- Jul 3, 1997
- Real Name
- Ronald Epstein
I've been a subscriber to XM for about 18 years, and it was better before the merger. One of my favorite channels was Cinemagic, which had a wonderful DJ who interviewed composers of movie scores, directors and how they used music in their movies, etc. But ten years ago they fired all the DJs on cinemagic, and brought it back as a "zombie" channel on streaming with no DJs. I still listen to it streaming, but it's sad that they had something special and killed it.
The time before the merger was just incredible.
First, the bitrate was equal to listening to a CD in your car. Post-merger it's like listening to a transistor radio.
XM cared about being different than FM radio. Their philosophy was to play as many unfamiliar songs as familiar to its listeners. For instance, they wouldn't just play the top hits of the 80s. They would play songs that didn't chart well.
Post-merger, Sirius kept the FM radio philosophy of playing the same familiar songs over and over again. They shove about 200 songs into each channel and play it relentlessly. They only want familiar songs heard. If you listen to it for 8 hours a day on a daily basis, it's the same rotation.
If it weren't for Howard Stern, I would not subscribe to SiriusXM. I am looking forward to Howard's eventual retirement so I can get rid of the service completely. The music just sounds horrible in the car -- especially if you have a good stereo system.