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Thread: Newbie question on "carputer" setup plans

  1. #1
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    Newbie question on "carputer" setup plans

    Hi,
    I'm new here and to creating a "carputer". Anyway here is what I'm thinking about doing. I just bought a 5" LCD dash mount display used for $75. I plan on building a system using probably a PII, maybe in the 350 mhz range. Since my LCD has s-video in I thought I'd buy a G-force 2 or similar card with s-video out and use that for the display. I'd also probably get a soundblaster live sound card for audio and hook this into my Clarion Cd player somehow. For power I'm thinking of just using a normal power supply hooked up to a power inverter. I currently have one wired into the back of my cigarette lighter which I used for my laptop but I dont think that will supply enough juice for a desktop system. Oh and I think I'll put a DVD player in it for movies too. My budget,not including the $75 I already spent, is $350 to $450 which shouldn't be too hard to stay in I wouldn't think. I'm also thinking anywhere from a 20-80 gig HD depending on how far I can stretch my money.

    Ok, what do you think? Are there any glaring issues you guys see with this system being used in a car. Is that display going to work? I know if it does I'll have to squint, or will it just not be possible to use?

    *edit - By the way here is the display I got I think. It looks the same. I got this from the model number on the back. Is it a POS or what? I figure for $75 its not bad. It looks just like the 5" Generic LCD display under the hardware-LCD/TFT of this site.

    Thanks in advance for any help/comments.

  2. #2
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    sounds like a plan, but remember when making a carpc you will ALMOST ALWAYS go over your budget.

  3. #3
    Raw Wave hijinks21's Avatar
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    you probably will go over budget. As for the inverter wired to the cig lighter. I'd change that and go right to the car battery. Some people get a low voltage when they go from the cig lighter.
    '98 Explorer Sport
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  4. #4
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    The screen doesnt look too bad, except it might not be very bright, it says only 150 cd/m2, which isnt bright. but for $75, as long as it works, its a great buy.
    Project AutoBoxen: Coming along, almost ready to hook up in the car.
    Celeron 500, 192mb ram, 8gb hdd, other stuff.
    '91 Mazda 626: Its free, so ill use it.

  5. #5
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    as far as attaching the inverter to your cigarette lighter or to the battery, what I actually did was attach it to my fuse panel. The firewall in my car didnt really allow me to run wire to the battery. Instead I found fuse adapters that give you a small plug that you attach your power wire to. Then attach your ground to the body of your car somewhere. I can take pics if need be. Its really quite simple.
    The Grand aMP3 Project
    Car: 96 Pontiac Grand Am
    Current Setup: AMD K62 300MHz, 64MB DIMM RAM, 20GB WD Hard Drive, Basic Video & Sound

  6. #6
    Registered User
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    sorry to spam the thread here, but i *should* have a voodoo3 with s-vid out available after x-mas. this is if santa brings my radeon 9000 pro.....

    later,
    nathan

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Mp3Goose_Your King
    sounds like a plan, but remember when making a carpc you will ALMOST ALWAYS go over your budget.
    Well I just figured out what I spent so far for my setup and you guys were more right than I would have ever guessed. So far its cost about $1075 and I'm still thinking about getting a Xenarc. Wow, I can't believe I spent that much.
    97 Mazda MX6 LS lowered with some Zoom Zoom, Alpine 7894, Via Epia M 9000, Western Digital 60 gig 7200rpm, 256 mb pc2100 ddr ram, 5" LCD, PC P&C PSU, Gyration Ultra cordless optical suite

  8. #8
    ddt
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    Originally posted by Mp3Goose_Your King
    sounds like a plan, but remember when making a carpc you will ALMOST ALWAYS go over your budget.
    ... two or three times

  9. #9
    FLAC
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    There are a lot of hidden costs: new tools, supplies, replacing things you screw up, upgrading things before you even used the first thing in the first place.

    The best way to minimize your costs is to plan carefully, and to do things the proper way. It might seem like it's more expensive to buy the right tools and materials, but some times in the long run it ends up being cheaper when you don't have to redo it.

    you've got a lot of cardboard laying around from all of these components, make a mock up!

    A lot of times people buy something to get buy untill they can buy the thing they really want.. these projects tend to take a lot more time to finish than you think, it might be best to just wait, save up, and get the part you really want instead of buying something, selling it for half what you paid, and buying something else.
    aka Kumaneko
    "Don't make me moderate your ***!"
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    mp3car system is currently FUBAR and finances do not allow for a correction of that situation
    Real computer hackers use a rotary cutting tool on their motherboard.

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