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  1. Car Computer Install: Building the Computer, Cable Management

    by , 08-22-2011 at 02:39 PM

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    Sean Clark, from mp3Car, illustrates the importance of proper cable management in any carputer build. Especially in smaller enclosures, making sure your computer has plenty of ventilation is essential. Zip ties keep the cables away from case vents and moving fans. They also make closing the case without pinching and damaging wires easy. It's important not to put pressure on delicate cables such as the motherboard power switch cable. It's also important not to put pressure on the memory when closing the case.
  2. Hardware Review: Lilliput 659GL-70NP/C/T Surface Acoustic Wave Touchscreen Monitor

    by , 08-19-2011 at 02:53 PM

    What is it?

    The Lilliput 659 is a 7" touchscreen monitor which uses Surface Acoustic Wave technology for accurate and precise touchscreen operation.

    The Verdict:

    As beautiful as the display is on the Lilliput 659, it may not be the best bet for every installation. The physical dimensions of the screens bezel and other components means you may very well need more than double din space for adequate installation. If you do have the space needed, the 659 may just be your best bet as its brightness and color saturation is head and shoulders above other factory Lilliput devices to this point.

    See the Lilliput 669HB on the mp3Car Store here.



    What’s in the box?

    As always with Lilliput monitors, everything is included with one minor omission. Connection options include an HDMI to HDMI/USB cable, DVI to HDMI/USB cable, and VGA/Composite cable with sub-connector. Included power options are a 12v cigarette lighter plug and brick-style home power connector. Also included are remote, driver CD, and desk stand. The one omission is the stylus that's typically built into the bezel of the monitor.


    Description:

    The Car PC market has been fed a steady diet of touchscreen options in the last several months. Not only have the major brands like Lilliput and Xenarc done more with their existing product line, the hobby has seen new companies start to promote new products. Though there are many slight differences on specifications between product lines, when it boils down to it, most devices use the same basic screen technology. In the 659GL, Lilliput has changed the game. The 659 uses a different type of touchscreen technology, creatively named "surface acoustic wave" (SAW). This technology isn't new by any means, but this is the first iteration we've seen in the 7-inch touchscreen genre. Surface acoustic wave touchscreens send ultrasonic waves constantly through the screen surface. When a user presses the screen, the wave is interrupted a touch event is sent to the controller for processing. Science aside, the surface wave technology in the Lilliput 659 allows for precise touchscreen presses, higher light transmission, and a sharper, more saturated image.


    Simply put, the image quality on the Lilliput 659 is fantastic. The colors are rich and images are sharp. Though the nit rating remains at 450, the light transmission the SAW touch panel allows makes the screen appear transflective. The glass is still glossy, but its mitigated by the amount of light it passes through. This benefit also allows for a extremely larger viewing radius when compared to resistive touchscreen devices.


    Equally as important to the display of the touchscreen is the response, and the Lilliput 659 comes through in this regard too. The SAW touchscreen is harder than the resistive variants, and this results in a surer button press. The Lilliput 659 eliminates the mushiness, giving users greater confidence in a press without needing the eyes fixated on the screen. I did note that it's harder to get a response on the outer 1/4 inch of the screen, but I'm not sure if this is a problem with my test unit or with all of the 659's.

    This small problem leads me to a larger gripe I have with the Lilliput 659. The bezel on this device when compared with any other 7" touchscreen available today is huge. Anyone looking to install this in a standard double din enclosure may encounter a problem getting it to fit. I'm not sure if the controller boards inside require the larger bezel, but its definitely something to take note of prior to hacking away at your dashboard. Check out my video comparing the bezel size with a Lilliput 669.



    The Positive:

    • Huge leap in image quality from the SAW touchscreen
    • HDMI, DVI, VGA, and Composite connections available
    • Accurate and satisfying touchscreen feedback
    • Auto-On still available (via factory menu)

    The Negative:

    • Bezel size may prohibit double din installation for some
    • Missing auto composite switch wire


    The Verdict:

    As beautiful as the display is on the Lilliput 659, it may not be the best bet for every installation. The physical dimensions of the screens bezel and other components means you may very well need more than double din space for adequate installation. If you do have the space needed, the 659 may just be your best bet as its brightness and color saturation is head and shoulders above other factory Lilliput devices to this point.

    For more specifications on the Lilliput 659 click here
    For more pictures of the Lilliput 659 click here

    Updated 08-19-2011 at 02:58 PM by Sonicxtacy02

    Categories
    Product Reviews
  3. New Products for Friday (@soundman98 #notspam)

    by , 08-05-2011 at 11:27 AM

    Updated 08-05-2011 at 11:30 AM by ChasPhillips

    Categories
    Products and Technology
  4. Car Computer Install: Building the Computer

    by , 08-01-2011 at 04:30 PM

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    Sean Clark, from mp3Car, shows us how to build a typical Mini ITX car computer. The Heyco grommet protects the power input wires from chafing. He uses a pneumatic punch to make a hole for the grommet and then feeds the mp3Car Quick Release Kit into place through the Morex 5677 computer case. The installation of the motherboard involves installing the Intel Core 2 Duo processor, cpu fan, memory, and Intel wi-fi card into the PCI Express slot. Once the motherboard is ready, the Min-Box M2-ATX is configured and bolted into place. Once the motherboard is installed into place, installation of the CPU fan, hard drive, and top of the case is done. Extra USB ports are extruded from the motherboard with an mp3Car USB Supersize Kit. During the initial boot, testing the computer involves entering the BIOS screen and verifying the CPU, memory, and processor are detected.
  5. How did the hipster burn his lip? He took a bite of pizza waaay before it was cool.

    by , 07-29-2011 at 02:55 PM