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Thread: Basic newbie question

  1. #1
    Newbie Donny Bahama's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Margaritaville, CA

    Basic newbie question

    I'm no stranger to custom application/specialty PCs; I have a lot of time, money, blood, sweat and tears invested in my HTPC (Home Theater PC). It's truly awesome, and the nerve center of my home theater, but man was it a ***** to set up! It was like 2 days to build and then 6 months of setup, tweaking, fine tuning, etc.

    Are car PCs like that? Or is it more like install the OS, install a media player, configure the player/UI and slap it in the car?

    And before you say, "Depends on what you want to do", this will be a music-only system - I'll load up a 250GB hard drvie with every CD I own, copy playlists over from my HTPC and I'm done. Not interested in trying to play DVDs at this point. (If I decide to later, all I'd probably ever do is transfer over a few ripped DVDs from my media server using 802.11g.)

    My main concern is keeping this thing small (probably mini-ITX) so it takes up minimal trunk space. How much of an issue is heat (in a trunk on a hot summer day)?

  2. #2
    Raw Wave Rob Withey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Bedfordshire, UK
    5 years on, and I'm still changing my setup. Mine is a basic music only system. I keep adding to the software (adding more formats), changing the display (char LCD->char VFD->PsSone screen), changing the input method (buttons->IR), changing the upload method (parallel transfer cable->NDIS LAN drivers), redesigning the power supply and case to be smaller, etc.
    Old Systems retired due to new car
    New system at design/prototype stage on BeagleBoard.

  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate Yuriy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Same, here - mine is music-only, very basic and slow system. Yet, I keep changing the skins, tweaking input methods, adding new hardware/software. But yes, if you need it fast you just get an OS, download WinAmp, upload your mp3s, define hotkeys, slap it in the car and go.
    00 Saturn SL2, boosted @ 8 psi - CarDomain
    Newest install - my quickest ever
    My 2nd carputer - b4 I broke the touchscreen
    My very first carputer - voted the most ghetto

  4. #4
    Newbie Donny Bahama's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Margaritaville, CA
    Cool. Yeah, I can understand the whole nqs (never quite satisifed) thing, but with the HTPC, it was several months just to get it stable and get everything working properly.

    I think, for the sake of ease of use (and coolness) I'll just go with the 7" touchscreen right from the start, so that when I'm done I can *stay* done. (For a couple weeks at least... )

    Thanks for the info, guys!

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