Altec Lansing XM3120 and Roady XT Review

Dave Zatz —  May 20, 2006

No sooner had I contemplated the usefulness of the XM3120 did Altec Lansing send me a review sample. The compact speaker dock includes two clear plastic cutouts for either the Delphi Roady XT or the Audiovox Xpress. I’ve enjoyed using it with the Roady XT at work the last few weeks. Not only does it look sharp and sound decent, but I’ve gotten rid of Roady2 home kit cable clutter and bulky computer speakers. The bundled external antenna wisely includes 20′ of cable for placements without window exposure. XM3120 retails for about $100, which compares with the butt-ugly Belkin F5X007. However, Belkin’s offering does come with a remote control — something I’d like to have seen Altec Lansing include.

Getting the XM3120 in the mail was all the encouragement I needed to upgrade from the Roady2 to the Roady XT. As you can see from the pics, the XT is smaller and sleeker. More importantly the FM transmitter is significantly improved, resulting in better reception and higher quality audio coming through my car radio. The display is also noticeably brighter. If you’re in the market for a small plug & play XM receiver, this model with included car kit runs only about $50 – $60 after rebate at places like Amazon and Best Buy or you can pick it up for $48.34 at Walmart without any rebate hassles (which is what I did).


8 responses to Altec Lansing XM3120 and Roady XT Review

  1. Looks like a nice bit of equipment, Dave. I’m thinking of buying this for listening to XM on my deck outside. Not that I plan on blasting 150 watts per channel, but how would this sound outside? I worry about the low power rating. Oh, and thanks for the WalMart tip; I might head over there today and drop the Roady2 from my Highlander Hybrid. Is the process to switch activiations on radios difficult?

  2. I’m not sure how it would sound outside, but I feel like the audio would fill a medium sized room nicely. I could definitely see myself purchasing one for our living room. And unlike the Roady2, the XT is true plug & play so you don’t have to mess with power and antenna cables when moving it. If you do upgrade, the good news is you won’t have to rewire your car antenna — the connector is the same for both models.

    Transferring the subscription was painless — it took about 5 minutes on the phone with no hold time at all.

  3. Thanks, but one last question: phone? What’s a phone? ;) I was hoping they had an online process….

  4. I was surprised to discover I couldn’t move a subscription online too. When I activated my MovieBeam earlier in the week, I also had to call in. What’s up with the proliferation of these retro communication methods? At least I didn’t have to wait on hold with either company.

  5. Ok, I took half of your advice. I nabbed the Roady XT at WalMart at the price you mentioned, but I grabbed the butt-ugly Belkin boombox model. ;) I liked the remote control feature as well as the weather resistant finish, since this will mainly be outdoors for me. It also has a built in antenna or you can use the included external. Sweet and thanks!

  6. It’s worth noting my Roady2 home kit remote is working with my Roady XT. It doesn’t adjust the volume, but I can change channels. I could also just reach across my desk to adjust it. ;)

  7. I can understand why Altec Lansing didn’t put a remote with this product (though the description on their website says “remote included”)–the Audiovox Xpress comes with a remote, and I for one don’t want to have to deal with 2 remotes. That is, in fact, the second reason I bought the Xpress over the RoadyXT–the first reason is that the Xpress dock has an AUX input in the dock so I can plug in my CD player or my PocketPC to listen to audiobooks and use the Xpress’s fm modulator.

  8. Kurt in San Diego June 28, 2007 at 11:53 pm

    I have the Audiovox Xpress and have been eyeing the Altec Lansing 3120 for some time. Will my Xpress remote control the VOLUME, as does the remote for the Delphi SkyFi with the Delphi Boombox? If so, I’m buying this unit!