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Thread: Lay the smack down on my carputer dream

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003

    Lay the smack down on my carputer dream

    Hi everyone, I need some constructive critisizm to catch some problems with my carputer before I start to build.

    1. First off Im going to run XP or XP lite so chip speed and memory will be a concern. Im thinking a 2400+ and 512Mb.

    2. Im thinking an 80Gb HD, anyone have experience with shock absorbtion and willing to share some knowledge?

    3. Radeon 9600 (for TV out and possibly if I want to play a game in house).

    4. A 350~500W inverter instead of a dc-dc PS so if I want to use another appliance in-car I can.

    5. Im thinking ATM of just buying a run of the mill 7" LCD from Walmart or somewhere (~$250). They're cheaper and Im not to keen about handing out my CC #'s on the internet anymore. Im assuming that @ 7" 640x480 will look acceptable.

    6. Sound is something I know nothing of. Im contemplating this because it has support for at least 4 speakers already in RCA form. Im assuming Ill have to place an amp between the card and the speakers. Will I?
    Also, Im only planning on using the 4 speakers my car already has (no sub).

    Well feel free to crack on my Idea, I need to shake out all the bugs I can

    EDIT: Its going to be mounted in a deep dish plastic tool box for portability.

  2. #2
    FLAC shakes's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Atlanta GA
    ok before the flaming starts and all the search buddies pop up ...

    almost all of your questions are answered 10 times over in the forums. they're very common.

    the very short answers ... 1. look at mini-itx ... via M10000, that's what most use ... 2. use a laptop hd, it can take the vibrations ... 3. m10000's onboard video is sufficient ... 4. inverters are super inefficient and induce noise .... 5. that should be fine for dvds, but you'll hate life for text. that's why most here use vga ... 6. again, start with onboard sound and move up ....

    do a lotta searchin and a lotta readin ... lest you'll be flamed by the day crowd
    My JeepPC Install

    "there are no stupid questions, just stupid people."

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  3. #3
    Low Bitrate wylie-c's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    I use an inverter, and it and the computer chassis are grounded to the car. I haven'nt noticed any real noise coming through my speakers, But it more than likely will reboot on you when cranking the engine.

    As for hdd, That seem to be a topic for debate around here. Some swear by laptop drives, I haven't had a problem with regular drives.

    And for processor, 2400+ is probably overkill, If you want a little more oomph than the Via mini-itx solutions offer, maybe a cheapy ECS K7SOM+ with onboard Duron 1300, add in a better vid card to get tv-out and it would do the trick while keeping things affordable. But for size and ease of stashing somewhere, you can't beat the Epia.

    I am also using a composite screen with my setup, and although it isn't perfect, it really isn't that bad. Just stay the hell away from STN screens! Make sure it is a TFT panel in there.

    Just my .02 cents worth.

  4. #4
    Constant Bitrate mindtool's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Mesa, Arizona
    First of all you'd save yourself trouble and possibly money by buying a receiver headset that has AUX in with like 45x4 W outputs to your stock speakers and use the carputer's sound card the 1.2" or whatever port and use a cable that converts to RCA out to plug into the AUX in of the car's receiver then it's far easier that way and thats the most preferred method to do here.
    2006 Ford F-150 Lariat SuperCrew 5.4L
    Project: [■■■■■■■■■-] 90% complete (reconfiguration phase)
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  5. #5
    Variable Bitrate telekineticfool's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    1.More ram is good, so that's fine. But what do you need that processor for? What applications are you going to be running? Most ICE (in car entertaintment) functions and navigation run fine on an Epia M1000 or some other 1ghz-range processor. Full version XP is fine on Epia, as is Win2k

    2. I've known of guys who use normal hard drives in their race cars and rock crawlers...I've never, in my entire experience online, heard of someone damaging their hard drive due to shock. General Wisdom says mount it vertically so bumps won't crash the head, but i don't even think that is neccessary.

    3. Onboard video from Epia is fine, otherwise, what's your question.
    4. I run a dc-dc power supply for efficiency and quietness. I also run a low-wattage invertor for accessories, if neccessary. Something to look into...usually two low wattage invertors are cheaper than a high wattage.

    5. Get secure paypal, and go online. You can find LCD's for $150.

    6. If you know nothing about sound, have someone (Best buy?) install a head unit that has an auxillery in. Should be about the same price.
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  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate fluffy2097's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Fremont, CA
    Quote Originally Posted by telekineticfool
    2. I've known of guys who use normal hard drives in their race cars and rock crawlers...I've never, in my entire experience online, heard of someone damaging their hard drive due to shock. General Wisdom says mount it vertically so bumps won't crash the head, but i don't even think that is neccessary.
    If you manage to cause a head crash by hitting a bump, you have more important things to worry about. Like the tree you just ran into.
    A digital mind lost in an analog world.

    Learn to ask smart questions!

    My car PC: The Lost Cause!

  7. #7
    FLAC DodgeCummins's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    DFW area
    My question to you would be, what is your purpose for building this computer...what parameters are you trying to reach...what will it do...what does it need to do?

    In my opinion it is overkill, by 1000%...but thats because I am not sure what your motivation is.

    I mean if you are trying to save money buy getting a cheap LCD, then why run a radeon 9600 and XP and Athlon 2400+.

    My $200 laptop can drive a cheap LCD screen.

    we need the info...


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