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  • reality check

    This is going to be a long one, so don't bother reading if you're in a hurry :-)

    I'm still in the planning stages of my carputer project (mainly due to the fact that i haven't got the car yet) In a couple of weeks it should be there. It's a black Toyota Celica, so fellow celica owners, feel free to toss in some ideas :-)

    So let's start with what i know.
    My setup will be as follows
    DASH
    - motorised in dash screen (if the ever arive)
    - slimline DVD CDRW slot loading attached through USB
    - USB hub
    - USB hard drive
    - USB keyboard
    - USB card reader

    TRUNK
    - epia MII 120000 + 512Mb PC2100
    - opus 150W
    - 3.5" HD

    DUNNO WHERE
    - USB GPS receiver
    - USB wifi reciever

    Everything is going to be powerd off the opus.

    Ok, now you got an idea of what i'm planning to do here are the questions
    1. power on and off.
    I would like to have my computer power on with the remote door unlock, and power off when i remove the key from the ignition. Problem i got with this (appart from finding the signal cables to tap into) is what will happen when i open the door to get something out of the car, without driving. Is there a way to halt the computer in this case ?
    Ideally i would need a system that goes
    remote door unlock -> boot
    wait 60s for ignition
    if ignition -> keep running until key removed
    if no ignition -> shut down

    2. wifi adapters
    I must admit that i didn't on this topic, so feel free to rant.
    What USB wifi receivers are good, and what antennas are good. I would like to get the best reception possible, so a signal booster is a must-have. I live on the 4th floor and i want my car to be able to pick up my network when parked in the street.
    Can anybody give me his ideas/experiences with this ?

    3. HD
    I've read somewhere (couldn't find it again) that it's not a good idea to have a 3.5" HD since they run of 12V and an in car PSU can't deliver a steady enough 12V.
    Is this true for the Opus, or is this only for the simple inverters ?

    4. Fuse
    I will have a power lead directly from the battery past the fuse-box to the Opus, the question now is what fuse should i use ? And are there any other things i should take care of when doing this ?

    5. Cooling
    This one goes out to the celica owners. In the booth there are two compartments under the carpet (with the jack in) I read on a celica-site that the one on the left has an air outlet behind the rear bumper. Can you get to that in order to evac some of the hot air produced by the computer ?

    6. Radio
    I would like to be able to get some FM/RDS reception in my car in order to listen to the news once in a while. I found the project that some electronics guys are creating, but last time i checked it hasn't been finished yet.
    Are there any GOOD alternatives in the mean-time, or will i be forced to keep a head-unit in the car for this purpose ?

    I think that's about it for my questions. If you have any suggestions please don't hold back. I would like to make my first carputer a decent one.

    Thanks for the input

    John_duh
    '03 BMW 320d (E46)
    Carputer progress : [#----------]
    Gathering information ... currently using my phone connected through BT as carputer
    '99 BMW Z3 coupe 2.8
    Carputer progress : [-----------]
    No work done yet

  • #2
    "USB GPS receiver"

    location on the roof on your car outside to get good satellite lock ons dont worry it wont fall off or get damaged by the weather.

    "6. Radio
    I would like to be able to get some FM/RDS reception in my car in order to listen to the news once in a while. I found the project that some electronics guys are creating, but last time i checked it hasn't been finished yet.
    Are there any GOOD alternatives in the mean-time, or will i be forced to keep a head-unit in the car for this purpose ?"


    xm would be the best for news. you can always use an amp instead of the head unit but thats even more money to dish out and to me the head unit is quite sufficent in sound (well at least in my mazda 6).

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by zoomzoommazda6
      "USB GPS receiver"

      location on the roof on your car outside to get good satellite lock ons dont worry it wont fall off or get damaged by the weather.

      "6. Radio
      I would like to be able to get some FM/RDS reception in my car in order to listen to the news once in a while. I found the project that some electronics guys are creating, but last time i checked it hasn't been finished yet.
      Are there any GOOD alternatives in the mean-time, or will i be forced to keep a head-unit in the car for this purpose ?"


      xm would be the best for news. you can always use an amp instead of the head unit but thats even more money to dish out and to me the head unit is quite sufficent in sound (well at least in my mazda 6).

      A: USB GPS WILL GET DAMAGED OUTSIDE YOUR CAR!!!! YOU WILL NEED TO WATERPROOF IT - peopl ehave done it so s e a r c h! not everyone has been succesful Please be careful what advice you give people.

      look up OEM GPS for an alternative to a USB mouse. it uses a GPSmodule with external reciever. but it is more expensive. You can use your GPS in the windscreen ok a lot fo the time but they quite often need a metal base to stick to (magnet) and this improves the reception.

      B: Zoomzoom - the guy lives in belgium! look at his name. I dont think they have XM radio in Belgium

      as fro FM and RDS - nothing decent yet. There is one in development. i am keeping my HU as i like radio for now. eventually it will be removed when the mp3car one comes out.

      Comment


      • #4
        I can help you out with a couple of things.
        Originally posted by John_Duh
        3. HD
        I've read somewhere (couldn't find it again) that it's not a good idea to have a 3.5" HD since they run of 12V and an in car PSU can't deliver a steady enough 12V.
        Is this true for the Opus, or is this only for the simple inverters ?
        I run a 3.5" HD in my car as do many others, there has not to my knowledge been a problem so far with in-car PSU's

        Originally posted by John_Duh
        4. Fuse
        I will have a power lead directly from the battery past the fuse-box to the Opus, the question now is what fuse should i use ? And are there any other things i should take care of when doing this ?
        You need to run 2 in-line fuses, one at either end to prevent short circuits.

        Hope this helps and good luck with the install.
        2Fast's Tumbleweed - Spag bol's Tumbleweed - 2Fast's site

        Comment


        • #5
          well the usb receiver Im going to use doesnt need waterproofing plus im not gonna spend that much money on it; thats what ebays for

          http://www.maptown.com/rikalinegps6010.html

          they dont have xm in australia? really?

          Comment


          • #6
            they dont have xm in australia? really?
            No. And they don't have it in Belgium, either. The sats for XM are geostationary and only have a good view of North America. GPS sats are low earth orbit and circle the earth, giving full coverage.

            John_Duh, you can "dip" your GPS in Plasti-Kote to weatherproof it, but try it inside the car. Many users have gotten good results with the GPS inside the car.

            Starting the PC with the car remote - I don't have an Opus but my Carnetix 1260 has an option that permits this and the Opus might as well. Someone with an Opus can likely inform you on that. To keep the computer from starting when you just run out to the car, use the key and unlock the door without activating the remote unlock.

            I had problems with a 3.5" drive in my car, but that was using an ITPS. I don't think it's a problem with an Opus.
            Originally posted by ghettocruzer
            I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
            Want to:
            -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
            -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

            Comment


            • #8
              Thanks for quick replys

              Radio
              Indeed, XM radio is not an option here in Belgium. I guess i'll be running a head unit and a carputer in parallel. My car has a separate amp, so is it a good idea to feed both the carputer and head unit signal to the amp, or should i make a loop such as Head unit -> carputer -> amp ?

              GPS
              I'm thinking about modding my 3rd brake light so that it can house both the GPS and Wifi receiver. I think this is as close as both will get to the outside of the car, since i don't want a GPS brick laying on my roof.

              power options
              I don't want to use the key to open the car, since that will run me into trouble with the alarm. (normal key opening doesn't turn the alarm of)
              Anybody know a bit of electronics that can give me the schematics for a delay switch as described above .... or an alternative ?
              '03 BMW 320d (E46)
              Carputer progress : [#----------]
              Gathering information ... currently using my phone connected through BT as carputer
              '99 BMW Z3 coupe 2.8
              Carputer progress : [-----------]
              No work done yet

              Comment


              • #9
                Can't put my finger on it but just recently there was a thread on a delay circuit. Very simple, included a capacitor and relay and the formula to figure the resister required for the time. Try a search on "Delay circuit".

                Also, try a search on "3rd brake light" or "GPS brake" or some combination. I recall someone doing this as well.

                As for the sound from the carputer, it will be up to your preference. If you run it into the HU, you can control the volume directly at the HU. If you run it to the amp, you'll need to control it from the carputer unless you connect it to the steering wheel controls (if you have them).
                Originally posted by ghettocruzer
                I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
                Want to:
                -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
                -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

                Comment

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