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Thread: MS Surface Pro 2

  1. #71
    Maximum Bitrate Mickz's Avatar
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    If you look at the last few pictures I posted you can see the "Bright sunny day" outside reflection through the rear window, also notice on the GPS screen how much this is reduced as its mainly very light colours. I'm also at a lower angle of view using the camera so it's more noticeable here that in my normal driving position.

    There are reflections when compared to my previous 8.1" high quality transreflective pro - these glass screens are very reflective especially with a black background, however IMHO the quality of the display and depth of colour is worth the trade off. One thing to keep in mind, the larger the screen the more noticeable reflections will become and from what I've been reading on comparisons between the SP2 and SP3 screens, the larger SP3 screen is slightly harder to use outside in sunny conditions.

    Portrait mode reduces the left to right reflections but can increased reflections seen through the rear window, again more noticeable on dark screen content. The SP2 though has a surprisingly bright screen and for the 5 seconds removal and install time of the SP2 tablet in the Vehicle I'm more that happy with the results. The main trade off with Portrait mode is having to look a little further down for all screen information as it's basically like looking at the FE spread over two screens, one above the other. Again, the largest screen I could have fitted in landscape is a around 9.5" and the SP2 was never going to fit in landscape mode unless I carried out major surgery to the main dash area. I doubt I could go much larger in screen size than the SP2 even in portrait mode unless I made it a non removable installation.



    EDIT : I had a chance to do a lot of driving in 40C temps and blazing sun today, There is definitely some wash out under SOME conditions, such as the SUN shining directly onto the Tablet, however it is still readable - Even the Tansreflective unit had trouble at some Sun angles and would be hard to see. So all in all Pretty good - I did notice something funny with the Adaptive brightness on the SP2 - In seems to compare the overall light to the light on the sensor??? as even with bright sunlight on the screen it will dim if a "slight" shadow is over the sensor - the level of which would normally invoke full brightness? for now I'll turn it off but when I make the facia I'm going incorporate a light guide (perspex tube) and bring it flush with the dash surface.
    Last edited by Mickz; 12-17-2014 at 12:17 AM. Reason: More Info
    Surface Pro 2 128GB portrait mode, Win8.1, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE. Previous Car-PC Project

  2. #72
    Maximum Bitrate Mickz's Avatar
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    Thought I'd post a view of the centre console cavity of the Honda. Now I know the metal work may not look pretty but I'm limited to the tools I have - a drill, a bench vice and a few hammers, and the metal work has gone through a few alterations as I trialled the best way to get the tablet mounted.

    As indicated in the text on the picture, all this installs and removes similar to the OEM Head unit and lower pocket. I have made this from aluminium - fairly thick for rigidity. The lower opening is filled with a large "C" section shaped aluminium frame, mounted on top is the 10 port USB HUB. Behind the "C" shaped enclosure/bracket are the SRS computer and various cables. The "C" section leaves over an inch space between it and the Vehicle cables and controllers behind it. There is plenty of room for other devices in this "C" shaped enclosure. When the SP2 Cradle mounting plate is installed it mounts across the top Bracket down to the top of this "C" enclosure and ties the two together to form a very rigid and strong unit.

    Virtually the only connections into the Vehicle wiring is the Audio HVAC head unit Plug, I removed a socket from an old radio board so that I could just plug it in. There are only 4 cables coming from the trunk - 5volt USB power, Audio cable, USB to the rear HUB and the Control interface cable. The Control cable goes straight to the iDrive panel between the front seats.

    The white USB drive plugged into the HUB is for Password security - It auto logs into the OS from a cold boot, later I'll incorporate a key fob transponder.

    Half way down you can see the cut down Climate-Control / Audio head unit PCB (in the grey enclosure) None of this would have been possible without successfully cutting that in half.



    Finally I'd like to repeat the fact that DAB and FM reception has improved out of sight with the Tablet install. Those of you who have looked at my old system will know that I built an RF shielded case for the M4 switch mode supply, and mounted the mini-ATX PC in the trunk with the PSU, and both inside another large aluminium case - I virtually eliminated interference from the PSU but could not get rid of all the noise from the MB and numerous cables.

    I hadn't realised how insidious this noise was to DAB-FM and GPS as testing with the Tablet didn't seem to make that much difference - but it sure does when installed correctly.
    Last edited by Mickz; 12-17-2014 at 12:47 AM.
    Surface Pro 2 128GB portrait mode, Win8.1, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE. Previous Car-PC Project

  3. #73
    Maximum Bitrate Mickz's Avatar
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    Dismantled the install in the dash - cleaned up all metalwork and painted - reinstalled and grabbed this shot. Still without the trim insert but certainly clean (or is that vacant) when the Tablet is not running.

    BTW Flash darkens everything a bit - IE the mats and seats are CLEAN light cream.



    So, I think I've run out of time with Xmas almost here and a few jobs around the house neglected over the past month. But the 10.6" Surface Pro 2 is in and working perfectly - I've prettied up a few off the Front End software screens, updated Garmin PC StaNav software to 2015 maps and cleaned my grubby paw marks from the trim. It's time to take a break - Wishing everyone an early "safe Holliday" and festive season

    BTW I just received my SP2 car charger from wherever, cost 16$ and first thing I did was cut it apart (as you do) I really only wanted the SP2 charger connector.

    It runs quite warm considering its an SMPS - Basically a circuit similar to the 5v USB supply I posted a few pages back. No fuse, if anyone wants a picture of the insides I'll post. The quality of the connector is not a good as the OEM AC charger connector, could be a problem with high charging current > 3A.

    I note that others who have bought clone charges complain of them melting - due to the high loss in the fuse holder - fuse connection heat causes charger casing to melt.
    Won't happen with this one -
    Last edited by Mickz; 12-19-2014 at 01:50 AM.
    Surface Pro 2 128GB portrait mode, Win8.1, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE. Previous Car-PC Project

  4. #74
    Variable Bitrate camo.b's Avatar
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    Looks just as it should it think i think...clean and vacant..especially to sticky fingers with glass smashing tools. Did you pick that charger due to a lack of a fuse? Or just get lucky

  5. #75
    Maximum Bitrate Mickz's Avatar
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    No just got lucky, although I would have soldered the fuse in the holder as I did on my 5v USB supply, just means you need a soldering iron to replace it.

    I've tested and posted before about the IR loss in most standard fuse holders once you get over 1A. I'm not going to use the charger at this time anyway - I'm leaving my home made charger/supply in for now.

    On the subject of glass breakers, I'm going to make a FAKE clip in "plane Jane" Radio facia with a few fake dash knobs and just drop it in over the tablet when I don't want to remove the SP2.
    Surface Pro 2 128GB portrait mode, Win8.1, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE. Previous Car-PC Project

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