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Installing computer a piece at a time

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  • Installing computer a piece at a time


    I have been wanting a carputer for ages in one of my cars but haven't actually started on one until now. I am one of those people that kept on planning and replanning not getting much done other than looking at other peoples installs and trying to figure out prices.

    I don't have a radio in my car (haven't for about 2 months now) cause I pulled my radio to put in my wifes car so she could use the AUX port for her MP3 player and instead of getting a stereo I decided to try the carputer instead. So today I started that...

    Today I hooked up the wiring harness like any normal aftermarket stereo and put RCA plugs on the end of the speaker cables. I hooked up an adapter for my MP3 player so I know the speakers still work. They do...

    So now I am going to figure out what I want for a computer to see what i am spending and then get the power supply I need for it.

    OK so here is my first question. When i hooked the MP3 player up I noticed even at full volume it was not very loud. Do you think I am going to have the same problem when I have the computer hooked up? Should I hook up an amp so thay the speakers have alittle more power driving them or do you think its just the MP3 player that is low in output?

    I hate to ask such a stupid question (and I see tons of newbie posts just like mine) but I figured its better to ask then mess it up.

  • #2

    Ok I feel Stupid. I missed the wiki link and after I posted it I found it and saw...yes get an amp...I like the cute way it was put. (ie Sell yout FM modulator, sell you headunit and use the money to buy an amp) So now I feel reaaaaaaally stupid. But I will as this part anyway...can you recommend a good affordable amp for my stereo. Something with good sound...4 channel so I can surround sound it in affect (dont want just left and right...I would like to controll front and back...which taht would be all PC stuff but I would need a 4 channel amp anyway...right or am I thinking wrong?

    Sorry for being a moron and not reading before I posted....I have been up since 4am and its 11 now...I am tired.


    • #3
      Yup, good job finding that you do need amp. Some people use the built in amp in a HU, but I see you are going headless, which is a good choice.

      As for what type of amp, it all depends on what kind of person you are. If you arent an audiophile you probably wont notice the difference between a $4000 amp and a $400 amp.

      You might find this thread helpful:
      Fusion Brain Version 6 Released!
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      30 Digital Outputs -- Directly drive a relay
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      • #4

        I am thinking this...

        Eventually I might put subs in. I used to have subs in an old car and the guy that helped me do that install recommended i put a separate amp in for my speakers later on to drive them better instead of having 1 am work the sub and the speakers...which makes sense.

        So i was thinking a lower am that handled the speakers for now...then later on add a second amp for subs.

        What do you all think?


        • #5
          Sounds liek a good plan.


          • #6
            Having a seperate amp for your subs will allow you to have a crossover at the front end when you add your subs down the road, so it's a good choice.


            • #7
              Hey Draco,

              I'm a newbie to car pc'ing too.

              I started improving my car audio sound and it eventually led to a carpc...

              Over a year ago, I stumbled on (PE) online and the rest is history - they basically became my single source for most car audio stuff.

              I love great sounds, but am not rabidly audiophile, so I was able to find some good little car amps, speakers, l-pads, wiring, connectors...from PE, and put together a sound system for my Saturn wagon that sounds really nice, for about $600. I use my Zen mp3 player as audio source 'cause w/30 gb, a LOT of cd's fit...

              But I, too, wanted something more in sound. I was advised to scheck mp3car and I found the forums very helpful and the mp3car store full of neat stuff.

              I am longtime electronic tech with a relaxed style, so i did not torture myself checking out specs for a year before diving in. I currently have an unconverntional carpc setup which i won't go into here, but let me say that I'm sitting in my ride now, posting ad listenting to music sounding better than it ever did!

              Advice? Read a LOT of the FAQ's and posts, and print out what you might want to have as a bedtime story... All the reading and research can be tedious, but unless you're made of $$$, do your homework to save cash in the long run.

              It all can begin with a good little set of amps and speakers....check out PE

              Happy CarPC'ing!


              • #8
                Woo Hoo! I have an MP3 player hooked up. So I have tunes again. I am using this post ... ... for tracking the overall progress.