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Thread: Sound Advice/Other Hardware Questions

  1. #1
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    Sound Advice/Other Hardware Questions

    Hey all, this is my first post here so I'm not sure if this is the right place or not to post, so I'm sorry if it's an issue.

    I plan on throwing this PC into my car:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16856173012

    Plan on hooking it up with this monitor:
    https://www.xenarcdirect.com/product...9&bestseller=Y

    I currently have a 4-channel amp for my speakers, and a 1-channel amp for my subwoofer, which is an Alpine 12" Type-R (Alpine M500 amp for the Sub, Kicker ZX3504 amp for the speakers). I have 2 pairs of the Infinity Refs speakers, 6 1/2". I also have a bass queue knob in there as well to control how hard the subwoofer hits.

    Alpine M500 Amp Specs:
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Alpine+-...9358&st=alpine m500&cp=1&lp=1

    Kicker ZX3504 Amp Specs:
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Kicker+-...4329&st=kicker 4 channel&cp=1&lp=1

    12" Type-R Subwoofer Specs:
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Alpine+-+Type+R+12%22+Dual-Voice-Coil+8-Ohm+Subwoofer/9775134.p?id=1218171551192&skuId=9775134&st=12" type-r&cp=1&lp=1

    Infinity Refs 6 1/2" Specs:
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Infinity...9896809&st=ref speakers&cp=1&lp=2

    For the PC, I plan on throwing in a 60GB SSD w. Windows 7, and I'll throw in 4GB of DDR3 RAM. I'll probably just store everything off of my 1TB external drive otherwise. I plan on throwing everything either in the glove compartment or underneath the seat. I plan on using my iPhone as my internet through tethering.

    So with all of that said, here's question 1:
    What do I need, if anything, for the best sound possible coming from the PC? Do I need any sort of sophisticated sound card? I'm pretty dumb when it comes to the sub/amp/speaker configuration for my car. I know that my old Pioneer radio had RCA inputs for the subwoofer to hook up to so I could adjust the sound quality on the fly, but I don't know if this computer has all the right inputs.

    Question 2:
    Considering the fact that the load-up will be almost instantaneous with the SSD, what should I do to power all of this together? I remember reading on some forums that if you wanted to leave the PC on at all times, you could get some sort of power supply, but what does that do to the overall life of the battery? Would it just be easier to get an inverter seeing as wait-time isn't a big issue?

    If anyone could give me some advice as to what the best solutions would be, that would be great. I am open to almost all solutions. Price is a moderate factor. I don't mind spending the extra money for something if it is going to make more sense in the long run. I also don't want to blow through the bank account, or go too cheap either.

    Thanks.

    --DC

  2. #2
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Start w/ the FAQs: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/advfaq.php

    Should get you past the generalities.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



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  3. #3
    MySQL Error soundman98's Avatar
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    1. what kind of control are you after from pioneer? the frequency control, or the volume adjustment?

    there are multiple solutions to either..none of which are found in the faq's..

    2. i am missing the point of this-- because the ssd is fast, you want to leave the pc on all the time, and/or use a inverter?

  4. #4
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    soundman98,

    What should I do if I want to control both the volume and the frequency control? I'm sure I have several options for both.

    And since the SSD is fast, I DON'T need to worry about turning the PC on/off all the time because the time difference between turning the key to turn the car on/off is irrelevant. So I guess the overall question is what to do for the power part of it. I suppose for my needs, an inverter would suffice?

  5. #5
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lessthandan View Post
    And since the SSD is fast, I DON'T need to worry about turning the PC on/off all the time because the time difference between turning the key to turn the car on/off is irrelevant.
    1 - Just because you have an SSD doesn't mean you will have instant bootup. The PC will still have to go through POST, which is typically 5-10sec depending on teh hardware and how your BIOS is configured.
    After POST, you still need to boot, which still takes time, although reading from the SSD will be substantially faster than reading from a mech. HDD.

    2 - It's unclear whether you intend to leave your PC on 24/7 or not. If you do, you will drain your battery, as the PC will be drawing power while it is on.
    Even if you put the PC into sleep mode, it still draws power (although a lot less), and has the potential to drain your battery.

    So I guess the overall question is what to do for the power part of it. I suppose for my needs, an inverter would suffice?
    Inverters suck for the PC. A DC-DC PSU is a far superior solution.

    Did you even look at the FAQs I linked you to?
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



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  6. #6
    MySQL Error soundman98's Avatar
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    ^ +1 i run a ssd, and i am still around 30sec for startup(enough to get about 2blocks away from my house before the pc starts up.)

    there is no simple pc solution-- some soundcards support things like that, but it is inconsistent..

    there is audio processing through the computer, but that costs over $50 to get the software required..

    the other option is to use a external solution similar to this or this

  7. #7
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    Check out the FAQs and get a proper power supply first!

    The first issue you will have is powering your rig. An inverter is not only inefficient, as it converts DC power to AC, that is again inverted by your computer power supply back to DC for use by the computer. Creates heat and electrical noise. The end result (in my experience) even with expensive inverters is induced noise in you system. Will likely express itself as a whine or crackle, often associated with engine RPM and the speed that the alternator turns.

    This noise is not the next big gremlin to work out - grounding issues. This problem also is generally a whining sound linked to engine/alternator RPM. The whining will get louder as you drive the engine faster. This is the result of the power differential created when you have grounds in different locations across your car, which is often the case when you have a screen up front, the computer under a seat, and the amp in the back. Make sure your electrical connections for all equipment is up to snuff. I would check some of the dedicated car electronic forums to deal with this issue.

    Check out some of the USB soundcards or USB DACs. I use a SoundBlaster Audigy 2 as a soundcard. By removing the soundcard from the inside of the PC case, you remove much of the induced interference from other electronics in the case. The USB connector cable also effectively shields these signals from reaching the sound hardware. I can adjust the base volume from within the SB software.

    A DAC is the best solution for highest quality sound, though certainly not the cheapest. This again is a whole new topic and will require some research...

    Good luck

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