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Using a *neat* laptop motherboard for a build

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  • Using a *neat* laptop motherboard for a build

    This is the way I see it
    Desktop Motherboard > Awesome Connectivity (lots of ports and upgradable etc)
    Laptop Motherboard > Very Low Power usage

    I'm thinking of using an Atom laptop motherboard in a build. I've found a HP Atom laptop motherboard that is cheap and widely available.
    Part Number: 504592-001
    Here is an example:

    I've asked about 20 sellers of these boards whether it will boot up with the following parts connected:
    >CPU heatsink
    >external VGA monitor
    >19V power
    >2.5" Hard drive
    >USB (Keyboard & mouse & CDROM)
    No original (LCD,Battery,keyboard,touchpad)
    Unfortunately I've had a few replies and none of them can tell me anything or seem willing to test if it will boot as described above.
    One seller told me that there is a power button on the motherboard.
    So I reckon it should work...

    If any of you have any experience with these boards, please share. Otherwise I'll let you guys know what happens after more sellers respond.
    And when I eventually buy one (I reckon it will work) I'll share some proper pictures of the board and the build with you good people
    I reckon if its successful, it could be a kickstart to MP3Car offering mobile motherboards in their SHOP!!! Now we're talking!!!

  • #2
    Okay, it turns out that board was a completely bad choice. I got a useful reply from a seller now.
    Thank you for your interest. A CPU heatsink is already included with this motherboard. The DC jack to power on this board is not included. It should be part of a separate smaller board that is connected by a ZIF cable. The hard drives for these mini 1000 laptops are 1.8" ZIF connection drives as well. Unfortunately I am not aware if this motherboard will work straight away with USB components and an external LCD. There does not appear to be any VGA display port included on this motherboard.
    It should work you will need to come up with a way to turn it on using a push button power switch that is normally in a closed position and hook it up to the power board. As far as it needing a keyboard and that it will not it should work fine.
    Mixed responses...
    Thank you for your inquiry, we'll be happy to assist you.
    Yes, power button boards sits on the motherboard itself on these system board models.
    And yes it boots up to Windows just fine if bare bone assembled.
    May be you need the keyboard to select LCD screen to external monitor.
    I will probably just get a crappy old laptop and modify it, that way I've got all the necessary parts.

    I still however believe it would be most convenient if we could buy laptop motherboards from MP3Car that are known to work as described in my first post


    • #3
      it usually doesn't work that way because laptop boards are application specific-- the creators control all aspects of the hardware, and are not limited to connection standards like desktop motherboards are. so if connector 'c' is cheaper, or better fits the build then connector 'a', they use it...
      My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
      "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"

      next project? subaru brz
      carpc undecided


      • #4
        I'm designing my system right now and it is based around an EEEpc 1005ha. I bought this netbook a while ago and recently the keyboard failed and I decided I didn't want to repair it as it wasn't fast enough for me and I use my work laptop more. That left it available for a car pc install which it will be plenty fast enough for.

        I have done extensive testing on the motherboard and it will work in pretty much any state. The key being that it has basically a pico itx size main board with a couple of break out boards for stuff. In my case, just one that is necessary as it houses the power button and the hard drive sata/power header. I had thought about using it stand alone but decided that just using the laptop in its case was simpler as I plan to use the battery to sustain it through standby while the car is not in use. If you plan to boot from usb then I'm sure you could find a way to power it on without the power switch either through the ribbon that goes to that board or some other method.

        Depending on the space you have available to work with (I have a miata so I'm kinda limited), you can buy small atom motherboards with only what you need that pull very little power or buy a used/damaged netbook(something with a cracked screen perhaps?).


        • #5
          Desktop Atom motherboards use a lot more power (like 25-30W) (just the board with no hard drive)
          Whereas a Atom netbook will use like 5W including hard drive and LED backlit monitor.


          • #6
            I assume you mean everything at idle. The Atom N280 which is in my 1005ha takes 10w.

            Still, 25-30w is a far cry from a core2 board. That was all I was saying.


            • #7
              If my dash was a little bigger I'd tear apart my Dell duo I just got from the outlet in a heart beat and use it along with the touchscreen. I could mount it portrait but movies look horrible on it. That with a USB surround audio card would make a pretty nice car PC install me thinks.