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Thread: Production Double-Din VGA Touchscreen in the making!

  1. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrbmw99 View Post
    Aaron,

    Jasin (and everyone else for that matter),

    I was thinking about this problem. I realized that the best thing to do is probably move the CD/DVD slot over a 1/2" or so to the left, and put a USB port next to it on it's right. So, a USB port will be on the far upper right corner next to the CD/DVD slot. Then there would be room for a sixth button on the left side...

    - Brett

    That would be great

  2. #72
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    Count me in as one who is very interested in an easy to install product...and the proposed time-frame of having this in production fits my schedule very well.

    Not having had a car PC yet, is theft a big problem to worry about? As I have been wandering through the forums, I came across this thread discussing an LCD camouflage anti-theft mod LCD camouflage anti-theft mod

    Is this something that would be worth designing-in?

    Keep up the good work and keep us posted on your progress.

    thanks,
    Murray

  3. #73
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    I like the idea of keeping the usb on the front. Maybe offering a little rubber molded cap to cover it like the plug covers on a digital camera would be good. That way it's accessible, but covered when not in use.

    I saw the round spot at the top and I'm wondering if that's for a knob? Are you looking at a basic rotary encoder or a multi function unit? I've seen the multi function units at Mouser and my favorite is the dual shaft unit:
    http://www3.alps.co.jp/WebObjects/ca...KJXM/RKJXM.PDF

    There's also the single shaft unit:
    http://www3.alps.co.jp/WebObjects/ca...KJXT/RKJXT.PDF

    The reason why the dual shaft unit is more favorable (to me anyway) is that you have the rotary encoder connected to the outside section (volume, control, etc). Then there's a hole in the center allowing access to the directional control stick (or nub of some sort). I'll draw something up quick when I get a chance today and I'll post it to show what I'm talking about. That dual shaft unit is 8 way with center click and has detents for the rotary encoder. If something like that could be included in the controller with the other buttons that would be great. That would take the button count up to 14 and I'm sure that whatever controller you are using can handle that.

    Afterwards, you'd just need some good programmer to write the code to allow the button presses on the unit to map to macros, key strokes, or windows events (volume, play, pause, etc).

    Great work so far. If you guys need any other help with the 3D design I'm using SolidWorks and have access to a seat whenever I need it.

  4. #74
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    Heh, I know I just joined, but I've been trolling these boards for months, but from the sounds of it, count me in for one! I too like the idea of having a front USB port.

    So far from the mentioned specs, everything that I'm looking for seems to be included! Good work! I can't wait!!!

  5. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedy_parker View Post
    Brett,

    This is sounding great and I've already reserved enough of my tax refund for it, so I'm in line for sure! I cannot wait.

    Been telling friends about it and they are convinced I'm crazy - "It'll never happen.." "They can't do that..." poor souls... they'll see.

    (I vote for keeping the front usb too!)

    I think you are going to make a lot of money with this. Make sure you're doing the proper CYA as well - and the proper marketing. We'll buy a bunch of them, but this could go a lot further - a LOT FURTHER. Best of luck to you.
    speedy_parker,

    Thanks for the support! I'm glad to hear this will work well for you. Yes, I've seen some people say the same about this "It'll cost too much" or "If it could be done, it would have been done already". In a way it has been with the DL065A, but we're taking it further.

    I hope this goes further and is a really successful product. It may CarPC based systems much more assessable to the masses (less work involved in designing and installing a complete system). Who knows. All I know is that it will help out a lot of people here.

    Quote Originally Posted by MurrayW View Post
    Count me in as one who is very interested in an easy to install product...and the proposed time-frame of having this in production fits my schedule very well.

    Not having had a car PC yet, is theft a big problem to worry about? As I have been wandering through the forums, I came across this thread discussing an LCD camouflage anti-theft mod LCD camouflage anti-theft mod

    Is this something that would be worth designing-in?

    Keep up the good work and keep us posted on your progress.

    thanks,
    Murray
    Murray,

    I haven't had a problem with theft before, not to say that I won't though. It would be difficult to design an anti-theft system into the unit because there are so many styles of dashboards we would have to accommodate. It would be easier for someone to do the mod you listed to their specific vehicle. If the monitor is mounted a 1/2" deeper in the dash, there would be enough room for that mod.

    Quote Originally Posted by ik632 View Post
    I like the idea of keeping the usb on the front. Maybe offering a little rubber molded cap to cover it like the plug covers on a digital camera would be good. That way it's accessible, but covered when not in use.

    I saw the round spot at the top and I'm wondering if that's for a knob? Are you looking at a basic rotary encoder or a multi function unit? I've seen the multi function units at Mouser and my favorite is the dual shaft unit:
    http://www3.alps.co.jp/WebObjects/ca...KJXM/RKJXM.PDF

    There's also the single shaft unit:
    http://www3.alps.co.jp/WebObjects/ca...KJXT/RKJXT.PDF

    The reason why the dual shaft unit is more favorable (to me anyway) is that you have the rotary encoder connected to the outside section (volume, control, etc). Then there's a hole in the center allowing access to the directional control stick (or nub of some sort). I'll draw something up quick when I get a chance today and I'll post it to show what I'm talking about. That dual shaft unit is 8 way with center click and has detents for the rotary encoder. If something like that could be included in the controller with the other buttons that would be great. That would take the button count up to 14 and I'm sure that whatever controller you are using can handle that.

    Afterwards, you'd just need some good programmer to write the code to allow the button presses on the unit to map to macros, key strokes, or windows events (volume, play, pause, etc).

    Great work so far. If you guys need any other help with the 3D design I'm using SolidWorks and have access to a seat whenever I need it.
    ik632,

    I am looking for a black rubber USB cover to include. It'll need to fit into the USB jack and not hang too far over the edges. The round spot is for a rotary encoder knob. I was looking into the Haptic force-feedback encoder, but it's too large to fit. So, I am planning on a simple rotary encoder. I'll have to find a nice black knob either way. I do like the idea of the multi-function unit you sent me. Do you have any pictures of one installed in a device? I'd like to see it in use. I suppose if this were used in our design, we'd have to find a knob that will work for both the outer encoder and inner joystick. Ideas?

    Thanks a lot for the offer on the design part of it! I think we're good for the time being, but I'll keep that in mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by 03LeMans View Post
    Heh, I know I just joined, but I've been trolling these boards for months, but from the sounds of it, count me in for one! I too like the idea of having a front USB port.

    So far from the mentioned specs, everything that I'm looking for seems to be included! Good work! I can't wait!!!
    03LeMans,

    Welcome to the forums!

    - Brett

  6. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrbmw99 View Post
    ik632,

    I am looking for a black rubber USB cover to include. It'll need to fit into the USB jack and not hang too far over the edges. The round spot is for a rotary encoder knob. I was looking into the Haptic force-feedback encoder, but it's too large to fit. So, I am planning on a simple rotary encoder. I'll have to find a nice black knob either way. I do like the idea of the multi-function unit you sent me. Do you have any pictures of one installed in a device? I'd like to see it in use. I suppose if this were used in our design, we'd have to find a knob that will work for both the outer encoder and inner joystick. Ideas?

    Thanks a lot for the offer on the design part of it! I think we're good for the time being, but I'll keep that in mind.
    - Brett
    I haven't seen any in action but a few folks here have taken those encoders and hooked the encoder part to an old mouse with the center click of the encoder being mapped to the center click of the mouse. Then one guy connected the 8 way of the stick to the numbers of a USB number pad. This is the direction that I was planning on going.

    One of the other users (cherrybomb) came up with a pretty slick solution:
    My ALPS RKJXT Encoder Solution

    I like the way he set it up and he's using one of the single shaft encoders. I didn't get a chance to do any design since I was stuck in meetings all day today. I'll try to get something out tomorrow for the dual shaft unit. The single shaft unit is always a nice simple way to go too.

  7. #77
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    Hi Brett,

    Just found this thread from the other one! As we said on there, it needs to be flush with the dash, otherwise it will be a massive turn off like the previous model. Looking at the bezels it looks like it might stick out?

    Mark

  8. #78
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    Here's a quick swag at the dual shaft knob. Outside ring turns and inside piece has center click and 8 direction (no turn). There's another encoder that could replace both pieces with a single, turn, click, and rock. This was about 5 minutes work and is only a concept. It's rendered out of shiny gray plastic.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  9. #79
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    Backlight control

    I haven't seen anyone mention whether there will be any way to control the backlight.

    The current way of adjusting the gamma doesn't really work very well (the black level remains the same, and the image just looks washed out).

    It's be nice either to have a two-level backlight, with the level automatically controlled by a voltage input that changes when the headlights are on (like other decks do it), or with a setting that could be manually changed, either on the display itself, or via PC control.

    Bonus points for having the PC be able to both detect the headlight input *and* change the level!

    Jason

  10. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by marky9074 View Post
    Hi Brett,

    Just found this thread from the other one! As we said on there, it needs to be flush with the dash, otherwise it will be a massive turn off like the previous model. Looking at the bezels it looks like it might stick out?

    Mark
    Mark,

    The bezel will be flush with the dash. The CAD files on the last page show the bezel itself, without the aluminum enclosure that will make up the rest of the design. There are holes in the aluminum for the Double-Din mounting brackets and mounting/installation kits. The location of these mounting holes is what will determine how far the unit will stick out of your dash. In addition, I think most double-din mounting brackets have long slot holes for the mounting screws so the depth can be adjusted there too....

    Quote Originally Posted by ik632 View Post
    Here's a quick swag at the dual shaft knob. Outside ring turns and inside piece has center click and 8 direction (no turn). There's another encoder that could replace both pieces with a single, turn, click, and rock. This was about 5 minutes work and is only a concept. It's rendered out of shiny gray plastic.
    ik632,

    Honestly, that doesn't match the design at all. I'm trying to picture a way that the 4 or 8 way rocker could match our bezel, while still having the encoder on the outside.. I can't think of anything. I was thinking about using a rather simple, yet very clean looking black knob. I've even seen some with a small chrome ring around them that look great.

    Quote Originally Posted by ejasons View Post
    I haven't seen anyone mention whether there will be any way to control the backlight.

    The current way of adjusting the gamma doesn't really work very well (the black level remains the same, and the image just looks washed out).

    It's be nice either to have a two-level backlight, with the level automatically controlled by a voltage input that changes when the headlights are on (like other decks do it), or with a setting that could be manually changed, either on the display itself, or via PC control.

    Bonus points for having the PC be able to both detect the headlight input *and* change the level!

    Jason
    Jason,

    Yes there will. I intend to make the LCD backlight adjustable through the USB interface. I also am planning on having a few extra ADC's and I/O lines accessible on the rear Molex connector. I suppose you can use one of these to sense your headlight input. Also, if I can pull it off, I want to add a small photosensor to the system that will be accessible through USB as well. I might even put in an option for the photosensor to directly adjust the LCD backlight based on how bright it is.

    - Brett

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