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General Questions - Clarifications Requested

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  • General Questions - Clarifications Requested

    As most of you are, I am interested in building an in-car entertainment system. I'm definitely watching my budget as I'm struggling (financially) through college right now. If someone has the time, please read this post and help me gain a better understanding of the hobby's background and such.

    1) I am thinking of using the VIA EPIA Nehemiah M10000 1Ghz All In One Motherboard from Anyone use this particular mo-bo? Looks sweet with built in 10/100, 5.1 sound, multimedia graphics, etc. Any known problems with WinXP or Linux?

    2) I would like the Lilliput 7" XGA TFT Car Monitor (VGA) with touchscreen. I can get one for $228 (display) + $35 (touch screen) + $34 (shipping) = $297 (total) on ebay. Looks like it comes with everything you could ever need or want in a screen like this. Any thoughts on this price or other (better) units?

    3) I see Opus has a DC-DC power supply for Auto PC use. They only seem to have a 12VDC to ATX... does this work for the ITX motherboards too? Seems like DC-DC solutions from Opus are the best bet for safe shutdown, etc.

    4) Is this hobby way more popular in Europe? Seems like every site I'm going to is shipping out of England or something.

    Thanks for any help. It's greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    Well, first, a fair warning, some people are probably going to yell at you about not searching the forums, because these questions have all been answered already. But here is a quick rundown of answers:

    1) Many people (including myself) use the M10000, and have no conflicts with windows xp, it is perfect for car-pc use

    2) Many people also use the Lilliput, and it seems to be about the best value you can get, check out

    3) Many people use the Opus, and swear by it. I use an inverter setup, because of the price of an Opus.

    4) Us Carputer people are from all over the world, from here in the U.S. to India, to UK, to Australia.

    Also, make sure you look at all of the cars in the "Show off your projects" Forum, it will give you ideas and answer some questions
    My OLD Carputer:
    Currently, Don't have a carputer :( I sold my lincoln and bought a '93 Acura Vigor, plan on putting a carputer in it one of these days. You can see my vigor at: This Site


    • #3
      Thanks for everything. You were most helpful. I know about searching and I have done so. But sometimes things are outdated (prices/models) or not directly related.

      Did you design your power supply that you referred to? If so, do you have instructions on the web or this forum?

      How about that Opus DC-DC though? Is that for ITX too?

      Thanks again.


      • #4
        P.S. Sea Lab is the greatest show ever. I hope I don't die from laughing so hard while watching it in my car.


        • #5
          Mini-ITX is just a "size" form factor. All voltages/connectors and mounting points are standard ATX, and therefore the Opus will work.

          When reading your first post, you said "I am watching my budget", but it's good to see that you are not scrimping on any of the important bits You are budgeting for probably the best PSU, and a VGA screen, which is very important IMO.

          Good luck with your install, it's a great (if expensive in the end) hobby to have!!

          Co-Developer of A.I.M.E.E


          • #6
            Opus/Lilliput/M10000 is probably the #1 combo for car computers at the moment. I built mine before Lilliputs were cheap, so I have Opus/M10000 and a composite screen, but will be upgrading to lilliput sometime soon.

            You will learn more from reading every thread in the first two pages of of the posts in 'show off your project' than from anywhere else on the 'net...I highly recomend it, it gives you a picture of what has worked and is working, and all the different ways to do it.
            MP3 MR2 (click here for details)
            Hardware: EPIA M10000, 512Meg Ram, 5.6"TFT, Opus 150watt DC-DC PSU
            Software: Windows 2000, Media Engine 2.0