the same compressed qualities as you described above, yet no one really notices.

I'm proceeding under the 'it is what it is' mantra until technology improves. I'm the only one on the block that thinks my digital cable isn't that hot either. oh well.

Last edited by rocketchris; 11-05-2007 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by rocketchris View Post
I'm with you on this. The sound quality is not quite what I had expected. It sounds like a 96kbps MP3 file, and at times is pretty annoying. Having reviewed this in a few different venues, it's def the service not your car.

I'm not surprised at the replies in this thread... as for the most part, the general consumer doesn't notice the difference. I'm not knocking anyone who replied here... I work as an audio professional, and its my job to notice this kind of stuff. We are a society of compressed media... so we learn not to notice it. I mean, how many people carry around an iPod with songs on it that tout the same compressed qualities as you described above, yet no one really notices.

I'm proceeding under the 'it is what it is' mantra until technology improves. I'm the only one on the block that thinks my digital cable isn't that hot either. oh well.
+1

I am a hardcore audio/videophile and the sound definitely reminds me of 96 kbps... I have some DVD-audio CD's which sound absolutly amazing though, especially steely dan http://www.amazon.com/Steely-Dan-Aga...4305633&sr=1-2

it amazes me how many people are tolerant of crappy sound and think that sirius sounds as good as a CD.
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by rocketchris View Post
I'm with you on this. The sound quality is not quite what I had expected. It sounds like a 96kbps MP3 file, and at times is pretty annoying. Having reviewed this in a few different venues, it's def the service not your car.

I'm not surprised at the replies in this thread... as for the most part, the general consumer doesn't notice the difference. I'm not knocking anyone who replied here... I work as an audio professional, and its my job to notice this kind of stuff. We are a society of compressed media... so we learn not to notice it. I mean, how many people carry around an iPod with songs on it that tout the same compressed qualities as you described above, yet no one really notices.

I'm proceeding under the 'it is what it is' mantra until technology improves. I'm the only one on the block that thinks my digital cable isn't that hot either. oh well.
But the real question is ... does it sound better than FM broadcast?

I don't think the point of sat radio ever was CD quality sound (not that that's much of a benchmark with the loudness war). I thought it was to get better than FM sound and get channel lineup anywhere you traveled.

To be honest, I was never a fan of sat radio until I got the pre-paid with the C. Having Kids Channel for the long drives with the spawn has turned out money better spent than the ipod interface.

Back to the point, Sirius sounds better in my car than the FM broadcasts in the area, but not by a ton.

I find the discussion of anything "audiophile" as relating to an OEM car stereo kind of funny anyway.
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:56 PM
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yes, the words audophile and the interior of a car will NEVER go hand in hand..
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Old 11-05-2007, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by wase4711 View Post
yes, the words audophile and the interior of a car will NEVER go hand in hand..

Agreed... but to answer the initial question, I can't say it's any 'better' than FM radio as they are each horrible in their own unique ways.

YES, I hear mpeg compression artifacts in the Sirius audio stream that I DON'T hear from a traditional FM radio station.
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:28 PM
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It is a matter of bandwidth. The FCC has only given satellite radio a limited amount of bandwidth to broadcast all its stations. The signal is very compressed, so can sound "tinny" like a bad MP3. Our ML's Sirius system is the best satellite radio I've ever heard. But until we got the ML, I was very disappointed with satellite radio's sound quality. My Z4 had horrible satellite radio, but the overall stereo, including FM, was amazing. The ML is the first one I've been in that did not have that "compressed" sound. I was hoping the C would be the same way.

When I first experienced satellite radio a few years back, I was so disappointed, so I know exactly where you are coming from. I've learned not to expect audiophile reproduction through that medium. Have you noticed how XM and Sirius no longer advertise that it is CD-Quality? It is not.
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Old 11-05-2007, 11:17 PM
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Thanks guys. It has been very helpful information It was first time for me to actually hear the sat. radio. so I did not know what to expect. But, now I know that I cannot expect CD quality sound from it yet. Since I have for 6 month free, I'm sure I will find some good use of this sat. radio in between.

Thanks again.
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Old 11-06-2007, 09:49 AM
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As a SERIOUS car nut, I really have to smile at this discussion...I'm happy to report that these are the kinds of issues that I see on the W204 board...

90% of the time, when we are using the car for local errand running, the sound system is off. It only gets used on long trips, and on those occasions, I've found the sat radio to be something we are happy to have. As somebody noted above, obsessing about sound quality in a car is...well...perhaps an oxymoron.

In our living room, the quality of the entertainment system takes on some importance; in the car, it is what it is, and makes virtually no impact on my enjoyment of any car we've owned.

Probably a generational thing....I also don't understand the need to spend every waking hour on the phone, either....oh, well....
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