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Thread: 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt - From total noob to install

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009

    2005 Chevrolet Cobalt - From total noob to install

    I'm going to be installing a PC in my 2005 Chevy Cobalt.
    I've started out as a complete noob to carPC's. After several months of reading and asking some stupid questions on the forum (and getting yelled at a few times), I've now collected the pieces I need to start a basic install. I'd like to document the process I went through to hopefully help someone in the future.

    Computers have been my main area of expertise going into this, but my knowledge of car audio and electrical are lacking so I will have to learn as I go.

    My goals started as...
    -Keep everything as OEM looking as possible.
    -Eliminate the factory radio.
    -Features the system will have, Audio, Video, GPS, wireless internet, vehicle information, and phone integration.
    -Upgrade stock audio


    I was fortunate enough to find a used car pc for a great price on an automotive forum I frequent. It includes...
    Voom2 case
    Intel D945GCLF2D mother board with atom processor
    160 Gig HD
    1 Gig RAM
    m2 atx power supply

    The monitor is a Liliput eby701 that I purchased already modified and installed in a double din radio bezel. It came from

    For am/fm radio I bought a directed hd - 1000 radio from ebay.
    It will be controlled by the computer through a cable purchased from MJS Gadgets

    Since I was getting rid of the head unit I will have to amplify the audio signal.
    A JL Audio 320 watt 4 channel amp was bought locally.

    I had and old USB wireless network receiver laying around that I'll use for internet.

    Bought a USB GPS receiver from

    OS - Windows XP - Use nlite to remove uneeded components of XP.
    Front end - Centrafuse - going to experiment with RideRunner also
    FFDshow - need the codecs for video in Centrafuse
    Defraggler - defrag hard drive, better than windows built in defragger
    Bootvis - tracks and optimizes startups
    CCleaner - Deletes temporary files and uneeded registry entries
    Adaware - malware scanner, active scanning off
    Avast! - antivirus, may try running without an AV to preserve system resources

    I wanted to test everything on my desk to make sure all the hardware would play together and to install and experiment with the software.

    This thread shows you how to power your system on a desk.

    After powering the computer I reformatted the HD and installed XP that I had optimized using nlite. I updated windows, and installed all my software. I then ran CCleaner, bootvis, and defraggler.

    I installed Centrafuse and added my media files.

    I then started adding and testing hardware components as I bought them.
    Surprisingly everything worked with little effort.

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate bratnetwork's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Haledon, NJ
    Looks like you definitely did your research and are off to a great start... Much better than I started off for sure.

  3. #3
    licensed to kill - FKA kev000
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    tripzero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    16.40618, 120.61106
    Is the Cobalt an SS? How do you like the bybyte bezel/case?
    Former author of LinuxICE, nghost, nobdy.
    Current author of Automotive Message Broker (AMB).
    Works on Tizen IVI. Does not represent anyone or anything but himself.

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