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Thread: 03 Jetta - If I Can, Any Idiot Can

  1. #11
    Maximum Bitrate kbyrd's Avatar
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    Another VW owner...

    Some thoughts on various posts:

    - Welcome, glad you dove in. I have the same thought, about if I can do it, anyone can. I've got a 2005 GTI with Monsoon.

    - I've kept the Monsoon amp, but ditched the head unit. There's quite a bit of collective wisdom here on dealing with the Monsoon amp, I'm sure we can figure out whatever problems you have.

    - Don't do XP64 (as you discovered). Lots of device manufacturers aren't porting drivers for it.

    - For re-tagging an library, I suggested "Tag & Rename", or "The Godfather". I use T&R, but it costs money, I hear TGF is great too and free.

    - As for frontends, skins. I thougt I wanted a mostly black skin as well. I went with Brushed Metal in CentraFuse 1.4 It looks better with the VW dash. The problem I discovered is that darker skins don't do so well in daylight on these LCDs. So, I've been using the default blue and white Centrafuse skin. I shows up MUCH better. I still don't like it, I need to search for a better one.

    - Finally, how are your going to mount the Xenarc in the dash?
    My worklog.
    Status: VM GTI sold, got out of the CarPC tinkering hobby, but I still think about getting back in.

  2. #12
    Variable Bitrate 3g Jester's Avatar
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    lookin good. cant wait to see final project.

  3. #13
    Constant Bitrate randomjohn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kbyrd
    Some thoughts on various posts:

    - Welcome, glad you dove in. I have the same thought, about if I can do it, anyone can. I've got a 2005 GTI with Monsoon.

    - I've kept the Monsoon amp, but ditched the head unit. There's quite a bit of collective wisdom here on dealing with the Monsoon amp, I'm sure we can figure out whatever problems you have.
    I'm doing exactly that. I'm going to get an aftermarket single din headunit with a rear auxiliary input at Circuit City or something and have them install it with the harness and antenna adapters.


    Quote Originally Posted by kbyrd
    - Don't do XP64 (as you discovered). Lots of device manufacturers aren't porting drivers for it.
    Where were you two days ago?

    Quote Originally Posted by kbyrd
    - For re-tagging an library, I suggested "Tag & Rename", or "The Godfather". I use T&R, but it costs money, I hear TGF is great too and free.
    I used T&R. It's got a 30 day free trial so I got all the re-tagging done with that. Good program, I recommend it to anyone else who has to do this. It's a lot more robust than it first appears, too. I didn't notice a lot of the features for doing broad re-tagging (like making sure all of the capitalization and spelling were the same on all my tags... so I had a directory with things like "beastie boys" "The Beastie Boys" and wanted them all uniform and there's a way to do that)

    Quote Originally Posted by kbyrd
    - As for frontends, skins. I thougt I wanted a mostly black skin as well. I went with Brushed Metal in CentraFuse 1.4 It looks better with the VW dash. The problem I discovered is that darker skins don't do so well in daylight on these LCDs. So, I've been using the default blue and white Centrafuse skin. I shows up MUCH better. I still don't like it, I need to search for a better one.
    I can't use CF as I need Sirius support. I'm really surprised to hear that the black background doesn't work in daylight... for some reason I thought it would be better, but I'll take your word for it. I knew a white background would be too bright at night but never thought black wouldn't work in day.

    Quote Originally Posted by kbyrd
    - Finally, how are your going to mount the Xenarc in the dash?
    No Xenarc, I ended up getting the Digital WorldWide non-motorized single DIN. So it is just going to go in the other DIN bay above the HU mentioned above. Monitor can be seen here:

    http://www.digitalww.com/DWW-700H.htm

    Thanks for the feedback.
    GA-K8VM800M, Sempron 64 2800+, 512mb DDR400, D-Link USB BT, Linksys .11g NIC, 250gb IDE, BU-353, SIR-ALP1 w/ MJS, DSATX 220w, DWW-700H

    Worklog: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/worklogs/65059-03-jetta-if-i-can-any-idiot-can.html
    Now with pictures!

  4. #14
    Constant Bitrate mccdeuce's Avatar
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    Instead of buying a new hu, I personally got the VW Car2Pc adapter. Its cheaper, and more productive. www.indashpc.org

  5. #15
    Constant Bitrate randomjohn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mccdeuce
    Instead of buying a new hu, I personally got the VW Car2Pc adapter. Its cheaper, and more productive. www.indashpc.org
    I might still check that out, but it didn't cure the fundamental problem I had of wanting to get rid of the 2-DIN Monsoon HU to go to a 1-DIN HU and 1-DIN pop-up monitor.
    GA-K8VM800M, Sempron 64 2800+, 512mb DDR400, D-Link USB BT, Linksys .11g NIC, 250gb IDE, BU-353, SIR-ALP1 w/ MJS, DSATX 220w, DWW-700H

    Worklog: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=65059
    Now with pictures!

  6. #16
    Maximum Bitrate kbyrd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randomjohn
    I can't use CF as I need Sirius support. I'm really surprised to hear that the black background doesn't work in daylight... for some reason I thought it would be better, but I'll take your word for it. I knew a white background would be too bright at night but never thought black wouldn't work in day.
    It wasn't CF so much as the "Brushed Metal" skin, I think it's available for many of the front ends. I was completely surprised by the black not working either. You know, this "black doesn't work" realization was when I had a shiny touchscreen surface (I have since replaced it with something more matte). With a dark skin, my LCD acted like a mirror. When there was white or bright colors, it was less mirror-like.
    My worklog.
    Status: VM GTI sold, got out of the CarPC tinkering hobby, but I still think about getting back in.

  7. #17
    Constant Bitrate randomjohn's Avatar
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    I ran the wires last weekend, installed the new headunit, wired the GPS and Sirius receivers, ran the USB to the trunk, crossed my fingers and... nothing

    The DSATX was giving me 5 blinks, which supposedly meant I was trying to draw too much power, but I unplugged EVERYTHING but the motherboard and one hard drive and still it thought I was drawing too much. I went into the handy dandy DSATX terminal interface and it was telling me the state of the shutdown controller was 7... well, only 0-4 are documented. Turns out 7 is some fault state. zootjeff is the man and hooked me up with new firmware to flash and unbelievably specific instructions (like the title says, I'm an idiot), and...

    IT WORKED! I BOOTED MY F'ING COMPUTER BY TURNING THE KEY.

    Ok, hundreds of people here have done it before, but I still felt liking shouting it. Screw you, it's my thread and I'll shout if I want.

    Anyway, there's still a lot of work to do, and I'm sure the touchscreen drivers will be a pain in the ***, but I turned the f'ing thing on and I got a windows screen.

    Among other things:

    - I have to swap the monitor and the HU. I just couldn't get them to fit with the HU below the monitor so I figured I'd just set it up and try it and get it running and fix it later. Monitor in that position is a little low and it hits my knee

    - I have to get the touchscreen and all the USB devices working

    - The antenna adapter wasn't installed right, I'm getting no AM reception

    - I have periodic ground loop/noise problems.

    Anyway, at least it's up and running. Baby steps...
    GA-K8VM800M, Sempron 64 2800+, 512mb DDR400, D-Link USB BT, Linksys .11g NIC, 250gb IDE, BU-353, SIR-ALP1 w/ MJS, DSATX 220w, DWW-700H

    Worklog: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=65059
    Now with pictures!

  8. #18
    Newbie crowdesign's Avatar
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    Let's see some more pics

  9. #19
    Constant Bitrate randomjohn's Avatar
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    Ok, the pics are here. See post #3.

    I'm psyched that it's all up and running. There's still a lot to do but the basic functionality is there.

    To Do

    - Swap the monitor and headunit. I just couldn't get them to fit with the monitor above and I just wanted to get the damned things working, so I figured I'd try it stacked this way. No good. Not only can I not see or reach the HU controls (which doesn't really matter too often) but I can't see or reach easily the HVAC controls. It's f'ing freezing here these days so I need access to those. Plus moving it up even just the 3" is 3 fewer inches out of my line of sight. So that's going to have to switch. Secondary to that is that I need a new coffee cup holder.

    - Close up the case and secure it to the trunk. Right now, it's just sitting in the corner of the trunk with the lid off. I'm going to see how well industrial strength velcro will hold it in there. I ended up drilling the Sirius receiver into the back of the back seat.

    - Bust open my microphone and get :Boris: working. Some of the iguidance controls are pretty small and I'd rather have the voice commands anyway.

    - Phone. Need to find a phone and a plan. Also need to build a cantenna so I can get at least hotspot wifi on the road.

    - AM Radio. Either the Sony HU or the antenna adapter is screwed up. I'm getting no AM at all. I have to fix that before the Yankees Opening Day.

    I think that's it for now.
    GA-K8VM800M, Sempron 64 2800+, 512mb DDR400, D-Link USB BT, Linksys .11g NIC, 250gb IDE, BU-353, SIR-ALP1 w/ MJS, DSATX 220w, DWW-700H

    Worklog: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=65059
    Now with pictures!

  10. #20
    Constant Bitrate randomjohn's Avatar
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    Too long without an update. I had planned to use this thread to keep me focused, but that obviously hasn't work. The big story over the last couple of months was the touchscreen. It was a huge pain in the ***. But I was so excited to have the thing working (and being able to listen to Howard), that I just used a mouse on the front seat. Talk about low budget.

    I finally sent it back to Armen on St. Patrick's Day and got a new one back like a month later. Longer than I'd like, but at least this one works. Had a minor hiccup because the two versions' cables weren't plug compatible, so I had no red on the new monitor and I was freaking out that I got a bad monitor this time. Ran the new cable through and worked that one out (there's a lesson, boys and girls, don't assume the thing is broken until you've set it all up the way and with the parts it's supposed to be set up).

    I also took the opportunity to move the headunit into the lower half of the compartment. Although I haven't fully clipped everything in yet. There is NOT a lot of room in there. So right now the HU isn't even in a bracket. I definitely have to find time to do that and get all the wires tucked away so the components are sitting flush.

    The touchscreen drivers continue to be awful, though. Right now I have to force it to load the worcol touch app on startup and just cancel out of it - or just ignore it and have roadrunner load on top.

    Need a new cupholder. I'm rethinking my decision to go no optical and I might do something similar to that xenarc mod that I saw recently and take the cupholder tray out and use that space to put in an optical drive and give me a little more room for all of the wiring that is crammed in there.

    What else... the TS hates being on a USB hub. I'm trying to decide whether to run a usb hub to the armrest or to the glove box. I have the microphone plugged into that hub. I also use it if I need a mouse. And when I copy stuff on a thumb drive. I suppose if I plugged in my ipod too. I could probably run it to the arm rest without extensions, so that might be the deciding factor.

    Aside from that stuff, at or near the top of the current to-do list:
    - Bluetooth phone. Still trying to pick the right phone, carrier and plan. I get 50% off Cingular phones and 23% off plans through work, so I'm currently leaning toward the SE W600i (get it for $100) with the MEdia Net Unlimited Plan. The Cingular 2125 for $270 (a/k/a HT Wizard, I think) and the 8125 for $315 or the Nokia 9300 for $315 are pretty damned tempting too. Absolute ket there is they have to be able to get me online while driving AND work with PhoCo so I can integrate it hands free into the car

    - I don't think I like the linksys NIC very much. Might upgrade that.
    GA-K8VM800M, Sempron 64 2800+, 512mb DDR400, D-Link USB BT, Linksys .11g NIC, 250gb IDE, BU-353, SIR-ALP1 w/ MJS, DSATX 220w, DWW-700H

    Worklog: http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=65059
    Now with pictures!

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