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Thread: General Questions

  1. #1
    Low Bitrate Alex121's Avatar
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    General Questions

    OK, ive decided to use my old laptop with a broken screen as my carputer, and of course i have a few questions:

    Power?
    I saw a inverter in a camping magazine which said it converts the PC's power so it is able to run from a car, will this do? it is only $50.
    I want the laptop to power on as soon as the car is started, and to power off when i tell it to, not when the cars ignition is turned off.

    Sound?
    In the settings of my laptop it says "Avance AC'97 Audio", and when i click advanced it lets me choose between a list of speaker set-ups which include 5.1 surround sound speakers, 7.1 wide configuration speakers, now in my car i want one sub and front and rear speakers, does this mean i dont need a usb audio card? and if so then how do i use the attachment diagram with my laptop?

    Attachments:
    Stuff like GPS dongle, usb touchscreen, usb hub, do i need to power these seperatly or can they run off the laptop? and also a usb hub turns one usb input into many? or does it just act as a extension for distance?

    Wardriving:
    Since I'm using a laptop what options do I have in this department? I cannot buy a PCI wifi card, so do i purchase a PCMCIA Wireless Card? What ones do you recommend, and do any PCMCIA Wireless Cards have optional antenna output?

    Thanks for your help, i appriaciate it!
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  2. #2
    Low Bitrate Alex121's Avatar
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    I mean something like this for the inverter:

    http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI....&rd=1&tc=photo
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  3. #3
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    Find yourself a few hours. Get some coffee and start some serious reading. Everything you need to know is on this forum.

    Unfortunately you don't know enough to answer the questions effectively.

  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate neon_eddy's Avatar
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    there are some posts in here about power sequencing with a laptop.. I'm not sure what they use.. but I would assume with a bit of soldering and a little wire you could hook in a ITPS or something.. for shutdown/startup .. ..

    or there are plans for straight up pulse circuts ..

    in the audio side of things.. you're gonna need a USB sound card if you want 5.1 .. and from there you may need a digital to analog converter to give you the 5 channels .. I'm not sure.. 2 channels is plenty for most anything.. but then again .. so is a "radio" ..

    with USB and wifi and all that .. if you have 2 PCIMA slots (not sure on the acronym there) you could go a slot wifi card .. and then get a USB card to make more ports.. a hub can replicate ports.. but I've found only so many.. and it depends on the type of communcation on those ports.. I found my USB keyboard actually has 2 devices in it.. one for the keyboard and one for the sweet blue light in it.. , and if you add GPS dongle, BLuetooth, Soundcard, TV, Keyboard, external cd drive, ect .. you can see how they get used up quickly.. I use firewire for my external drives..

    anyway .. hope that helps..
    Shawn



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  5. #5
    Low Bitrate Alex121's Avatar
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    ok well ill try to answer these questions myself, and YOU can tell me if i am correct :|

    Power:
    Specifications:
    Output Power Continuous: 300W
    Output Power Surge: 1000W
    Standby Current: < 300mA
    Input Voltage: 10 15VDC
    Output Wave Form: Modified Sine Wave
    Efficiency: > 90%
    Size: 165(L) x 86(W) x 49(H)mm
    Weight: 0.7kg
    These are the specs from the inverter, im guessing since its continuous power is 300W this should be more than enough to run my computer which said it needs 220W from the online calculator. Im guessing i should install a switch in the front from the laptop to power it on and off, and if i turn off my car and keep my laptop running it will use the laptops battery.

    Sound:
    Since the audio jacks in my laptop look nothing like the diagram im guessing im gonna need to purchase a usb external 5.1 sound card to complete this setup.

    Attachments:
    All should be fine running from usb ports in the laptop and dont need extra power. The USB hub gives you 4 usb inputs from 1 usb output?

    Wardriving:
    I need to purchase a PCMCIA card, and no they do not accept antennas.

    Now since these questions dont take much thought from experts, but a hell of alot of searching for the exact answer by me, do you reckon you could spare 2mins of your very important time and correct me if im wrong in any of these!

    Thankyou

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate neon_eddy's Avatar
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    yeha your power solution would work fine.. I'd use the ACC line it's only powered when your ignition is on..

    sound: .. yup

    attachments: .. hopefully .. I found issues whne trying to use all 4 ports.. lets say.. using my keyboard, USB thumb drive, and touch screen - it may work.. each MB is kinda different I found.

    wardriving: you might be able to make/hack an antenna.. I just figured they would have more power to them.. but a USB could be placed optimally .. decisions decisions.

    a usb wifi dongle is always nice to have anyway ..
    Shawn



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  7. #7
    Low Bitrate Alex121's Avatar
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    ok just clearing some things up, you said a hub can replicate ports, so if i have three usb inputs in my laptop, and i put a usb hub in one of them, i will have 6 all up?

    and the usb wifi dongle, something like this?
    http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI....=WDVW&tc=photo
    but what does this actually do sorry?

    thanks mate

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate neon_eddy's Avatar
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    that's a blue tooth dongle .. nice if you havea blue tooth phone,

    make sure if you want internet it's a 802.11(b,g) one ..

    yes.. not all 4 may be able to be used at the same time.. in my opinion there is only so much bandwidth in the USB data stream or whatever.. and say you could have 4 USB storage devices connected easily, because they all are not sending and recieving data at the same time.. but 1 wifi, blue tooth, a gps, and a touch screen would proably not work.. because they are all spitting out datat all the time.. (maybe not the TS)

    you WILL have 6 usable USB ports .. you WILL have at least 3 usable ports simultaneiously, most likely 4-5 , maybe 6 ..

    hope that helps
    Shawn



    Check out my web company Minneapolis Web Designer | MODx Web Design - Himmelberger Design


  9. #9
    Low Bitrate Alex121's Avatar
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    ok ive got the usb hub thing, i just purchased a laptop usb hub off ebay.

    but with the wifi dongle, the one i posted it says wifi wireless adaptor, thats not it?
    and could you point me in the right direction cause ive searched ebay :S
    thanks

  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate KyleYankan's Avatar
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    I hope your computer accepts 220 - that thing oeprates on it. I'm not sure if that's an aussie standard, but we use 110 here in the states. I think if you can go 120 - it would be better. converting 12->220->12 can be quite unefficient, I beleive. Most power supplies have a 110 or 220v setting. I beleive 12->110->12 can be more effecient.

    BTw, we use 110 and 120 interchangeably if you search on ebay.

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