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  • DirecTV to PC?

    Hi all, this is my first post and my first car-pc! I am building a car-pc for my 1988 31' class A motorhome. It has a 13" CRT and VCR now and that leaves me lots of room behind it for a full size MB and so on. I plan on a 17" touchscreen on the dash over the hole for the 13" is now (yes, it will fit). I want to use a ~22" TV on a fold down bracket for the main cabin area mounted on the roof behind the drivers area.

    1. How do I incorporate satellite TV? This has me stumped.

    2. Since I need a new radio head unit, should I just get a radio card for the PC?

    My list so far is below and maybe someone has better suggestions on hardware and software. I am still in the early stages of design, so making changes is easy. I have 8 months to build this...

    Items to purchase:

    19-26" LCD TV with fold down for main cabin TV
    17" LCD touch screen monitor for main screen
    12v car-pc power supply (brand?)
    New radio head unit?

    Items on hand:

    Motherboard w/1gb ram
    Dual video card (ATI)
    Hard drive
    WiFi card (Linksys)
    GPS dongle (MS/Pharos)
    DVD combo drive
    USB/Memory card bay
    Video input device (Will Dazzle work?)
    Backup camera w/IR

    Software:

    Windows XP
    RideRunner
    WinAmp or Win Media player?
    DVD player drivers?
    MS Streets and Trips
    Geo-caching
    APRS

    Wish list (future add-ons):

    Engine status and gauges
    Battery condition/charging
    Generator status
    Fridge status and temp
    Water and propane levels
    Gray and blackwater tank levels

    Here is a before picture:


  • #2
    Anyone, Bueller?

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    • #3
      http://www.kvh.com/products/product.asp?id=125

      Quite a few if you look around:
      http://cgi.ebay.com/KVH-TracVision-R...#ht_3286wt_923
      openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
      - Always Recruiting Developers -
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      • #4
        I am not looking for mobile dishes, I know about them. What I am looking for is a way to have the PC control the Satellite receiver similar to how the PC can control XM radio.

        My goal is to "zone" the outputs so I can listen to radio or MP3's on the front speakers while driving and the kids can watch TV, movies or play games on the Wii. Not sure how to make this work.

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        • #5
          If your Direct TV box has usb or a low speed data port you can use this program to control the box. You may be able to incorporate that as a plugin into what ever front end you use.

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          • #6
            in that case the device you are looking for doesn't exist....the best way is to use a standalone receiver and a video capture card.

            Or could use the digital method:
            http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/global...setId=P4920044
            openMobile - An open source C# Front End (why choose openMobile?)
            - Always Recruiting Developers -
            Like what you see? Donations are always welcome

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            • #7
              I don't see why you can't use Girder to control the dish box. You can program it to work with just about any infrared device.
              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:
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              • #8
                i think you are looking for a card like this
                ??

                http://www.hauppauge.co.uk/site/prod..._internal.html

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by coreyspeed View Post
                  i think you are looking for a card like this
                  ??

                  http://www.hauppauge.co.uk/site/prod..._internal.html
                  How can this card control the DTV unit? I have used an older version but not sure how it will work with DTV. On the web page, it claims to be compatable, but nothing that I can find says how.

                  Thanks for the suggestions so far.

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                  • #10
                    no what you really need is this- http://www.hauppauge.com/site/products/data_hdpvr.html

                    but its not a good solution, especially for mobile. its buggy, but it does work.

                    alternatively, if you can live with an s-video quality signal, just use any old NTSC tuner card like the pvr150mce, they will have input for s-video, and you take that from your satellite box. windows media center, or many other programs, can then control your satellite box with IR commands, via a media center IR remote kit.

                    however, if you have internet in your carpc, i would go the route i choose. instead of adding in a whole satellite system into your car, set it up at home and stream it to your car via ORB. it wont require you to install anything in your car, not even software. its all browser based, and works excellent. i have all my satellite channels in my car whenever i want, i even use orb to get tv to other rooms in the house. its not as elegant as using a set-top-box directly, but it works well and a lot cheaper then adding receivers to your monthly plan.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by trader007 View Post
                      no what you really need is this- http://www.hauppauge.com/site/products/data_hdpvr.html

                      but its not a good solution, especially for mobile. its buggy, but it does work.
                      If I had constant internet connection I would use my Roku, but we will be relying on WiFi most of the time. I could tether my cell phone, but not sure how well that will work.

                      I think for now I am going to build the PC setup with the 17" touch screen and just play with the satellite and TV combo with the hardware I have. There are some interesting software mentioned above that I am going to play with. I have all winter and spring to play with this as we do not leave for our 3 week trip until August.

                      Thanks everyone for the suggestions so far.

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                      • #12
                        i dont know much about the mobile satellite antennas... they dont work while in motion right?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by trader007 View Post
                          i dont know much about the mobile satellite antennas... they dont work while in motion right?
                          They have them that do: http://www.kingcontrols.com/king_dome/

                          You can find them for less than list price though.

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                          • #14
                            thats pretty cool.

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                            • #15
                              You can control some DirecTV receivers via a PC serial port to DB9 to USB to receiver.
                              MainLobby's MLDirecTV is software that does this today.

                              You can pipe the HD tuner output to the Haupauge HD PVR to get the video into the PC in high def. You can use SageTV as the digital PVR software. Tallus's MLSageTV plugin can then interact between SageTV software and MainLobby so that MainLobby is the front end for both.

                              Tallus's TRadio application then can interact with XM / Sirius / HDRadio and interfaces with MainLobby.

                              Tallus's TOBD2 software does same for the engine data. Not sure if it would work with your motorhome (depends on powertrain).

                              MainLobby has MLIPCamera that can work with a backup camera.

                              There are a few ways you can get voltage status into the PC so that MainLobby can view that too. Tallus's TChart application would allso provide a graphical chart view of voltage etc.

                              Quite a bit of work to get what you want, but certainly possible.

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