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Thread: Recommendations for dual desktop-sized touch screens for automous vehicle

  1. #1
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    Recommendations for dual desktop-sized touch screens for automous vehicle

    I am looking for recommendations on full-size (15-20 inch) touch-screen monitors for use in an autonomous vehicle research project. I have a Xenarc 7" for my Intrepid's Carputer and that works great for my car: its solid, had auto-dimming, works in any temperature, etc. However I don't see any full-size monitors on mp3car store. Over on newegg they have a ton of desktop sized touch screen monitors but am having a hard time finding anything info about dimming control and durability for automotive environment so I figured I'd see what the community here might suggest.

    This is going into a 2007 Chevy Tahoe, 1 monitor will be in console between driver and passenger and occasionally gets hit directly with sunlight, the 2nd monitor will be on a pivot arm in front of the passenger but can rotate over to face the driver if there is no passenger.

    Critical features:
    - Bright enough to be seen in daytime and able to be dimmed enough to not be blinding at night.
    - 15 inch or larger
    - must support dual monitors in extended mode and the touch controls target the correct screen (e.g. Win 7 or 8)

    Desirable qualities:
    - Has external backlight dimming switch (e.g. slider like the ancient IBM laptops from the mid-90's, or some physical buttons) or auto-dimming based on ambient light (corresponding question: on an LED monitor will the backlight auto-dim if one configures the video card to darken the output???)
    - 1080p resolution
    - multi-touch support (e.g. Win 8 support)

    Below is a picture of the current setup. The existing touch screen is 7 years old and has a really narrow viewing angle and getting dim necessitating its replacement.

    Name:  front dash_small.jpg
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    I also included a picture of the server rack that runs the vehicle - this is what the touch screen will be interfacing with.

    Name:  servers_small.jpg
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Size:  187.8 KB

    Anyone have any models they would suggest? Or manufacturers or stores I should check out? Thanks for any help and suggestions!

  2. #2
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    Looks impressive... Not sure you need all that expensive equipment but regardless... I would look at laptop screens.. They are generally setup for what you are looking for. And the best part about it is that you can try them out on a laptop to see how well they perform before trying to use them in your truck... Just get a replacement screen for that laptop and add a touch screen on top of it unless you find a laptop you like that already has a touch screen. I suspect this will be your best option and when the time comes for me to look at doing something similar for my 2003 Avalanche that is how I will likely go about it.

    Another potential source is an all in one screen. Some of them are setup with touch as well.

    And last but not least are industrial supply houses. Most places that normally use PLC's such as the ones in the back of your truck use a PC mounted inside of a case with a touch screen on the front. We have some larger screens where I work that are setup like that but they are not cheap. Looking at your truck I am thinking you don't care about cost unless you got those boards cheap used.

    Not really sure why you chose a PLC setup like that. It is expensive, not designed for mobile use and the same job could be done with a handful of much smaller pc's and interface setups that are mobile friendly. You can expect connection issues that are hard to trace and I suspect component failure will be common place. Those setups are NOT motion friendly and don't handle changes in temperatures well. We have them here at work and they are very touchy. We have a couple of areas that are very humid and we end up changing out major components on a nearly annual basis due to failure. Again you would be better served with a different setup. I notice it looks like you have a rubber base to the unit but that won't resolve the issues. Good luck with that... I am doing something similar but I will be using an Intel processor in the console and multiple powerful ARM boards hidden in the interior. The only things that will indicate something different will be the screens and the cameras that will be visible. The Radar detectors are pretty hidden. There is a place that those PLC units work well but in a vehicle isn't one of them. If you are building a test system with the intent of downsizing later then I could possibly see it but it just doesn't make sense and isn't very practical as is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by redheadedrod View Post
    Looks impressive... Not sure you need all that expensive equipment but regardless... I would look at laptop screens.. They are generally setup for what you are looking for. And the best part about it is that you can try them out on a laptop to see how well they perform before trying to use them in your truck... Just get a replacement screen for that laptop and add a touch screen on top of it unless you find a laptop you like that already has a touch screen. I suspect this will be your best option and when the time comes for me to look at doing something similar for my 2003 Avalanche that is how I will likely go about it. .

    That was the way for me too. It cost me only the board as i already had the lcds from dead laptops. So for me it was one way . And the lcds for the laptops at these days are pretty good at all.
    Vw Sharan 2007 1.9tdi || Exide 100Ah
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    Primary monitor 8" 800x600 || Secondary monitor 15.4" 1280x800
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    I was looking through a few chassis mount options today that looked like decent options - similar to the PLC type you suggested, so I'll look into that as well.

    The rack is not a PLC, its a 19U custom built server rack on rubber isolation mounts. It was built in 2007 and needed most of the cpu power available at the time. It was built as a modular research platform that would provide easy code development and testing, all of the pc's run windows. Its not at all a daily driver and much of the design decisions were made to build it in a short time frame. Its outfitted with half a dozen lidars, radars and cameras and has since been used for a variety of perception, planning, and autonomous control research projects. The internal HVAC controls the temp/humidity enough that for the first few years the pc's survived quite well, the vehicle is always garaged and never sees very extreme weather. The past year we have had a number of PC's start to wear out but given their age that is to be expected now.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by pradecki View Post

    I also included a picture of the server rack that runs the vehicle - this is what the touch screen will be interfacing with.

    Name:  servers_small.jpg
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    !
    As the Bishop said to the Actress 'Nice Rack'

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    http://www.chalk-elec.com/ i just recieved the 15.6" multi touch, i had ordered. it seems to be working pretty awesome!! check out their shop so far i am very pleased !

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    Quote Originally Posted by settra View Post
    http://www.chalk-elec.com/ i just recieved the 15.6" multi touch, i had ordered. it seems to be working pretty awesome!! check out their shop so far i am very pleased !
    Mate!!... where are your pics?

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    I am working on it�� i am w8ing dor the rest of the pieces of the pc to arrive! But i think i will have it done, before the end of the next week

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    Sounds good!!

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