E46 CarPC with Original HU
after spending some weeks by reading posts, I would like to share my experience with my BMW E46.
In fact, I have installed a Compaq 800MHz Pentium CarPC with additional devices such GPS mouse, Terratec TV/Radio PCI card, 30GB Hard Drive for OS, 100GB HDfor Musics and Videos, 7" Xenarc LCD Monitor, Roadrunner, Navigon, etc.
The difference with others CarPC Installation based, is that I have kept the original HU from BMW. The idea behind is to still have a very good FM reception, to fed the sound into the K7 Circuit (not with K7 Adaptor) in order to have better sound quality, to be able to habe music (radio) when the CarPC is defekt or whatever the problem.
For this, it is necessary to cut the touch panel of the HU in order to get it in the same place of the Ash unit. The connection between the base HU and the touch panel is made through an 15-20cm Flat Cable.
It is of course necessary to cut the new Clima + Ash unit in order to remove the Ash unit and to place the modified touch panel HU's.
The Head Unit has to be cut in order to be able to place the Xenarc Monitor. The pcb circuits of the Xenarc have to be placed on the horizontal way, the monitor on the vertical way (of course).
See pictures below, they speak by themselves.
CarPC Sound controlled with HU
thanks for the compliment!
yes, I control the volume through the HU, that was the goal as well.
On the past I had a Archos mp3 player internally connected to the
HU (directly sold on the IC). I was able to control the sound through
the HU and was perfect, no additional noise. But the Archos was
connected with an audio cable coming from the box. That was borrowing..
Then I decided to install a CarPC, with mp3 player anf GPS function, and
this in order to minimise flying cable... I mean without cable at all on the
driver compartiment :-)
Whatever, th only lost I have is the Ash and Sun Glasses compartiment,
that"s all! If you have a CD player with CD Changer capabilities... it will be a little bit more difficult... you will need surely additional HW in order to emulate the CD Changer.
That's the reason why I decided to buy a BMW Business with better Amplifier
and sound quality as the previous one.
I will do pictures of the CarPC, which is installed on the bagage room. The cables are placed all over the car on the left side, untill the bagage room.
It was not complicated. You do not need to remove chairs...
For the audio, you will surely need to use a loop ground isolator in order to
separate ground path, else, the return path of the CarPC supply will also
use the audio path... and then noises. It cost about 30euros.
How did you mount the extenal audio connection
I would like to use the same casette HU for this.
You say you soldered the external audio directly to an IC.
Can you specify this a bit more where to solder. (I would like to do the same thing)
How do you select the external audio source on the HU ?
Thanks in advance.