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  • Mazda3 Modification questions

    This is to all the owners of a Mazda3 who have installed a carputer...

    I am considering installing one and have read a lot of posts on it, but I have yet to read about 2 things that have been nagging me...

    1) What about the clock display? Since you have to take out that display to put in the new DIN kit, what do you do for a clock?

    2) I have volume control buttons on my steering wheel. Will those buttons be completely useless now? If not, what do I do to integrate them into the carputer sound system?

    (Subject to have more questions added as they arise)

    Thanks for any/all help!

  • #2
    the pc has a clock the front end will display.,

    and you can interface your steering wheel controls. theres something in the store for it.
    MII12000 | 512MB PC3200 | 60GB 2.5" Samsung
    M2-ATX 160W PS | SlotLoad DVD/CDRW | BU353 GPS
    7" Lilliput 619 | WinTV | WIFI | Bluetooth
    Audigy2 ZS | HQCT | Kyocera KR1 Mobile Router(3G)
    Roadrunner | LSXvoid | IGuidance 3


    My Worklog

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    • #3
      Or you can just mount a screen in the stock OEM nav dash panel, keep the stock headunit and interface it with a P.I.E adapater + Car2PC adapter. You'll have instant music startup, am/fm radio and such from the stock headunit. The adpaters will give you aux-in for audio from the PC AND allow you to use your steering wheel controls on the PC (as well as the HU).

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      • #4
        If you stash the HU in the glovebox (seems to be the most popular install) and use a metra dash kit, you will have to come up with your own cable extension and brackets for holding the OEM LCD in place if you still want the time/FM readout. Otherwise, I just keep my HU on AUX mode, use Road Runner's clock (or my cell phone, since my stupid power supply died)
        MII-12000 / Ampie / Lilliput 7" / BU-355 / PicoPSU / uSDC
        Currently: Enjoying the setup, but always contemplating my next move...

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        • #5
          What I did when i had my carputer in my 3 is what the above said. mounted brain of HU in glovebox. I didnt keep the LCD screen visible, but it is pretty easy to do. Just find a way to keep it in place and extend the wires to connect to the HU in the glovebox.

          You can use the steering wheel volume control by hooking the carputer up to the speakers thru the HU. Thats what I did. It was great still being able to use the volume controls on the steering wheel. Not to mention, I could still play cds, radio, etc if my carputer was ever out of order.
          My Carputer Project

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          • #6
            And relocating the HU is probably more time and money than picking up a stock nav dash panel (which is a motorized flip up unit) from a junkyard. It's also less OEM looking. You aslo have to worry about not having music when your PC is having issues... which they all seem to have eventually... search it... there are threads on people reverting from a "headless" setup to using aux on an aftermarket HU so that they can always have radio and also instant startup of the radio.

            It's your car and your project... pick whatever setup works best for you.

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            • #7
              I am planning on mounting the LCD where the stock HU is now and, if I decide to use a separate HU, mounting the HU in the glove box and the PC in the trunk.

              If I was to keep a HU and wire the computer through the Aux input, would I be able to control it with the PC at all or would it be a separate entity that I would have to control on its own? I like the idea of having all of the controls on one screen rather than dealing with a screen for some things and a stereo for others. I had been considering using an amp and wiring that to the computer rather than using a separate HU, but which would work better?

              I like the idea of having the music start up quickly on its own. On that note, how long does a carputer usually take to start up and start playing music? Would I be 5 minutes down the road before I can use it or will it be within a few seconds?

              Also, I have a Harman Kardon Drive+Play kit for my iPod already installed which has a wired FM transmitter and an Aux input. Would you suggest using that to integrate the computer to the HU through that or are the overly-expensive adapters a key role in the pc to HU integration?

              Thanks to all who are helping, I'm just trying to figure things out before I start down the road of purchases. I know it's a lot of questions now, but I appreciate all the help

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              • #8
                You can't control HU from the PC... stock or aftermarket. You can only do it the only way around... control the PC with the HU.

                Just about everyone will tell you to skip FM transmitters if you have a plug-in Aux solution available. The sound quality is many times better and in the case of a Mazda HU.. using the syflex (sp?) aux-mod (advanced version) or P.I.E. adapater + Car2PC adapter you not only get AUX input, but also the ability to control your PC from the Mazda HU... which also gives you steering wheel controls.

                There have been several threads on boot up times... a cold boot will partially depend on your mobo BIOS. SOme will have options that you can enable for fast boot... others will not. The best times have been around 20 secs... many are in the 30-50 seond range. Most people use hibernate with the best around 15secs and many around 20seconds... the numbers are from memory, so they be a bit off... I suggest searching for the threads which will also have tips on improving boot times. Is this useable for you or not? It may depend on the person, but I can say that even my commercial Toshiba HD/DVD recorder takes too long to boot up (user expectations) at around 15-20seconds. Some people on the forum are fine with their 15second hibernation recovery times and others have reverted (or started with) to using a HU for radio, aux input and such. There is always the advantage that if your PC needs servicing, that you'll still have music in your car.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ctsoccer13 View Post
                  This is to all the owners of a Mazda3 who have installed a carputer...
                  I am considering installing one and have read a lot of posts on it, but I have yet to read about 2 things that have been nagging me...
                  1) What about the clock display? Since you have to take out that display to put in the new DIN kit, what do you do for a clock?
                  2) I have volume control buttons on my steering wheel. Will those buttons be completely useless now? If not, what do I do to integrate them into the carputer sound system?
                  (Subject to have more questions added as they arise)
                  Thanks for any/all help!
                  I'll talk to a friend (John) of mine from a local club today at the MOM (Meet of Mazda's) http://www.mx-3.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=49383
                  I saw briefly that he's installed a CarPC in his 3. http://teamslipstream.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=961
                  He's a bit of a puter techy.

                  John
                  http://gickr.com/results4/anim_5055e...a2b3b197c9.gif
                  1990 RHD JDM 300ZX TT 2+2 5sp T-Top
                  491RWHP / 18psi / 94 octane

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have just started my planning/install into my 3. Relocating the stock HU only took a few hours to do. The longest part was extending the LCD wires. There are a few walk thru's on these fourms from other 3 owners previous installs. I used them for reference. I did the relocation so I wouldn't lose the stock LCD look and to have the option of playing the radio or CD's when going on short trips.
                    My 2005 Mazda 3 Worklog:
                    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=89621

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I cut the lower right side of the glove compartment so I could fit a laptop all the way to the back, I am using a uSDC controler for starup/shutdown I wired the laptop's positive to the power on on the controler but the shutdown was not working properly then I wired the laptop's negative side of the switch to a bolt on the car and now it works like a charm. For the screen I contacted Vanilla and order on of the top screen mounted LCD's ($1100) a bit expensive but for a custom fit I'll go the extra mile I am waiting for him to finish it. I also installed to T1's two amps an four JVC's needless to say my roof is shaking.

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                      • #12
                        I can't find them

                        Originally posted by pack3twhore View Post
                        I have just started my planning/install into my 3. Relocating the stock HU only took a few hours to do. The longest part was extending the LCD wires. There are a few walk thru's on these fourms from other 3 owners previous installs. I used them for reference. I did the relocation so I wouldn't lose the stock LCD look and to have the option of playing the radio or CD's when going on short trips.
                        If someone comes across these walkthroughs can you post the links here. I manage to find it once but didn't bookmark it and now I've searched and can't find it again.

                        The one I saw moved the complete head unit (dash face) into the glove box and extended the lcd wires.

                        I'll keep looking but if you can help, it would be appreciated.

                        Thanks


                        Not to worry, I found on another site here:
                        http://www.mazda3forums.com/index.php?topic=37499.0
                        VoomPC, VIA C7 1.5 Ghz, 7" Newision LCD, 80 Gig WD 5400 RPM Laptop Drive, M2-ATX, RoadRunner, iGuidance, Freedom 2.0, AT&T Natural Voice Hot Babe Audrey. All wrapped up in a piece of crap Suzuki Grand Vitara.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by yukon View Post
                          If someone comes across these walkthroughs can you post the links here. I manage to find it once but didn't bookmark it and now I've searched and can't find it again.

                          The one I saw moved the complete head unit (dash face) into the glove box and extended the lcd wires.

                          I'll keep looking but if you can help, it would be appreciated.

                          Thanks


                          Not to worry, I found on another site here:
                          http://www.mazda3forums.com/index.php?topic=37499.0
                          Why would you do this???

                          Check this install out, simple, affordable, easy - Stock LCD still works and in place -

                          http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...5-door-gt.html

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