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Thread: Desktop as carputer ??

  1. #1
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    Desktop as carputer ??

    Ok i am a car audio installer that knows a load of tech about stereo systems but i am new to car pc's. I have one fairly simple question, I have an older desktop pc i am not using, a compaq presario with an AMD athlon xp 2800+ i believe . This should work fine for a carputer right ?? I know that i would need a power supply but other than that and a screen to interface with , i should have a good start to expand on correct ??

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Low Bitrate agentq's Avatar
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    Well it would work, but I would recommend spending the extra couple of bucks and getting a mini itx board and a case designed for a car computer. Spend a little money now and save you a headache later. Desktop pc would be bigger and you would have to fab some mounts to hold it down and not slide everywhere, vs a small board that has like an atom dual core processor built in that takes less power and fits in a car pc case that looks good and is much more easily mountable.

  3. #3
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthonyott99 View Post
    Ok i am a car audio installer that knows a load of tech about stereo systems but i am new to car pc's. I have one fairly simple question, I have an older desktop pc i am not using, a compaq presario with an AMD athlon xp 2800+ i believe . This should work fine for a carputer right ?? I know that i would need a power supply but other than that and a screen to interface with , i should have a good start to expand on correct ??
    There are three primary factors you need to consider for a PC in your ride:
    • Power
      The DC-DC power supplies only provide so much power, so that needs to be considered.
      There is a handy FAQ about choosing a power supply to work with given system specs to insure you have adequate power for the PC.
    • Space
      You only have so much of it in your vehicle. A desktop board will work just fine, but where are you going to put it?
    • Temperature
      Heat is the enemy of electronics. Vehicle interiors can get very hot in the warmer months. Add in electronic bits (a CPU, for example) that creates heat under normal operation and you have the potential for system failure resulting from excessive temperature.
      There are components that are designed to generate less heat, as well as cooling equipment that help keep component temperatures down.


    In many ways desktop hardware is easier to work with when you look at components that will work with the PC, specifically, DC-DC power supplies. You can get the best of both worlds with the smaller form-factor hardware. MiniITX is very popular due to the small size of the motherboards, but many use the slightly larger microATX or the brand-specific Shuttle form-factor.

    Your Compaq Presario may have a microATX motherboard. Many consumer-oriented mini- or mid-tower sized PCs have microATX motherboards. That may very well be a good starting point.
    You'll have to do some research about your PC.

    More importantly, I would look into the specifics of the CPU. Some AthlonXP processors are high on the power draw, and wouldn't be the best choice for vehicle use.
    You can always underclock, but you admit you're not a PC guy, so that may be a foreign concept to you.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

  4. #4
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    I just looked up my product info on the Compaq website and under form factor it says this;

    Micro-ATX form factor: 9.6 inches x 9.6 inches (24.38 cm x 24.38 cm)

    So does that mean i could use the internals of this desktop and put it in a carputer type case and use it ??

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