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  • Powering laptop

    How do you power a laptop to use it as a CarPC? Do you run wires from the battery back to the power adaptor of the laptop and power it that way? Or is there some other way?

  • #2
    There are a few options, depending on the power requirements of your laptop.
    A car power adapter works well.
    There are regulators like the Carnetix P1900 that work well with many models of laptop (but not all!)
    An inverter will work, but isn't the ideal setup.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



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    • #3
      By car power adapter you just mean a charger that plugs into the cigarette lighter?

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      • #4
        Yes.
        Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
        How about the Wiki?



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        • #5
          Lind power adapters

          I like the Lind DC to DC power adapters designed for autos. I use an automotive sytle relay latched by accessory power to cut fused 12Vs to the adapter. This then turns off the power to the DC to DC power adapter when you turn off the accessory power.
          The laptop will still be powered by its' internal battery (but won't drain the car battery).

          check out http://www.lindelectronics.com


          Neil
          neilhart
          aka Neil
          My Domain is www.sfba-corvette.com check it out!

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          • #6
            okay, say you use one of them, what turns the laptop off after you leave the car? wouldnt it drain your battery keeping the laptop charged?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by tacobandit View Post
              okay, say you use one of them, what turns the laptop off after you leave the car? wouldnt it drain your battery keeping the laptop charged?
              You can get a startup/shutdown controller for this purpose. You don't need one, but it makes life convenient.
              Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
              How about the Wiki?



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              • #8
                the best way to use a car adaptor with a laptop & no shut down controller is to simply wire the car adaptor to only have power with ign, then set the laptop to react with a shutdown or standby/ hybernate etc when on battery power for what ever length of time you choose. I've been meaning to write-up a comprehensive power guide for laptop installs for a while now, just haven't had the time
                MY NEWEST INSTALL:modded infiniti fx with big screen

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

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by turbocad6 View Post
                  I've been meaning to write-up a comprehensive power guide for laptop installs for a while now, just haven't had the time
                  That would be awsome! Can't wait!
                  Worklogs: 08 Sequoia Platinum Carputer (In Progress!)
                  Skin: MetroSex on the Beach preview

                  07 Infiniti Fx35 (done!) & 06 Infiniti M35 (gone...)

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                  • #10
                    So what would be better: powering laptop through auto-adapter or using Carnetix PXXXX ?

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                    • #11
                      depends, if your laptop can run off the voltage required for it from the ps, then it could certainly be used for it's sole power no problem. if you did that you might also need to use a seperate pol power supply for either your 12v accesories or 5v acessories, but that's not so bad really.

                      I like using a regular atx power supply & have that trip a relay to power a car adaptor for the laptop so then the atx power supply can be used to power all acessories you might add, the atx & the car adaptor should be more than enough to power anything you can add to your system. it may be slightly wasteful in that the 3.3v won't be very useful for much, but at least you know that you have enough power for everything else you might add.

                      I guess I would look at the whole system & decide what else I would be powering... if the ps you have in mind will power everything you'll add including the laptop then that's great, but if your going to have to add another ps for accessories anyway, then I would consider using an atx supply & a car adaptor.

                      if you used an atx supply tripping a relay for a car adaptor then it could still do the startup/shutdown for you... I've done them both ways & unless it's a minimalist system your building, I like the atx/ car adaptor solution better as it has more room for expansion & will allow you to grow the system without headaches, it sucks to try to add somethng to your install & realize that you don't have enough power for it. no matter what, you'll probably need 3 different voltages, 5v, 12v & whatever voltage the laptop runs at, of course the ps & a seperate pol can do the job, but if your going to add a lot of other stuff you could get to the point of needing more than one seperate pol's.. that won't happen normaly with an atx/car adaptor solution.
                      MY NEWEST INSTALL:modded infiniti fx with big screen

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

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                      • #12
                        What if I were to wire a cigarette lighter plug in behind the dash to the ignition/accessory wire going to the headunit to power the laptop and then another one for the screen?

                        That way when the car was off neither device would be drawing power and killing my battery?

                        I only plan to hook up the laptop and screen in the dash area so adding things should not be a problem.

                        I got the Xenarc700IDT for Christmas if anyone has some personal experience with hooking one of those up.

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                        • #13
                          I have the same setup right now, and I do have problems with it: if laptop is charging and my headlights are on, monitor screen goes blank occasionally due to power shortage/spikes.

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                          • #14
                            use shutcontrol

                            its in the software forum

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                            • #15
                              You could also configure the laptop to shut down after X minutes on battery power

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