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2004 350Z ALMOST ready to start (cost Eff. analysis)

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  • 2004 350Z ALMOST ready to start (cost Eff. analysis)

    Got everything inhouse and tested. Almost ready to start, but the computer is failing memory check and rebooting. Waiting for new RAM to get in. I was able to get the Motorola IHF1000 bluetooth unit installed and running. Couldn't go through the computer for bluetooth as I use a blackberry and they don't play well with others for full connection possibilities. The IHF1000 is fantastic for a Blackberry.

    Hoping other 350Z owners look at this as I have a question. I am going to be using 2, maybe 3 separate antenna's. I want the car to look completely stock after I'm done, so the sharkfin doesn't work. Does anyone know if one can get the stock 2005 GPS antenna housing aftermarket? Looks like heck, but it's larger than normal antenna's and could house more than one.

    For other newbies, I would like to show cost effectiveness for a carputer (not doing this for show, but for usability as a constant commuter), so.....

    Car: 2004 350Z Enthusiast model

    Original upgrades:
    Bose 6CD head unit $150 (got a deal, these usually go for $250-350)
    Specialized preamp to put Bose in Enthusiast $150
    Kenwood Amps/speakers/10"subwoofer/Installation $800
    XM Commander/installation $200
    350Z OEM Bose subwoofer cover $50
    Magellan Roadmate 800 $700

    Total: $2050

    Recent Upgrades:
    Axxess unit XM/Ipod integration in head unit: $210

    Total now: $2250 ... And that is going with cheapest prices available.

    Now Carputer costs:
    Mini ITX case, 2.0Ghz Jetway Mini ITX motherboard
    PCMCIA/Bluetooth/HDSafe upgrade
    120GB 5400RPM SATA Hdd
    1GB RAM
    M2X Power Supply
    DVD external combo Drive $620
    Xenarc 7" touchscreen, 700TSV $274
    Radioshark $20
    Soundblaster Live! External sound card $50
    Streets and Maps (only going to use the GPS unit dang it ... STUDY FIRST, THEN BUY) $100
    Hubs, Cables, Etc. $50
    Amps, speakers etc. (have to include for apple to apples comparison using 75% of original cost for installation variations) $600
    XM USB converter $50
    XP Pro (using an old CD I don't use anymore. Upgraded the original computer to MCE)
    RoadRunner Frontend (I'll donate when I get caught up....I Promise!)

    WIFI and Cellular internet connections will be using Ericson GC89 that is provided by work, so guessing you would need to add $100 or so for this feature.

    Total (minus WIFI/Cellular): $1764

    Optional 2003 Nav cubbyhole (didn't have to go with this) $115

    Added expenses:

    Slingbox $120
    Motorola IHF1000 bluetooth $140

    So it looks like the Carputer is $500 cheaper and can do soooooo much more. Keep in mind prices are my cost and not suggested retail, so shop shop and shop some more before you buy!

    Should be able to get started on the installation today and will start getting some pictures. Was able to get the Motorola IHF1000 inside the coin holder and is completely hidden! (stock look).

    Anyone looking to upgrade their enthusiast to Bose, but not carputer, let me know. I might be getting rid of the Bose HU/preamp/Axxess (with ipod/xm connection) as I won't be using the HU at all now. Will just put the factory unit back in and let someone else enjoy the Bose. The Axxess is full Ipod which means text/searching/charging capabilities from HU and not just an Aux. connection. Keep in mind that for the upgrade, you will need amps, OEM subwoofer cover, etc. as I will be using these parts. If I finalize this decision, I'll list it in the classified section.

    Also, if anyone needs just the XM commander HU (Just the display/controls), let me know! I don't need it anymore.

    And so the journey begins!

    Attached Files
    My opinion is my own.

  • #2
    Jan Bennett
    FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!


    • #3
      My bad...thanks.

      My opinion is my own.


      • #4
        Mounted the touchscreen (WHEW)

        While waiting for the RAM to show up, decided to do the toughest (IMHO) and scariest (voided warranty) job of the install. Mounting the touchscreen. The only thing I did different from most of the others was 1)mount from the rear without trim pieces and 2) rather than reroute controls for the monitor, the Xenarc has remote control capabilities, so drilled small hole for IR reciever. Hooked to computer and everything works great, so job 1 is done!

        Not happy that the cubby hole door doesn't match (will show in next set of pictures), but in it's own way, I guess it looks kinda cool. Might wind up painting it if it doesn't look right after I'm done.
        Attached Files
        My opinion is my own.


        • #5
          Great cost analysis. I just need to pony up the $1k.


          • #6
            I know, it hurts like heck. You think you are saving so much by doing a little at a time, but by the time your finished, it cost you more money than it would if you just grin and bear it. Good luck!
            My opinion is my own.


            • #7
              Here is the finished touchscreen and door

              After powering up, I noticed something. The monitor is the exact size of the cubby, but the touchscreen overlay is just a tad smaller. You could see a little bit of the white edge all the way around. Found a seriouosly high tech solution........take a sharpee and trace the very edge all the way around. Looks great!

              Also is the door color issue. It does have sort of a sporty carbon fiber look to it, so I might keep it. Didn't look as bad in the car and sunlight.
              Attached Files
              My opinion is my own.