The Sky Isn’t Falling (Sirius XM)

I’ve complained at least twice about the passing of XM and my worry that the “new and improved” will be anything but, and last week the big switch happened (without any warning to subscribers, naturally).

Of the first 6 preset channels on my radio, I lost three of them to new channels which was a little disconcerting. But after a few days, with the exception of one of them, I am liking the replacements.

  • UPop 29 – always knew this was going (since Worldspace is in Chapter 11) but it has been replaced with BBC Radio 1 which I have always wanted access to. Only downside is that the sound quality for speech has always been dodgy on every channel so at freeway speeds in the convertible it is near impossible to hear what the DJs are saying
  • Flight 26 – generic pop station, has been replaced by another generic hit station playing too much Nickelback, Daughtry etc I can’t tell the difference between any of them. I have replaced this channel with Chill.
  • Fred 44 – very sad to see this replaced but I am delighted that the replacement 1st Wave is fantastic. Hardcore fans of Fred certainly won’t like it, but for the very reasons that I do. I liked Fred for the new wave hits and did not like it when it went all punk on me. 1st Wave seems to be overwhelmingly the style that I like, just this morning they played King’s Love and Pride, I haven’t heard that in years.

Time will tell if the “shallow playlist” complaint of the XM nation will hold out, I’ve not listened enough yet to determine how often the same tunes are coming around, but so far I’m pleasantly surprised with the new lineup.

3 thoughts on “The Sky Isn’t Falling (Sirius XM)”

  1. When I was testing Sirius & XM, Fred was my pick, but 1st Wave was much better; it’s one of my top picks still and I’m glad it survived the shake-out.

    It seems, at least for the 80s channel I also listen to regularly, that the playlist has got a little “deeper” – this morning I had to switch channels because I didn’t like the track; of course that’s happened before but it used to be that I could simply ignore it for one track, now rarely I cannot ignore the track. That was the issue I had with XM, hence my assumption that Sirius has got a little “deeper”.

    My biggest annoyance is the loss of Super Shuffle on Sirius – but they’d killed it months ago.
    BPM also is not as good as The Beat which it replaced; but I suppose it can’t all be “Sirius channel wins over XM equivalent” 😉

    Mostly I’m happy with the new Sirius; and if the line-up is basically identical on XM, I might try switching over – it seemed that reception was always better when I tested XM back in ’07 …

  2. Strangely for me, XM is now finally the better choice; all my favorite sirius channels are available on XM now and XM wins because it has baseball. Better yet, they now offer a la carte plans as I typically only listen to 4 stations. Of course none of that matters unless I decide to stop using my OEM sirius radio and buy the (one and only) new radio which supports those new features.

    I just wish they used this opportunity to significantly improve sound quality/compression.

  3. I gave 1st Wave a workout on the two hour drive home Friday and was very pleased with the selection. The true test will come over a few weeks but it’s looking like I will be a happy camper.

Comments are closed.