Satellite Radio Equipment

Written by Blaire Chandler-Wilcox
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Satellite radio equipment comes in an enormous variety of styles and capabilities, with price tags ranging from reasonable to expensive. But before you pick the actual hardware, you've got to determine where you want to enjoy satellite radio. Though you'll need the same components, each is designed differently depending on where it's going to be used. Home units are designed differently than automotive units, which are designed yet differently than boat units.

You can, of course, completely avoid this question by opting for a portable. With portable equipment, your satellite radio goes wherever you go. An additional benefit of portables is that you're only purchasing one satellite radio subscription, yet you're able to enjoy it at home, in the car, on the boat, at the beach, etc.

Satellite Radio Equipment: the Big Three

Regardless, there are three components that make up satellite radio equipment. First, you'll need the satellite antenna to pick up the signal. You'll need a tuner, which receives the signal from the antenna and sends it to a control module. You'll need the control module which lets you pick channels, and see what's playing (sometimes the control module and the tuner are in the same housing). And of course, you'll need speakers.

When considering your satellite radio equipment, its good to bear in mind what level of sound quality you desire. For easy installation and good sound quality, you can choose a wireless FM modulator. For better sound quality, but slightly more complex installation, it's recommended to opt for a wired FM modulator. For superior sound but fairly complex installation, direct audio connections are your best bet.


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