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Thread: Thinking about a car pc for my soarer, any advice?

  1. #1
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    Thinking about a car pc for my soarer, any advice?

    I've posted this over at soarer central but I thought you guys might be able to give me better advice about the specific components


    The current head unit isn't good for much (no radio, mp3s, usb, or aux in, only normal cds)
    So while I was looking for a new one i stumbled into a car pc thread, and now I'm fairly certain this is what I want.

    I'm thinking this motherboard/cpu
    http://umart.com.au/pro/products_lis...id=2&sid=75449

    This touchscreen
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/SAMSUNG-7...59968637?pt=LH _DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19c3d91e7d#shId
    Mp3 car gave it a pretty favourable review
    http://www.mp3car.com/blogs/146454_h...n-display.html
    Have any of you got any experience with this screen? Is there a better screen I've missed?

    Power Supply
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Mini-ITX-...604732414?pt=A U_Laptop_Accessories&hash=item35b11cf7fe#ht_2848wt _905
    Is this where the power for the screen comes from?

    Ram
    http://www.umart.com.au/newindex2.phtml?bid=5

    I'm thinking I'll take the 60gb ssd out of my desktop and chuck windows 8 onto it (and use this as an excuse to upgrade the desktop to a 120)

    I can't seem to find any slot loading sata dvd drives, is there any around?

    I'd been planning on mounting it in the dash like walter did
    http://soarercentral.com/sc-forum/me...tml?1250425953
    But now I'm not sure, under a seat would be a lot more accessible, easier to install and probably get more airflow

    Would it be possible to connect up my phone somehow and use the gps reciever in it? Its a desire hd. If not, something like this
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NEW-Gosge...3006197?pt=AU_ Electronics_GPS&hash=item33668024f5#ht_2935wt_1163

    From what I understand this won't be able to power the speakers/sub, so I'll need to buy an amp as well?

    For a rear view camera I've found cheap ones on ebay like this one
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Color-CMO...ht_5085wt_1396
    How well do these work? Is it worth the extra money to get a good quality one
    With one of these cameras I'll need a capture card like this?
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-CHANNEL...#ht_3770wt_905

    Any advice about these components/car PCs in general would be much appreciated

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beattme View Post
    I've posted this over at soarer central but I thought you guys might be able to give me better advice about the specific components


    The current head unit isn't good for much (no radio, mp3s, usb, or aux in, only normal cds)
    So while I was looking for a new one i stumbled into a car pc thread, and now I'm fairly certain this is what I want.

    I'm thinking this motherboard/cpu
    http://umart.com.au/pro/products_lis...id=2&sid=75449
    looks pretty good-- i ran a intel board with a similar processor for a little while-- it does fine for all but the cpu-intensive stuff(i use my carpc for audio processing, and the little processor couldn't keep up..)



    Quote Originally Posted by Beattme View Post
    This touchscreen
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/SAMSUNG-7...59968637?pt=LH _DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19c3d91e7d#shId
    Mp3 car gave it a pretty favourable review
    http://www.mp3car.com/blogs/146454_h...n-display.html
    Have any of you got any experience with this screen? Is there a better screen I've missed?


    For a rear view camera I've found cheap ones on ebay like this one
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Color-CMO...ht_5085wt_1396
    How well do these work? Is it worth the extra money to get a good quality one
    With one of these cameras I'll need a capture card like this?
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/4-CHANNEL...#ht_3770wt_905
    quoted together because they kind of go together depending on your needs.

    if you only want to see what is behind the car while reversing, and do not want to record the footage, then a better option is to purchase a screen like one of the lilliput screens from the mp3car store that have a 'reverse input wire'. then you just connect that wire to the reverse lights, and connect the camera to one of the RCA inputs. then when you shift the car into reverse, the camera will show on the screen.

    if you want the camera to record to the pc while driving, then there is a couple of concerns-- first, atom boards don't do well with cpu-intensive programs, so depending on the quality of the video adapter, it might work, or it might slow the pc down to a crawl.. second, a 60gb drive with 1 camera is roughly good for a month or so depending on the image resolution, frame rate, and image compression.. but then there is also the issue of recording to the same drive as the OS-- it can be made to work, but after 3years of security camera experience, i have seen plenty of odd errors because of it(causes some systems to go into a reboot loop, others to not boot, or the recording files can become corrupted), so a dedicated recording drive is heavily recommended if that is a route your serious about.


    edit: also, if your using ssd, i think it is a bad idea to use a ssd for camera recordings because of the constant write cycles-- this is where a standard platter drive could have better life..



    Quote Originally Posted by Beattme View Post
    Power Supply
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Mini-ITX-...604732414?pt=A U_Laptop_Accessories&hash=item35b11cf7fe#ht_2848wt _905
    Is this where the power for the screen comes from?
    not really-- that is the power supply that the motherboard would connect to. you can connect the screen to one of the 12v outputs as well, and it it typicaly done that way to help extend the life of the screen(most screens will accept car voltage, but the extra layer of protection always helps keep the screen running longer)

    Quote Originally Posted by Beattme View Post
    goes to the umart main page-- so no idea

    I'm thinking I'll take the 60gb ssd out of my desktop and chuck windows 8 onto it (and use this as an excuse to upgrade the desktop to a 120)

    Quote Originally Posted by beattme
    I can't seem to find any slot loading sata dvd drives, is there any around?
    this appears to be one:
    http://store.mp3car.com/Teac_TEA_DVW..._p/opt-011.htm

    it's been so long since my install, i've forgotten all the parts, but i used a slot load drive, coupled to a ide adapter, coupled to a ide-usb converter-lots of parts, but it works fine for the 6-8 times i've used it..

    Quote Originally Posted by beattme
    But now I'm not sure, under a seat would be a lot more accessible, easier to install and probably get more airflow
    honestly, if you have the space in the trunk or glove box, those are better options.. my pc is installed under my passenger seat, and the days i need to take the seat out to re-do hardware make me regret it-- it's guaranteed to be at least a 1/2 hour project no matter what needs to be done because of the labor involved to remove 4 seat bolts, and take the seat out without damaging any interior panels..

    Quote Originally Posted by beattme
    Would it be possible to connect up my phone somehow and use the gps reciever in it? Its a desire hd. If not, something like this
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NEW-Gosge...3006197?pt=AU_ Electronics_GPS&hash=item33668024f5#ht_2935wt_1163
    no idea..

    Quote Originally Posted by beattme
    From what I understand this won't be able to power the speakers/sub, so I'll need to buy an amp as well?
    correct. if you have a sub, then you might be better off looking at aftermarket amps--typically, most turn to using 'motorcycle amps' on ebay-- they are quite cheap, small, and reportedly as good or a little better then a factory amp-- though i wouldn't recommend them for any serious aftermarket audio systems--i don't believe they will have enough power..

  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    Sorry about the dodgy links, here's some tinyurls to the ebay ones

    Ram
    http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products...id=5&sid=71734

    Power Supply
    http://tinyurl.com/7mjj75d

    Monitor
    http://tinyurl.com/7y2j4p2

    GPS
    http://tinyurl.com/6smly77

    Camera
    http://tinyurl.com/7fvbd4b
    Capture card
    http://tinyurl.com/6lotz7j

    Or if you don't like tinyurl heres the original post with working links
    http://soarercentral.com/sc-forum/me...tml?1329091067

    After doing a bit more research an e-450 board seems to be a better option, but none of my local stores have any.
    Is ebay any good for buying motherboards?/Would it get damaged on the trip from america to australia?
    http://tinyurl.com/79wdspa


    What I was thinking for the camera was to have the last 15-30ish minutes in ram and only have it saved to a hard drive if I tell the computer to save it, if I could do that I'd probably add a front camera too. But this isn't at all necessary, just something I thought would be nice to have.

    I think I might pass on the dvd drive for now then, I've had the one in my desktop disconnected for about six months now and its only inconvenienced me once or twice in that time.

    There is a factory cd changer in the boot which doesn't work which would be a nice spot for it, but I was a bit hesitant about using it because that means I'll need to run vga/hdmi and usb cables up to the front of the car, is the signal from them fine over about 4 metres? If I was putting it here I may be tempted to go a little bigger than an itx board
    The glove box is pretty much non-existant. How often do you need to re-do the hardware? And what sort of things are you changing?

    It has a factory sub, I'm not sure if it works as the current headunit doesnt have a sub-out, if not I've got one laying around I'll probably put in. I'd been thinking a 5 channel like this http://tinyurl.com/6q34678
    I think there is a factory amp for the sub in there somewhere which I may be able to get away with using.

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