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What do I need to get satellite radio?

Understanding your options for listening to SiriusXM service

What do you need to listen to satellite radio? The answer depends mostly on where you're primarily going to listen to it. In this article, we'll walk you through your options. 

The good news is that getting the gear you need for satellite radio isn't an all-or-nothing situation. With a subscription to SiriusXM, you can listen to their programming in many ways. Currently, satellite radios can be divided into three categories: dedicated, Dock & Play, and app-based that let you listen online. 

Dedicated car and home satellite radios

Dedicated car satellite radios work with in-dash car stereos only. A special antenna connects to it, and sits on the roof of the vehicle. Similarly, dedicated home satellite radios let you listen to SiriusXM at home. They connect to your home stereo system, and also use a special antenna, which usually needs to be mounted facing a window or outside.  

siriusxm sxv300

Dedicated car satellite radios like the SiriusXM SXV300 keep a low profile

Dock & Play satellite radios

Dock & Play satellite radios are compact units that work with sets of accessories to play over both your car and home stereos. The advantage of a Dock & Play SiriusXM player is you can transfer it from the car to your home stereo, and only pay one subscription. A Dock & Play radio will often also work with a compatible SiriusXM boombox, and packages are available.

To get satellite radio service with either the dedicated or Dock & Play option, you'll need the following:

  • a Dock & Play satellite radio (also called a tuner or a receiver). The radio connects to and plays through your car or home stereo, or both, depending on the radio you select and accessories you get.
  • a satellite radio antenna (most radios include the antenna).
  • a subscription to the SiriusXM service.
XM Onyx EZ

Matt's ready to hit the road with his SiriusXM tuner

Let the Roady take the stage

SiriusXM’s vast programming lineup gets better all the time, and so do their tuners. The slick new RoadyBT tuner is their latest and greatest, with a full-color screen and easy-to-operate controls. It plugs into your vehicle’s power port and gives you the option to connect via the vehicle’s Bluetooth connectivity, FM radio, or the AUX input. And it even comes with your choice of 12 months of Platinum service for $99 or your first three months free. If you’ve been thinking about adding SiriusXM to your daily driver, the RoadyBT is a great way to get into it.

sirius xm

You can stream your favorite SiriusXM programming using the app

Stream online with the SiriusXM app

The SiriusXM app and the SiriusXM webplayer let you access your account and listen to SiriusXM online on any computer, tablet, or smartphone. That means you can stream your favorite channels in the office or any time you’re on the move. When an Internet connection isn’t available, you can stream the music using your device's data plan. You can also stream SiriusXM programming through select smart TVs, and smart speakers, including your Sonos system. You won’t even need a dedicated antenna.

To get satellite radio service using the app, you'll need the following:

  • a computer, network-capable product, or a mobile device like a tablet or smartphone
  • an app or Internet browser to access SiriusXM online
  • a subscription to the service

Note: A subscription is required and sold separately by SiriusXM. Some channels are not available in all packages. Satellite radio service is available only within Canada and the lower 48 states — not available in Alaska, Hawaii, or U.S. territories. You can, however, stream SiriusXM throughout the satellite service area, as well as Alaska and Hawaii.

we have helpful advisors

We're here to help

Ready to experience the awesomeness of SiriusXM satellite radio? For further advice about choosing the right satellite radio gear for your home and/or car, contact one of our expert advisors via phone or web chat.

  • Mary Wallace from Sarasota, FLA

    Posted on 4/9/2023

    I have a 2015 Toyota Avalon which came with Sirius XM installed on the radio. When I purchased the car, I subscribed to Sirius which I enjoyed very much. However, this past year I lost my satellite connection. I contacted Sirius XM and the tech people could not get a re-connection. They suggested I go to the Toyota dealer to get the satellite connection re-established. Toyota told me straight out this was NOT a connection problem but a radio problem (without checking the radio) and I would have to replace the entire radio which would cost a lot of money, even though my am/fm radio worked perfectly fine. Toyota dealer said the diagnosis was based on their MANY, MANY experiences of the same problem. They suggested I use a free streaming service. I have since unsubscribed from Sirius XM. Are there any options other than subscribing to streaming services such Pandora, Spotify or Apple Music. I miss the variety of entertainment (music, news, comedy, etc) on the satellite connection

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 4/10/2023

    Mary, Sorry to hear that. Not sure what was going on with the stock radio, but if it's not giving you the functionality you want, you have some options. A brand-new factory radio will be very expensive and also very 2015, so that's probably not the best of them. Aftermarket radios can be had for a lot less, plus they can give you a lot more. Give us a call and talk to one of our advisors. We can help you choose the right gear and give you the right advice on how to install it.
  • Sue

    Posted on 3/26/2023

    Can Sirius XM be used with a Bose system IV bookshelf stereo system?

  • Robert Kaiserling from Milwaukee

    Posted on 12/28/2021

    /hi , I have recently purchased a Sirius Onyx home radio for my girlfriend through your company. The manual claims the antenna must be facing south to get a signal. As the only southern facing window is nowhere near where her stereo is located & being a condo , no exterior antennas can be attached . Is there another way to send the signal from the antenna to the stereo ? Perhaps through Bluetooth or some other wireless method? Thanks

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 12/29/2021

    Robert, With questions like that, it's always better to have a conversation with a real live human. Since you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you can call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system.
  • Deborah Dixon from Waukegan

    Posted on 11/16/2021

    I have a 2015 Chrysler 200,it didn't come with Sirius satellite. Is there a way i can have it/one installed?

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 11/17/2021

    Deborah, We can help with that. I've sent your question to our sales team, and they'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.
  • Allen D. Snyder from Belle Vernon, PA

    Posted on 7/12/2021

    I have a 2021 KIA- K5 equipped with a car radio that has Apple Car Play/Android capability. I installed a used SriusXm tuner that was given to me by a friend. I'm currently listening via FM radio signal. I would like to utilize the "AUX" capability of the Sirius tuner but my car radio doesn't have that plug-in feature. Do I have any options? Thank you

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 7/13/2021

    Allen, I've sent your question to our sales team, and they'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.
  • Phyl B. from Franklin IN

    Posted on 6/5/2021

    How about a telephone number to actually talk to a live person about Satalitte radio

    Commenter image

    Crutchfield Writing Team from Crutchfield

    on 6/7/2021

    Phyl, If you have questions, you can reach one of our Advisors at 1-888-955-6000. We'll look forward to hearing from you!

    Posted on 3/13/2021

    I own a 2016 Nissan Frontier SV with Sirius installed on my factory radio. If I replace the audio system with a Sirius compatible system do I need to buy a Sirius tuner or will the original tuner work?

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 3/15/2021

    Vinnie, When you replace the radio, you'll lose the factory satellite radio. There are plenty of ways to get it back, though. When you enter your vehicle's info into our Outfit My Car tool, you'll see which stereos fit your Nissan, plus the correct harness and some other helpful info. If you have any questions, our advisors are available via phone or chat.
  • Mark Shrum from New Kensington

    Posted on 1/1/2021

    I already have Sirius xm in my truck. I'm upgrading to a double din unit , what do I need to keep my satellite radio?

  • R McLaughlin from 12566

    Posted on 12/15/2020

    So in other words if I am already paying for cable I can hook up? Pardon my lack of knowedge

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 12/16/2020

    R., Not exactly. You'll still need a subscription to SiriusXM, at least. I've sent your question to our sales team, and they'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.
  • Andree Postel from Dallas

    Posted on 12/14/2020

    I want to buy a radio for each of my kids rooms. I like that the XM radios can be controlled with parental controls but I'm wondering if there are other radios that we can use and what components the radio needs to have in order to have parental control and play XM through it.

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 12/15/2020

    Andree, I've sent your question to our sales team, and they'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.

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