Newbie question @ laptop audio, and dvdrom compatibility...
First, I'd like to say "thank you" to everyone that has helped me thus far......I would be clueless (more than I am now) otherwise. I've come to the conclusion that I'll be using a spare laptop (Gateway Solo 1150) as my car pc, and would like to know how the audio will connect to the aux-in on my headunit? My CQC-8300U Panasonic has an RCA for Aux-out, but do I need an adapter to get sound from the laptop? Also, I'm wanting to find an internal dvd-rom for the unit, but can't find a compatibility list anywhere. Can someone point me in the right direction, besides If I'm going to mount the drive in the dash (is that possible?) can I get any slimline dvd-rom off of ebay and expect it to be compatible? Is there an extremely long (don't really know what I'm asking about...) 20-pin ribbon cable that would connect the dash-mounted internal to the laptop (which would be under the passenger seat)? Sorry if I'm a bit vague, but I hope that someone can help. Thanks!
First, you can stick anything anywhere if you want to.
Second search this board for slim cdrom, or slim slot, or slim dvdrom. (and adapters)
Third, search this board for maximum ide cable length.
There are multiple discussions on these topics.
Including the hack you are asking about...and it is a hack...and will probably not be easy.
I don't know anything about Panasonic HUs but on my Pioneer I had to get an Auxilary Input Adapter for this. It turns the IP-Bus plug (CD Changer) to RCAs. Then I took an cable with RCAs on one end and a headphone plug on the other end. Then I plugged the RCAs into the adapter and the other end into the headphone/line-in jack on my laptop. Hopefully that will help you out.
max IDE cable lenght is 26 inches so use a usb to IDE converter and a 40 pin to 20 pin converter and any slim cd/dvd/rom will work you are using the usb converter but max read/write speeds will go down to about 12x
PS ditch the Gayway and get a real PC stop trying to do it the easy way
To connect your laptop to your aux in dash head unit you have to have a cable that has a MALE headphone jack on one end, and a MALE Left and Right RCA(standard composite audio) on the other end. You can get a cheap cable from radio shack for about $6. If you want shielded cables then your are gonna pay a lot more, I'm sure radio shack has both. Shielded cables are reccomended in the car because of engine noice and all that, but some people have successfull used the cheapo ones with no problems. I personally use the expensive ones, and I get NO engine noise or buzz at all.
I am assuming you are connecting the audio from you laptop using the headphone jack, and that your gateway has one.
HOpe that helps. And don't mind what people say about the laptop route, do what fits your budget and your style. I didn't have the time or energy to go the computer in the trunk route, but eventually might do it. My laptop does everything that the guys with the computer in the trunk do, maybe more, and def easier.
if your after changing the cdrom in your laptop to a dvdrom, than any slim laptop dvd rom will do, the only thing you need to watch out for is the frontplate, the plastic bit with the button on at the front.. In some cases its wider. This is a easy fix.. a quick file down and jobs a good'un. If you are wanting to extend and stick the dvdrom in the front of your car, and the laptop in the boot, then I would suggest getting a usb2.0 pcmcia card for it, then you would need to get a usb 2.0 hub, and a extension cable. I would suggest a powered hub, as the pcmcia might have probs running the length of the car.. using a hub at the front would also give you the option of more hub sockets, for adding keyboard, mouse, mic, touchscreen.. etc.. etc.. you would only need to run one usb cable then for all these things :-) .. O and u would then need a usb2.0 cdrom case to stick the dvdrom in :-)
hope this helps