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SIRIUS S50 You asked for it, now you got it! A forum all about the SIRIUS S50.

 
 
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Old 12-11-2006, 11:14 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thrillington
I listened to the Cowboys-Giants game while flying to the west coast last week without a hitch. I wedged the headphones at the window by putting the antenna part underneath the lip of the window shade. Worked great.
You must have had the SL100. The question posed was how to duplicate those results with an S50. Doing that with an SL100 will work great provided you are on the correct side of the plane.
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:04 PM   #17
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Well, I will be testing this tomorrow, assuming they let my battery pack rig on the plane. I'll take pics too when I get back. Scion is throwing a big event in Miami Beach and flying a couple hundred owners out to it. What an awesome car company!! Hopefully I'll be able to listen to Howard during my flight tomorrow.

I swear i saw that Satradios weren't allowed on planes but I've never been able to find any info against them since then. I most worried about them freaking when they scan my battery pack. We'll see, keep your fingers crossed for me tomorrow morning. And I should have a window on the right side of the plane...
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:08 PM   #18
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If you are worried take a laptop case or something like one and put electronics in it. I always put all power cords and stuff in mine. Then I take out my sat radio because it looks like a black blob in the x-ray machine. If you are taking a laptop you will have to take that out and put it in its own tray anyway.
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Old 12-17-2006, 06:30 PM   #19
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Well, it worked out pretty well, all things considered. The box i made is very clean from being swabbed repeatedly by the TSA, hehehe. It was actually a good way to promote Sirius, sort of...

Anyway going from SFO to Charlotte NC, I got perfect reception the entire trip. I took the little metal plate I had the antenna stuck to and placed it in the window shade groove. Since I was still a little wary of whether it was OK or not, I hung my hat on the antenna and it was covered except for the wire going down by my feet. I had the box on the floor and used the remote. I also used my headphones, didn't want to push things with FM trans. I had listened to a little bit of Howard on my way to the airport so I switched over to 101 and listened to almost the whole show. Coming back, I got spotty reception and after a while I switched to Bubba's show from Friday that I recorded.

For the box, I used a 7x5x3 project box from Radio Shack. I used my Dremel to make a hole for a 12v jack. I have some 12v batteries from a UPS that are just a little smaller than that. They are 7.5 Ah. I charged it up real good before I left. I probably used it for live reception about 7 hours and recorded stuff for 3 plus it recharged the unit's battery since I listened to it in regular portable mode on the short leg of my flight. I'm currently running it on battery to see how long it will last. I also need to rig a charging option since I have to take the top off right now and just hook my little charger straight up to it.

Here's what it looks like:





Not exactly a Stiletto, but it'll do.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:49 PM   #20
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In speaking with a pilot friend, the legality concern is not from the FAA, but the FCC. At the time, the FCC was worried about X amount of travellers crossing X amount of cell towers at X amount of time. The fear was of bringing down cell networks.
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Old 12-19-2006, 07:05 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teksurv
In speaking with a pilot friend, the legality concern is not from the FAA, but the FCC. At the time, the FCC was worried about X amount of travellers crossing X amount of cell towers at X amount of time. The fear was of bringing down cell networks.
There's no way that is correct.
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Old 12-19-2006, 12:04 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABAP4Life
There's no way that is correct.
I'm always up for learning new things. Enlighten me.

Edit, I should have specified cell phone use in my previous post whereas we are really talking about SAT radio usage.
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Old 12-19-2006, 12:10 PM   #23
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seems far-fetched to me, the same load could occur from a train or buses, etc but there are no similar restrictions on those.

I have always heard it is over concern of interference with GPS and other electronics from the incoming/outgoing signal. That's why they were testing that theory on MythBusters...
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Old 12-19-2006, 12:10 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teksurv
I'm always up for learning new things. Enlighten me.

Edit, I should have specified cell phone use in my previous post whereas we are really talking about SAT radio usage.
It still won't matter. First off it is rare for a cell phone to have any service while flying. Second taking a few hundred (the largest plane) people off the network will not affect it. Even if the whole plane made a call at the same time and the call hit the same tower, the tower would be able to handle it without a problem. Maybe I am not reading your post correctly but it sounds to me that you are claiming that the reason cell phones aren't allowed on the plane is the cell network doesn't crash. Is that what you are saying?
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:53 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABAP4Life
It still won't matter. First off it is rare for a cell phone to have any service while flying. Second taking a few hundred (the largest plane) people off the network will not affect it. Even if the whole plane made a call at the same time and the call hit the same tower, the tower would be able to handle it without a problem. Maybe I am not reading your post correctly but it sounds to me that you are claiming that the reason cell phones aren't allowed on the plane is the cell network doesn't crash. Is that what you are saying?
Well I'm really not trying to claim anything as fact, as I could very well be wrong. I'm only mentioning what I heard from a pilot. He himself could be mis-informed.

The theory as I understand it, and again could be incorrect, is not limited to an aircraft, but all airtraffic at a given point in time. Due to the cruising altitude of an aircraft, the amount of handoff between towers, times the amount of people using them in the air, was thought to be a potential problem. A train, being on land would switch between a set amount of towers on its horizontal plane. An aircraft could potentially "see" a greater amount of towers. Given its speed, and the increased amount of potential towers to connect/rapidly switch from is/was the concern. This times however many aircraft could see however many towers in a given area.

Again, I'm no expert. Maybe I should just Google it.
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Old 12-19-2006, 01:59 PM   #26
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I wasn't saying that you were posting this as fact; I think everybody took it with a grain of salt because it is coming from a third party. I find this very hard to believe because, as I said, it is rare for you to get a signal in the air unless you are cruising at a very low altitude. Even when I go skydiving I don't get signal 90% of the time; in the plane or after the shoot opened. If the phones were switching from tower to tower this would not bog down the system but it would bog down the phone. The only concern with them switching so rapidly would be the electronic noise the phones would produce but according to myth-busters that wouldn't matter. This sounds to me like somebody was talking out of their ass and was trying to impress you. Maybe I'm completely wrong but it just doesn't add up to me.
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Old 12-25-2006, 11:51 AM   #27
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Sorry to ju8mp in, but I mainly bought my S50 because Im goin on vacation to Mexico in March and wanted to know if the Satellite will work there?
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Old 01-01-2007, 05:53 PM   #28
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I've heard reports on Stern of people getting signal in Mexico. I don't remember what the date was.
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Old 01-02-2007, 01:22 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABAP4Life
I wasn't saying that you were posting this as fact; I think everybody took it with a grain of salt because it is coming from a third party. I find this very hard to believe because, as I said, it is rare for you to get a signal in the air unless you are cruising at a very low altitude. Even when I go skydiving I don't get signal 90% of the time; in the plane or after the shoot opened. If the phones were switching from tower to tower this would not bog down the system but it would bog down the phone. The only concern with them switching so rapidly would be the electronic noise the phones would produce but according to myth-busters that wouldn't matter. This sounds to me like somebody was talking out of their ass and was trying to impress you. Maybe I'm completely wrong but it just doesn't add up to me.
Actually, cell phones work on "line of sight", and can pick up a tower from as far as sixty miles away. I used to be a tech for Verizon Wireless and would see lots of cell phones that showed bills where the call was made from Victoria, BC and the caller lived over 30 miles away in Washington. They'd live close enough to the water to skip the signal over to the other side.

As far as the towers are concerned, most people don't realize that cell phone towers only hold the ability to carry about 20-30 cell phones at a given time. This is why there's literally thousands of towers across the nation, to hold the traffic that cell phone companies use. Having a weak signal on your phone doesn't mean there isn't a tower nearby, it most likely means there are a lack of towers in the area.

The phones can work from a plane, but it's not just so cut and dry. There's issues of clouds, weather, signal interference, and much more. Most people forget it's a two way radio that puts out one and a half watts of power, with an internal antenna. That's not much to work with, which is why the towers are on the ground and explains why satellite phones are huge. I'd not think it's so much tower overload as mentioned before, but lack of controlling which phone goes to which tower. At an altitude of 36 thousand feet, you have the possibility of paying roaming charges in Canada when you're over Kentucky, or Puerto Rico charges over Miami, just as an example. Cell phone companies would have to consistently correct your bill and to have literally thousands of angry customers calling in to their carrier each month would be a huge hassle, not to mention expensive for them.

Anyways, just my two cents from experience.
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Old 01-02-2007, 08:48 AM   #30
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adam, I have yet to see a cell phone work on a plane 30,000 feet in the air. If what you say is true then ever phone should get at least a blip of service 30,000 feet in the air. A 30 mile reach would certainly allow service up there; you still have over 120,000 feet (over 23 miles) to go if you are at cruising altitude. Your scenario does not make sense to me. According to this article:
http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/12/21/w...nes/index.html
The use of cell phones is blocked by the FAA and not the FCC that is blocking the use of phones on the plane. It also sounds like they need to install equipment that will allow you to use the phones on the plane (I'm guessing it will boost the signal to get it to the ground).

I had a problem with the phone routing the calls through the wrong tower but that was because of a setting in the phone; or so the Verizon tech told me. That was about 10 years ago, back when you roamed by walking 10 feet in either direction; before the masses had cells.
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