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Thread: Wanting to build CarPc (new)

  1. #1
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    Wanting to build CarPc (new)

    Hey everyone,
    First of all I have done a lot of reading on this, but would still like to ask some questions as I am new. First of all I hail from Australia, and as such would like to know the best place to buy everything from here.

    Oh and I may be new to the concept of a car in a computer, but by no means am I not inexperienced with computers or car audio. I have built computers before and have recently just pulled my subaru liberty apart to install a couple of 10" subs, 4 speakers and an amp an a basic head unit. (The original owner of the car made a massive mess of things lol)

    My needs for the CarPc will be primarly for music and video and bluetooth. Gps and all that extra stuff can come later, as I already have a GPS unit.

    To my knowledge I won't need anything that powerful but obviously want something that turns on pretty quick, so here is another question? How long does it normally take you guys to turn on the CarPc from sleep or from off to on?

    Also are there any parts you recommend over others. Also what parts would you guys recommend for what I need. I will probably build this thing myself as it will be cheaper I imagine.

    Alright next question, I presume with the Dc-Dc regulators that you need a psu in the computer still, with the dc-dc psu, I presume you don't need one, correct me if I am wrong.

    Anyway any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamein_Firen View Post
    My needs for the CarPc will be primarly for music and video and bluetooth. Gps and all that extra stuff can come later, as I already have a GPS unit.

    To my knowledge I won't need anything that powerful but obviously want something that turns on pretty quick, so here is another question? How long does it normally take you guys to turn on the CarPc from sleep or from off to on?
    It all depends on how much RAM, and how many devices you have. From cold boot, mine takes about 45 seconds. From Hibernation it takes about 15 seconds, I have alot of RAM though, 4GBs.

    Also are there any parts you recommend over others. Also what parts would you guys recommend for what I need. I will probably build this thing myself as it will be cheaper I imagine.
    What you buy is all about preference, to do what you want one of the new ATOM boards will work for you.

    Alright next question, I presume with the Dc-Dc regulators that you need a psu in the computer still, with the dc-dc psu, I presume you don't need one, correct me if I am wrong.

    Anyway any help would be appreciated.
    No mater what your setup, you will need a PSU, unless your using a Laptop or certain MoBo that only require a 12V direct connection, forgot the name. Since you are not building a monster system, the M2-ATX will be more then enough for you.
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  3. #3
    Newbie miko55's Avatar
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    When buying motherboard, make sure its miniATX or even better microATX. You really dont have to have the best PC in your car. Atom and 1Gb Ram shoul do. Disk size is up to you.
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    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamein_Firen View Post
    I presume with the Dc-Dc regulators that you still need a psu in the computer
    no... DC-DC regulators are for laptops and proprietary mini-PCs that use a power brick. computers that use power bricks have internal regulators which distribute power to the system.

    a DC-DC regulator takes the place of the standard AC-DC regulator (power brick). since the PC's internal regulator handles power distribution, no additional PSU is necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by Flamein_Firen View Post
    with the dc-dc psu, I presume you don't need one
    correct (if you're referring to an ATX DC-DC PSU)... DC-DC ATX power supplies output several voltage rails (+12v -12v +5v +5vSB +3.3v) through a 20/24-pin motherboard power connector and multiple 4-pin molex connectors.

    DC-DC ATX power supplies take the place of a standard AC-DC ATX PSU, no additional PSU is required.

    ---> the bottom line is, no additional PSU is required for either. whether you choose a "PSU" or "regulator" depends on what type of computer you'll be using

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    Sorry to thread jack, but with that M2-ATX you posted (thats this right http://linitx.com/viewproduct.php?prodid=10917 ?) does this just hook up directly up to a battery and then to the computer components? Theres no need for regulators and what not?

  6. #6
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miko55 View Post
    When buying motherboard, make sure its miniATX or even better microATX.
    It's miniITX and microATX, FYI.

    But I question this statement. Why sshould someone make sure to use one of those two formfactors? Sure, miniITX and microATX are smaller formfactors and are appealing for that very reason.
    However, if someone has the space, there is no reason they couldn't run a full-sized ATX board in their vehicle. It's been done before.

    Many people install a full-sized motherboard because they have one lying around, making for a less expensive installation.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
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    Thanks for the advice everyone. Thank you FusionFanatic for the explanation behind the psu's and regulators, that was really helpful. Also with these I presume you run a cable to your battery but what type of cable?

    So the miniITX or the microATX motherboard and the ATOM processors was what I was thinking and I probably won't have much ram as there won't be much point and as for memory external hard drives can always extend it so that doesn't concern me.

    Also so does anyone know the best place to buy this stuff as i am in australia, ordering overseas in fine though if its cheaper, don't have a problem with that. Wanna keep this as cheap as possible. Also what cases are everyone using?

    Once again thank you for the quick replys everyone

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamein_Firen View Post
    Thank you FusionFanatic for the explanation behind the psu's and regulators, that was really helpful
    you're welcome

    Quote Originally Posted by Flamein_Firen View Post
    with these I presume you run a cable to your battery but what type of cable?
    it depends on the PSU you choose. it's just like wiring a car audio amplifier. you first need to know how much current the PSU will draw, then you can choose the correct gauge wire to use for your power/ground lines. the IGN line is a low current line only used as a trigger, so you can use thinner wire with that.

    as an example; I use an M2-ATX. It draws a max of 15A, so 12awg [or thicker] power and ground wires are good, I used 10awg (because it's thick enough and I already had a spool of it ).

    NOTE: make sure you put an inline fuse within a few inches of the power source. the fuse doesn't need to be any higher than the PSU's onboard fuse (I use a 15A fuse on my PSU power line).

    check out this site for more info on wire gauges and fuse ratings. good luck

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FusionFanatic View Post
    you're welcome


    it depends on the PSU you choose. it's just like wiring a car audio amplifier. you first need to know how much current the PSU will draw, then you can choose the correct gauge wire to use for your power/ground lines. the IGN line is a low current line only used as a trigger, so you can use thinner wire with that.

    as an example; I use an M2-ATX. It draws a max of 15A, so 12awg [or thicker] power and ground wires are good, I used 10awg (because it's thick enough and I already had a spool of it ).

    NOTE: make sure you put an inline fuse within a few inches of the power source. the fuse doesn't need to be any higher than the PSU's onboard fuse (I use a 15A fuse on my PSU power line).

    check out this site for more info on wire gauges and fuse ratings. good luck
    Wow thanks again, once again you have answered the question in a very helpful way. Thant helps put it into perspective. Thanks

    Now just to find where to buy the stuff.... still no suggestions on that???

  10. #10
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    Hey, I'm from Perth and I've just started buying stuff for my CarPC.

    For the screen I wanted a Lilliput or Xenarc and couldn't find any places in Australia that sold them, or if I did I think the price was ridiculous compared to just buying from USA. If you don't care about the brand Jaycar (jaycar.com.au) had a 7" touchscreen for $200 on special last time I checked, so you could get that though I didn't since I figured it's easier to go with something proven and has support. I bought my Lilliput off eBay, it was the cheapest source I could find (though still fairly expensive... I wish I did this all before the dollar slumped )

    The motherboard/CPU/RAM/HDD you can buy at your local computer stores. You can find them for good prices there. If you're in Perth, try PLE (ple.com.au) as they usually have the cheapest prices and great service as well.

    As for the case I think you can find the miniITX/microATX ones at your local stores too but if not you can either make one yourself or get off eBay.

    Um I think that's most the basic things covered?

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