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Thread: self contained Android/Linux double DIN OS-S/HW unit

  1. #21
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    This is awesome! i registered on this site just cuz of this tread. you should start manufacturing these and selling them. great job on the build!

  2. #22
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    Looks like a great project. I am looking at doing something similar myself but using a much more powerful board.

    Just haven't decided if I want to go this route or mount my system in a box somewhere else.

    Does the panda board come with a decent audio out?

    Most of the different boards I have seen come with a single stereo out. I would like front/back and sub on my vehicle.
    A preamp may work.

  3. #23
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    I had a similar problem with the car PC, only left and right out. I bought a Clarion MCD360 crossover. It allows for either 2, 4, or 6 channel in. and either 2, 4 or 6 channel out. With it I can put in a 3.5mm to RCA cable to one set of inputs, and get 4 channel, with sub out of it. It also has remote sub volume. The only down side is that if you want to do F-R fade, the controls are on the crossover, not very convenient. Although truthfully, I usually set the fader and forget about it. It also does not have remote volume, you have to do that elsewhere.

  4. #24
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    This actually looks like a very nice unit and would likely do what I need to do with my system with the default Audio out.

    I was also looking at the USB version of the sound blaster 5.1 X-FI or whatever that thing is called.

    Personally I would use the volume in the computer and not likely touch the bass or anything else.. Would set it and forget it most likely.

  5. #25
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    Excellent!
    Is a board like this also an alternative?
    https://www.olimex.com/Products/OLin...A13-OLinuXino/

    I just happened to reading pcworld and came here to see if anybody was doing something similar and you already did!

  6. #26
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    Probably is but here is the board I will likely be using...

    http://boundarydevices.com/products/...lite-imx6-sbc/

    It is a little bit more expensive but way more powerful...

    I may also hook this to a Microvision Pico Projector...

    And project this onto mediaglass...
    Can you say full color heads up display?

  7. #27
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    @ redheadedrod:
    well I guess the audio out is an issue with all boards. I use an amp with 4 input/output (works well with the 8 speaker setup in my car, though I do not have a sub). I was looking at a solution for the front and back fade but I an working on something else right now (I listed some of the missing components in a previous post), so audio is quite low on my list. Once I have that done I will look into using a i2c controlled potentiometer to fade front and rear audio to the amp (since it is a 4 in I can control fader that way). Nice board by the way, seem quite powerful. I guess I had committed to the pandaboard a while back because it had a very good community backing and it also had all required expansion ports. It seems the selection of boards is growing fast, which is very nice.

    @ SapporoGuy:
    I had not seen these boards, thanks for the info. They seem to be very good low end boards and they even have nand memory. Something I am really missing on the pandaboard, already killed one SDcard.

    Over the past couple of weeks I have been trying to come up with a better solution for my push-button setup. But the bybyte housing is not going to cut it for what I want. There is just not enough space besides the screen to get a pcb board in there. So I decided to come up with my own front panel for the bybyte housing.

    Front

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    and back

    Name:  front_panel_back.png
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    (I am taking advantage of the full width available in the center console for the radio opening, which is less than optimal with the bybyte)

    I will use one of those 3D printing services the get a usable panel (maybe someone has done that before and has some tips). That way I can use a rotary switch for volume control and buttons for home, menu, and back. It also allows me to have a usb connector and sd-card reader in the front (at a usable location and not in the middle of my buttons). Once the housing is done the pcb boards for the buttons and power is next.
    Last edited by nordman; 11-12-2012 at 02:58 PM. Reason: I should not post that late, forgot the important details.

  8. #28
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    @nordman
    This is just GOODNESS man! I'm in LOVE with your project and have the same pieces in my mind. I would like to know a bit more about the expansion board. Mainly about its 3G / GPS module. Does it come all ready? I mean, soldered, etc? Just need to do the software stuff? What about FM in pandaboard? Did you get it working? If I'm gonna buy one, I will be purchasing one board around Feb/Mar 2013.

    Any other board you see in the market as good as the pandaboard (with a so vibrant community and stuff?). If we have more juice, is good. But I think pandaboard running even Jelly Bean is perfect for a car setup.

    And I'm planning to get the capacitive version of expansion board which I saw a video in youtube with GPS, voice, data (3G) all working. But I still have questions regarding the pieces of it.

    And this will be my 1st car pc project, and other area that worries me is the power supply. What do you think I should use? I was thinkinb about the Carnetix as well, or other cheaper solution but also easy to handle/install, etc.

    I'm a Software Engineering, working in IT area for around 10 years. I know various programing languanges, but my strongest skills are around Java, but getting more and more Python and ready to deep dive into Android/Linux/kernel stuff. However, the eletronics/hardware is my weakness and I wouldn't be comfortable with soldering, designing my own pcb for power (as you seams to be currently working), etc.

    Well, looking forward to hear from you! I'm really thinking about go get the parts and start the fun!

  9. #29
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    I currently own the imx53 and imx6 development boards from Freescale. The imx53 is similar to the Pandaboards but the IMX6 is far more powerful.

    I will be setting up a development system for these boards to run Linux. I may tinker with Android too but really am more interested in Linux since my intent is to develop OpenMobile to run on these as a FE.

    I am a Software Engineering student that has tinkered with computers for over 30 years in various environments. I have very basic hardware experience so I will be going outside my comfort zone but after the first of the year I will be getting a hardware developer kit from Parallax to use their Propeller Micro processor chips. My intent is to use them to make the hardware I want to add to the ARM boards work.

    They are very simple chips but pretty powerful. I will be using multiple of these chips to slowly develop a multi faceted board with the intent of the board to take one of these ARM boards and make it usable in a vehicle. Since I am reasonably new to hardware development I figure it will take some tinkering to get things to work but I plan to add the modules one at a time until I get them working.

    I will start another thread when I get one of the chips to discuss my intentions. I plan to use this as a learning project because I want to specialize in embedded systems when I graduate so I can make use of writing my own drivers and such under Linux. But essentially I want to build an add on board that takes something as simple as a Raspberry PI and make it somewhat usable as an in care unit but could also be used with any linux device. With the faster ARM boards you should be able to do everything more smoothly. But since the add on board will do most of the work for you it should hopefully work well with any device.

    However since I am a full time student and this is not a top priority project it will take a while. My intent is to bread board some things, get them to work and build a board.. When the board works I will start working on the next module to add on to it and go from there. I think the biggest thing will be to get the basic framework working and go from there. Adding other modules to it should be relatively simple in comparison. Since I am not a hardware guy I may not be successful in my project but I will give it a go.

    Rodney

  10. #30
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    @gpborges
    The Chipsee expansion board does NOT come with the GSM modules soldered. Chipsee seems to be a bit messy with their information policy. If you check the PDF file for the board you will see that it lists the GSM module as not soldered. That would also mean it does not come with one. However, since I have the first version of the board, the one with the pci-e card slot I just took an old usb Sierra Wireless AirCard apart and used the pci-e card that was inside. For the new board version they seem to use a gsm module that needs to be soldered to the board. My suggestion would be to get in tough with them to see if they offer a soldered version. if that option is not available there is always the option to use a GSM usb dongle and a usb GPS dongle. Not a perfect solution but it should work.

    Getting FM to work has been pushed down a bit on my priority list. I managed to extract the compiled libs from someones sd-card image (search for "leepj androidonplatform") but have not tried to get it to work with my pandaboard. Besides, if you are planning to go with the 4460 version there is no more FM module on the WiLink 6.0. They took that one out... so no chance of getting FM on the newer boards other than external module. And the selection of external ones is very limited....

    Alternative boards to the pandaboard are the Freescale i.MX6 Quad Sabre Lite (as mentioned by redheadedrod) which goes for $179. It has a lot of features, a nice one is the dedicated pin-out of android buttons. Another one I found in the quad core class is the ODROID-X2 which goes for $135. It all depends on what you want in a board. So far the pandaboard is powerful enough to run all the apps I need. The biggest issue I see with other boards is the screen, for the pandaboard you get enough 7inch screens, even capacitive ones, with add-on boards. I have not seen any for the other boards.

    As for the power, my approach with the CarNetix was an overkill. It was just what I had and I didn't want to by anything else. The super simple solution would be to use a 5V buck converter (search for "dc buck converter step down 12v to 5v"). You can find those for $10-15. The only thing you need to make sure of is that they are 3Amp or higher. Better higher if you are planning on run external HDDs. All you need on top of that is a power switch like the one I used. The Pololu Pushbutton Power Switch is quite nice but anything like it works too. That way the soldering is at a minimum or just use "insulating screw joints". Designing my own power supply turned out to be more complicated than initially thought. The hardest part is figuring out how to do the power-on and power-off sequence. I am not quite there yet, still missing the power-on/-off via ignition. Will post some more details later. In the meantime I have decided to go with my own design for the entire housing. Will add some more details as well.
    Last edited by nordman; 12-22-2012 at 11:00 PM.

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