Sirius Conductor Tuner

The Sirius Conductor Receiver SCH1W is considered one of the best satellite home radio built in recent times. The tuner is very sleek, measuring only half the length of a dollar bill and stands at a height of 2.6 inches. The remote for this device has an LCD screen which displays a lot of information. The three line display will tell you the channel that is being played, the name of the artist and the name of the song. It will also display a step-by-step guide for installation and set up. Whenever the hardware's configuration is not correct, you will get helpful tips on the LCD screen to remedy the situation. For example the screen will give a message saying “Antenna Not Detected”, when you have forgotten to attach the antenna.

Having this powerful remote, is like literally having the radio in your hand, as it has a range of 100 feet working on a frequency of 908 MHz. The device uses the Z-Wave technology which allows the signals to pass through walls at short distances. The remote also is a multipurpose device, as it can control 12 infrared (IR) devices, like the TV, A/V receiver and even a Windows MCE. Although the remote works on low power radio frequency (RF), it can still effectively control IR devices, which are not in the line of sight. This is possible because the tuner has a built-in IR blaster. There is a mono jack, 1/8th of an inch long, which lets you connect an IR emitter. With this, the programmed IR signals in your remote, are converted to RF and sent to the tuner, where they are converted back to IR.

IR components can be added to the remote control in a couple of ways. The first way is to find the four digit code for your IR device type, in the Sirius Conductor manual. This codes will make it less time consuming for you to configure your devices. The second way is when the codes are not listed. You will have to take the original remote of the device and hold it at a distance of 2 inches from the Sirius remote, in order to “teach” it the IR commands.

There are 2 types of audio outputs. One is an analog RCA output, where the audio might get affected by proximity of electrical lines. The other is a digital Toslink optical output, where the audio output will be isolated from any electrical noise. 

One major drawback in the Sirius Conductor Tuner is that you cannot control it from the tuner itself. You can control it only through the remote. If you misplace the remote or if the batteries in the remote are over you have no way of controlling the tuner. The remote also works on four AAA alkaline batteries which are not rechargeable.

One more limitation that can be seen, is that the Z-Wave technology in the remote, only supports “metadata class” of devices. Lighting control and other types of Z-Wave devices are not supported. Also the you cannot control the tuner with some other device except with the remote that comes with it. All this is a serious drawback for a home automation enthusiast.