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Thread: Best options

  1. #1
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    Best options

    Let me say first that I am only 17 and have NO expierience building a computer, altering my car (taking apart dash or doing anything like that) or any eletrical knowledge whatsoever. I am sure though that I could build a computer because I am not stupid but I have never done something like that before.

    I wish to add mp3/maybe dvd/gps support/ and maybe more to my car. I have been reading around and I have a question. Since I do not have any real knowledge about how to do this, what would you reccoment that I do: delay all mp3 support for my car for like a year or however long it will take before I know enough to do it myself, or would buying a pre-build carputer from like carcpu.com be a better option?

    If this has been addressed before please direct me where to look. I did try the search function and the key words that I entered either displayed too many results or none.

    Thanks,
    Steve

  2. #2
    Variable Bitrate
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    Quote Originally Posted by DazedNiteman
    Let me say first that I am only 17 and have NO expierience building a computer, altering my car (taking apart dash or doing anything like that) or any eletrical knowledge whatsoever. I am sure though that I could build a computer because I am not stupid but I have never done something like that before.

    I wish to add mp3/maybe dvd/gps support/ and maybe more to my car. I have been reading around and I have a question. Since I do not have any real knowledge about how to do this, what would you reccoment that I do: delay all mp3 support for my car for like a year or however long it will take before I know enough to do it myself, or would buying a pre-build carputer from like carcpu.com be a better option?

    If this has been addressed before please direct me where to look. I did try the search function and the key words that I entered either displayed too many results or none.

    Thanks,
    Steve
    I think as a general rule if you are affraid don't do it
    I took a quick look at carcpu.com and seems like a total rip-off, for the price that the charge you can get a top of the line Clarion or Pioneer system thats not going to be a computer, but is going to play mp3/wma/dvd and will have a perfect GPS support.

  3. #3
    Variable Bitrate Superduck's Avatar
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    Welcome to the addiction.

    Well, if you want to learn it yourself, start by deciding first what you want to do. You need to set limitations, size, price, complexity. Get familiar with all the options. Spend one day/week/month looking at all the available monitors, or GPS programs, or cases etc... Start with buying the basics. Don't overbuild the system if you're sure you won't want to upgrade. If you're going to be happy with just a big MP3 jukebox, then don't waste time or money on anything bigger than a P2-400MHZ. If you really want to play Quake III while sitting in traffic (I don't advise this, roadrage is bad enough), then you'll need some expensive hardware.
    Are you planning on using the stock stereo system, or replacing everything?

    Research every step, it'll save time in the end and you won't end up with a closet of useless stuff you thought you needed.

    This FAQ really is a good place to get started. Then focus on one aspect of the system at a time, or you'll get overwhelmed.

    Otherwise, if you've got the money to spare, and you're not as interested in building it as you are in actually using it, go with one of the big manufacturers like Alpine. Their systems are idiot-proof, and look very clean and efficient.

    The reason I learned to fix my own car and build my own computers is that I didn't have the money to pay someone else to do it.


    Hope this helps,

    Kris

  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate
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    As a noob myself...I've actually lurked here for a while and read...then re-read to understand the basics. Then when I had an idea of what I wanted to do I asked more specific questions. So my advice is to read and read but don't be afraid to jump in and learn.

  5. #5
    Constant Bitrate
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    my advice honestly ... just take your time ... this is definetly not a "noob" project if you ask me. However, that doesnt mean you CANT do it. I'd just make sure you go through and be thorough in what you want. (heck even no noobs need to do that)

    About buying a prebuilt carcomputer. I dont now if i'd go that route. At least for ME i am thinking the hardest part is making sure i strip windows down to the max. So it runs the fastest but also has ALL the options i need on it. Cause in reality the biggest dilema for this project is to make sure my computer is stable and fast.

    One last thing ... i ahvent gotten it yet but from EVERYTHING I have read. BUY THE OPUS 150w power supply. IN FACT .... buy it today. Like order it on one of the group buys. Cause apparenlty it can take up to two months to even get. So considering your powerless without it. Go for that first.

    I mean hell trust me if you change your mind you will EASILY be able to sell it, maybe even for a profit
    1999 Camaro z28
    -- Computer installed :) Phase 1
    -- z28 302hp dynoed :( WAHH!!!!

  6. #6
    Constant Bitrate P4_2.66GHz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arkadiyp
    I think as a general rule if you are affraid don't do it
    I took a quick look at carcpu.com and seems like a total rip-off, for the price that the charge you can get a top of the line Clarion or Pioneer system thats not going to be a computer, but is going to play mp3/wma/dvd and will have a perfect GPS support.
    Sure, it's a rip-off.
    It's only a most powerful car computer system available right out of the box.
    For a versatility, no Pioneer, Clarion etc HU manufacturers can come close to a PC. If you want Nav support, you better not get one of those units that use the same drive to read Nav DVD data and MP3 CDs, as the last thing one would want is to damage the Nav DVD disk. Those are expensive to replace.

    P.S.
    You forgot the most important part:
    HARD DRIVE STORAGE!

  7. #7
    Constant Bitrate ose-ml320's Avatar
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    I had built computers, but never worked with cars/stereos. If you keep it simple , it's really easy. I was originally going to build a powerhouse multimedia center, but didn't. I'm glad I didn't for 2 reason, noise and heat. and you really don't need a p4 in the car.

    I got a Casetronic C137 (includes a 90 watt PSU) with a Via M10000 motherboard (already installed), I added a 60GB 4200rpm harddrive, slimDVD, 512MB memory stick, WinXP pro and Viola', a fully functioning computer. The only thing needed to make it a Car PC was a 19V laptop cigarette lighter adapter to power the PC, which was great because it connects right into the stock case, no modding; I plug the stereo lines from the pc into an audio adapter I bought for my stock stereo (that was actually the trickiest part). Slide the whole thing under the passenger seat (it's not even bolted down). That's it.

    When I start the car, the PC autoboots, auto-launches Media Car, and starts playing my playlist. I press "exit" in Media Car & it powers down the whole sytem. NOTE: I do have to remember to shut down the pc or it will stay on and drain battery.

    I originally intended to install an OPUS for auto-power up/down, but put everything on hold, when I realized how bad the glare is.

    Things get tricky if you want a powerhouse pc, mount the screen in dash, add automated power up/down, or completely replace existing stereo. Which is why I suggest keeping it simple at first. Of course READ READ READ.
    Scott

    MCS-PC
    Epia M-10000
    XP Pro; 512MB; 60GB (2.5")
    Panasonic Slot SlimDVD/CD-RW
    7" Lilliput (Touchscreen)
    Casetronic C137 w/ 90W PSU (Temp)
    19V Laptop Adapter (Temp)

  8. #8
    Newbie liquidX's Avatar
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    I was able to build a P4 tower by just researching on the internet. There are guides out there to do anything. Dont buy a computer, just sit down and research, a computer for the car will be very easy to build. I just ordered all the parts to do my first. good luck
    Car: 2003 Tahoe
    Stereo: alpine MP3 deck/alpine type R component speakers/JL 10" sub/Alpine V12 amp
    Carcomp: 10% done: shuttle MB, P4, 256Mb, 60gig, 8xAGP, external sound card, lilliput 7"

  9. #9
    Variable Bitrate
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    Quote Originally Posted by P4_2.66GHz
    Sure, it's a rip-off.
    It's only a most powerful car computer system available right out of the box.
    For a versatility, no Pioneer, Clarion etc HU manufacturers can come close to a PC. If you want Nav support, you better not get one of those units that use the same drive to read Nav DVD data and MP3 CDs, as the last thing one would want is to damage the Nav DVD disk. Those are expensive to replace.

    P.S.
    You forgot the most important part:
    HARD DRIVE STORAGE!
    What you got there is a basic computer, unless I am missing how it is different from any P4 2.66 system that can be bought for 400 dollars + PS replacement. So from what I understand you are charging 2800 for something that can be had for under a grand, if you don't mind explain that to me.

  10. #10
    Constant Bitrate P4_2.66GHz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arkadiyp
    What you got there is a basic computer, unless I am missing how it is different from any P4 2.66 system that can be bought for 400 dollars + PS replacement. So from what I understand you are charging 2800 for something that can be had for under a grand, if you don't mind explain that to me.
    You're missing the fact that one is made to be plugged into a wall outlet and another installs into a car. It is that simple.

    $400 for a P4 system? I wonder what brand name parts you get with it.

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