Great Install Andro...looks really well done.
I have a new passat as well, and am planning on putting a car pc in there. How much space was behind the radio unit? Think there is room to tuck pc components back there or no? Or do you think it would get too hot.
I'm thinking of having the screen actually fold down, and be able to access the dvd drive that way, and possibly throw the hard drives where you threw the head unit. I don't have the steering wheel controls and what not to coordinate, so I think it will be a bit simpler.
It will take a bit of fabrication, but should work ok, I think.
Let me know your thoughts!
Hm, there isn't that much room behind there and it's plastic all around so there won't be much ventilation and I think they'd get hot. There is only so much room you can place a double-din unit there - just recently I've seen some dual-din displays already ready to be built in, with adjustable angles of the display, including a FM/AM receiver, an amp and a USB DVD drive (to access it the screen folds down)- it seemed interresting to me, though I'm not sure one could get the OEM feel with this - and I think something like this might just fit and I guess it's just something you are trying to do.
Originally Posted by legallink
If I'd be thinking about building it this way I'd go with this monitor/dvd/tuner/amp combo and a DIN sized case for the PC, tuck this into the CD changer case (where I've got the radio now) and voilla.
Don't forget you'll need the CAN-BUS interface anyway, although you don't have any steering wheel controls. You can't get the standard ISO power connector any other way and you'll have problems without it.
If you need more info just tell :)
Thanks for the tips Andro.
I have seen the dual din product, but am not so thrilled with it for several reasons. The first is I really like to control parts. I am much happier with having to swap out a broken part than a whole unit...if I didn't build it, well, it just makes it that much more difficult. And the guarantee of quality as well.
The other is, I am a little skeptical of using the motorized mechanism. I think that is failure waiting to happen.
That being said, I have looked at it, and it seems like a decent unit. If I throw a pc where you have the head unit...can I interface with the speakers and what not without a head unit? I was under the impression from your post, that I would need a head unit.
Thanks for the tip about the can bus.
When you say not too much room..we talking 3", or more like 6 or 8". With 6" or 8", I can fit an etx board back there, ro something that isn't a standard size, but your thoughts on putting the PC in the glove compartment are probably the easiest and best route. Can I trace some cables from the head unit to the glove box? Then I could have the drive and lcd mounted there and the pc in the glove box.
This will probably be starting to piece itself together in Jan. or Feb...I am just gathering info, and may just do all the fab stuff. Thanks again!
legallink, i fully understand your concerns. i am trying to avoid mechanical parts as much as possible, and i'm always trying to go to the most oem look possible, since anything that looks like a custom install is just something waiting for some crook to be stolen. if you have an oem look, that's not that attractive, i think.
if you don't have steering wheel controls, don't have the built-in phone and don't mind controlling the volume (and the whole audio experience, for that matter) with the pc only, there really isn't much of a reason to use it. but if you don't have the can-bus adapter, there is no way for you to get the ignition signal (ok, maybe you could find some device in the car that you could hook yourself to to get it, but i'm not sure which one this could be - most of the devices are can-bus controlled and you'd probably have some problems with it as well). without the head unit of course you'll need amps to power all your speakers anyway, and a physical connection to the speakers is, of course, available on the radio connector (which also contains the power line, can bus line, etc.).
i'm not sure about the dimensions of the room behind the radio, but if you take the standard 2-DIN unit (like the factory radio), you'll have maybe an 1" clearance (or even less) behind it, so just enough for the connection cables to flow there. when i put in the monitor, i'd guess it's about 4" left behind it. tracing cables isn't a problem, there's (just) enough room to trace them, but you need to dismantle quite a few things - the glove compartment must come down all the way (you must do that anyway if you want to install something there, so this maybe isn't such a consideration). it's also ment for cables to be traced there - if you install a changer, you have to have some room to trace the cables between the head unit and the changer anyway.
re the dvd drive - from my experience, the way i'm using it, i use the dvd drive extremely rarely - the music is the hard drive, i don't normally watch movies in the car and if there's something i want to see, i save it to the disk via network anyway and then watch it from there (bear in mind you could also easily damage the cd/dvd on a more bumpy road). my disk is vertically mounted, this way it's a little less seceptive to damage on the roads since on 'normal' bumps on the road the heads won't crash to the hd platten. i do damage checks on the hd from time to time and no problems sofar (cca 30k miles sofar, a lot of that also on bumpy roads and with a hard suspension ;) ).
Andro! This looks great!
Ok I'm a first-posting noob here, but I'm a regular over at PassatWorld and VWVortex. I must have missed this install over at PassatWorld because this is the first time I'm seeing it. Great job!
I'm also posting because you've given me hope that tackling this kind of project in a B6 Passat is totally doable. Others will say that the CAN-BUS complexities of the VW's make it more of a pain than it's worth getting into. I know computers, I know wiring, I know general car audio... but I dont' know CAN-BUS. I'm hoping you can offer a little advice.
It has been a few weeks since this post has had any activity and a couple new options have seem to come available since then.
Here's my current setup:
2006 Passat 2.0t Sedan
OEM DVD Navigation system with Dynaudio amp/speaker system
Glovebox CD Changer removed and replaced with Phatnoise Phatbox.
The Dynaudio system is an option on the Passats here in the States... are you familiar with it? I'm not sure if it's an option on Passat's where you are. It's basically the OEM system with the addition of an amp and speakers from high-end audio company from Denmark called Dynaudio. It sounds absolutely fantastic. More on this later.
What I want to do:
Single DIN pc where the CD Changer was (and where your headunit is)
DL065A 6.5" Double-Din VGA Touchscreen
This touchscreen has integrated AM/FM radio. For me, this does away with the need for a headunit (assuming I can find a USB XM Radio solution).
Or does it? That is my main question. What I would be doing is running audio out of the pc into the audio-in connections of the DL065A. That audio would then run out of the audio-out wires of the DL065A to the Dynaudio Amp. As said above, the Dynaudio amp and speakers sound incredible, and I want to keep those. I have no use for a subwoofer and therefore do not need an additional amp.
So with all this being said, I'm wondering how hard this is going to be for me, again, considering the complexity of the CAN-BUS. You've apparently given this plenty of thought. Question: when you removed your original headunit from your Passat (by the way, all the 2006 VW H/U's including the Nav one are made by Blaupunkt... this is probably why that was your only choice for glovebox unit) as I was saying... when you removed your original HU from you Passat, how many connections were there? If I recall correctly, the back of my Nav had four: one radio antenna, one satellite radio antenna, one GPS antenna, and then the big guy: the big cluster of wires that went to a big plastic clip that assumedly houses wires for speakers, power, etc etc. Where does the CAN-BUS come into play, and how does this relate to the CAN-BUS adapter that you mentioned earlier in this thread?
Wow... long post for my first one. Let's end it here and see what your thoughts are.
First of all, welcome here. Thanks for choosing my thread for your first post :)
I know the Dynaudio system, though I have chosen not to get it since I wanted to have a 'full' system including sub and I anyway was planning to go with an aftermarket install. That's why I don't know whether there is anything special you need to do to control it (if it's also in some way controlled via can-bus or not) or if it's got the standard remote in and voilla. So this could prove to be a problem for you if it is can-bus controlled.
Otherwise, I was also looking at DL065A, it looks interresting for such an installation. What I mostly need my HU for is steering wheel controls, there is no fool-proof option available yet (the last time I checked Pac-Audio has not finished yet with their can-bus adapter, this was the one I was most watching as a possible solution).
Otherwise, the can-bus is not a major issue. That major cluster you are talking about contains the power, the speakers, the can-bus. You will need to get an can-bus adapter that connects to this cluster, this one will provide you with the necessary connections, most of all with the ignition switched power you'll be needing to power (and appropriatelly suspend) the PC. I'm using the one from Blaupunkt that has all the necessary connections and is useful for every HU (or carpc installation), not just when connecting to the Blaupunkt HU (it also contains the HU steering wheel control interface that Blaupunkts can read, that's why I have to use a Blaupunkt HU, I wasn't able to find this from any other brand - Alpine would be my preferrence but... and btw, my OEM HU (the el-cheapo RCD300) is built by Grundig :) )
It would be excellent if you could also use the built-in GPS antenna, look into that, I'm sorry I don't have one, but I'm not sure what kind of adapters would be needed and if this indeed works (the OEM GPS antenna is a kind of active antenna and needs to be powered etc. to work - hence the need for some sort of adapter).
Hope this helps you go further in your project. If you need anything else, just say, I'm happy if I can be of some help.
Hi again Andro,
Thanks so much for the reply!
Ok, yes one important thing I forgot to mention in my first post is that I DON'T have steering controls. I wanted them, but I ended up settling because of what my dealer had available.
So with that being said, my understanding is that the only other thing that I now have to consider related to the can-bus is the MFD in the instrument panel. One of the greatest features of the VW OEM Nav is that it tells you all your pertinent info (like where you need to turn and when) right there in the MFD. My guess is that is very much an OEM function and if I go with Nav in the PC, I'm going to lose this functionality no matter what. I can live with it I guess, especially since I know that there are PC Nav solutions out there that are far better and more advanced than VW's OEM Nav anyway. So I don't know how much I need to worry about can-bus complexities after all.
However, if the can-bus adapter is what I need to ignition switched functionality, then I certainly want it. Can you post a link for me to this adapter, or perhaps just tell me where I can get them for different HU's? Is it the Pac-Audio place that you mention? It's good to know that I don't necessarily have to go Blaupunkt since I don't have the steering wheel controls. And, sorry, my dealer told me all the VW HU's were Blaupunkt. My Nav unit definitely is. ;)
Further, I will look into solutions for the OEM GPS antenna and see what I can find out. I'll keep you posted.
Thanks again for all your help!!
Andro, I just bought one of these. This will take care of any problems that would arise with the fact that 2006 VW's don't have a 12v Acc wire in their harness. We shall see how the other functions of the canbus work out!
I like your project
I just bought this car. I got the 3.6 one. It has the nav but its worthless. Have you seen anything that i can plug right in to that screen. Its so new im scared to touch it