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  • Soarer Volume Control

    The Toyota Soarer has a volume control knob mounted in the centre console surround. This usually plugs into the stock head unit & controls volume + on/off, however since putting my carputer in, this has done nothing.

    Today, I decided to do something about it, so here are the results of my work.

    The volume knob is just a variable resistor with a momentary on/off push button (normally off). The wiring for this as as follows (thanks to some chap on this forum):-

    Click image for larger version

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    So, what can I use to measure a variable resistance and momentary push? Well, its easy - the game port. A joystick is just a couple of variable resistors and some momentary push buttons. The solution then is simple!!

    15 pin game port -> Soarer volume knob

    Pin 1 --> End
    Pin 2 --> Push
    Pin 3 ----------> resistor linked to Pin1
    Pin 4 --> Ground
    Pin 6 --> Middle

    After hooking this up, you can go to the Windows control panel game controller setup screen. You can then add a "2 axis, 2 button Joystick". Then calibrate it. Obviously, only 1 axis will work when you rotate the volume knob and only 1 button will work when you press the knob, but it will work fine.

    The only trick now is how to set the windows volume when you rotate the knob and how to mute when you press the knob? Well, I've written a quick Java program to do this & when its tidied up a bit & tested I'll release it, source n all. Shame I don't know c# or c++ or something so I can compile something small and tight, but this will work fine for now.


    You can use the joystick port for 4 resistive inputs & 4 TTL digital inputs. Read more here http://www.epanorama.net/documents/j...ml#temperature

    Interestingly, I did notice that Maplin UK are selling a USB > gameport adapter for about 7 if you wanted a USB solution.

  • #2
    I thought about doing the same type of thing with the volume control in my Soarer back when i lived in Japan... Damn i loved that car... I had the twin turbo 2JZ version... Was perfect for drifting!!!

    Definately like to see how this turns out. Nice set-up by the way...
    MY INSTAllS:

    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...e-install.html

    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...tallation.html

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    • #3
      Nice writeup!

      That was me who figured out the wiring of the volume knob BTW
      PowerVoice v1 | NaviVoice Source
      GammaControl v2.4
      SKINbedder v3

      1995 Lexus SC300

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      • #4
        This is what I have been looking for! do you have any part of the java done or is this still in the starting stages?

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        • #5
          pin 1 +5 ________________
          |
          pin 3 stick1x ____ |
          | 100K |
          _/\/\/\_________|
          pin 6 stick1y ___ |
          | 100K |
          _/\/\/\_________|
          pin 11 stick2x ___ |
          | 100K |
          _/\/\/\_________|
          pin 13 stick2y ___ |
          | 100K |
          _/\/\/\_________|
          ___
          pin 2 button1 ______o o_______
          ___ |
          pin 7 button2 ______o o_______|
          ___ |
          pin 10 button3 ______o o_______|
          ___ |
          pin 14 button4 ______o o_______|
          |
          pin 4 GND ________________|

          Ok so I use this circuit which is simple to setup but my question that I need is how do I watch the GamePort so when a button is pushed, it knows what to do in the windows inviroment? Is there basic programs on the net that can be downloaded? I dont know C that well to do this I dont think. Hell I know i dont know how. Has anyone else done this?

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          • #6
            I found a program called "winstick" that allows you to assign functions to joystick actions, but it wasn't good enough for volume control.

            I have some Java written & will complete soon. It will only do volume + mute but I'll release the source so others can customize it.

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            • #7
              That is awesome man! Let me know when you get it up!

              Also, Not to hijack your thread but let me tell you what I have found through some deeper research. You can use a standard remote to control many functions on the computer. This will be a typical setup if you want:

              1. Purchase any basic remote. Hell use an old tv remote if you want. I will use a car CD player remote cause it will be some and have all the functions needed.
              2. Build or purchase a Serial IR reciever. You can build your own for about 12 bucks or buy one cheap on ebay. VERY EASY TO MAKE!
              http://www.irblaster.info/receiver.html
              3. Download a program called WinLIRC @ http://winlirc.sourceforge.net/
              4. Install the software. It can be setup to sit in your startup tray in the background.
              5. Set the program to be on receive mode and have it learn all the commands you want to use.
              6. USE!

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              • #8
                I've got a remote control here that I got with a haupaugge product. It's got a USB receiver. It presents itself as a HID keyboard device - dead easy to configure into just about anything. I may put it in the car at some point.

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                • #9
                  As far as writing the program for the joystick volume control... why reinvent the wheel? There is a program called Girder that can do just that. Plus many more things
                  PowerVoice v1 | NaviVoice Source
                  GammaControl v2.4
                  SKINbedder v3

                  1995 Lexus SC300

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                  • #10
                    I'll look into it, thanks for the tip. Believe it or not I did search around for about a week.

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                    • #11
                      I try it myself if I can get it work.

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                      • #12
                        Ok, finally I've been bothered to get some software written and released. It's a RoadRunner plugin & you can find the details here http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/rr-p...ol-plugin.html

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                        • #13
                          Try this.
                          http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/road...-released.html

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                          • #14
                            I did. For a start, it doesn't work with game ports & secondly its digital not analogue. Take a read through this thread & see what I'm trying to achieve.

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                            • #15
                              Anyway to get something like this working on a modern PC with no gameport relatively easily?

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