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Thread: My Budget All-Digital System

  1. #1
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    My Budget All-Digital System

    Hi. First let me say thanks and Hello to everyone on this forum...I cant stop learning man! Alright. This is the Idea...Im trying to build an affordable but clean sounding/operating carputer system for my ride. What I have right now is this Fujitsu Lifebookc6631 laptop. Specs: P3 @1ghz, Win 98, 128MB ram, 30G HD and a DVD player.

    What i think is cool about this rather oldschool laptop is that it has usb,Firewire and what i believe to be a TOSLink optical out (this little red light coming out of something the size of a headphone jack). So...given that this is an optical out this is what i would like to do:

    Connect the optical out to an Amp with optical ins, and then power the entire system through that amp (possibly the Hifonics Zeus model).


    So..Ive been reading a million posts for the last couple weeks getting aquainted with the idea of a car pc and one of my main concerns with this possible set-up was A) The THUMP that occurs when u power on the system (prevented with something like the M1-ATX) B)The fact that i will not be able to hook up another PSU to stop my battery from being drained over night.

    What i wanted to ask you guys was first Will there be a THUMP if i dont use a H/U and just connect through the optical out to the AMP?

    Second Will my car battery drain overnight if im using a Laptop(the battery is really sh__ty and lasts about 1hour fully on, and a couple hours on standby)?


    Since i already have the laptop, i think all i will need is a power inveterter (70 bucks), some speakers (300 bucks), and an optical amp (400 bucks) and a touchscreen to act as my H/U, screen and keyboard.
    Thanks.

    PS

    Is it good enough to just have a normal 400W inverter running from the battery and plugging in the regular power adapter into that? And also, does a Capacitor Help with keeping the battery alive over nite?

  2. #2
    Variable Bitrate StrataG's Avatar
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    If your laptop AC/DC adapter outputs 18, 19, or 20V, you may want to get a Carnetix P1900. This board has a delayed on remote line to turn on the amps after the computer has started booting. I'm not sure if you will even have to worry about that with optical though. You can hook it up to the laptop's power switch to alleviate the problem with the computer draining the battery. The computer should not stay on when you are not in the car for long periods of time. A cap is not a battery. It will not help power your computer overnight. It is meant for slow charging and quick output. For the extra money (over the inverter), the P1900 will be well worth it. It will handle startup/shutdown, prevent thump when the computer gets power and regulate the power to the laptop efficiently (much more so than an inverter).

  3. #3
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    Thanks! Well, the power ac adapter is 16V (3.75A) so, i guess the carnetix wont work for me, but it would have been nice cause it looks like that car alarm option would have solved the problem of the "on" button being all the way in the trunk. I was kinda thinkin of always having the computer in standby or hibertnate so i could just touch the screen and it would be ready...guess thats not a good idea.

  4. #4
    Variable Bitrate StrataG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canuck
    Thanks! Well, the power ac adapter is 16V (3.75A) so, i guess the carnetix wont work for me, but it would have been nice cause it looks like that car alarm option would have solved the problem of the "on" button being all the way in the trunk. I was kinda thinkin of always having the computer in standby or hibertnate so i could just touch the screen and it would be ready...guess thats not a good idea.
    You may want to contact Mike over at Carnetix. He may be able to modify the P1900 or instruct you how to drop the voltage to 16V safely. It seems like your best bet.

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