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How would you build it?

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  • How would you build it?

    Very new to the concept of carputers so I need some guidence. I would like to build with the capabilities for dvd, cd, mp3, divx, all those other common media formats, GPS, wireless internet, and also be able to handle games like battlefield 2 and the new Doom, tv tuner, radio tuner, and take video and audio coming from a ps2 or other game console. How would you pros go about building such a system? Heck even list a prototype build if you're willing and have the time. Sorry if this is just clutter on the board and thank you to anyone who replies.

  • #2
    sounds like u'll need a pc alot more powerful than the average carputer, but you'll prolly get flamed for askin questions like this, make sure u do alot of searching and be sure to chek out the faq emporium here http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=106

    good luck mate
    Im planning to sleep my way to the top! wake me up when im there.

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    • #3
      Yeah I know I get flammed at least once or twice for this. I've been reading evrything I could find all day but some of it is still going right over my head. There alot of different information to take in about carputers than what I'm used to in home pc's. Oh one thing I forgot to mention is that I live in Arizona where the heat can get quite extreme at times. Is there any problems or extra steps I will need to take to keep it running cool or are the built to run hotter than your average home pc?

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      • #4
        I would do it the same way if I were to build a regular computer, except I would look into different power sources and enclosures. My suggestion would be dropping the idea of playing modern games. If you do that you can get a realtively cheap laptop and there will be no need to build anything.
        Current Status: For Sale

        Specs
        - 1.5Ghz Toshiba Laptop (available - no screen)
        - Indash Motorized 7" VGA TS
        - DeLorme GPS (sold)
        - Power Inverter (sold)
        - Pioneer HU (sold)

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        • #5
          maybe if u just focus on making ure carputer powerful enough to handle dvd, cd, mp3, divx, GPS, internet, etc and leave the gaming side to the PS2 via av input. just a suggestion but would make much more sence and also be cheaper considering you wont seen to fork out the dolaars for a beefy system. so if this suits you, maybe stick to the 1ghz range cpu with about 256 mb ram and make sure with whatever monitor u buy, that it has av input
          have you considered building a system based on the epia boards? theyre motherboards with cpu imbedded and they require minnimum physical space and power, perfect for car-pc applications


          cheers, keep us updated
          Im planning to sleep my way to the top! wake me up when im there.

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          • #6
            I guess I'm asking to much with the gamming then huh? OK so what if I droped that aspect of it. What would I need in terms of specs to run an efficient system with all those other goodies I would like to have? HOw about my heat issue. Any thoughts on possible problems or solutions?

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            • #7
              well specs wise, like i said before, roughly 1ghz cpu, at least 256mb ram, the harddrive size is upto you (it really depends on what uses u have planned for it), you'll need to look into buying a psu designed for car pcs, the 2 leading brands are opus and M1. you'll want a touchscreen lcd for which there is plenty of info on throughout these forums and i could go on and on but the best way to decide is probaby look at the specs of someone elses setup, findout why they chose those parts, decide what parts would suit you best, then compose a proposed setup, and post here again with the proposed hardware to see it all is good (y)
              Im planning to sleep my way to the top! wake me up when im there.

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              • #8
                thanks MaHk

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                • #9
                  Hmm let me but in here.... You dont need to drop it... it will all depend on how much you are willing to pay, and how much room you have.

                  If you have room for a full size tower, a 10" or 12" or even 15" touchscreen, a GOOD battery, a large enough inverter, and a SDC compatible with an inverter then you are game...

                  You just need to go to your favorite computer supplier and purchase a PC powerful enough for all your games (what? P4 3.2? whatever ya want), with enough memory for those games, good video card, etc (maybe dual output so you can have back video with different screen) and so forth.

                  an inverter would allow you to hook it all up to a regular home 110vac computer psu...

                  I wouldnt do it... I think inverters are a PITA, I think your system will be VERY power hungry, you can damage or run flat your battery (if it isnt powerful enough), your system might not crank correctly, and you will have a wack job of fitting a large screen (to play those modern games, you arent planning on doing that on a 7" are you?)

                  anyways, it IS very possible, albeit it is probably more problematic than one would want...
                  Roy

                  2005 Range Rover 4.4
                  Any ideas for putting a PC in this? :)

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                  • #10
                    Yes I would have room for a fullsize tower but then I won't have much room for anything else. The more I think about it's really not very practical to try to cram that much into a system for me. My original thinking was to have a 7" screen in the center and another 10 or 12" screen on the passenger side. What are some reliable units for gps, tv, and fm radio that would be worth me looking into? I've been trying to find info on getting good signals for tv and radio but it seems that it is an uphill battle for the rest of you also. Would you guys suggest using a head unit for radio instead of the carputer?

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                    • #11
                      any headunit that has aux input would be perfect, that way you can just have the car-pcs audio-out running into the H/Us aux in plus ofcourse look for the features that u want eg mp3
                      Im planning to sleep my way to the top! wake me up when im there.

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                      • #12
                        so I would run a line out from the pc to the aux in of the h/u then from there preamp/out to my amps. Is that correct?

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                        • #13
                          yes, so thats another feature u want in ure HU, rca preamp outs, then switch between the two via the HU
                          Im planning to sleep my way to the top! wake me up when im there.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            full_bleed:

                            I think the biggest problem would be HEAT (this has been mentioned earlier, but anyways). Extreme hardware for playing new games causes pretty nice amount's of heat. So basicly without proper cooling system your carputer will crash and it might even broke because overheating.

                            Think it this way: Do you think you can use, let's say, p4 3.2GHz with any amount of memory, 160GB hard drive and something like GeForce 6800 or Radeon x800 for graphics card (for pretty nice gaming experiense with new games like BF2) in closed place like closet?

                            My opinion: i Don't really think so, or not for a long term of use anyways. Even most basic PC:s (something like p2 200MHz) will crash eventually in ftp/http server use after couple days when used in closet (yeah, i've tryed this ).

                            These new systems heat up pretty much even in well airconditioned spaces (hardcore use like gaming multiple hours straight).


                            But let's cut the bull*hit and get to the business . Here's few things to think about:
                            • First of all, make sure that there's proper airconditioning for PC
                            • Make sure that there's enough power for system (if you think your primary battery wont be enough, maybe you could place another battery at trunk to power up those extra electric devices like that PC, screen(s), playstation and what ever else you got in mind. WARNING: It's possible that there will be some harmfull fumes caused by battery recharging so be carefull and sure that there's decent airconditioning at the trunk ). Also it's better to buy larger inverter (or maybe large power supply?) than is needed just for the future add-ons.
                            • There's going to be lot's of cables so it's better to plan this part many, many, many times

                            And then possible solution for build:
                            TRUNK:
                            • PC with decent hardware
                            • Also possible amps
                            • That extra battery if needed (if using this, you got to remember to put extra fuse's and i strongly recommend use of relay to cut the power from main battery when car is parked and "offline" . This is because that extra battery will be just fine for giving the power needed for pc and stuff and your main battery wont be juiced to empty)
                            • Of cource some nice lightning's (neons and stuff) and plexi glass for nicer look

                            Cabinet (or what ever you want to call it ) :
                            • 7"-> screen (with vga AND av-in rca) of your choise to dash with installation of your taste. Plug your PC to screen with vga and playstation/dvd-player/anything else to av-in rca.
                            • If you are playing those dvd's, mp3's and audio cd's from ps2/PC, then you don't have to install additional dvd/cd/mp3 player to center console and u can use that extra space to install that screen (if it will fit)
                            • Playstations and other s*it can be installed under the seat's pretty nicely
                            • You could install some minikeyboard and maybe trackball mouse to dash to control the PC (only if you don't got touchscreen)
                            There's some info for a start. There's lot's of other things to notice and so many ways to do things that it would take too much time to write about all of that. I was thinking that it would be nice to do some kind of tutorial like: step to step quide for car-PC install (with additional screens, input devices and stuff like that). So new guys could get inside of this "hobby" without doing massive amounts of mistakes, and . Maybe i'll write somekind of step by step quide in future

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                            • #15
                              THanks Jamiks that was very useful information. Ok here's another question. If I went with having a pc and a h/u would the passenger in the vehicle be abl to throw on some headphones and listen to a totally different cd or play a game while the h/u plays audio through the speakers?

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