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Thread: which laptop?

  1. #1
    Newbie Mark0055's Avatar
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    which laptop?

    Hi People,

    I'm about to embark on this kind of project for the 3rd time - it was coming across this excellent site that spurred me on again!

    1st time - 1995 bought P75 laptop for 100, never got round to it
    2nd time - 2005 bought "geek you ride", never got round to it
    3rd time lucky?

    I've decided to use a laptop and docking station because it seems to me if you can arrange it so the laptop can be pulled from the car and used for other things its two 'puters for the price of one!
    Plus laptops are designed for lower power consumption and they have integral battery that will help out the car battery.
    I'll still be doing the molded in dash screen and gps etc etc and connecting that lot to the docking station, not just sitting the laptop on the passenger seat.

    So my question is:
    Is there a preferred or noticibly superior variety of docking station/laptop?

    The ones we have at my work (newish compaqs) seem entirely unsuited and can barely dock a laptop when theyre sitting on a desk, never mind under a car seat or vertical behind the rear seats!
    do some laptops get too hot is another worry.
    any suggestions?

    Thanks for reading,
    Mark
    (Mk3 Supra)

  2. #2
    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Most of my laptop experience is with Dell. They do tend to have a lot of docking options and usually they can be found pretty cheap on ebay.

    Though the newer laptops have a "smart" plug. These newer ones suck because no one makes a replacement so you have to get one made by dell and they tend to be more expensive as there is no competition. Though you can usually scope one on ebay for not too much.

    As a for-instance. I'm now using a Dell Inspiron 8600. I get a dock and monitor stand. I go to plug it in and it doesn't work. Tells me the powersupply isn't rated high enough, which is BS, it would be fine as I'm not running the lcd panel. So then I had to go buy a bigger ac adapter.

    You also can't use something like the Carnetix laptop supply to power it. This point really sucks.

  3. #3
    The Lavender Tie Just
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    Click the big link in my sig for a great place that has answers to many questions!

    Good Luck!

    Peace,

    Rafster

  4. #4
    Newbie Mark0055's Avatar
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    I take it a smart plug is one with more than just a 18v / 2wire / +ve & -ve ?
    Thats worth bearing in mind! sounds like it would rule out any dc to dc solution and force you use an inverter unless theres a car adapter for that model.
    lol - rafster i spotted your giant sig when i got here and read the newbie sticky thingy very informative.

  5. #5
    FLA gospeed.racer's Avatar
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    I also like the Dell series for the same reasons. I have a C600 and a C610 (P3's) and the full size docking station- gives you 2 pci slots too You can get a Codi dc-dc power supply off eBay pretty cheap to power it all. Easy hack for the power button on the dell docking stations as well. All around, they work very slick.
    2005 Ford Focus ST

  6. #6
    The Lavender Tie Just
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark0055
    lol - rafster i spotted your giant sig when i got here and read the newbie sticky thingy very informative.
    Great, the members of MP3car and I would like thank you for being one of the smarter Newbs!



    Peace,

    Rafster

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    Unregistered User ODYSSEY's Avatar
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    ODYSSEY

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  8. #8
    MySQL Error MatrixPC's Avatar
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    To help you move on, this is the best tip for you.
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  9. #9
    Newbie Mark0055's Avatar
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    Hi Matrix, I actually read your thread yesterday as well - did a search for "supra" . Fantastic job M8! I hope mine looks that good when i get to the moulding part. I'll be scrutinizing your pics very closely

    I cant seem to find much in the power supply part of the shop that would suit an 18V laptop, they all seem to supply smoothed 12v or less . not surprising as this exactly what a desktop pc wants.
    can anyone point me at a suitable bit of kit?

    How do these voltage uppers work anyway? do they convert to ac run though a transformer and then dc again? cos that would be an inverter wouldnt it?

  10. #10
    Raw Wave shotgunefx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark0055
    Hi Matrix, I actually read your thread yesterday as well - did a search for "supra" . Fantastic job M8! I hope mine looks that good when i get to the moulding part. I'll be scrutinizing your pics very closely

    I cant seem to find much in the power supply part of the shop that would suit an 18V laptop, they all seem to supply smoothed 12v or less . not surprising as this exactly what a desktop pc wants.
    can anyone point me at a suitable bit of kit?

    How do these voltage uppers work anyway? do they convert to ac run though a transformer and then dc again? cos that would be an inverter wouldnt it?
    I'm using an inverter myself as I have to due to the proprietary "smart" ac adapter.

    What you probably want is a Carnetix 1900.

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