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Thread: why carnetix or inverter for laptop????

  1. #1
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    why carnetix or inverter for laptop????

    hi, i have a question about using carpc setup with a laptop.
    i see bunch of auto/air adapter that goes into cig jack and charges as well.
    why is there a need for carnetix or inverter when i can just use it with an auto air adapter? i mean, doesn't that charge while the car moves and hibernate while the car's off?

    trust me.. i've searched alot.. i still haven't really figured out WHY is it necessary to use those..

    help me out plz?

    btw. i'll be using a dell laptop (inspiron 6000)

    thanks in advance, guys.

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate psyrex's Avatar
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    inverter: people tend to choose this when they only have an AC adapter and don't want to spend lots of money.

    carnetix: the popular one outputs the 19V common for laptops (and, thus, same function as an auto/air adapter), but has additional features: SDC, and 12V for a 7" LCD.

    - If you won't use an external LCD, then you don't need the carnetix to power it.
    - If you already own the auto/air adapter, then you only need a 12v converter or just plug it directly into the cig socket if you're brave enough.
    - If you *don't* already own the auto/air adapter *and* will need a 12v converter for an LCD screen, then getting a carnetix just makes it easier because it's 19V, 12V, and SDC all together.

  3. #3
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    ok..
    i have 2 cig socket in my 04 acura tl.
    can i plug lcd and laptop into each?

    and what exactly is 12v converter? (pic might help, sorry)

    thanks in advance

  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j2flo View Post
    what exactly is 12v converter?
    I believe psyrex is referring to a 12v regulator

  5. #5
    Maximum Bitrate psyrex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ComputerGeek View Post
    I believe psyrex is referring to a 12v regulator
    Well, not necessarily. (j2flo, this is tech stuff you don't need to know yet.) A regulator (linear or switching) generally refers to devices that deliver the voltage desired and dumps the rest. This might work in a car cuz the battery/alternator is at 13.8v, and a decent linear regulator will still be able to deliver 12v no problem (more headroom is nice, though). If you're doing 12v unregulated to 12v regulated, you'll need some sort of buck-boost topology, and that's usually referred to as a converter. Marketing-wise, sadly, the names are interchangeable.


    j2flo...
    cig sockets: well, of course you should be able to stick it into both sockets, but, um, don't you want to eventually hardwire everything to be a smoother install? I don't think of cig sockets as a limited factor in how many devices to install. By hardwiring, you also sidestep a potential problem of loose connections or low amperage stock wiring.

    12V DC-DC converters/regulators: try the ones in the mp3car store.

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    thanks psyrex and computergeek.

    psyrex, i do have one more question. sorry, i have really been on this site searching and studying with references, however for certain questions, i'm not so sure yet.

    on the ebay, there is a dell auto/air adapter and it says 19.5v or something.
    my cig jack says 12v only. is that why i need a converter (or regulator)? i just want to go this route to be simple enough to do it myself without having to hire people to do it.

    psyrex, can you be kind one more time and show me the links to the converter or regulator that's 12v? or something i need to plug in my lcd and laptop into my cig jack without blowing anything?

    thanks in advance.

    sux i found out too late about carpc... sigh.

  7. #7
    Maximum Bitrate psyrex's Avatar
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    You don't need to hire anybody since it's not too hard if you give it some time to understand electricity. If you really just want to plug it into the cig socket, then just use the cig socket adaptor that comes with the LCD when you buy it (people tend to call this thing the "egg"; you'll understand why when you see it). It's not the best, but it works for your requirements. I still very much recommend you to do a proper install - not only will you get a good stable carpc setup, but you'll learn alot more about your car in the process.

  8. #8
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    thanks, psyrex.
    i guess i'll study more to get the complete set up done.

  9. #9
    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Another consideration specific to Dell is if it has a "smart" power supply. Usually indicated by a barrel type plug with a thin pin in the middle.

    There's a chip in there that identifies the supply to the BIOS, if the BIOS doesn't recognize it, it will not charge the laptop battery. It may also post "F1 to continue" BIOS messages, disable the use of port replicators etc. Might want to google your model to see if they have it. My 8600 does. I found an adapter made by batterybiz that worked and powered the port replicator (~$50USD), Dell now makes one as well but I believe it's closer to $75-100usd, not sure if it's powerful enough for running a port replicator or docking station.

    If you have this type of supply, beware of auto-air adapters that are "Charge only"

    Might want to read this thread.

    Inspiron 8500 Power Question

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