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Thread: First project!

  1. #1
    Low Bitrate chomo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    First project!

    Hey there! Just getting started with my first carputer project. Although I have made some pretty cool audio and multimedia installs on my cars, now I'm trying something new: I bought an 8" Touch Screen monitor, I've already have it configured to work with my ATX motherboard; I'm using a Celeron D 2.66GHz with 1GB RAM, a 5.1 channel sound card (a cheap one just for the start), a slot-in DVD drive and a 7200 80GB 3.5" IDE hardrive, working on Windows XP and DFSL from drivesoft. All this plus a highly modified XBOX console (which will also work as a stand alone DVD unit) and a Kenwood KDC-MP5028 head unit. Maybe it doesn't sound so impresive, but it's just the starting point; it's all going into a 2004 VW New Beetle GLS, which ain't the roomiest car in the world, besides of having lots of grounding problems; and I still have to figure out how to house the amps (a P8004 and a P8002) and a sealed enclosure for two 12" P212S4 sub woofers (I'll have to build a new one); all this from Rockford Fosgate. If this ain't enough: as for I live in Mexico City, it's gotta look as stock as possible (stealth technology would be helpful); otherwise it might get stolen...

    First of it all, I'm planning on using the main dash to locate the monitor; this means both the head unit and A/C controls must be relocated. I'm planning to integrate the monitor into the dash using either fiber glass or abs plastic; right below it I'd like to locate the head unit. The car's got a factory included enclosure between the front seats, which will house the rest of the carputer components (MB, HDD, DVD and soundcard); maybe the A/C controls could be relocated right above the MB and beside the DVD slot. The problem in here is that this console also houses the emergency brake. Another option for the carputer's location would be the glove box, but it would need lots of mods...

    Now: How should I power the system? I'm planning to use a power inverter, but it seems stupid to convert DC power into AC and then use a standard power source to bring it back to DC. I'm thinking of either modding a power source or buying a DC-DC one, but seems like it's hard to get here in Mexico and too expensive to have it sent from the US (customs agents and taxes in Mexico are really a big pain in the neck...).

    I want to get the most out of my in car system, so I'm thinking on getting some GPS navigation software (barelly became available in Mexico, but found the right one already!) and a USB GPS receiver/antenna (suggestions welcome). I'd also like to monitor the car's performance and status trough a ODBII interface, but this is a topic I'm totally new at.

    I'll try to post some pics on how the work gets going! After all this is done, I'll have some performance mods made into the car... I never liked the car (specially the Speed Blue paint), but my parents gave it to me as a gift and it seems like I can't sell it or paint it some other colour; so I gotta make the most worth of it!

    All help and suggestions are more than welcome!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Georgia Tech (ATL)
    FAQ: Power Supplies Explained (Part 1)
    check there for help deciding on powering the system... sounds like youll need a good size DC psu but the power calculators will help you in that thread.

    '00 accord p4 mobile
    here is what one person did for a stealth project. search around and more will show since it has been discussed before.

    For GPS: GlobalSat BU-353 or Holux GR-213 are top notch receivers... seems the BU-353 is a bit more favored and is sold in the store.

    hope that helps...

  3. #3
    Low Bitrate chomo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Still on the go...

    Ok, now I have figured out how to power the system. At first I'll keep using a 400w power inverter, later on (and as soon as I have time to do a quick visit to the U.S.) I'll get an OPUS 150 PSU; the inverter's digital screen (Xantrex X-Power Digital Micro 400) shows that my CarPC doesn't have peaks over 150w, usually it will only require about 90w to work (and that's with a 2.66GHz Celeron D, 1GB RAM, standard LG DVD/CDRW unit, a 3.5" 80GB 7200RPM HDD, a 3.5" 40GB 5400RPM HDD, a USB/FireWire additional PCI card and an ATi Radeon 256MB extra video card), so I think it should be enough.

    But here's a new challenge: I saw Bugbyte's Bettle, loved the way he installed the screen! I'm gonna do something pretty much alike, but I don't like having it so far from me, so I'm gonna do it backwards: I'll be using a servo to flip the screen up, only it will be in the front, so it's going to push the top of the dash up. I don't know if I made clear what I mean, but don't worry, I'm already working on it; just a couple of days to get some pics... I also figured the back dash in the trunk would be the best place to Install everything I don't need to see in order to work the system, only the slot DVD unit (which I haven't bought yet) will be placed in the front, either under the dash or in the glovebox.


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