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Thread: Skeptical Wife + Honda Odyssey = Advise Needed!

  1. #1
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    Question Skeptical Wife + Honda Odyssey = Advise Needed!

    Hi Folks!

    I've just about convinced the wife that it's time to put a computer in the ole' minivan. However, she has asked if I can make the installation look as “factory installed” as possible. So, I'd need to put a TFT VGA touchscreen in the double din space in the dash.

    To that end, I have a few questions:

    1) Where can I find a 12V TFT touchscreen that will fit well in a double din opening? I’ll need a screen that bright enough to be viewed in the day, but dimmable so that it is not too bright at night.

    2) Once I find the right screen, I’m assuming it will be just the raw screen and will not be in a case. How will I mount it? How will I dress it out so that it looks factory installed?

    I don’t suppose that there is some company out there that makes a car specific VGA install kit to make this all easy.

    3) I had always thought I would go with a VGA controller, in order to ensure a crisp clean image so that the text can be read easily. Yet, I notice that many of you are using NTSC video to drive yours. Is there some reason for that? Which way should I go?

    4) How will a powered-down touchscreen do in climates like ours where the interior of vehicle can get down to below freezing at night to as high as 130° when the car is parked out in the sun? I assume we’d need to let the car warm up or cool down a bit before powering up the carputer.

    All help is much appreciated!

    Cheers!

    Michael David
    Cheers!

    Michael David

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    The only way that you will get that professional look that you wife wants it to do a custom bondo-fiberglass job. That is all the advise that I have for you on this subject.

  3. #3
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    Originally posted by MichaelDavid:
    <STRONG>Hi Folks!
    3) I had always thought I would go with a VGA controller, in order to ensure a crisp clean image so that the text can be read easily. Yet, I notice that many of you are using NTSC video to drive yours. Is there some reason for that? Which way should I go?
    </STRONG>
    Most people use NTSC because it's cheap and easy. A 6.4" touchscreen with a controller is going to be in the $1000+ range.

    A 6.4" NTSC screen is $100-200.

    If you can afford a 6.4 or 8.4" vga touchscreen, by all means go for it!

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    Here's a 6.4" VGA LCD that might do the the job. It's $545 so the price is right... MAybe someone else can check it out and see if it will work. It says "Input system 6 bit digital RGB" and I'm not sure what that means.

    Another option would be the Liksang 7" Wide Screen model. It's $200, NTSC and should fit perfect into a Double Din slot.

    Good luck on your setup Michael, It should be fun!
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    You drive a minivan?!?!
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  6. #6
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    Touch-screens are a lotta $, around $1000 for a nice sized one. I haven't looked anytime recently since putting my own 6.5" into my vehicle, but is there an in-dash screen that'll fit that, ala Alpine or any other car stereo maker? That would be the best option if you can get one in the size you need. Then you can get one of the remote control IrMans and use a plain old tv or stereo remote to control the PC.

    [ 01-20-2002: Message edited by: Tony S ]
    P4 2.4GHz, Intel mobo w/onboard sound & video, 128MB memory, 100GB Seagate Momentus laptop drive, Xenarc 700TSV 7" touchscreen, IRman using Girder, 150W Opus dc/dc psu, Alpine CDA-9835 h/u, MBQuart speakers, Infinity 15" sub, MTX amps.

  7. #7
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    Or you can do like I did.

    Remember for screen size that an extra half inch on each side is needed for mounting...so depending on how the dash is made 6.4 may be the biggest that will fit, take some good measurements of the screen.

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by Falcon62Travis:
    <STRONG>"Input system 6 bit digital RGB" and I'm not sure what that means.
    </STRONG>

    The digital interface is similar to that of most LCDs. They have 6 bits of red, green, and blue for every pixel on the screen. If you think of each pixel being drawn on the screen, it starts in the upper left hand corner of the screen, and then every clock it moves one to the right. When it gets to the end of the screen, The sync signal resets the counter and it moves to the next line.

    That is where the TFT controler comes in. It takes in the analog signal from the computer, and samples 6 bits worth of data for Red, green , and blue and sends it over a digital interface to the LCD.
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    All of you seem to always leave out the Datalux touchscreens which go for around $250-$300 on e-bay and they are 10.4 inches in size. What a great price for such a large screen, and it's VGA too! I have one myself and have no complaints except that the housing is a little bit large, but it can be removed. They can only do 640x480 but hey that's acceptable in a car for most anything, right?

  10. #10
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    Hi Folks!

    Thanks to all for the replies!

    I may be able to give up on the touchscreen idea, if I can come up with an effective pointing device - that can be easily hidden when we are not in the car.

    I should have mentioned that we want this installation to be a covert as possible, to minimize the chance of it being stolen. I had a very expensive car stereo stolen once, which has left me a bit paranoid.

    Anyway – for a non-touchscreen LCD – this looks interesting:
    http://www.discountcarstereo.com/Pioneer/AVX-7300.htm

    It has an RGB input, which is pretty easy to derive from a VGA output. I don’t know is its resolution, or how I will deal with the widescreen thing. I’m thinking a stretched Win2K desktop would like kinda’ weird.

    But then, we are used to the touchscreen thing since we use them in the house (I have a few of the Datalux LV10's that SuperMatty mentioned).

    So, I did find this, in both a touch and non-touch version:
    http://earthlcd.com/mev65.htm

    I could be wrong, but even though I plan on mounting this in the dash, I think buying an LCD in a case will make it easier to make a professional looking installation. Maybe not, eh?

    Anyway – all comments and suggestions welcome.
    Cheers!

    Michael David

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