Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 44

Thread: 2007 Ford Fusion Carputer (version 2.0)

  1. #1
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    791

    2007 Ford Fusion Carputer (version 2.0)

    hi all. a few of you may remember seeing my old system (now retroactively named "carputer version 1.0 ). that was my first carPC project (version 1.0), and I have been addicted to this hobby ever since a few months ago I completely overhauled my carPC system. this was a true overhaul as I replaced and/or upgraded almost every single component in this system.

    since not all people will be interested in reading about the full details, goals, capabilities, and cost of this system, I am posting the completed installation pics and short descriptions first. the full details will follow...



    in place of the head unit is a 7" touchscreen VGA monitor (Lilliput EBY-701) and 1/2-DIN audio equalizer (Clarion EQS746). the equalizer allows for hardware control of master volume, subwoofer volume, front/rear fading, aux input switching, and 7-band equalization


    under the passenger seat is a MoCoSo.com aluminum mini-ITX carPC case. inside the case is an Intel D201GLY2A motherboard/CPU combo, a MiniBox M2-ATX [DC>DC] carPC power supply with built-in startup/shutdown controller (it turns the carPC on/off automatically with the car's ignition key, just like a standard headunit), and a 40GB 2.5" laptop hard drive (40GB is fine for my needs, and is easily upgradeable if more storage space is needed).


    in the trunk are two amplifiers. a 400w (200w RMS) 4-ch Pioneer GM4300F that powers 6 door speakers and 2 rear deck speakers, and a 800w (400w RMS) Kicker ZX400.1 that powers two 500w (250w RMS) 12" MTX Blue Thunder legend subwoofers.


  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    791
    GOALS
    -there were several goals that I wanted this new system to meet:
    • the computer needed to be more powerful
    • consume less power
    • needed to turn itself on/off automatically with the car's ignition
    • take up less [vehicle interior] space
    • fabrication of replacement interior panels should be eliminated
    • modification of factory interior panels should be minimal
    • total cost should be less than the cost of a high-end double-DIN audio/video/nav head unit


    this new system fulfilled all of those goals, and ended up costing far less than I expected to pay

    Motherboard/CPU
    I used an Intel D201GLY2A mini-ITX motherboard/CPU. this board is very small in size and has a built-in Intel Core-2 based 1.2GHz Celeron processor that can easily handle every carPC function I have thrown at it. best of all, it only consumes 27 watts! (while being far more powerful than my old laptop, it consumes less than 1/3 power). cost ~$75


    Power Supply
    I used a MiniBox M2ATX DC-DC carPC power supply. cost ~$75


    Hard Drive (HDD)
    I used a 40GB Toshiba 2.5" Laptop HDD. I bought it used on eBay for $15

    PC CASE
    I used a mini-ITX carPC case from Mo-Co-So.com (I bought from his eBay store). it is a nice aluminum case that looks like a standard car amplifier. this case is small enough to fit under the Fusion's passenger seat, so that's where my new system went. this location makes use of an otherwise unused space, doesn't require the use of extension cables, and it stays cooler in the summer / warmer in the winter than the trunk does. cost $59


    MONITOR/TOUCHSCREEN
    I used a lilliput EBY-701 7" Touchscreen VGA monitor. there's nothing special about this monitor that made me buy it, it's price-point was the major draw for me. cost ~$150


    WIRING
    I ran a dedicated 10AWG from the Fusion's power distribution box (under the hood) to the M2-ATX. other necessary wiring includes audio cables, REM turn-on wire (IGN) for the M2-ATX, etc. I already had all the required wires, cables, and connectors from previous projects; if I didn't have any wiring supplies on-hand then I would have probably spent between $15-$30 for it.

    -COST: the components above can be bought for about $390. this is far less than it would cost to buy a high-end audio/video/nav headunit, and it is much more powerful and expandable.

    SOFTWARE
    I already had a retail copy of Windows XP. I used RoadRunner for the front end with the DigitalFX skin. the only software I paid for was iGuidance4.0. cost ~$99.


    ADDITIONAL HARDWARE
    I bought a GlobalSAT BU-353 USB GPS receiver to usewith iGuidance4.0. this is a nice GPS receiver that sells for about $37


    AUDIO
    for this new system, I chose to use the carPC as the sole/primary audio/video source. there is no head unit in this system, audio signal goes from the PC to the equalizer in the dash. the equalizer takes the 2-ch stereo audio signal and splits it up into 6 independently controllable audio output channels (front R/L, rear R/L, and subwoofer R/L). this allows for easy hardware-based volume/EQ adjustment without the need to look at the screen (it makes the carPC system just as safe to use as the factory radio by keeping your eyes on the road for basic audio adjustments). I bought the equalizer on eBay for $50

    the equalizer controls the pre-amp audio signal, which feeds the two amplifiers in the trunk. I still have the factory speakers in the doors, but I have added a couple Pioneer 6x9's in the rear deck. I have a Pioneer GM4300F powering all 8 speakers, the door speakers are wired in series and connected to amp channels 1 and 2. the rear deck speakers are connected to amp channels 3 and 4. the equalizer's front output goes to the 6 door speakers, the equalizer's rear output goes to the rear deck speakers. the equalizer's subwoofer output feeds two 12" MTX Blue Thunder Legend 500w (250w RMS) subwoofers powered by a 800w (400w RMS) Kicker ZX400.1 mono amp.

    I already had the Pioneer 6x9's and the MTX subwoofers (they are both old discontinued models no longer available). I bought the Pioneer GM4300F and the Kicker ZX400.1 amplifiers on eBay for $80 and $100.



    total cost of extra components was about $366, bringing the total cost of my entire system up to ~$756. while that is alot of money, it includes far more power and expandability than any head unit could ever provide.

  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    791
      • [li]PC assembly[/li]


      since I bought everything barebones / as individual components, the first thing I needed to do assemble the PC. I like to to assemble the parts myself, that way I know it's done right. this way allows you to remove/change anything you don't like and add/customize anything else you want (yes, you could do this with any PC, but why pay for a pre-assembled version if you're just going to take it apart and re-do it?).

      the case I bought came with a slide-out motherboard tray that the motherboard, hard drive, and power supply all mount onto. assembling a carPC is basically the same as assembling a home/desktop PC. screw your components to the case/tray, insert RAM stick(s) and expansion cards (I didn't use any expansion cards in my setup), and plug power/data cables in.



      the case I bought came with a 6-pin I/O power connector. 3 of the pins were for constant/battery power, IGN/ACC (remote turn-on), and ground. the other three pins were +5v regulated, +5v ground, and delayed amplifier turn-on output (it waits until the PC has booted before it turns the amps on, this avoids the turn-on "thump" that happens if the amp turns on before the audio source). it also had a standard barrel connector under the 6-pin power connector. the barrel connector 'pins' were +12v regulated and +12v ground. the ground wires are the same as the PSU's ground input wire so there was no need to have it as an output in the main power connector. I cut/terminated both ground outputs and moved the +12v regulated output into the 6-pin power harness. this allowed me to remove the barrel connector, I drilled out a hole a little bigger and mounted a momentary pushbutton switch in its place. the case didn't come with a power switch (the power supply turns the computer on/off so it is generally not needed, but I wanted an external power switch just in case.



      • [li]Operating System / Software Installation:[/li]


      even if I had bought a pre-assembled PC, I would still have installed the OS myself. I like to do it myself so that I know it's done right and setup the way I want it. I use nLite to make my own custom XP installations.

      to install the OS, I used the ATX power supply, mouse, keyboard, and CD-rom drive from my desktop PC, and plugged them all into the carputer motherboard



      • [li]Power / Ground Wiring[/li]


      for safety reasons and to avoid doing any damage to the car's factory wiring, I try to keep all my wiring as isolated as possible from the car's factory wiring. out of everything I have installed, the only factory power wire being used is the ACC wire from the stock radio harness. I use that wire as a trigger for a single relay, the relay then provides direct battery power (or acts as a trigger) for other components that need to turn on/off with the car.

      I have 4 power wires coming off the battery. one 4-AWG wire runs under the car and up into the trunk to power two amplfiers. three 10-AWG wires run from unused fuse connectors in the power distribution box and run through the firewall (through the interior fuse panel wire harness grommet). of these three wires; one 10-AWG wire powers a small 6-circuit fuse block in the stock radio location, the second 10-AWG wire runs down the center console to a 4-circuit fuse panel for the carputer power input and outputs. the third 10-AWG wire is not used yet (it will be used to power my aftermarket power moonroof, I don't like the way the dealer hacked the power wire into the interior fuse panel).

      Center Console Wiring



      I used a 4-circuit fuse panel in the center console. circuit/fuse #1 (top) is the main 10-AWG power input wire for the carputer. circuit/fuse #2 is the delayed +12v audio amplifer turn-on output from the M2-ATX. circuits/fuses #3 & #4 are +12v regulated output wires from the M2-ATX (#3 goes to the trunk to power the backup camera, #4 goes up to the center dash terminal block to power the monitor and equalizer). you can't see it in the pic, but the carputer ground wire is connected to a parking brake handle bolt.

      Center Dash Wiring (former stock radio location)



      I used a large terminal block for power connections. this was not necessary but it keeps everything organized and allows me to easily make wiring changes without having to rewire everything each time (and I tend to change things alot, if fact the wiring is slightly different today than it was when I snapped that pic ). most of the power wires connected to the terminal block come from different [secondary] power sources but the same wire color is used, so to avoid confusion each power wire is labeled.

      there are two relays on the left, they both get their power from the 6-circuit fuse block above them. "relay 1" is triggered by the stock radio harness ACC wire (via a 0.25 Amp fuse); this relay does not directly power anything, it is only used as a trigger for "relay 2", the Clarion EQS746, Visteon HDZ300, and the M2-ATX. using the relay for the stock ACC wire isolates the car's factory wiring from my own wiring. "relay 2" is used to power the front console cig lighter socket and an additional cig lighter socket I added to power my Pioneer Inno's charger.

      the other power wires on the terminal block come from the center console fuse panel to power the monitor and equalizer. the terminals on the right are chassis ground

      • [li]Audio Wiring:[/li]


      after all the power and ground wiring is complete, I needed to run the audio (RCA) cables. for most people, this would a simple 1/8" stereo plug -to- dual RCA plug audio cable to run from the carputer's audio output jack directly to the audio amplifier(s). for that (typical) setup; all volume, fader, and EQ settings are controlled through the touchscreen (through software). for my setup, I wanted physical knobs to control volume, fading, and EQ settings. I chose to use an in-dash 1/2-DIN equalizer (Clarion EQS746). this equalizer uses 5 sets of RCA cables (1 main input, 1 aux input, 1 front output, 1 rear output, and 1 subwoofer output). so I had lots of RCA cables to run



      • [li]Monitor Wiring / Installation:[/li]


      all power/audio/video connections in the EBY701 run through a single 16-pin connector. I already ran power wiring for the monitor to the terminal block. I didn't need to use the monitor's built-in speaker for anything so the audio is left unconnected. the other connections are a VGA cable to the carputer (for the video), a USB cable to the carputer (for the touchscreen interface), and a single RCA cable to the trunk (for the backup camera).



      once all the wiring is completed, the monitor was ready to be hooked up. to secure the monitor I attached velcro to the back and bottom of the monitor enclosure. the bottom velcro attaches to the top of the equalizer, for the back I bolted a short piece of aluminum flat stock across the stock radio opening using the top two stock radio bolts.



      • [li]Center Bezel Modification:[/li]


      the stock center bezel is opening is almost the perfect size for the EBY701 (horizontally it's about 1/4" to short, and vertically it's about 1/4" too tall). before I installed the equalizer I only had the monitor itself in there. all that was required to fit the EBY 701 into the stock radio opening was to simply file about 1/8" from each side (because of the switches on the right side, I filed mostly on the right side to make the screen sit more in the middle).



      to add the equalizer required cuting/filing about 3/4" off the top the opening (to move the monitor up). I used a roto-zip to cut the opening out larger, then used a file to smooth out the edge. at some point I may epoxy the monitor bezel to the car's center bezel, then fill, sand, and paint it to for a cleaner look, but for now I'm ok with the aesthetics (it looks similar to the stock radio as far as aesthetics are concerned).



      • [li]Override Switch w/LEDs:[/li]


      under normal circumstances, you simply turn the key and the carputer automatically boots up, remove the key (and open the door) and the carputer shuts down. but since it is a computer, it is not an instant-on/instant-off device. it takes time to boot and time to shut down (it depends on how you have your BIOS and OS setup, but boot up usually takes around 30 seconds (using hibernation can make it faster). if you're only running to the ATM or getting gas then you will be getting right back into your car in a few minutes, you don't need/want to have the computer shut down just to boot back up again in a few minutes. there are other times where you are just moving your car from one space to another and don't need/want the computer to boot up at all.

      for these reasons, I (like many carPC'ers) installed an override switch on the power supply's IGN line. there are different ways of doing it depending on how much control you want, and whether or not you want a visual indicator of the override status. I wanted full control, as well as full visual indication of the override status. I made a small switch mount out of 3/32" Aluminum flat stock that mounts to the right of the equalizer. I drilled three holes in the aluminum mount and installed a DPDT mini toggle switch, a green LED, and a blue LED. (sorry for the blurry pics)



      when the switch is in the "normal" position the carputer starts up and shuts down with the car (the blue LED lights up when the switch is in the "normal" position and the ignition key is turned to the ACC or RUN position. when the switch is in the "override" position, the carputer will turn on and/or stay on and the green LED will stay lit up (regardless of ignition key position), when the switch is in the "off" position the carputer will shut down and/or stay off and no LED will light up (again, regardless of the ignition key position).



      • [li]PC installation:[/li]


      I installed the PC under the passenger seat for several reasons; it allows access from the driver's seat (with the passenger seat pushed forward all the way), it keeps the wire/cable lengths shorter, and allows it to operate in the ambient temp of the passenger compartment (as opposed to the extreme heat/cold in the trunk). the case fits perfectly right under the seat and cannot be seen when the seat is pushed back. to push the case up a little further I cut a notch for the seat's wire harness which allowed me to push the PC back about another inch. it is not physically secured to anything, it just sits there, wedged in by the seat brackets/plate and the rear carpet. I could easily attach a couple velcro strips to it hold it, but it's not necessary.



      • [li]Audio Amplifiers and Speakers[/li]


      there is no traditional head unit in my car (the carputer IS the head unit). since a computer cannot amplify the sound up to speaker level, an outboard amplifier was required to do this. I have two amplifiers in my trunk, a Pioneer GM4300F 4-channel 400w (200w RMS) amp to power the 6 door speakers (wired in series and connected to the stock radio harness) and two Pioneer 6x9 three way speakers in the rear deck. I wired the door speakers in series to raise the impedance seen by the amplifier. this lowers the power output of the amp and reduces audible distortion (the door speakers are still stock, they would not exist if I tried pushing 50w RMS into them ) amp channels 1 & 2 power all 6 door speakers (fed by the equalizer's front outputs). amp channels 3 & 4 power the rear deck speakers (fed by the equalizer's rear outputs). I also have two 12" MTX Blue Thunder Legend subwoofers (yes I know, they're old!) powered by a Kicker ZX400.1 800w (400w RMS) mono amp (fed by the equalizer's subwoofer output).






    so that's it!... any questions, don't hesitate to ask!

  4. #4
    Newbie LordBentoR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    7
    Wow, very nicely done. Clean dash, and the computer itself looks pretty hidden. Thumbs up!

  5. #5
    Variable Bitrate Zogg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Plano, TX
    Posts
    311
    Very nice, FF. My wife has a Fusion and you have provided an excellent roadmap for me to use if she ever lets me install a carputer.

    Z
    Zotac N630I-D-E M/B w/ Nvidia 7100, E5300 cpu, Xenarc 700IDT, M2-ATX, XP, RR & DFX 5.1.

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    791
    thanx guys

  7. #7
    Constant Bitrate
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Norton, MA
    Posts
    119
    very nicely done for sure. That screen and equializer do give it a fairly OEM look to the overall product, looks great.

    Did you have any issues installing and setting up iGuidance 4 and the bu353? This is my next step in my install and have read many issues on both and so I am dreading installing them. Did you happen to crack iGuidance? I have a retail copy that I purchased but I am leary to install it due to the activation process.

    Does the switch you have allow you to restart the computer? I am thinking if the car is running and the computer all of a sudden locks up can you flip the switch to Off and then back to normal causing the computer to reboot? I am thinking this is exactly what I need for mine instead of extending the front panel switches I harvested from an old case.
    2005 Ford F-350 crew cab 4x4 6.0L SRW LWB

    Planning:
    [|||||||||-] 95%
    Parts Aquisition:
    [||||||----] 60%
    Install:
    [|||||||||-] 90%

    Finally getting Built

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate FusionFanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    791
    Quote Originally Posted by jdc753 View Post
    very nicely done for sure. That screen and equializer do give it a fairly OEM look to the overall product, looks great
    yeah, compared to the original stock radio, its about as close to the original OEM look as you can get. if I mold the screen into the dash then it will look 'cleaner', but it will not look "Ford OEM".

    Quote Originally Posted by jdc753 View Post
    Did you have any issues installing and setting up iGuidance 4 and the bu353? This is my next step in my install and have read many issues on both and so I am dreading installing them. Did you happen to crack iGuidance? I have a retail copy that I purchased but I am leary to install it due to the activation process.
    no issues that I can remember. IG4 works perfect with the BU353, you might have to manually select the COM port and baud rate the first time you use it but that's no big deal.

    no, I didn't 'crack' it, I payed for a legal copy. if you have a 'retail copy' (legal?) of iG4 then you shouldn't have any issue activating it.

    Quote Originally Posted by jdc753 View Post
    Does the switch you have allow you to restart the computer? I am thinking if the car is running and the computer all of a sudden locks up can you flip the switch to Off and then back to normal causing the computer to reboot? I am thinking this is exactly what I need for mine instead of extending the front panel switches I harvested from an old case.
    if you toggle the switch to the center position (off) then the computer will shut down. you can then put it back to normal and it will boot up again (basically a manual restart).

    as long as you use an intelligent ATX power supply then all you have to do it put a switch on the IGN line to control your PC power state.


  9. #9
    Constant Bitrate
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Norton, MA
    Posts
    119
    Quote Originally Posted by FusionFanatic View Post
    yeah, compared to the original stock radio, its about as close to the original OEM look as you can get. if I mold the screen into the dash then it will look 'cleaner', but it will not look "Ford OEM".


    no issues that I can remember. IG4 works perfect with the BU353, you might have to manually select the COM port and baud rate the first time you use it but that's no big deal.

    no, I didn't 'crack' it, I payed for a legal copy. if you have a 'retail copy' (legal?) of iG4 then you shouldn't have any issue activating it.


    if you toggle the switch to the center position (off) then the computer will shut down. you can then put it back to normal and it will boot up again (basically a manual restart).

    as long as you use an intelligent ATX power supply then all you have to do it put a switch on the IGN line to control your PC power state.

    Sweet thanks for the quick responses. Yes I did purchase a retail copy of iG4 but after reading a bunch of thread about people getting locked out of it after having to reformat and only being able to activate it twice I got pretty leery. Activating and software connecting to the internet simply for innitial start up is one of my major pet peeves. Just trying to find out more info before I go ahead and use it or if I am gonna try and cut my loses and sell it for a different GPS software. Thats how much I hate activating things and don't wanna get screwed if I have to reformat or something. For now the iG4 package sits on my desk next to the BU353.

    I got an OPUS 320w PSU currently, but had issues with the jumpers and it not wanting to boot when I set it up according to the manual so currently it simply powers the computer and I have the front panel switches hacked out of a case setup to turn it on. Had some other questions here but somehow stupid me missed your wiring diagram.

    Thanks again and great install.
    2005 Ford F-350 crew cab 4x4 6.0L SRW LWB

    Planning:
    [|||||||||-] 95%
    Parts Aquisition:
    [||||||----] 60%
    Install:
    [|||||||||-] 90%

    Finally getting Built

  10. #10
    Variable Bitrate
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    237
    Is it advisable to run a 4 Gauge Power Wire under your car into the trunk?

    I only ask because I am getting ready to run my main 4 gauge cable and I didn't find a hole in my firewall yesterday, so I will probably have to drill...

    I wasn't sure if it was a sound idea or not, But I guess it could cut down on interference introduced into your audio system. What did you do to secure it/make sure it wont get torn up by road debris?

Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Indexing music in 1.0.9.8 Failed
    By hovalistic in forum StreetDeck
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-07-2007, 11:19 AM
  2. RC4 Phoco issue / SE K800I
    By SOS in forum CF Bug Reports
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-15-2006, 02:34 PM
  3. error - DLL Missing
    By dan__wright in forum AutoTouch
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 05-19-2005, 01:12 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •