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Choice on Hardware, C3 vs athlon x64.

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  • Choice on Hardware, C3 vs athlon x64.

    Hello, I am working on a linux system for my 2004 350z. I've been reading quite a bit on the typical install on these cars, overhead 03' cubby in my 2004 with a 7"..

    I have a dilemma. I have access to either a Wyse v90 Winterm(1gig, 1 gig ram, 2 gig flash). At first I thought this wasn't the ideal option, but after reading I have mixed emotions. The Wyse v90 has the C3 1.0 cpu, which I've head both raves and rants about it's performance ability. The 2 gig flash is actually installed into an IDE header. My initial thought was to use the onboard flash to install my OS, and base apps. Then use a USB drive for storing data(music, etc).

    I also have my previous Desktop, an Athlon x64 5800+ (2.8 Dual core), on a mini-atx board with 4 gigs of ram. I had some heat issues with the machine previously, however it now has an aftermarket heatsink on it, and those issues were resolved. They also only happen if I was gaming/youtube/e-mail all at the same time for an extended time. I don't think my carPC would push those limits.

    Goals for my system:

    Linux OS -- I work with SUSE/SLES daily, and run ubuntu at home. However, I chose gentoo for the v90 if I went that route. If I went with the athlon I may go with LinuxICE or another flavor, or even gentoo. )
    GPS -
    MP3 Music
    Internet connectivity through tethering with my iphone, probably bluetooth.
    Either Satellite radio and/or Pandora(by using internet with iphone).-- I live in a 3g area.
    Maybe OBDII access, I haven't done any research on what I can do with my 350z.
    7" Touch screen in dash.

    I know this will be a never ending project, but I can't decide if I am better off going with the v90 C3 for this, or my athlon setup.

    Wyse V90 Pros:
    Cost(less than 100$)
    Lower power consumption(<20w vs 90+w for the athlon)
    Wyse v90 Cons:
    Performance, Slow CPU, not designed for high end performance.
    Lack of Expandability, no pci slots and limited USB.
    IDE/USB only HDD

    Athlon Pros:
    Performance, 2.8 dual core is more than i'd ever need in a car.
    Expandability (Wifi card instead of USB, Sound card, etc).
    Onboard Video(Wyse does as well, but my mobo has it built in.. so no need for a card)
    Athlon Cons:
    Power Consumption! I assume i'd need an inverter for the wyse as well, since I doubt there are any DC-DC transformers for a wyse v90.. However i'd need a larger one, and concerned the system is too much for my car.
    Size, Will take up more room. Though, still out of sight.
    Cost(I reused most of my parts, so I'll need a new PSU, and case).
    Heat(More Heat than the wyse).

    Any suggestions? I've read around and really can't come to a conclusion. I don't want to risk damaing any of my electrical system in my car by running the athlon, but I don't want to spend the time building the wyse linux install just to be disappointed by performance.

    I hope this isn't too much of a 'spoon fed' kind of question..

  • #2
    Another option is replace that power hungry CPU with something more power efficient, such as an Athlon X2 4850e (2.5 GHz dual core), which has a TDP of 45W (about $56 new online). It will run cooler, and will let you use a smaller (and cheaper) DC-DC power supply, such as the M2-ATX.


    • #3
      That is an excellent idea Kross, I hadn't considered that or even looked at what other CPU's my board could handle.

      Has anyone started with a VIA Nehemiah and been disapointed? How quickly did you 'outgrow' it?


      • #4

        The C3 is a bit outdated for most car-pc applications nowadays

        The C7-M still manages
        The C7-D just runs too hot

        The Nano CPU is perfectly acceptable for most applications

        The Dual-Core Nano CPU will kick arse (whenever it reaches production! heh)