Thanks to everone here at MP3car.com This wouldn't have turned out nearly as well without the wealth of information shared here!
I pulled 4 guage from the battery (fused), down the driver side wire tunnel, to a power distribution block under the rear seats. The fuses in the distribution block can be accessed by folding the rear seat bottoms forward. I ran 8 guage to the amplifier and 10 guage to the computer. The computer and amplifier have a common ground, under the front passenger seat. The RCA cables run down the passenger side wire tunnel and are are kept apart from the power cables. Speaker wires run up the center console and into the dash and attach to the factory speaker wires using a store-bought adapter harness. The turn-on wire is the same but running in the opposite direction. USB and VGA cables are also run from the dash and down the passenger side.
There is a (for now unpowered) USB hub I tossed under the center console to help make up the connections to the GPS and Touch screen controller. This will be either moved to the glove box or I'll make some holes in the center storage box which will allow other USB devices (keyboard, mouse, Network, Memory cards, Disks) to be attached, when needed.
At the moment, the LCD is still powered from the ciggarette lighter port. I still need to run a power wire from the PSU up to the screen to eliminate that problem. At the same time I'll run some power for by USB hub. Also the amp turn-on needs to come from the computer, and not the ignition switch. This should eliminate the 'thud' I get when the computer turns-on.
I also plan to tap the gear select lever switch(es) and run that back to the computer. This will allow me to disable certain software features (movies, etc) when the 4runner is in motion.
Right now I'm still working out which software package(s) to run. For GPS, I'm using Street Atlas 2004 and I also have MapPoint 2002. For a front-end and A/V playback I've been trying, MediaCar, MediaEngine, FrodoPlayer, and VOICES. None of them are (yet) the perfect solution, but each has capabilities far in excess of anything off-the-shelf navigation / stereo system. Still, I wish had a ton of time to roll my own code. I'm sure that would be satisfying. On the other hand, if one of these packages would release source code, I'm certain I could find time to code and post bug fixes as well as iron out some of the GPS integration issues. (sorry, I had to toss in my 2 cents on this issue).
Damn that is smooth!! I can't wait till I have the time and $$ to do something similar in mine. Great work!!
looks great rando!
Congratulations. Great location for the computer. What are you gonna do about cd/dvd?
Hey, thanks for your post. As you can see, your case worked out perfectly for me (once I reengineered an IDE cable to fit and found the proper flush mount screws )Originally Posted by jusatry
The DVD drive is still something I need to work out. It would be nice to be able to play, rip, burn content on the road but it's not essential for my purposes. Basically I've got two choices. I can mount a drive in the glove box (there's a handly shelf in there that would work perfect for a drive). The other choice is to just plug in the DVD drive (via USB) when I need to use it. I'll probably go with the latter solution. I plan to add a few USB ports up front somewhere ... when i get a moment. For now, I just use an external USB disk drive to transfer media to the system. If need be, the computer is easily removed since it's only fastened to the cubby with straps.
Also, I just recevied my Radioman AM/FM serial thingy yesterday. I need to work out how I'm going to hook it up. Since there is already a USB hub buried under the center console, I'm thinking the best way to go is a serial to USB converter. That way I won't need to extend the antenna wires all the way to the back of the car.
BTW, the internal sound on the M10k sounds excellent in my system. I know others have had problems with it. I pick up a little noise from the computer itself, but nothing from the engine or otherwise. I'm thinking of going with USB sound since I could position it right next to the amp and only go into RCAs (analog) for a few inches. I'm hoping that such a solution will give me extremely clean sound, comparable (at least) to using the toslink connection.
I also need to work out the 5v standby power issue. So far my battery hasn't died, but I've read other posts where people were measuring 200mA while the system is off. That doesn't sound like the best thing for battery longevity. IIRC, lead acid batteries don't handle repeated drain/charge cycles well. It's unfortunate that the Opus 150 doesn't have a jumper to configure it to go COMPLETELY off. I may just add a relay to the battery input of the Opus.
I am running the Epia 10K onboard sound also - and I get no noise whatsoever. It's so good I actually gave up on the idea of a sound card.Originally Posted by rando
Car: 2000 Audi A4 Avant 1.8t
Carputer 2.0: removed. Back to stock.
Hmmm ... maybe I'll try moving my RCA cables around a bit and see if I can eliminate the little bit of noise I have before I go the expensive USB/Sound route. Then again, bringing the USB sound up front will shorten the run I need to use for my Microphone (once I get it installed). That could be a plus too, I guess.
As for the standby power issue, i just completed taking some measurements. My truck uses 19-25mA (measured at battery ground) when at rest (given a few minutes to stabalize before taking the measurement). The Opus draws about 6.7mA on the 12V line with ACC low and the computer disconnected. The computer and opus together pull 96.7mA with the computer off (measured at the 12v line into the Opus). I have an unpowered USB hub connected to my GPS and touchscreen. If I pull the USB connection, the combined power consumption goes down to 92.5mA. I pulled my serial RadioMan, the RCA cables, and the VGA cable. These had no measurable effect on the current draw. So here is the power consumption of my system while off.
04 4runner Engine/ACC Off: ~20mA
M10k (Off with no devices attached): ~86mA
USB Hub and devices (Computer off): ~ 4mA
Opus (Off with no devices attached): ~ 7mA
Based on this data, I can expect my battery to drain 5-6 times faster than it would have without this equipment. If I want to address this problem, it looks like the only approach is to kill the 12v line into the opus when the truck is off. This should be doable with two relays or a single relay and 2 diodes. I'll probably go with the former solution since it guarantees isolation between the 12v input and 12v output of the Opus.
I added the Audigy 2 NX USB and it eliminated my noise problem. I don't hear much of a difference in terms of sound quality over the M10k built-in sound ... though it hard to tell when comparing two sound sources at different times. The IR remote on the Audigy is a nice bonus. Once I get my mic/line-in issue resolved (see my other post) I will remove the IR sensor from the Audigy and reattach it with some wire. Then I will be able to position the sensor in a convenient location while keeping the main Audigy unit tucked away under the center console.
I added a relay on the +12v input to the Opus. It is switched by the ACC line OR a +12v output line from the Opus (isolated by diodes). The effectively eliminates the standby current issue I mentioned above. My Opus is now 100% off when it's off. All other functionality is retained.
The Lilliput is now powered directly from the Opus. Unfortunately, it seems to have picked up some interference from the new wiring and/or power source. There are waves rolling up across the screen. I didn't have this problem when it was powered from the cigarette lighter using the std lilli power egg.