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  • Ok so, 'Build your own car pc'...

    I've recently brought the 'Build Your Own Car PC' book from author Gavin D.J. Harper, and I've got a few questions about the equipment that he has suggested/selected for his book.

    Firstly, the Griffin RadioShark.

    - I've recently read a poll where only 1.88% of people used a Griffin RadioShark with they're setup, this poll was heavily won by Directed / Visteon HD Radio which was 43.19%.

    Is the Directed / Visteon HD Radio CarPc easy? Does it come highly recommended? I saw a photo of the setup and it looked like the Visteon had a separate head unit, is this correct?

    Secondly, the Andrea Auto Array

    - This component is a voice recognition microphone for the CarPc, in the book Gavin has listed a table with a list of statistics proving the Andrea unit to be a clear winner. Is this the case? He only lists 'Compared Microphones' as apposed to saying which he compared to.

    Thirdly, the Hitachi Endurastar 30gb Hard Disk

    - Gavin recommends this for a HDD, he states that the Endurastar is very resistant to shocks and average car use, Would an SSD be a better option? Money aside, the Endurastar doesn't really have any perks against an SSD.

    If someone could answer any of these questions or clear up any cloudy areas for me that would be awesome!

    Thanks guys

  • #2
    For the hard drives a solid state is better for durability and speed but my $60 2.5 inch laptop drive has been working fine for years.
    Ampie Case
    2.5" Hard Drive 80GB Samsung 5400RPM
    256 MB DDR2 PC5400
    Xenarc 700TSV - VGA Monitor
    Intel D945GCLF Motherboard
    M2-ATX-HV

    2005 Honda Civic

    Comment


    • #3
      a quick check, and i found that th book was published back in '06...

      so some of the info isn't very accurate anymore..

      i don't use radio, but the directed/visteon units are the most popular since mitches cable started getting made to control them(probably about 06-07 when that came out)

      they do have a external controller unit, but i don't think that you need it to allow the computer to control it-- just mitches cable, and a aux input..

      the andrea is still one of the more popular ones, though it has taken a little different form:
      http://store.mp3car.com/Andrea_Super..._p/com-054.htm

      the reason for this is because the included usb dongle has echo, and noise cancelation in it-- so that if you make a phone call, the usb dongle will make the audio clear enough that the person on the other end will have a hard time knowing your in a car..

      a normal mic(without echo/noise cancelation) will pick up EVERYTHING-- from road noise, to the police sirens behind you , and will make it much harder for the other person to hear you..

      for the hdd: there was a huge debate on types of hard drives in the environmental section. overall, it depends on how much you want to spend:

      some users use 3.5" home computer drives-- some of these have survived multiple car-totaling wrecks.

      2.5" laptop drives are popular because they are cheap, have lots of storage, and small, and because they are smaller and lighter, physics, and the laws of motion say that they are less prone to vibration damage then 3.5" drives...

      ssd is seems to be 'almost' the best, but cost-per-gb is kind of high, and the limited write cycles are also a disadvantage, but they can theoretically survive anything a normal 2.5" drive wouldn't, and are not affected by cold as much.

      overall, 3.5" drives are worse then 2.5", and 2.5" is worse then ssd, but none are perfect.

      then there are the platter speeds-- a 5400rpm drive is noticeably slower booting, and accessing info then a 7200rpm drive... if you are not keen to the cost of ssd, get a 2.5" 7200rpm drive-- it is worth it over 5400rpm..

      in planning, i would recommend buying 2 drives of identical size, and keeping one as a backup with all the same files on it.

      i used to be religious about this, then i updated to win7, didn't have a chance to update my back up drive, and 2 days after finishing the update, my primary drive took a dump...

      the other major change that i think the book is going to miss is the large amount of dc-dc power supplies, and the tiny atom powered boards that are hitting the market like a tidal wave-- they make great, cheap car computers that can do carputer duty beautifully for most carpc-ers

      another good place to look for some other info is here:
      http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/advfaq.php
      My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
      "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


      next project? subaru brz
      carpc undecided

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      • #4
        SOUND MAN THANK YOU SO MUCH!!

        Your info is so valuable thanks heaps!

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        • #5
          I'll go with 7200rpm SSD by the way.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by skooki View Post
            I'll go with 7200rpm SSD by the way.
            do you mean a high speed ssd? because there is no moving parts in ssd's, they are usually measured using their read/write speeds

            otherwise, i have been using a 7200 2.5" drive in my own setup-- nothing to break any records, but works for me-- win7 takes something like 2-3 min to get music playing (estimate: never actually timed it yet)
            My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
            "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


            next project? subaru brz
            carpc undecided

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by skooki View Post
              I'll go with 7200rpm SSD by the way.
              If you put one in an industrial blender, it might do 7200rpm...

              Comment


              • #8
                apparently, it is the about only thing that blendtec hasn't tried yet...
                My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


                next project? subaru brz
                carpc undecided

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by soundman98 View Post
                  apparently, it is the about only thing that blendtec hasn't tried yet...
                  Ha, I looked there as well! Looks like they only do full closed systems and not individual parts.
                  Ampie Case
                  2.5" Hard Drive 80GB Samsung 5400RPM
                  256 MB DDR2 PC5400
                  Xenarc 700TSV - VGA Monitor
                  Intel D945GCLF Motherboard
                  M2-ATX-HV

                  2005 Honda Civic

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    haha yes i meant high speed but SSD mainly interests me because of boot time? Apparently a lot faster than your average 2.5'' drive

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                    • #11
                      it is a lot faster, and because it is solid state, if you live in a very cold climate, you have to worry less about the effects of the cold on the drive--most platter drives use bearings with fluid to keep the platters moving, so in really cold weather, the fluid is affected.)
                      My OLD 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT:
                      "The Project That Never Ended, until it did"


                      next project? subaru brz
                      carpc undecided

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by skooki View Post
                        Is the Directed / Visteon HD Radio CarPc easy? Does it come highly recommended? I saw a photo of the setup and it looked like the Visteon had a separate head unit, is this correct?
                        The Directed and Visteon HD radios used to be the standard. I have the Visteon unit, it works quite well. But since they aren't made anymore, they are pretty hard to find.

                        The recommended replacement is the HD radio sold right here in the mp3car.com store. The one in the store has an advantage, in that it sends the audio from the radio back to the computer over the USB link. The Directed/Visteon units required you to plug an analog audio cable from the unit to a line-in on your computer.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          and analog is a big downer is that right?

                          like, less analog the better?

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                          • #14
                            It isn't that there's anything inherently wrong with analog. Line-ins are a scarce commodity. Some people like to have a few external tuners that all want to have their output routed through the line-in on the computer, such as XM Radio and HD Radio, or an external mp3 player plugged in via the headphone jack. This last scenario is useful if you have a friend who wants to plug in their mp3 player to your system to listen to their music.

                            Plus you need to spend a few minutes adjusting the volume level in the audio mixer to just the right level.

                            And it's one less cable to worry about.

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                            • #15
                              So you basically mean, people try to run all their audio tuners through the AUX? I'm I on the right track?

                              Although the radio uses USB is that right?

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