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Thread: Alfa GTV installation

  1. #1
    Newbie Richard Alpha's Avatar
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    Alfa GTV installation

    Hi everyone. This is my first post, so please be gentle with me, but I have been looking in on the forum for a while. I first came up with the idea of fitting a PC to my car about a year ago, and I thought I would be amongst the first. I'd got fed up with cables for Palm based sat-nav, and Speed-trap detector all littered around, and I had a vision of a single device to fit in the dash to do Sat Nav with traffic, speed-trap detector, MP3 player etc. Once I started doing some searches I realised that I was far from the first! Some of you guys had been doing it for years.

    I waited and waited for the Nano-ITX to come out and had the intention of building a PC with a slide-out screen into an old stereo. However, I got bored of waiting for the Nano-ITX and couldn't fit anything bigger in the front of the car, so have gone for a boot-mounted PC.

    For anyone unfamiliar with the Alfa Romeo GTV it is a beautiful but impractical 2+2 sports coupe. It is a triumph of anti-tardis design: tiny on the inside and fairly big outside. So for a car PC there is nowhere to put anything.

    I think with better knowledge I could have done things a lot more cheaply, but I have played safe and ordered an Opus MPX vehicle case with built-in 90W PSU, EPIA SP13000, slot-in DVD, 2.5" SATA HDD, and the Xenarc IDT 7" Touchscreen.

    My first problem is that even the IDT case doesn't fit this car! Yes it goes in, after I have hacksawed the back of the DIN tray:


    But the dash is such that it will only open part-way, and certainly can't swivel, and I'm not sure it is to be much use like that.

    My next idea is to modify the IDT to see if it can work upside-down - can I put the screen lower in the case, and still open it upwards as normal? I will have a play with that soon.

    The other major problem I have to deal with is where to put an amplifier/amplifiers. There is nowhere obvious that a 4-channel amp will fit, but I am hoping that I can fit a 2-channel amp in the boot for the rear speakers, and a 2-channel under the passenger seat for the front speakers. I have no desire for a sub-bass, at least not at the moment.

    So I will fill in this log as I progress, and would be pleased if anyone has any comments that could help me.

    Administrators: if this is in the wrong place please let me know before you delete it. Thanks.
    Trying to fit a PC into an Alfa Romeo GTV. It's installed, but the buttons have fallen off since.

  2. #2
    Constant Bitrate Partybuster's Avatar
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    Those great looking alfa's aren't easy for mounting a screen. I can't wait to see it finished.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Newbie Richard Alpha's Avatar
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    Thanks for support PartyBuster.
    Well, I have abandoned my first plan to simply use the IDT screen, and instead I have taken the screen out of the IDT mount, and fix it in the dash. I've found a few suitable places to secure it to, and the associated electronics board, but this will mean moving a few switched (hazard lights, front and rear fog lights) and most difficult will mean fabricating a replacement dash for the middle console. Lots more work. Darn!
    Trying to fit a PC into an Alfa Romeo GTV. It's installed, but the buttons have fallen off since.

  4. #4
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    Hi there. is it possible you could tell me how you wired the power up for the screen ? how many wires are there to go from the screen to power?
    Thanks

  5. #5
    Newbie Richard Alpha's Avatar
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    No Problem. The IDT is supplied with a plug and about 70cm (26") of trailing wires. You need to wire an earth, a permanent live, and a switched live. I assume that the permanent live is used to retain settings when the car ignition is switched off.
    There is also single specific bespoke socket and a supplied cable for the USB, VGA, and 2 composite signals.
    Trying to fit a PC into an Alfa Romeo GTV. It's installed, but the buttons have fallen off since.

  6. #6
    Constant Bitrate Partybuster's Avatar
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    Interesting, can't wait to see some more pics.

  7. #7
    Low Bitrate
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    Thank you very much for your help and advice.

  8. #8
    Newbie Richard Alpha's Avatar
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    Darn it! I've spent many many hours over this weekend trying to make a plate for my dash to fit the screen in. I've tried using laminate ply board, perspex and sheet steel. All looks awful, mainly due to my skills with a jigsaw. Maybe I will see if I can get steel or aluminium, or even sheets of acetate, cut to size. Any ideas where in the UK to enquire? What sort of place?
    Trying to fit a PC into an Alfa Romeo GTV. It's installed, but the buttons have fallen off since.

  9. #9
    MySQL Error Scouse Monkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Alpha
    Darn it! I've spent many many hours over this weekend trying to make a plate for my dash to fit the screen in. I've tried using laminate ply board, perspex and sheet steel. All looks awful, mainly due to my skills with a jigsaw. Maybe I will see if I can get steel or aluminium, or even sheets of acetate, cut to size. Any ideas where in the UK to enquire? What sort of place?
    you best place for alloy would be a scrap metal place. There is also an aluminium recycling places that may have some scrap (like the one i used to know in Chester, they had loads i used to eye up).

    Look through yellow pages or business directories for plastics and metals places. If you go along then most will just give you off cuts for free or a couple of quid to buy the guy a pint.

  10. #10
    Newbie Richard Alpha's Avatar
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    Well it seems what I need is a workshop with "CNC". I have found one nearby so will get a quote for accurate shapes and cut-outs in steel or aluminium.
    Trying to fit a PC into an Alfa Romeo GTV. It's installed, but the buttons have fallen off since.

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