one of the habits i picked up is to balance and rotate the tires every other oil change (for me it's a rotation every 6000 miles approximately). frequent balancing seems to make the biggest difference and helps to minimize uneven wear on the tires especially if you're as heavy on the throttle as i tend to be.
how do you like the 7" xenarc? i've wondered if it's difficult to see and/or use considering that most have the screen mounted lower and closer to driver. i'm torn between that screen and the 8" 16:9 tview. the tview screen is almost the same size as the 7" xenarc but with the added advantage of an extra inch in viewable area. there's a review on the screen in the review palace subforum which helped to influence my decision.
I'm selling my dash mount for the Xenarc screen if you're interested. I broke my monitor and never finished it. It needs a little TLC but is otherwise great. Let me know if you want some pics or something.
Do you mean the thing that it stands on?
if not, pics would be cool.
I like the xenarc screen, but then again it's my first one (in this size range). More screen space would be nice if it fits, but I got mine right before they started shipping the 8" screens. I think 16:9 isn't a neccessity in cars, the xenarc 8" is a 4:3 I think, that seems to make more sense. Less issues with your video card, I'd guess.
In terms of placement, it's really easy to glance at, since it's in your perephiral vision. No need to move your head. Usage isn't too bad, it's not much of a reach, but not as comfortable as the HU location. I'm sure people who place it there have the ideal usage and viewing, but I wasn't ready to get rid of the HU and mess with the dash.
I grabbed "strokeit" http://www.tcbmi.com/strokeit/ which is great. Just like with streetdeck, I swipe in a direction and it runs a command or macro. So to zoom in on the map, I swipe right, zoom out, left. Scrolling through the playlist by doing up and down strokes on the screen.
Since I was having the gps problems, I made a hibernate stroke which switches the com port in IG before hibernating. That way when I resume it can reconnect to the gps without unplugging the device or restarting.
I am left handed, so I wish the screen was on my other side. Most of my passengers are right handed, so that doesn't help them either :) I need a car with the steering wheel on the right side. Like a skyline, that would be nice!
I'll post pictures later tonight or tomorrow.
Thats a great idea but i just like the idea of making a mod permanent.
sorry to bring up an old thread, and thanks for such detailed pics, daspider boris. I see how you swing your monitor into place, but when you swing it backwards to close the storage.... does it latch in an up position somehow?? or does it rest on something? or just the foam on top of the vents...?
Also... I was wondering if any of you would know some answers... or have input for me on my idea...
i'm sick of constantly trying to upgrade my audio system because i don't go with what i truely want in the first place, so its time to just go all out with a carputer... (orrrrr another option i was considering...... which is where i have some questions i'm quite clueless on)
1- building a carputer, probably with an extra mobo i have......
-Ideally, I would like to use the gps capabilities of my phone w/ garmin mobile... it is a sprint mogul with an upgraded rom, so it has an enabled GPS chip (that works even without cell service, and is free), and it also allows for new truely broadband speeds (averaging 500kbps up to 1mbps!!!, and sprint doesn't have a data plan like verizon yet for its phones, only the data cards.... soooo it can't tell the difference between using the phone as a broadband modem for the pc, or just using the SprintVision internet services..... which is only $15/month unlimited, instead of $ per kb, or $100 unlimited like other 'data' plans...)
so that covers an internet connection & gps chip, it is a sprint mogul.. i'm pretty sure the highspeed phone as modem can work via usb OR bluetooth, but I just hope the internal gps receiver can be used by an external program.
-Question: I always run into ground loop interference / altenator whine.... even with power down one side, RCA down the other... trying to keep signals away from power, using shielded and twisted cables... i just hate it, and i hate using cheap little boxes for ground loop isolation as the weak link in a oxygen free, gold plated RCA
(***audio is my MAIN focus here... none of my systems stay stock, in fact they are COMPLETELY redone, all aftermarket speakers, all powered by external amps... aftermarket HU, but no speakers ever run off the HU, only RCA outputs***)
So, my question, are there any amps out there that accept optical signals?
Optical = no electrical interference... I just didn't know if any company has tried advancing that far....
I know that there are optical to RCA converters, which I supposed could minimize the potential for interference.... especially if my source (carputer) and amp are both in the trunk!
BUT is there such an amp that will accept optical / Toslink signals?
OR do you have input on the best way to avoid high freq. whining that goes up in pitch & volume w/ RPMS (from altenator)..
-When you were installing the screen in the top storage bin... did you find out (or anyone else) the ideal size(s) for it?
-If I did include a carputer.... I would not use any headunit. I have no use for CDs, and probably not even radio... I could add fm receiver to the carputer if I wanted to later. All I'd want is FLAC support, an easy to plan USB hub in the glovebox [for external HDD to hold my close to 100GB music collection, as well as plug in my phone if usb is better than bluetooth for internet (oh i could experiment with the quality of internet radio over my phone.... but liking my systems loud and powerful, OK quality wouldn't cut it... but with 500+ kbps, it should be good??), and other accesories (folding keyboard, etc etc)...], an aux input for other mp3 players, easily ran back to the line in on the comp...
Without a headunit, ideas for that space?? would it be easier to mount a touchscreen in this location? I have used 5.1 in my car before, and I actually loved listening to it with my music, the clarion HU had dolby music and dolby movie (no screen didn't use movie), it had 3 pre-outs, front, rear, and sub (or in 5.1, the R+L sub was Sub mono + center). a single din center speaker may be the best bet for the previous HU location. any ideas here??
oh, and if optical is used, whether it be to a decent DAC, or optical input on an amp (if it exists)... this would probably be acceptable to run from an onboard optical out from the motherboard and still maintain quality, correct?? I run optical out from the same motherboard (the extra one i mention has a faulty LAN port) in my desktop to the optical input in my home theater, and it makes my lowly entry-level 5.1 home surround sound great when i'm listening to higher bitrate mp3s and FLAC, considerable difference noticed between higher quality mp3s like v0,320 and lossless FLAC vs 128, and even some noticible difference with 192. I know a lot of people say FLAC in a car is stupid, but hey... I like it in my living room, and I take my car audio to a whole other level... its MUCH louder... regardless of road noise, and not the best acoustic environment... it is soo loud, that the better and clear(er) sound from high bitrate and flac would be noticed even more so at such levels, and I would assume this would also lessen the chance of distortion or clipping at these high levels that MAY be caused by lower quality?
any and all input is appriciated..... the next post is an alternative I have been consideringg as well.
ok, i typed a long explinated... then the browser refreshed... wow...
i really wanted input on this too, now i'm just ****ed... i'll try to summarize, if I can...
I came across this...
since my main focus is audio, it may be an easier route...
first, let me explain my first attempts to use flac, I had a 60 GB ipod... and flashed it with rockbox... worked great. this ipod was stolen from my apartment...
so I decided to go with the new 160 over the 80 GB due to my increasing collection of FLAC files... little did I know that rockbox did not support the new classic model, thus no FLAC files.... so I found this little box, made for home media, but seems it could easily find a natural home in the senta, wether it be the lower storage if there was room, or even hidden away in the glove box. AND it plays FLAC files..
Now my new 160gb classic was stolen within a week again from my apartment (i'm moving out to the coast at the end of the month!!)
I know, many say flac is pointless in a car, but ever since I connected the optical output on my motherboard to my optical in on my home system, it turned my entry level cheap 5.1 system into some pretty good sound, and with that I was able to notice big differences between 128 mp3 and 320 mp3/FLAC. since I don't want both 320 and FLAC, I'd rather stick with FLAC all around if possible... Now I know, road noise... not good sound staging, etc in a car... but if I can hear a noticable difference in my home stereo between 192 MP3s and FLAC... then I know I will in my car, especially if I decide to go 5.1... even if I stick to stereo... I take my car audio to completely different level... it is MUCH louder, and I think that every gain in quality will help prevent distortion, clipping, and prevent damage to my speakers at these high levels that could be caused by lower quality... not to mention if I already hear a difference, turning the volume up times 10 should still hear a difference!
So, for this 'alternative'... like I said, the main focus is audio... the FP1 has an ipod dock, and an option for USB HDD... at first I figured that pluggin the ipod in the dock would not play FLAC files, even though the media center supports them, because it seems the native ipod firmware would be in charged, just controlled externally... but looking at the GUI pictures... it seems like the media center MAY read all media files that IT supports from the ipod and arrange it in its own database. of course, if it didn't... I could always use the usb connection, and still have an Ipod dock for friends/family that would like to listen to their ipod selection...
of course, the touchscreen would remain the same in either case..
now, this would cover the audio controls, like a glorified headunit...
here are some advantages and downsides i see to using it (for audio only) vs a carputer...
-The interface seems like it would be easy enough to go through a large selection of music
-However I would miss my winamp, especially if I could get milkdrop 2 going on the touchscreen :)
-The device is made to be controlled with a touchscreen and/or remote, so it is already set up for media browsing
-With carputer I would have to find proper skins to run winamp on a small touchscreen efectively.
-The FP1 is a simple on/off with an easier power solution, and no worries about booting, opening programs, etc..
*IF* I still wanted to use the gps on my phone and posibly internet:
currenty, I use a window suction cup generic phone holder to hold my mogul when I need to use to garmin GPS on it.
this is something I really have no idea if it would work:
Does anyone know if it would be possible for a touchscreen to select between two video sources, but ALSO control both sources with the touch functions??
I know there is a program that allows the USB connected Pocket PC to display on a computer, and interact with it as if it were a seperate program, using the mouse to select what would normally be selected on the touchscreen, and displayed on a larger screen....
if I could use the FP1 for media, and then switch to a hardware solution for the software I just described, it would be amazing.... Somehow using the touchscreen to display and control the pocketPC. This would be all I would need, but I'm not sure if it is possible. I know some sort of hardware adapter, perhaps a custom circuit board project would do the trick, but I would need pointed in the right direction. This way I could switch my video source for the screen over to the GPS on my phone, or the phone's internet browser...
Seems this is unlikely, but if I still wanted to use the FP-1 to simplify my media in the car, and if it was possible to at least display a second video signal (oh i just figured there would probably be some sort of controller/selector for this, such as A/V switches).. anyways, I could use the FP-1 for my audio, and create a much MUCH cheaper and less demanding carputer that would simply be used to connect to the GPS of my pocketPC phone, and possibly the internet connection from using the phone as a modem. This carputer would not have the same booting concerns, as it would be turned on as needed for GPS and internet, where waiting a minute is not as much a concern as waiting a minute each time I want to hear my music library. It could also be an AUX audio source, to provide simple audio from GPS, the internet, and using internet radio as a radio substitute if I find the quality acceptable.
It seems the best way would be full out carputer, or using the FP-1 and lacking the gps, net, netradio, etc. IF there is some way to display and control the pocketpc from the touchscreen, then this combination of FP-1 for media (with a usb HD, or perferably portable mp3 player of some sort, which also supports FLAC, acting as a USB hd... so i could take it along with me) and the touchscreen display of my Garmin GPS from my phone would be ideal. Although, i'm not sure if simple hardware and circuits can accomplish that task, just because some software can...
I am open to many suggestions, including what I should choose for my next portable digital audio player. I have always liked the ease of navigating large libraries with ipod's click wheel, and most importantly, the storage capacities offered by ipods that is hard to find in other DAPs.... I DO NOT like the way ipod's have to hide everything, create its own database, and prevent simple drag and drop adding of files... its apple's proprietary everything and anything that I feel weakens an otherwise good ipod. Also, video, pictures, is not a concern at all. Of course, another huge feature i'm looking for is support of flac files.
So: Large storage, interface to browse large libraries with various methods, and FLAC support are my main concerns.
If the ipod classic is supported by rockbox again soon like the previous models, then it may be the best option (although theft of ipods is still a concern... i think you could have a $500 portable media player next to a $150 ipod nano, and the nano would be stolen)... another benefit would be an option for digital output, which is available with ipod, but only though the USB connection...
Some I have been considering strongly are the products by COWON america,
-great sound quality
It seems the iAudio X5 is the largest hard drive offered, at 60 GB, however it offers a USB host feature, which I believe can be used to play media directly from other usb storage, can anyone confirm this?? There is also a 'sub pack' which attaches to the bottom, offering USB 2.0 (seperate from USB host), and additional line outputs.... could the USB or additional outputs be used for digital output??
A great player that supports flac AND has 120GB drive...
now I just need almost $900 to buy it.... if only someone could take this and change it into a normal audio player instead of a DJ mixer... still a neat idea.
As for speakers, at the moment I am considering Elemental designs, at least for the mid-woofers and subs, as they are priced extremely well for the quality. Things like Alpine's Imprint, and the awesome 5.1 digital processors as well as center speakers provided by alpine and clarion are what I wish for, but are unrealistic with my budget (most likely $2000-$3000 max, but it will depend as things progress)
Like I said, all ideas are greatly appriciated... from what mp3 (FLAC!) player can do the job, to audio or carputer solutions, to some suggestions of those lesser known companies with audio that can compete with the big dogs at a fraction of the price and doesn't cost an arm and a leg.... I think I need as much help as I can get!!! I'm so frustrated with my system right now... I've been installing for a while, I just need a fresh idea, and don't have money to throw away (especially paying someone for something I can create!!)