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Thread: Complete Newbie Question.

  1. #1
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    Complete Newbie Question.

    Okay, I see the button. I could probably even my question. However, I feel it is probably pretty unique and needs some GOOD advice. So without further ado, here is my question.

    I'm in the process of slowly making my '85 Mazda RX-7 a little more creature comfortable. It has no audio system what so ever. What it does have is a double DIN whole in the dash where I could put a head unit. The problem is, I don't want to purchase a head unit for a CD player or stereo I won't ever be using. So, I came up with an idea for putting in an MP3 player with a touch screen to control it. It would suit my needs for music perfectly, and look cool in the process. So, I was wondering....

    Is there any way to buy a portable MP3 players (i.e. creative, archos ready made unit) and get a touch screen to control it? That being said, I know there is a way to power the unit off the cars battery through an AC/DC inverter. I would suppose you could then output the music to an amplifier and then run that to the cars speakers. Mounting the equipment isn't that much of a concern. My biggest question is getting a touch screen to directly interact with the factory MP3 unit. I don't know if that would be a cheaper or easier solution to building a full fledged computer to play MP3 music on. I don't need video or any other capabilities at this moment.

    Thanks for all your input, and if this project works well, I'll find a way to incorpaorate a system like this into both my wifes minivan and my Mustang.

  2. #2
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DomesticImport
    Is there any way to buy a portable MP3 players (i.e. creative, archos ready made unit) and get a touch screen to control it?
    Not likely.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

  3. #3
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    I was worried that would likely be the answer.

  4. #4
    Admin. Linux loser.
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    Yeah, think about it...you're asking for a product that uses a $200 touchscreen to control a $100 mp3 player. I'm not aware of any ready made products for that.

    Just getting the touchscreen to display buttons or song info on it would require some kind of OS, whether embedded or whatever, so it would be a little weird if someone sold something like that.

    On the other hand, I do believe there are some headunits that come with screens that let you do what you're asking. Pioneer makes some that play mp3 CD's.
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  5. #5
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    I thought that what I was hoping to do would be impossible, but was thinking that maybe somebody had devised a way to do that. I'm trying to avoid a headunit, as I'm not looking for CD or radio capabilites and don't want to pay for anything I'm not going to use. I simply desire to have touch screen control of a MP3 player with hard drive storage! I think I'm just going to have to build one myself, and there seems to be plenty of information about that here!

    Thanks, again.
    Import or Domestic -- Their both fun!

    1996 Ford Mustang
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  6. #6
    Constant Bitrate
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    I think it would be cheaper and easier to build a real PC.
    Pick up an old 500MHz PC with mATX board (pretty cheap ~$100 maybe) and get your touchscreen and a Morex 60W PSU.

    the Morex could power a Celeron mobo and 3.5" HD, right??
    My first carPC!
    MP3/CD player
    Celeron 633MHz - 10GB Seagate - 64MB PC100 - Win XP

    Soon to actually find its way into the car!

  7. #7
    See me in my wet t-shirt. stevieg's Avatar
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    Yeah go for the PC in the car... MUch nicer option.

    It just seems SO pointless to control a portable MP3 player (which you would run DC-DC no DC-AC-DC) off a touchscreen.

    Er, if you wanted you could build a PC, write a touchscreen interface, and then run out a parellel relay controller to the ripped-apart portable MP3 player wired to each of the buttons. But that would be very very very pointless
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  8. #8
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    Okay, so a full on computer it is. (Which will end up more then what I was hoping to spend, but seems required!!!) In that case, what are the minimum requirements for hardware/OS to allow for 2 hard drives (Not certain I'll need that many, but like to plan ahead.) and the ability to run WinAmp or other MP3 player via a touch screen. Since I've a '85 RX-7, the location of the computer will end up in one of the storage bins!
    Import or Domestic -- Their both fun!

    1996 Ford Mustang
    2000 Cobra motor conversion

    1985 Mazda RX-7
    daily beater, well beaten

  9. #9
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    DomesticImport,
    I was also looking for something very similiar to what you described to install in my car. I was going to build a pc, but then I realized that I dont need all the extra stuff.. i.e. gps, dvd, etc, etc. and just wanted to be able to have my portable mp3 player displayed on a much bigger clear, easy to use screen or touchscreen.

    Essentially I was looking for a portable mp3 player with a big screen and easy controls, i.e. touchscreen, or a mp3 player that can output to a screen. I did some research and found many devices that fit the profile, some better than others.

    For example the one that really fits the profile is the AIVX and AIVX mini, it is perfect with both Video and Audio Output and a remote! Its cheap too! The other products listed would work but are mostly portable media players with their own built in screens that can output video to tv and some monitor's also you would probably have to output to a head unit. Also I thought that a simple PDA could be used, mounted onto the dash, because it can output sound, and it uses a stylus, some may even use touchscreen. So check out the Aivx and these others:

    AIVX
    AIVX Mini

    PMP's:
    montego portable
    DVX-POD
    http://reviews.designtechnica.com/firstlook52.html
    iRiver 20 GB Portable Media Player, PMP-120
    iRiver PMC-120
    creative zen
    Mustek 40 GB Portable Media Player / Recorder (PVR-H140)
    macvision mc1007 7" screen
    APEX Digital 20 GB E2go Portable Media Player, MP-2000
    NHJ MPM-202 personal media player
    Samsung YH-999 20GB Portable Media Center with 3.5- Inch TFT LCD Screen
    PMP 730 Portable Personal Media Player with 7 LCD TFT Screen

  10. #10
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    A lot of these mp3 players have simple wired remotes (usually optinal extra), then you could mount it in your dash. And if you could figure out a way to replace the standard display with a larger display, with similar characteristics, but just larger fonts and install that in your dash.

    And since most of these hard disk mp3 players work through the IDE interface, there a possibilty to replace the small expensive hard disk with a standard cheap hard disk.
    Mostly just ideas haven't found anyone do anything like this, well except for some people upgrading their hard disk to the 6GB 1" drives.

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