Rolling Road Report - Delphi XM Roady
Satellite Radio System

LA Audio File's sister publication LA CAR has reviewed a number of cars factory-fitted with satellite radio systems, and they have all been enjoyable. Most recently, it was an XM Radio-equipped Cadillac Escalade ESV that the reviewers had the pleasure to listen to. The clean, distortion-free CD-like sound quality, coupled with the vast selection of stations (100 - ranging from comedy to news to television programs to just about every kind of music genre you can think of) always makes the ride just that much more enjoyable with satellite radio. The reviewers always wanted to try an aftermarket satellite radio system, but were put off by all the nickel and dime parts needed to assemble it, and ultimately by its total price.

Delphi has introduced an aftermarket system that addresses both concerns. It's called the XM Roady, and comes fully-equipped will the parts one needs to enjoy satellite radio: XM receiver, cassette adaptor, cigarette lighter power adaptor, and micro-antenna. Best of all, the whole package sells for only $119.99. This was enough for us to take the initiative to acquire one for long-term use. 

Driver's Log, Day 1
The micro-antenna is magnetic, so it secures itself to the trunk of our long-term Passat without the need for adhesives or drilling. The antenna wire is easy to feed trough the trunk pass, into the back seat seams, under the floor mats, and under the front seat. The Roady comes with an assortment of mounting paraphernalia. The receiver fits conveniently into the slot in the dashboard, with the aid of a coin purse. After hooking up the cables, we plug in the power adaptor. Total installation time: 30 minutes(!).

Driver's Log, Day 14
There are seven display colors, and only now do we realize that one of the colors - night blue - is a perfect match to the Volkswagen blue that lights up the instruments of Passats, Jettas, New Beetles, et al. We use a cloth glove to hide the unit, since the Roady's gleaming silver visual presence is otherwise too tempting for would-be thieves.    

Driver's Log, Day 28
The Roady doesn't have quite the same sound quality that we've experienced with dedicated satellite radio systems, like that in the aforementioned Cadillac Escalade ESV. It lacks the delicate treble detail of the latter. However, it still has a CD-like quality to it - no crosstalk, no static, and no fading signal (except under bridges and in buildings). Regular FM radio and CDs get played less-and-less. Every now and then, we switch to AM radio to hear the traffic report.

Driver's Log, Conclusion
We predict that the Roady's all-in-one approach will impact satellite radio in a big way. First, it will force manufacturer to bring the price of hardware down. Second, it will spawn a number of all-in-one copy cats. We are all for it. Finally, satellite radio comes to the masses.

For more information on XM radio, go to the XM Radio homepage.
For the definitive XM sateliite radio forum, go to XMFan.com.
For the definitive Sirius satellite radio forum, go to Sirius Backstage.
To visit our sister publication, go to LA CAR.

- Roy Nakano

Review at a glance

Delphi XM Roady Satellite Radio System

Features:

The package includes an XM receiver, micro-antenna, a cassette adaptor, cigarette lighter power adaptor, and various mounting hardware. 

Seven different back-lit color displays and three interchangeable faceplates. 

Works with cassette-capable car stereos using the included cassette adaptor kit. 

For stereos without cassette players, the optional Delphi XM Roady Audio Adaptor enables Roady to play on car radios (professional installation required) 

TuneSelect - Notifies you when a favorite song is playing on a channel 

Channel change via Direct Entry, Scroll Wheel, Presets, or Category Search 

Dimensions:3.97 in. W x 2.37 in. H x 1 in. D
(101 mm x 61 mm x 25.4 mm)
Weight:5.1 oz (144.6 g)
Inputs/Outputs:Antenna - RF SMB Connector
Power - P13 connector, 6V DC, 600 mA average, positive polarity
Audio Output - 3.5 mm diameter ministereo jack


Company Information:
Delphi Corporation
World and North American Headquarters
5725 Delphi Drive
Troy, Michigan 48098-2815
USA
Tel: [1] 248.813.2000
Fax: [1] 248.813.2670

Source: Manufacturer loan
MSRP: $119.99

URL:
www.delphi.com/

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