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volv s80 ideas for carpc

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  • volv s80 ideas for carpc

    Long time reader of this forum first time post. I've had tons of ideas floating in my mind on what to do for a carpc. Because I dont have that much money to spend (about $1000), I want to get the most out of it. With also the possibility of upgrading when I have more money in the future. Current I drive a 2002 Volvo S80. It does not have the factor navigation system in it. So I wanted to add one in, I looked at what volvo offers, but the system is kinda shotty....not even touch screen. So I looked in to carpcs. The major items I wanted to add to my car were

    GPS, Ipod integration, bluetooth phone connect, backup camera

    Heres some of the choices I have looked into.

    1. Fit the system with the aftermarket but still OEM motorized screen aboved the center dash, I can also added a backup camera for 100 more bucks.

    pro. straight forward and costs about 500 bucks. Self install and parts from ebay.

    con. all I added was gps and camera, no touch screen, no ipod support, no bluetooth. No real future upgrades.

    2. Next option was to add the PIONEER AVIC-Z2 with a double din adapter from volvo to replace the factor HU radio unit.

    pro. adds everything I wanted and looks pretty sweet

    con. costs me a leg and arm. The unit with no accessories from ebay runs 1000 and then i need all the separate dongles to get everything to work, thats at least another 400 bucks. This also leaves me no room for any future upgrades.

    3. Carpc, something thats pre-built such as the G4 infill I was on the store part of this site.

    pro. Everything I have ever wanted, can get future upgrades

    con. Again the cost will probably kill me. On top of that its out of stock. So god knows when it will be available again.

    4. Built my own setup. So I will probably find a double din metal frame from somewhere for real cheap and built a small pc there for pretty cheap, because I can get parts for PC's for very low prices. And then add a touch screen monitor to it. But I run into a lot of problems.

    Problems. If I bolt in the touch screen, I will have no room to put a cd/dvd slot. As you can see from this picture of the adapter, there is no room, I thought about having the drive vertically on the sides, but measurements are gonna be way to close, and I dont want to buy any parts to test out only to find out its not gonna fit.

    But I wouldnt know how to build my own motorized screen, I thought about buying a cheaper setup that has the screen and cd/dvd player and is already motorized and gutting it and putting my own computer in, but I have no experience, to find out its not going to work and have my money to go to waste.

    So iam reaching out for help on ideas from the community. Hopping you guys will have some brilliant ideas. Again I want a very clean install, dont want any cd drives in the glove box or anything like that. Just a double din unit. Thanks in advanced.

  • #2


    • #3
      alright so after some more researching and looking around, I found the dww-6500 from digitalww, this item seemed like the perfect fit for this project, its priced reasonably and also I think its just exactly what I needed. But I wanted to have a few things clarified before I pull the trigger.

      So this unit comes with the motorized lcd and a dvd drive, with built in amp and am/fm tunner and also support a USB connection to control the touch screen from a computer. So if iam understanding this correctly, the system will function as a stand alone out of the box unit right? As in it has its proprietary software built in that will play music and such. So suppose I was to connect a computer to it, I can run whatever software but just from the computer. Is there any way to integrate the tuner and connect it to the computer so everything can be controlled from one software sitting on the computer.

      In a nut shell, I guess the question would be, could I put a pico-itx board in that case with a SSD and maybe bluebooth dongle and gps dongle. And maybe gut the hardware already in the case besides the tuner and am and in the end use the monitor to control everything software based on the computer including the radio.

      In the end I guess what I really want out of the dw-6500 is the screen thats motorized with the built in cd/dvd drive and the tuner and amp. I dont need any of their other software.


      • #4
        i have a selfmade motorized screen, its a lot of work, but if you need ideas on that...
        Cold weather mobo list: Copy the list and add your board
        my hidden screen in action (youtube) , the worklog , RR Volvoskin


        • #5
          wow rijk I just saw the youtube video of your homemade motorized lcd, thats sweet. Yeah i would definitely appreciate some tips on where to get started. What hardware you are using, and such.


          • #6
            You also looked at this one:

            The no. 4 picture is the parts i bought along with the servo for a remote sailing-boot (picture 7)
            The start + stops works with a relays. The motor is powered with 5 volt of the m2. (
            Is a big companies probably one in your country as well.
            The relays is operated by the ignition-key.

            But before all this you need to take measure the amount of space you have for the movable parts.
            Mine for instants needed the frame (picture no 4) to transfer the power of the motor to the top.
            On that picture there are also 4 magnets. one to hold te screen in the closed position and 3 to hold it in place in the op end position. The tape on one of them is to reduce the magnetic force just info to let the motor close the screen again.

            On basis of the measurement decide which screen you use and how it will move. Draw everything first!!
            Make sure you can adjust your start ? stop point!

            Leave room for the cable of the screen to move, that one nearly caught me out

            On last warning, its gone take a lot of time
            Cold weather mobo list: Copy the list and add your board
            my hidden screen in action (youtube) , the worklog , RR Volvoskin


            • #7
              yeah that does seem like an incredible amount of time to be invested. I just seems to be to be easier to hack up a pre-made double din unit. I dont know maybe I am way wrong. I was wondering how you hooked up your volvo audio. Is the amp built into the Hu radio unit? or is there a seperate amp somewhere else? Also how did you handle the am/fm tuner? Do I need some sort of USB device for my car to use the tuner? I am so lost with so many question.

              Thanks again!


              • #8
                The head is out of the car, radio = HQCT, cpc is directly connected to 2 amps
                one for the 4 speakers and one for the sub. Take an externaal soundcard, the onboard doesn't sound good (mine was 7.1)

                if you want to hook up your head:
                Cold weather mobo list: Copy the list and add your board
                my hidden screen in action (youtube) , the worklog , RR Volvoskin


                • #9
                  Where did you buy the Frame?

                  I like one to buy too.



                  • #10
                    alright iam back again, been a little busy for the past couple weeks. I looked around for 7" touch screens and came to the following conclusion,
                    1. Damn they are expensive
                    2. I think I can actually fit a screen and a slim DVD drive in the double din adapter (I bought it from volvo, cost me $70 bucks including shipping)

                    I explored some more options and saw these choices

                    1. Asus eee-pc ($300), its 7" screen and for $40 more I can mod in a touch screen controller. I would need to add a GPS dongle $40, Slim DVD drive $80, HQCT $200, bluetooth module (iam sure I got one lying around), wifi card, (same)

                    Is there a cheaper alternative to the HQCT from mp3car? That seems really really expensive, maybe somehow hook up an xm radio? I dont know.

                    2. Use a 7" digital photo frame and start finding old laptops and adding parts. ($140 for photo frame and a touch screen module) I dont even know if this idea has any chance of working. I dont know how to hack the photo frame to accept external input.

                    3. I saw a new 7" liliput LCD (2008 model) for $170 bucks shipping included on ebay. And then same with idea two (2), scrounge up a laptop and add parts lying around.

                    Idea 1 is the most probable of working out but costs approx $460 without HQCT.

                    Oh again, I want to be able to fit everything inside the double din unit (I know its a stretch)

                    Hit me with some inputs, ideas, thoughts, random acts of kindness? Donations? Haha


                    • #11
                      alright I am sure this has been asked before, but I dont know what search for as to key word. But my question would be, is there any chance I can hack a double din pre made unit that has everything, such as


                      to run linux or xp?


                      • #12
                        alternative to HQCT, its for the American market (tunning steps)
                        Cold weather mobo list: Copy the list and add your board
                        my hidden screen in action (youtube) , the worklog , RR Volvoskin


                        • #13
                          So if i am understanding your previous reply correctly

                          The head is out of the car, radio = HQCT, cpc is directly connected to 2 amps
                          one for the 4 speakers and one for the sub. Take an externaal soundcard, the onboard doesn't sound good (mine was 7.1)
                          The Volvo amp is not inside the HU headunit right? I can just take audio cable out of a computer and hook it up directly to the wires when I disconnect from the headunit?

                          I looked at the alternative you had posted as to HQCT, I dont really understand how the HD radio cables work? Do I take the antenna and connect it to that and then connect to the serial port on a laptop?

                          Btw I decided to go with an eeepc, its small enough to fit everything inside a double din with some hacking and its fairly cheap.

                          Heres a list I compiled as to cost of this project

                          EEE PC $299
                          Touch Screen $40
                          HQCT $200
                          PCI Soundcard $20
                          SlimDVD Drive $30
                          GPS Dongle $40
                          Power Supply $80
                          XM Radio ???
                          Bluetooth Dongle $10
                          USB Hub $5
                          Backup Camera $30
                          Radar Detector ???
                          OBD-II ???
                          SlimLine Drive Adapter $10

                          Total: $764

                          ??? - Dont know if I am gonna put in yet.

                          Good site that I found for EEE mods.


                          Maybe I should start a work log. Where do I post one?


                          • #14
                            the cable is made for the alternative radio, the Hd-Radio Visteon

                            more info:
                            Originally posted by krnpimpsta View Post
                            I have the Visteon HD Radio unit with Mitch's cable. It works great and there is nothing "unfinished" about it. I have it plugged into my line-in on my soundcard, but mitch's cable is a serial cable that is used to control the visteon unit from my computer. Integrating it into road runner was as easy as copying one directory and adding a line into my RR config file.

                            I only have one touchscreen LCD that I use for everything.. you don't need or use the separate LCD/controller that comes with the Visteon. In fact, you can't use it because mitch's cable takes up the port that it's supposed to plug into.

                            Hope that helps.. I really recommend mitch's cable & the visteon.. it works great and I have perfect reception, equal to or better than what I had with my stock radio.

                            Nice stang.
                            Originally posted by blk02si View Post
                            My radio reception is also much better than my stock headunit. When it's in HD mode its as clear a CD no doubt.

                            The HD tuner is by far the best AM/FM solution, and this is coming from someone who has tried them all including the expensive/rare HQCT module. In fact I own 2 HD tuners and am in the process of adding the second to my home theater PC.

                            Also, just a FYI, the Visteon unit is actually a standalone tuner that has been reverse engineered (by mitch) to allow PC interfacing.


                            I don't have a volvo amp, i have pioneer. Most heads have an internal amp. But if tour car has an optional volvo amp the most likely place to find it is under the front passengerseat.

                            Cold weather mobo list: Copy the list and add your board
                            my hidden screen in action (youtube) , the worklog , RR Volvoskin


                            • #15
                              Any idea where I can find out what kind of power the OEM 2002 volvo s80 radio head unit is cranking out? So I can find a comprable amp. I dont need anything crazy, so I dont want to over do it, but I also want to take full advantage of the pretty nice speakers that comes with the car.