I am working up plans to turn my Gateway 7415GX laptop into a carputer. Its a fairly fast laptop with a AMD Athlon 64 3000+ processor, dedicated ATI 9600 64MB vid card and soon to be nearly 1TB of HDD. Plenty for a carputer
I want to mold in a 7-9" monitor in the lower dash of my Explorer where the current waste of space trip computer is. (say OBD-II and Dash Commander Light). I also want to power a compliment of USB's with bluetooth, a Blu-ray USB drive mounted where the stock HU used to be, GPS and, well, everything else you can think of. Oh, also will be adding a USB based Sirius Sat Radio. I want to run all of the audio through an external high quality (Sound Blaster) external sound card to my Arc Audio EQ/Line Driver and out to my amps and speakers. This will create front, rear and a sub channel off a stereo input with 9v output and low noise floor. The audio section is already installed and sounds superb as its designed to be an SQ rig. I am good with car audio.
I am good with computers in office settings but get them into a car, avoiding a DC to AC converter which we always used on short trips, and well, I am lost.
I have read 100+ posts and visited many DC to DC manufacturers but for the life of me cannot understand the whole concept. My laptop appears to not have a "docking station" so I am forced down the hard path. I kinda get rewiring the laptop shutoff switch but with so many features involved I get lost. Seems to me it would be so much easier if their was a "box" that was wire into the 12v system (heck, I could pull power and ground from my distro system). Into this box we could plug all of our add ons.
Don't know what my question is. I am sure I will figure it out. I have built some sick car audio systems but so far am lost. If you got a nugget or tip or roadmap then hit me up.
Never thought wiring a soon to be mostly dismantled laptop would be so confusing. I will stop as its late and I am rambling.
I run laptop with W3bma5ter startup/shutdown controller (easy to build)
and then set the software to 10sec delay for stadby..
laptop has internal battery.. infact it has bad cell and still lasts over 2 days in stadby, which I find great because no worry about car battery getting drained and the infamous hibernation issue's these guys all complain about.. As soon as the car is off laptop switchs it's power options to the internal battery... when key is on it switchs to the DC 19V in, and starts charging the laptop battery again.. which barely is low because it's only been in standby..
I strongly suggest not using a inverter!! Oherr cheap method: I HIGHTLY RECOMMEND using the laptop car adaptor/ charger.. there online!! for every model, and cheap plus they are made for the specs of ur laptop and there already DC/DC.. theres no guess work or rewireing nothing. simply run it to the appropriate fuse. say its a 75watt DC converter so example...75 watts DC/DC devided by 12v is 6.25 amp.. so a 10 amp fuse running off the ignition would be perfect. I recommend looking for autoshut down controllers and software on forums so you can see pics.. but laptops are lower power consumption, which is cheaper to get going hiccup free. Look @ Carnetix or Opus power supply's EXPENSIVE.. plus a doctorate in wire harnassing and hiding all those wires to look "integrated"...
Did it.. Done it... now I got to keep the neighbors kids away!!
That would work for the laptop but would it cover and all the other add-ons I mentioned? I plan on doing a lot with this puppy. Will this it handle at least a 7" touch screen, GPS, OBD-II USB, Clearwire-Wimax, MagicJack, Sirius Sat Radio, etc.???
No worries about hiding wires. Got two cars with 5 amps, 4 subs, 2 sets of comps, 2 sets of rear fill and a couple of serious brains and you cant see one single wire. I am anal that way.
heres the link for the laptop power on module... build it urself there easy..
heres the software that monitors if car is on or off to put it into standby/hibernation.. theses are mandatory for laptop users so bookmark these.
will it power touchscreen and all that other stuff?
your power option is for pc only that i suggested.. the sirius, monitor and all that will need to run the power it suggests.. all lilliput can be run direct to battery although it suggested not to because the power fluctuates 10Vto 14.4V so get a 12v regulator for monitor! The PC is the only thing really that needs "boosting" to 18.5 or 19V.. the other devices are stepped down or are 12V so that would be easier.
heres my setup so you get the idea
battery-->ignition--->monitor, liliput 10" with power button terminals soldered together (to turn on and off with
battery--->ignition----> to laptop-auto-power-turn-module----->laptop ON/OFF button
battery---->fuse panel to hot when on (fused 10A)----->toshiba car DC/DC adaptor 12V to 18.5V 6A plugges into laptop.
my GPS is computer software based the only power it needs is 5V from USB GPS reciever connected to PC
OBDII USB interface... theres no power to run.... its dependant off the PC's 5V USB power
your Sirius (read lower for another option) is 12V? run that to the ignition like you would anyways no need to regulate it. it's made for the power fluctuation in cars.. unless Im mistaken on type of sirius your using?
Magicjack?? not sure is this 120V device... how does it hook up? IS it powered by a AC or DC does it depend on power outside of PC?
clear-wire wimax.. interesting.. im going to the internet oracle and research.. *update* 110v well 90V exactly 10watts usage so that my friend would need a inverter.. theres better options without the need for a inverter.. how about verison's braodband wifi card it's a service monthly thing just like the huge dohickie you were gonna install except its made for laptops and its always broadband and it connects to USB no other power needed...
the theory i suggest is keep everything targeted towards mobility, the power options are better, chances are if it's made for a desktop that requires.. heres another option if your going with a "wifi connection thats aways on why do Sirius? you can recieve damn near all radio stations from special PC based software that is better without the monthly charge..over 1000's of stations without commercials all you need it broadband interent which your wanting to implement.
Did it.. Done it... now I got to keep the neighbors kids away!!
Awesome info Jesse,
I am still digesting a lot of it. I must say that my previous post was done at like 5am during a bad night of insomnia. I reread it and I don't know what I was thinking.
Now, to answer some of the questions...
The reason for both Sirius and some sort of Wifi is simple. I live in far Northern California. No, not San Francisco or Sacramento, but Redding which is a hour South from the Oregon border. Because of that fact, full time Sirius is a non negotiable matter. I have a Howard Stern & Lithum Addiction and Wifi dropout would be a bad scene.
We have "clusters" of cell service along the major Highways so maybe AT&T or Verison would be better for a wireless card. Clearwire seems to just be a bubble provider around cities like Redding but I like its price to speed ratio. I am 15 miles away from the edge of clearwater's coverage yet my Samsung Blackjack II shows the I have 3G coverage hear at home....in spots. Clearwire seams to be really spotty acording to their own map. Maybe dMand can speak more about the coverage area. It does appear to be the cheapest solution.
We do a lot of traveling so having Wifi at points along the way would be very helpful. Magicjack is more of a facination than a neccesity. Dont have to have it.
The bare minimum my carputer must do:
Massive MP3 (320K or Flac) library.
DVD/Xvid/Dvix etc. DVD (or even Blu-ray) drive installed in dash
Sirius Sat Radio (still a little shakey here parts wise. More searching)
Internet where availible
Mild Gaming like Roller Coaster Tycoon and Peggle (Wife)
OBD-II w/Dash Commander lite for diagnostics and trip computer (which is being removed).
I don't know what I was thining when I was asking what would power all the laundry list of items I listed. Most of them were USB, duh. As long as the laptop has enough power, all the USB item should have no problem. If they are not USB then they are likely 12v and there are plenty of places to pull that. I have a distrobution block with a few empty 8g wire hookups.
Sorry for the bone headed questions. Search and sleep.
Have a look in my signature at my worklog which is based on a laptop. I have used an Opus 150 watt power supply configured to output 19 volts for my HP laptop and Xenarc 706TSA monitor. I started off with the Opus at 12 volts and running a in car laptop adapter until I realised it as more efficient to get rid of it because the Xenarc handles 12-24 volts and Xenarc said it was best practice to go with the regulated power.
As far as turning the laptop on, I opened it up and soldered some wires onto the switch and hooked them up to the modem phone port. So In the car, I simply clip in a phone cable to turn it on.
I like the Opus but you have to tell them you are using a laptop for them to provide the right BIOS. I played around with Relay controlled startup shutdown controllers but currently am settling on manually turn on and off, That way if I stop for a short time, I leve the lap top on but monitor off as I have the luxury of an 85 amp hour dual battery setup.
The Opus itself is not hard to wire in. the power come from the battery, the accessory power tells it to power on and the other wires give me 5 volt and 19 volts.
Still got so much to do. Currently working on adding an Arduino embedded controller to do a few jobs including act as the RR volt meter (for each battery) and the temperature sensor. Main job will be to press the monitor buttons to select the reversing camera input hen the reverse lights come on. Not quite finished the hardware, ten got to write the software,, so it might be a while before it goes in to the car...
I also have a DVD drive to install inthe arm rest one day...
2007 Toyota Hilux with a CarPC..
OziExplorer GPS Embedded in RR: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/sb-s...iexplorer.html