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Thread: PC install: dash vs trunk

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005

    PC install: dash vs trunk


    I tried searching for the question I'm going to ask but I can't find the right query for that...

    Anyway, I have a Civic 98 and I have plenty of room behind the dash where my Xenarc 7" is going to be installed... I'm using a micro-atx with 3 pci cards (audigy2, tv/fm, wifi), 3.5" hd, opus 150w and I'm going to check if it fits in dash. Also, I managed to move my spare (I want to keep) a bit to the front and I've been able to fit a small pc case also and still be able to close the "lid" on the floor. I'm going to have a optima, 2 amps with a sub in the trunk. I'm going headunit less.

    So my dillema, try to install the PC in the dash or keep it in the pc case in the floor with the spare? What are the differences?

    The only thing I found:
    - Trunk install: need long cable for vga (interference?), usb, firewire (dvd-rw), power for Xenarc from opus... but short audio cable from sound card to amps... Also easy install...
    - Dash install: direct cable for vga, dvd-rw, usb, power for Xenarc... but long cable for audio, well like a regular headunit install

    Please help me...

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate knubile's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    I've done both in a couple of different cars. Both work really well. I suggest pic the final solution you like.
    The installation will be a pain in the *** regardless.
    I find the box in the trunk is generally less of a hassle. Running wires isn't that hard and you won't have to worry about fitting everything out of sight.
    On the other hand, keep in mind. Your trunk gets pretty hot. Its basically a sealed box.
    Hope those are some decent tips for you.

  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate pRoFiT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Fresno, CA
    I have a truck so the dash is all i got. Or under the seat. But my amp is under the seat. Dash makes more sense, your dvd or cd drive could be right there. Usb has a cable length limit, I think 15 feet (not a big deal i guess). Mostly less wires to run under the carpet. You only need rca to amp and power.

    If you have the room in the dash for it.

    Although on the other end if your not big on cutting up cases and modding your dash the trunk would be quick and easy. Maybe.

    I always type before i read. Hard drive + subs probably dont mix well. most hard drives will shutdown or fail with the force of 1 or more G's. Your choice, no right or wrong answer.

    Wait install two, one in the front and one in the back. second one can be server.
    Um, I guess this is where you put something witty.WITTY

    My Web site, in the design stage.

    Modified RRSkinEditor

  4. #4
    Constant Bitrate Gixxer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Daphne, Alabama
    I have a 02 Civic and I mounted my board behind the screen. It worked really well for me. Ran one RCA back to the amps and used the line out to go to the other amp.

  5. #5
    Constant Bitrate CornToeGoblin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Or you could go the improvised method, install it on the outside in a water-proofed box and pass it off as a satelite antenna that came with the car
    2008 Civic... Sound system... then carputer install...

    If you look at my avatar closely, you can see a chick with two big knockers....

  6. #6
    Newbie MiniRX7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    I wouldnt mind the dash location..

    but waht about fan noise
    2k3 Max SE 6spd
    Temp setup:
    7" indash screen/Xbox running XBMC
    Carputer coming soon
    My 2003 Maxima

  7. #7
    FLAC -zip-'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    nano-ITX board in-dash
    2008 350z GT Installed since April 22nd 2011 - Worklog
    2000 Protege Installed Since April 2, 2005 - Intel D201GLY|Fusion Brain|ODBPros ODBII|Engenius|GPS Rikaline|Powermate|Motorized Lilli
    Sound Stage

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by -zip-
    nano-ITX board in-dash
    And where can you buy these? Last I heard they weren't out yet.

    EDIT: I stand corrected. Just noticed that 2 minutes after this post. I've been looking forward to the Nano release for some time now and am glad it's finally here. Hopefully I'll be able to pick one up in the near future.

  9. #9
    Raw Wave RoyN's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    São Paulo, Brazil

    2005 Range Rover 4.4
    Any ideas for putting a PC in this? :)

  10. #10
    Constant Bitrate stapan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    had the same kind of dilemma, here are a couple other things to consider when making a decision.

    the pc can generate a lot of electrical noise itself, and 150 watts is not an insignificant amount of power. I dont like the idea of running it and its power next to all the ECM (car's computer) wiring. probably going to be a non-issue, depending on how your factory wires are run, but you could cause all sorts of interference that you'd never know about and would only make the car run slightly worse. and I also dont like the idea of the pc/esp. sound card picking up noise from all the under-dash circuits. just seems like not the right place to have a pc. I also feel that most of the advantages of dash mounting (e.g. ports, cd drive, etc.) can be done in the dash area other ways if needed ($15 26-in-1 usb hub and card reader, remote mounted dvd-rom)

    what kind of processor and case are you using? good fans are pretty cheap and you can go with the highest cfm you can find 'cause you probably won't hear them back in the trunk anyway. and you should have plenty of room for 120 mm. heat generation will depend on what kind of processor.

    and what about the center console? seems like it would be the best of both worlds, but you may need to do a little fabrication or modding of your factory trim.

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