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Sharkfin (radio reception) for 2010 or newer models?

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Accessories and Modifications' started by riva, Feb 21, 2011.

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  1. riva

    riva New Member

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    I have a 2010 Prius. My antenna broke off and I'm considering getting a Sharkfin.

    I've seen a number of posts regarding the bad FM radio reception on the sharkfin, but most of them are from 2009 and older. So I did a google search and came across this sharkfin vendor (visual Garage) online that boasts "a built-in fractal antenna to allow for AM/FM radio reception."

    Anyone know anything about this fractal antenna? Has anyone purchased from this vendor? Is there another Sharkfin vendor you'd recommend? Thanks ahead of time for your suggestions.
  2. riva

    riva New Member

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    UPDATE: Since posting the message above, I've purchased the VG Sharkfin. You can read my review of their product on the next page... about 15 posts down.
  3. mad-dog-one

    mad-dog-one Prius Enthusiast

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    I think the moderator can help with the location of the post, if that's a problem. In the meantime, I'll be watching for answers to your question from folks with experience in this area.
  4. Joe166

    Joe166 New Member

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    The sharkfin antenna doesn't help the reception but doesn't make it worse either. Just about the same. I don't think the antenna is the problem. I had the original antenna for a while and have had the sharkfin for about a year.
  5. riva

    riva New Member

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    Hi Joe, What vendor did you purchase your sharkfin from? Do you have a photo of it? Thanks.

    R.
  6. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    You probably won't want my help because I have a 2009 :p but I bought mine from Visual Garage and yes, the reception is slightly worse. I have gotten used to it, however, and would buy the fin all over again.
  7. SDM44

    SDM44 Señor Member

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    I've had the sharkfin on my car for over a year now. I live in the LA area, so radio reception has always been good in any car I'm in. That being said, radio reception didn't get any better or worse with the sharkfin antenna.

    I also tried driving around for a couple of days with no antenna, and I was still able to pick all of the radio stations that I listen to, and it really didn't sound like there was any loss in reception. So in reality, your area and coverage is really the main factor. The 'coolness' and clean factor of the sharkfin on your car gives you points into the appearance of the Prius.
  8. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    Ohhhh so you are a senor member too? Ci senor?
  9. riva

    riva New Member

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    To everyone, Thanks for your comments. I'm curious to know where everyone ordered their sharkfins from. Any thoughts about the different brands and designs offered? Any photos to share?
  10. Joe166

    Joe166 New Member

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    Sorry, I don't come on this site as often as I used to so I didn't see your question. I really don't remember for sure, but visual garage sounds right. I did manage to screw up the gasket so I called and they sent me a replacement one right away for no charge. Good people. It was a few dollars cheaper than the Prius Chat shop, but I probably would have used them if I had thought it through. They are good too.

    No, I don't think I have ever taken a picture of my car. Not even my two seater Thunderbird.

    My kids and my dog, yes. My car, no.
  11. riva

    riva New Member

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    Joe, Thanks for your feedback.

    Does anyone know what the dimensions (height, width, and length) are of the Sharkfin sold in the pc shop here is vs the one sold by Visual Garage? It's hard to tell from the photos. I sent them an email yesterday and I haven't heard back.

    Also, do you suppose they had to increase the size of the sharkfin for the 2010 Prius antenna base, which appears larger than the previous gen antenna base?
    1 person likes this.
  12. Joe166

    Joe166 New Member

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    I think the ones from VG and the PS are the same product. I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure they are from the same manufacturer. I am not sure why I think that, but I kind of remember someone who bought it from the Prius Shop commenting on the ultimate source based on papers in the box.

    I have no idea whether it is the same size as Gen II, but if they are selling the same model for both cars, I think that answers your question.
  13. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    They are the same. I would not bother going through PriusChat shop. No offense to anyone but they are slower than the direct manufacturer, Visual Garage. Plus VG is much more pleasant to work with regarding returns/warranties/issues.

    I think you should just buy it already and see for yourself. You won't want to look back.
  14. riva

    riva New Member

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    Mac, Thanks for the information.
  15. kmkremer

    kmkremer Member

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  16. riva

    riva New Member

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    My Visual Garage Sharkfin Review (from a visual perspective)

    I ordered the sharkfin from the Visual Garage website. It arrived quickly but unfortunately the overall appearance is a big disappointment for me, not to mention VG's customer service leaves a lot to be desired. For one, my product arrived with a small paint blemish, and after a dozen emails (yes one dozen!) back/forth along with two sets of pics (the first set they claimed were not clear), they still want me to send their product back to them for a closer inspection.

    Aside from the paint blemish, the biggest disappointment for me is the black 3m tape they use to attach the product to the car; it's very visible as it protrudes around the bottom edges. In all fairness, this may not be a problem for some (especially if you have a dark color vehicle); however the black tape juxtaposed against my Classic Silver paint color makes the product look cheap and tacky, imho. I will state I am very picky about aesthetics... and I think just about anything that looks taped on looks cheap and tacky.

    I asked the VG rep why they don't use a lighter color (i.e. grey for example) adhesive tape to blend in better with the lighter paint colors... and their response was "We use black colored tape for all our shark fins." Given this, I think the photos at their website are not indicative of what the product looks like when attached. I will also add that considering the cost of their Sharkfin, I don't think it's unreasonable to expect the adhesive tape to blend a little better with the paint color.

    Bottom line: this is not the same Sharkfin we're seeing on the Lexus or other high end vehicles. Not even close.
  17. sfadchi

    sfadchi Junior Member

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    Great review! I'll be shying away from this product.
  18. riva

    riva New Member

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    To Kmkremer, re: beat sonic.

    I emailed beat sonic for dimensions and specs. Their sharkfin is a little larger (approximately 8" in length) compared to the VG sharkfin (approxomately 7" inches in length). They also told me they use a grey adhesive tape, which they said will blend in better with lighter paint colors. Other than that, I don't know much else.
  19. NaviOverride

    NaviOverride New Member

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  20. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    deleted/ moved to the post below
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