Revisiting my entire set-up and trying to make it better
So, it's been about 3 months since I completed my first factory-like install of a CarPC system, and I'm impressed with what I have accomplished thus far (even tho i started this project in Nov '08) but now I feel I should take things a new level and who better to ask for than help than those who know the playground the best =)
I'm running a VIA VB7001G Motherboard, and I plan on keeping this board mainly because i bought it for 50 bucks and it has dual monitor support built-in, other boards in is price range don't compare to it in my eyes (feel free to show me other options if I did miss one tho).
Using a Xenarc 700TSV I bought used of ebay which is still running strong and even custom-fabricated it into a double-din dash kit available for my car. The sunlight from the rear and side windows kills me when I need to use the screen for directions and what not, but for ~200 bucks, I think that's about as good as it gets.
Audio. After looking around the forum and testing out my own system myself, I realize that if I have such a system that CAN have higher-quality audio output than a boombox or regular car stereo, I should implement it. With that said, how would I go about it? After looking around I saw people suggest buying a 4-channel amp and sub and wiring it in myself. This sounds like a good idea but my car comes with a BOSE premium sounds system (stock amp + 10" sub) which means everything is already tucked and hidden away, and in a small coupe like mine, I rather enjoy as much room as I can get. A couple of questions at this point are:
- IF I buy an amp, would I need to buy speakers as well? (the amp is proprietary so I figure the entire system is)
- IF so, what should I get for the highest possible in-car quality of sound?
- IF the above can be avoided, is it possible to just cut-up a wiring harness and run that back into the system for higher-quality sound?
Integration. I know this isn't the right section for this little part, but was hoping to just get some ideas of how to go about the process and find my way from there. Right now I have the actual PC unit mounted on a bracket near my knee. For now it's ok, but to be honest, looks a little messy and unprofessional. I want to either mount it inside my dash behind the monitor or somewhere else it can fit but also easily removed (I LOVED how BugByte did his Plug-n-Play system, but I don't know where I can get similar instructions like that).
I think that's about the only things i'm considering at this point. I'll be updating this as I see the need to revisit this, but I really appreciate any all input I can get from the community. Thanks in advance for any and all replies.
what year/make/model/trim level is your car? bose amps vary widly with cars, so without that info, it is hard to know if the amp can be used or not...
Ah sorry about that, thought there was a quick drop down thing that showed vehicle specs like the centrafuse forums, sorry about that.
Trim: Type-S (USDM)
eh, there is a section with car info, if i went into your user profile, and everything, but i don't ususally do that-- it took me almost a year just to enter my cars info, so i don't usually look there...
anyways, to answer your audio questions--
here is the link to the aftermarket harness for your car:
because it doesn't have rca's on it, it means that the amp accepts high level inputs(the signal after it has been amplified)-- so to ditch the hu, would mean that you would need to add a small amp to get a better signal before the bose amp..
'great sound' is completely relative--a $2,000 speaker set might sound absolutly stunning to you, but might sound like absolute garbage to me, and a $2 boom box might sound great to me, and horrible to you-- it is all relative
if the bose system sounds great to you, and you want to ditch the hu, get a small motorcycle amp to power the bose amp- and keep everything compact.
if you feel that the bose system could use some work, then i would recommend starting by replacing the amp, and going from there.
the best speaker set is the one that you feel sounds the best-- do not ever let a car audio dealer tell you that any speaker is better or worse than another-- let your ears tell you what is best (i like to ignore pricing until i narrow it down to a couple of different models, and then start critiqueing them based on sound vs. price) --because you are the one who is spending the money on the speakers, and who will have to listen to them after the purchase-- just take one of your favorite cd's to the audio store, and demo all the speakers-- any reputable shop will have no problem letting you listen to the different speakers--i know i have spent near 2-3 hours at a time at audio shops demoing speakers, just to find a set i like...
That is the wiring harness for my car, the other one is universal which doesn't work with my car for some reason, I guess because the leads are different or whatever...
ok, so apparently, crutchfield sucks
well at least i included the link so that i am not sending you in completely the wrong direction...
the good news is that it makes it even easier-- being that your amp accepts low level(the audio before it get amplified by a radio, or amp) you will be able to connect the computer directly to the amp-- so you wouldn't need all that aftermarket amp stuff to integrate with the bose amp that i mentioned before...
Well, in that case, is it possible to run a second amp that can control fade and balance and stuff?