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What's the best choice for a laptop carputer?

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  • What's the best choice for a laptop carputer?

    I'm thinking of going Ebay diving for an old laptop with a broken screen that I can use for my carputer.

    What's everyone had the best luck with for a carputer?
    No great amount of CPU power is needed, I think RAM is much more important. (around 1Ghz seems ok)
    I'm thinking these are the priorities:
    1. MUST have USB (USB 2 if possible)
    2. has to go above 384 Meg RAM (1gig would be nice)
    3. should have one serial port native
    4. native power would be nice (but been a long while since I've seen a laptop want 12-13V)
    5. line-in would be nice
    6. being able to do a 7" screen's native res would be a bonus

    Anyone have a laptop that fit most of these?

    Sky

  • #2
    There are lots of laptops that meet that criteria.

    What do you mean by "native power"?
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

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    • #3
      Car native power
      12-13 volts DC.
      I had a nice IBM unit that did that, but it seems they need more like 20 volts these days.

      SKy

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      • #4
        So get a Carnetix.
        Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
        How about the Wiki?



        Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

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        • #5
          Many laptops these days have car adapters available, and there are 3rd party models available too.

          For a serial port can't you use a USB to serial adapter? I'm sure you can pick one up on eBay.

          Look for something less than 3 years and it should meet you criteria.

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          • #6
            I'd prefer a real serial port, always had better luck with them. (except for having to remember to disable the serial mouse detect with XP)

            So noone's had any problems with any laptops a few years old?
            (esp trying to do 800x480 video?)

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            • #7
              800X480 is tricky & hit or miss, especially on an older laptop built in video. if that's important then try to search for a sucessful laptop install at that resolution & try to get the same one, cause more than likely, I wouldn't count on it running 800x480 without adding like a villagetronics video card or something. 800X600 doesn't look too bad as reasonable comprimise I guess ...
              MY NEWEST INSTALL:modded infiniti fx with big screen

              first windows carpc install........my liquid cooled LVDS screen :D

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              • #8
                Look for success with a particular graphics card, as if someone has had success with 800x480 on another laptop with the same graphics card it is very likely the same will be true with others.

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                • #9
                  Get a thinkpad... I think the T series is what you would want...

                  Rafster
                  Post # 3000

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                  • #10
                    T series are nice
                    2007 Honda Fit Sport 1.5L SOHC-VTEC

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by binary.h4x View Post
                      T series are nice
                      I know, I have a T41...

                      I love it almost as much as my Powerbook....

                      Rafster
                      Post # 3000

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                      • #12
                        I'd look for one with name-brand graphics (nvidia, ati) and look for one that had a non-universal docking station available. That way, you can mod the power switch for remote on/off without having to disassemble, and I don't know of any case where it isn't possible to do custom resolutions on an ATI or Nvidia card (it's more work on some ATI boards, but doable). Other than that, you should be good with your criteria, imho.
                        I have too much time and too little aggravation in my life, so I built a carPC. ;)

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                        • #13
                          Just get a low voltage mobile processor computer you won't have to worry about overheating and it doesn't need a lot of voltage. Good luck I'm thinking of a laptop install myself. I currently have a mac mini that I take in and out. Good luck
                          As you sow, so shall you reep
                          My Install- http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/show...-10-4-lcd.html

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Rafster View Post
                            I know, I have a T41...
                            Can you confirm that it supports 800x480 on the VGA output?
                            I have a chance buy a used one.

                            Thanks!

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                            • #15
                              I actually can't because it is a work computer.

                              The only way that I know of to find out is if you install Powerstrip (if it's compatible with the IBM graphics adapter)

                              http://www.pcworld.com/downloads/fil...scription.html

                              Rafster
                              Post # 3000

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