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I am ready to get started, what's a good place?

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  • I am ready to get started, what's a good place?

    I am looking to do a 2003 Toyota Matrix install. I've seen some good threads about the car, and pretty much plan to borrow a lot of ideas from them.

    The problem is, i am kinda having a hard time getting started (mainly since i am a bit overwhelmed) but i think i have an idea of what i should do. From what i've seen in MatrixPC's and Matrix_24's installs, i should get a head unit, since i can't really adopt what i already have.

    So, i am thinking that maybe that would be a good place for me to start. If i just rip out my exisisting head unit and install a new one. This way, i'll at least get my hands dirty, and then i'll have a big hole in my car's dashboard, and that should be enough motivation for me to proceed.

    Is that a good idea? For a car noob, is installing a new head unit fairly straight forward?

  • #2
    how newb r u ? and yes a hole in the dash will induce spending ! but atleast get the stuff you need and test the pc and make sure it's ready 2 go, then take-out your current stuff ! you'll need a amp if there's no head unit 4 sound ! it's like having a baby but without all the blood but there will be crying !
    Underconstruction for 2007 !!!!

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    • #3
      i am probably as noob as it gets, in terms of the car
      i am not worried about building the PC itself

      i am starting to debate on whether of not to get another head unit, or get an amp

      i am also considering building a PC small enough to fit into the dash.

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      • #4
        Take a look at the FAQ Emporium. Specifically, the FAQ to the FAQ's, which you can reach by clicking the link in my signature. You'll want to read the one on how to get sound to your PC and there are a couple on how to get started.

        In addition, take a look at the main page of the wiki. It lays out the main categories that you should be aware of when building a car PC. Not all of the headers are fleshed out yet, but a search back on the forums on those topics will usually get you some information on 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

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        • #5
          ok, i am gonna start drawing diagrams this weekend. My goal is to build everything in dash. I think i'll go with an amp, rather then a separate head unit.
          I'll take some measurements, and do a cardboard mockup of the PC.

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          • #6
            Get a new HU, it make thing easier and nicer sound. The factory HU is NOT worth to keep and it make planning much complicated.
            If you can get your hand on the radio bezel for cheap from fleebay or local junkyard, do your fab on that extra bezel so you don't have to drive around with a big hole on the dash.
            I think the Lilliput (not exactly sure of modle #) EB7 (or the Ex audio twin) is a much better fit for the double DIN openning as it is wider instead of taller like the Lilliput 619. The result is less fab work.
            The bottom part where the power outlet is a perfect fit for a single DIN HU. You just have to make some creative bracket to support the HU from the back.
            Other than that, thing is very straight forward. Just need to run power cables and such. The beauty about this car and its twin (Vibe) is you can rip the car a part without using any tool.
            2004 Matrix XR A7N8X-VM/400 AMD XP-M 2500+, DS-ATX
            89 Supra Turbo P3 [email protected]/Abit BE6 II, Alpine M-BUS Car2PC.
            Y2K Accord Dell GX150
            RoadRunner is the best FE PERIOD
            EmoRebellion is a SCAMMER

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            • #7
              i have no desire to keep the HU, but i thought i'd go with an amp instead.
              What are the disadvantages?

              Also, since you built one (and i plan to steal ideas from you) is it feasible to build the PC into the dash? Or do i have it have to put it under the seat / in the trunk?

              Thanks!

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              • #8
                Well, I like to have the HU because I do listen to radio sometime especially when on short trip I don't want the PC to be on. Easier volume control. Those are the only advantage with the HU. But with it, installation is more complicated than with just an Amp.

                Putting a PC behind the dash or on the seat is depend on what mobo size you are using. There is space behide the radio big enough for an ITX mobo, but also watchout for the "bar" behide it because it will interfere with anything that is deeper than the factory HU. Another thing to watchout for when putting a PC in there is HEAT. Make sure you have propper ventilation/air circulation or PC overheat is very likely.
                2004 Matrix XR A7N8X-VM/400 AMD XP-M 2500+, DS-ATX
                89 Supra Turbo P3 [email protected]/Abit BE6 II, Alpine M-BUS Car2PC.
                Y2K Accord Dell GX150
                RoadRunner is the best FE PERIOD
                EmoRebellion is a SCAMMER

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                • #9
                  OK, sounds reasonable.
                  I am looking at the ITX motherboards, and will definitely take a close look at cooling.

                  As for the head unit, i have been eying one with build in HD radio, so i'll check that out. You are right with the volume control though, i don't think i want to trust the PC with that.

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