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Thread: OPERATION LANCE 04 Lancer + Carputer = awesome school project

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb OPERATION LANCE 04 Lancer + Carputer = awesome school project

    OPERATION LANCE (Logistically Advanced Networked Car Environment) . . . initiated!

    I am an Australian student who has built a Carputer for my Major Design Project in the subject Design and Technology.

    As part of the evaluation process I am seeking your feedback and comments on my Carputer project. I believe you guys are the experts in the field of Carputers and your comments, opinions and ideas would be greatly appreciated. Things to consider include function (features), aesthetics (appearance), ergonomics (ease of use), safety, impact on society and the environment, and any other comments you may have.

    PLEASE NOTE: All comments are welcome but NO inappropriate talk, swearing, and/or smart remarks, as this will be printed for use in my folio as part of the evaluation process, so it should remain relatively professional.

    Below is an overview with pictures of the finished product.

    Main Features:
    Fully functional Carputer system with WIFI internet access, GPS navigation, reversing camera, music and multimedia playback, front facing road camera and more
    Dual battery setup
    Components housed on innovative slide out tray that has the benefit of keeping the Carputer and amp safe while simultaneously maximising boot space
    Focus on discrete install that aims to avoid serious modifications to the car (ie. Use of OEM grills for speakers, hidden away slide out tray, screen that uses existing 1 DIN slot

    Specifications:
    Intel Atom CPU @ 1.6GHz
    Kingston 2GB RAM
    200GB 7200RPM 2.5 Seagate Momentous HDD
    MCS Mini ITX case
    M2 ATX power supply
    Globalsat BU-353 GPS receiver
    EBay generic brand reversing camera
    EBay generic brand webcam
    Engenious Tech 200mw WIFI receiver
    7dbi gain antenna
    Verbatim USB hub
    Xenarc 7 LCD touch screen
    Road Runner frontend
    Windows XP Pro
    Map Monkey GPS software
    Precision Response 5 channel class D amplifier
    Alpine type s splits
    Rear/front sound fader unit

    Pictures:


































    Get Commenting!


    Thanks for your time


    Cheers

    Hirtzy

  2. #2
    FLAC
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    Everything looks great, i like the camera mount, but i'm not feeling the wifi attenna, get a smaller one, or mount it at a better location.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Punky View Post
    Everything looks great, i like the camera mount, but i'm not feeling the wifi attenna, get a smaller one, or mount it at a better location.
    Yes I agree. The WIFI antenna is not the most aesthetically pleasing aspect of the project. In this case I went for functionality (ie. big gain antenna mounted in optimum reception area) over looks but eventually I want to replace it with a 3G mobile data plan when it becomes more affordable for an always on connection.

    Thanks for the comments Punky, its really helpful for my project evaluation.

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    Hey mate..How you finding that mobo? Im looking at getting the same one. Would you reccomend it?

  5. #5
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    good job.

    Maybe you could mount your antenna one the rear parcel shelf at an angle the same as the rear window. That way it wouldn't be as obvious.

    Also if this is part of your project, you could list the price and where you bought each item.
    Never let the truth get in the way of a good story

  6. #6
    Variable Bitrate
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    nice setup, what is those cylindrical thing over the motorized screen?

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    Quote Originally Posted by blues87 View Post
    Hey mate..How you finding that mobo? Im looking at getting the same one. Would you reccomend it?
    The Intel Atom CPU/Motherboard is great!

    It is very power efficient and in a small form factor (Mini ITX). The integrated sound card puts out alright sound. The integrated graphics worked out of the box with the Xenarc screens default 800 x 600 resolution.

    In terms of CPU power it is nothing too special as it is only 1.6GHz but it seems fast enough for the purposes of a carputer. For instance running Windows XP Pro with RoadRunner as the frontend and playing music only uses on average 5 - 10% CPU. Add music visualizations and it jumps to around 35%. RRCam adds about 20 - 25%. But the big killer is Map Monkey GPS which uses about 40 - 60% CPU. When everything is running (excluding visualizations), the CPU sits at about 60 -95%

    I believe that this CPU/motherboard is really good value for money and in the future I may be looking to upgrade to the dual core Intel Atoms when they are released for greater processing power.

    Hirtzy

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    Quote Originally Posted by skuller View Post
    nice setup, what is those cylindrical thing over the motorized screen?
    Thanks Skuller.

    When I received the Xenarc screen I had a problem with the vertical angle as it wasn't positioned correctly and couldn't be adjusted (this is a design flaw with the Xenarc screens). It allowed too much glare and was unreadable so I came up with the "cylindrical thing" as a solution.

    It is a modified ski handle and metal frame that acts to keep the screen at an optimum viewing angle. An important consideration here is that it was installed without drilling any holes or making any modifications to the car.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by meddler View Post
    good job.

    Maybe you could mount your antenna one the rear parcel shelf at an angle the same as the rear window. That way it wouldn't be as obvious.

    Also if this is part of your project, you could list the price and where you bought each item.
    Thanks for your comments meddler as every point helps.

    Yes, mounting the antenna on the rear parcel shelf was taken into consideration but I found optimal signal strength was achieved in its current position. This position for mounting antennas, interestingly enough is also used by unmarked police cars in the NSW Police Force.

    I will upload my materials/finance list when I get home as I am writing this reply form my carputer and don't have the file here!

    Hirtzy

  10. #10
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    For anyone that is considering building a Carputer, please find attached my materials list for computer hardware and accessories that was used in the construction of LANCE, my D&T project. The majority of it comes from Australian sources and ebay. Please also consider commenting on my project as I need as many points of evaluation as possible. Hopefully this will help some of you out there! Enjoy!
    Attached Images Attached Images

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