On XM Satellite Radio

“I listen to XM about 25% of the time. The rest of the time it is off. I use earspeakers, just standard Etymotics for the last several years. I have several custom molded ones, but the Etymotics work fine. As good or better. I shortened the wire so it is about the same length as corded earplugs. I use a short coil cord from this to the XM receiver.

Getting the wire and earspeakers set so that nothing fouls on the jacket or tank bag always takes a little experimenting. On my last trip I got it right by mid-morning and then it was fine the whole time. I could stand on the pegs, hang off, turn my head both ways, etc.. and the cord was fine. At first it was catching occasionally on something but I changed the position of the cord slightly and then it was perfect.

For years I had a waterproof cassette deck with an am/fm stereo. Then just an am/fm stereo and no cd or cassettes. The XM is the best solution so far. Satellite signals don’t fade with distance.

In the rain the XM is safe under the tank bag cover, but using its controls through the triple digit glove rain covers is hit-and-miss. The On, Off and preset channels are ok, but using the Koss thumbwheel volume control is pretty impossible.

The XM is the best when it is dark or on a long lonely highway. Sometimes a song will come up that is just perfect accompaniment for the road or the moment. Like the Frank Sinatra stuff that was on late Friday night.”

--Mr. Subjective 8/05