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XM Radio Antenna

Old 07-16-2006, 09:30 AM
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Default XM Radio Antenna

I have a Pioneer DEH-P3700MP on my boat. The XM radio signal fades in and out. It has an antenna like you see on a car XM radio. I believe the problem is that it is not grounded well or there is not enough metal on the boat. This is a bay boat with no metal other than the rails around the center console. I have searched around for marine antennas on the net. The marine antennas don't need to be grounded. Where can I find a marine antenna that will work with my radio? Is there a way to ground my current antenna better?
Old 07-16-2006, 10:52 AM
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Default RE: XM Radio Antenna

The antenna is on the highest point in the boat. No blockage from any direction. We were in Destin Fl. last week in the bay with clear skies, no clouds anywhere and it would constantly fade in and out. I even moved the antenna around on the console to see if I would get better reception while in the bay with no luck. Sitting in the yard under trees it plays fine. Even at the dealership it plays fine but once you get on water or get the boat moving the signal fades in and out. Seems to be one of those issues you can't get fixed because every time you carry it in to be fixed it works fine. Its very annoying. I am about ready to have the XM turned off.

The reason I think it is a grounding issue is because all of the marine antennas state that they are non grounded antennas.

Any other suggestions?
Old 07-16-2006, 11:49 AM
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Default RE: XM Radio Antenna

Duct Tape - 7/16/2006 10:05 AM

i have never heard of an xm antenna needing to be grounded. i have installed those antennas on fiberglass cars and never had a problem. you may just have a bad antenna or cable. or maybe you are just getting blockage.
Many of the car antennas require a ground plane to perform well. There are antennas that do not require a ground plane, like the marine antennas or glass mount antennas.

Having a ground plane is not the same as grounding the antenna. I believe that the ground plane effectively becomes part of the antenna by amplifying the signals received by the antenna. (That's probably a gross simplification of how it really works, but it's how it was described to me.)

Old 07-16-2006, 12:52 PM
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Default Re: XM Radio Antenna

When an antenna says it needs a ground plane, it means the antenna is a 1/4 wavelength antenna and needs to have metal of some kind beneth it. It uses the metal beneath it to act as part of the antenna. In effect makes the antenna look longer than it really is (mirror image of it's self). Antennae of 1/2 or better do not require a ground plane.

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