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Thread: Advice on set-up

  1. #1
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    Advice on set-up

    I have a 2008 Nissan Versa, and hope to install a Mac Mini and a touchscreen 7in Double Din in place of the stock head unit. Now above my head unit (which is double din) is a single din pocket which I can remove as well. I was to set it up such that the monitor replaces the head unit, and the mac mini can go on top, thereby eliminating the need for a lcd with a dvd drive, as the mini's would be accessible. The mini would be positioned between two air conditioning vents, and I could potentially reroute some cooling if I ever run into heat problems.

    My main question is regarding audio output from the mini. Will the output from the mini be enough to power the stock audio equipment, or is there an amp inside the head unit that I'll need to replace? If I do need an amp, is there a lcd unit with an amp included that doesn't also add a redundant dvd player? Would that be cost effective, or should I buy an amp myself to wire up? Keep in mind, I find the stock audio perfectly fine, save when I am going 80mph with the windows open.

    Thanks very much!

  2. #2
    Constant Bitrate golfguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lxmorj View Post
    Will the output from the mini be enough to power the stock audio equipment, or is there an amp inside the head unit that I'll need to replace? If I do need an amp, is there a lcd unit with an amp included that doesn't also add a redundant dvd player? Would that be cost effective, or should I buy an amp myself to wire up? Keep in mind, I find the stock audio perfectly fine, save when I am going 80mph with the windows open.
    You likely will have removed the amp that drives the stock speakers when you remove the head unit, except in the case that Nissan has made it external somewhere else in the car (Mazda does that with the Bose stereo in my car - the amp was under the passenger seat - and our BMW has a stock amp in the trunk).
    The mini will be unable to drive the speakers at anything like acceptable audio levels. You will definitely need an amp. I've never seen a screen with an integrated amp, and it's unlikely that the heat from an amp would be good for an LCD screen, but perhaps others have seen something I have not. If you're happy with the relatively low power level of the stock head unit, you should be able to get a pretty economical 4-channel amp. Your options will also depend on if you have the 4 or 6 speaker system or the Rockford Fosgate subwoofer. I recommend you do some research on a site like DIYmobileaudio.com or a similar forum as well.
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  3. #3
    Variable Bitrate natedawgg's Avatar
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    yeah you will need to have some sort of amp to drive the speakers. the sound card in the mini is not very strong at all. my car has a stock external amp, but it is very dependent on the stock head unit to get the correct signal. i ended up having to keep my headunit and get an aux plug adaptor so that i could get the correct sound. hopefully that will not be the case for you.
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  4. #4
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    Update on plans

    I've changed my plans since my last post. I am no longer certain I am in need of a touchscreen, as I would include a keyboard and mouse somewhere in the car anyways. This allows me to save a significant amount of money. I've also found some head units with video inputs and an LCD screen (both touch and non) which have a built in amp. I imagine (although I've yet to confirm) that the speakers that came stock won't demand more than 4x45 output, which is the output cap I seem to find on all LCD head units. I've already bought a G4 mini for $275, and am looking into different head unit/screens.

  5. #5
    CarFrontEnd Creator iamgnat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lxmorj View Post
    I've also found some head units with video inputs and an LCD screen (both touch and non) which have a built in amp.
    You have to be careful with these. Typically they do not accept VGA or better input (usually RCA or S-Video) and the results of running a computer on them is usually inferior for most people. Also you typically do not have access to the touchscreen.

    There are a few combo units (no links off the top of my head) that are made for computers with a VGA input as well as a built-in amp and access to it's TS. You can easily get a small (comparable to what they offer) amp and an LCD much cheaper though.

    I imagine (although I've yet to confirm) that the speakers that came stock won't demand more than 4x45 output, which is the output cap I seem to find on all LCD head units.
    Unless you have an upgraded stereo in your car, 4x45 is easily 50% more power than you currently have if not closer to double (most base mfg headunits put out around 4x25 IIRC).

    -dave
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