View Poll Results: head unit or no head unit?

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  • I think having a head unit AND a carputer is better

    50 46.30%
  • I think running just a carputer with NO head unit is better

    58 53.70%
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Thread: head unit or no head unit... that is the question

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbocad6 View Post
    with a 701 alpine processor there is no loss of quality at all with a headunit, & there is no running rca's from the dash to the rear anymore with that setup either, when the pc is selected as source, it's exactly the same as if there was no head unit really, optical into the 701, then rca's out to the amps, the processor can go in the rear close to the amps, so rf pickup on the analog side is nil, head unit does not come into play at all at that point either.

    skitlz, what would you be using to process the audio? unless your really going to go off & do all processing & x-overs on the pc then you will not really get audiophile sound quality no matter how "pure" your original signal is, because the car environment will totally destroy all thoughts of just amplifying a "pure" signal. think of car audio like a fun house mirror, the end result looks nothing like the subject matter represented, & you have to alter & fine tune the original signal so the end result looks like the intended original signal, this would be the equivelent of making your head & legs supper skinny & your waist huge so the reflection in the funhouse mirror looks like the original image should for example.

    there is a lot of signal manipulation needed just to repair the damage a car environment does to the audio,31 band 1/3 octave eq'ing is pretty much manditory to fine tune a system well enough to make the car invisable to audio reproduction, doing this on the pc is no light task
    Good post turbo. Let me ask you.... when my installation shop guy begins to install the 701, will he need to spend time EQ'ing the unit in order to get the sound right? What if he is not familiar with the unit at all? Are there presets for beginners within the unit that he or I can select that will do the job for me?

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbocad6 View Post
    with a 701 alpine processor there is no loss of quality at all with a headunit, & there is no running rca's from the dash to the rear anymore with that setup either, when the pc is selected as source, it's exactly the same as if there was no head unit really, optical into the 701, then rca's out to the amps, the processor can go in the rear close to the amps, so rf pickup on the analog side is nil, head unit does not come into play at all at that point either.

    skitlz, what would you be using to process the audio? unless your really going to go off & do all processing & x-overs on the pc then you will not really get audiophile sound quality no matter how "pure" your original signal is, because the car environment will totally destroy all thoughts of just amplifying a "pure" signal. think of car audio like a fun house mirror, the end result looks nothing like the subject matter represented, & you have to alter & fine tune the original signal so the end result looks like the intended original signal, this would be the equivelent of making your head & legs supper skinny & your waist huge so the reflection in the funhouse mirror looks like the original image should for example.

    there is a lot of signal manipulation needed just to repair the damage a car environment does to the audio,31 band 1/3 octave eq'ing is pretty much manditory to fine tune a system well enough to make the car invisable to audio reproduction, doing this on the pc is no light task
    Ok the 701 definately meets your argument.. But its another ball game again.. What about folks (like myself) with just a HU like a 880PRS. I just don't believe the AUX in (1v MAX) can deliver good sound.

  3. #43
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    I have a HU because, I had it and don't feel like rewiring now. Maybe next summer if I even have the same car.

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by isamu View Post
    Good post turbo. Let me ask you.... when my installation shop guy begins to install the 701, will he need to spend time EQ'ing the unit in order to get the sound right? What if he is not familiar with the unit at all? Are there presets for beginners within the unit that he or I can select that will do the job for me?

    Someone will need to. It will not set its self for you.

    As for the question about aux in...have you TRIED it yet skiltz? Audio is funny like that...you never know if you're happy with it till you actually listen to it...

    I KNOW I'm not happy with onboard analogue sound, others here are perfectly happy with it. I KNOW I'm not happy with it because I tried it...even ran it through a 7 band EQ on the first CarPC I did a few years ago. Was NEVER happy with it. But then again, if I had been happy with it I don't think I would have pushed my system to the point I've pushed it to now and continue to push it to...
    Jan Bennett
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    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedGTiVR6 View Post
    Someone will need to. It will not set its self for you.

    As for the question about aux in...have you TRIED it yet skiltz? Audio is funny like that...you never know if you're happy with it till you actually listen to it...

    I KNOW I'm not happy with onboard analogue sound, others here are perfectly happy with it. I KNOW I'm not happy with it because I tried it...even ran it through a 7 band EQ on the first CarPC I did a few years ago. Was NEVER happy with it. But then again, if I had been happy with it I don't think I would have pushed my system to the point I've pushed it to now and continue to push it to...
    No im defaintely guilty of that. Everything i buy i try research to buy the best on PAPER. Doesn't always turn out that way.. Your right, i need to get my CarPC in and play.

    I think ultimately though I will go HU less. Im running Passive crossovers so don't need TA. I dont see the point in running signal from the trunk to the front then front to trunk..

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKiTLz View Post
    I think ultimately though I will go HU less. Im running Passive crossovers so don't need TA. I dont see the point in running signal from the trunk to the front then front to trunk..
    who says the carputer has to be in the trunk? if your carputer is located in the front somewhere then the cables could be much shorter. but even in the trunk it is often less than 10 feet. if you run the carputer's sound output directly into an amplifier then you avoid a set of RCA cables but you now need longer speaker wires instead.

    and it's funny that you said earlier that "Im a firm believer in the more things you pass through, the more molested the signal gets", yet you're running the signal though passive crossovers which probably "molest" the sound quality more than a second run of RCA cables would.

    the head-unit's aux-in voltage is irrelevant. even it it was only 1v max a good head unit would amplify it's pre-amp output to 4v or higher anyways, which will feed your amplifer with a nice clean signal.

    I use a HU with my rig and I think it sounds great. keep in mind i'm no audio-freak, but I know horrible sound when I hear it, and my system sounds pretty good IMO (especially considering the audio comes from my laptop's on-board sound)

    but anyways, like I've said before... this thread/poll wasn't to debate which method is better or worse (because that debate will never end). it was simply to see which method was more popular... that's all

    good luck with your new system

  7. #47
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    It only takes me a few seconds to switch over to the hardware controller for my HD Radio unit (Visteon Zoom HDZ300). It a tiny little thing, just velcro's to a spot on my lower dash. The picture in that ad makes it look huge.
    The little thin remote it comes with is really not a bad thing at all.

    I keep the remote and the hardware controller out of the way in the glove box when the carpc is available since the Visteon is fully software controllable.

    I really dont drive the car that much, so I typically take the carpc in the house and use it. There are lots of times where I just dont want to mess with taking the carpc with me out to the garage for short trips, and the little hardware controller provides the perfect entertainment solution for those instances.
    I guess you could say I do not fit into either of the two poll options specified, since I have the best of both worlds..

  8. #48
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    a lot of newer cars are integrating more & more other vehicle functions with the head unit, & there are cars that removing the head unit really isn't even much of an option at all without loosing climate control display or other vehicle options & functions.

    you can still add a pc to a vehicle like this if you keep the factory head & factory display, I'm doing one of these now & relocating the factory display overhead. removing the head is not really possible on some cars.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbocad6 View Post
    a lot of newer cars are integrating more & more other vehicle functions with the head unit, & there are cars that removing the head unit really isn't even much of an option at all without loosing climate control display or other vehicle options & functions.

    you can still add a pc to a vehicle like this if you keep the factory head & factory display, I'm doing one of these now & relocating the factory display overhead. removing the head is not really possible on some cars.
    Actually I think this is/will be only a problem for a few years. Reason being cars that havent had character LCD headunits, are now getting them, but cars that have already passed that phase long ago (like Lexus RX series) now have graphical LCD screens in VGA quality. 640x480 usually right now, but that is good enough.

    More and more cars are getting in the category where you can send the VGA signal from the PC to the OEM screen and then just flip the source. and use the OEM touchscreen interface as well.

    I think that this will be the way all cars (well anything above basic crapola) will be very soon, and then soon after all cars.

    So I am looking forwards to buying a car with a cool display for the future new carpc.
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  10. #50
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    yeah but that still means the head unit is manditory & not optional. I coulda displayed the pc on the stock screen & done no fabrication at all, that's definatley an option, but 640X480 on a less than 7" screen was too much compramise,

    in a few years well have hd displays & more compatability for sure, & this means more "headunit included" installs

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