First-generation satellite radio tuners were car audio units; the next models could move between home and office, and back to the car; and more recently, dedicated home receivers were introduced. The Antex Triple Play SRX-3 represents the logical next evolutionary step--a $1,999 list Sirius radio designed for the booming multiroom and custom installation market.
The SRX-3's half-inch-thick sculpted metal faceplate and robust construction standards bespeak a high-end aesthetic. Great, but we had a little trouble reading the backlit LCD; after squeezing in three sets of Sirius stream names, channel numbers, and artist names, each readout is rather small. The viewing angle of the LCD is limited, it's way too bright at night, and Antex doesn't provide an option of dimming or turning off the display. Then again, Antex's product designers assume most end users will stash the SRX-3 in a closet or equipment rack and rely on their home automation displays to deliver Sirius stream information.
Three stereo analog and three optical digital outputs are provided to feed up to three zones or rooms. The only other connectors of note are the RS-232 port and the IR remote-control input that work in conjunction with home automation systems. A high-quality indoor/outdoor omnidirectional Sirius satellite antenna is supplied with the SRX-3.
The curvy little plastic remote doesn't look or feel very high end, but it can select among the three zones and 10 stream presets. Again, most SRX-3 owners will jettison the remote and instead use their home automation system to control the unit.
Inquiring minds might want to know if the SRX-3 offers any advantages over purchasing three separate Sirius tuners. We can think of a few: the 3.5-by-17.75-by-12-inch (HWD) SRX-3 will likely consume less space than three separate tuners, and it requires just a single Sirius antenna. The most annoying downside: you'll still need to sign up for three separate Sirius subscriptions to feed each of the SRX-3's tuners. With the company's current pricing model, that's about $27 per month: $12.99 for the first subscription and $6.99 apiece for the other two.