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Thread: Car PC.

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    Regular Member g33had's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Car PC.

    Anyone fitted a car PC to their car?

    I have a JVC DVD headunit single din with small display, but it is a great headunit so i am thinking of buying another single din unit but a motorized touchscreen 7" display for connection to a car pc to run an extensive media center and gps etc etc.

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    Mine going back in as soon as the new screen arrives. In car pc mk6. I have learnt a lesson from eah previous instal!

    If you want any advice, pm me. A word of warning however, you will need to put a lot of planning, and time into the project before it will work properly and be reliable. If you just want the finish product, just by one of these off the shelf solutions. If you want a project, this is for you!

    Also the vectra opening in a tiny bit smaller than ideal for the screen if you don't go down the motrised route....

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    Regular Member P3tchy's Avatar
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    Just get one of the double din units from Chinavision that have everything built in and run Windows CE as the OS, I'm sure it could be upgraded.

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    Regular Member g33had's Avatar
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    I have a small PC unit i can use for it and fit it in the glove box or in the rear.
    Its just the motorised touch screen 7" displays that seem to be alot of money lol.

    I am looking for a project yeah, but would prefer to have alot of the funtionality to begin with and then i can build more on like usb gps for navigation, usb dvb, for freeview tv!!

    Would love to see what other people have done with their car pc's in Vectra C's.

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    Regular Member g33had's Avatar
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    Thinking maybe its better getting a stand-alone monitor and mounting it above the headunit with the headunit on the bottom of the d-din slot.

    You could transfer music/movies/apps etc across wireless to your car while its parked outside the house with the computer turning on using WOL (Wake on LAN).
    Also looking forward to being able to connect to it using a RealVNC (Remote Desktop) connection to be able to use it as if i was sat in the car. Meaning i could install applications and things without being in the car.

    Defiantly worth building!

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    What Pc do you have? Many aren't suitable, I discovered this in in car pc mk1 lol! Needed too big a power supply to power it! It rebooted whilst cranking and drew 15A just to boot the computer!!!! It might be worth building one specially for it!

    Relistically I wanted to do what you want - fiddle with software, but making a reliable system that works in a car is hard and I am still not at that stage!!! Its a great project though which is on going, I particulary remember rebuilding windows after a failed linux install on the M6 (or my friend did, I was driving!) Thats at least something not many others will have done!!!

    You really need to think about your hardware though, for example I used to use laptop drives because they were smaller and drew less power but I live in the country and often drive down rough lanes, etc and they just break after a while. I now use standard 3.5" HDs for the media and a solid state drive for the OS!

    Either way you should have some fun and good luck!!

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    Regular Member g33had's Avatar
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    It's a really small dell p4 computer, has a laptop disc drive, and probably a laptop hard-drive (have yet to open it up yet hehe). I was thinking about an SSD drive but they are rather expensive.

    The screen is gonna cost me £200.
    I can't wait to get this project under-way to be honest hehe.

    Was going to mount it in the boot but i have a large system with alot of bass (2x Alpine type r's) so i thought that what just kill them hehe. I have a power cap which should help in running the car pc, but i don't think this little computer will draw much power but one day i shall upgrade the alternator with a bigger one as my lights still dim at high volumes even with the cap hehe.

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    Yeah I need a bigger battery and alternator for mine I also have a large sound system; Dedicated amps all around, tweeters powered by different amp to the mid-bass units via an active crossover. Disabled rear speakers and one twelve inch sub. Its 160w RMS per channel into the front mid-bass units, and 80w RMS into each front tweeter. Subwoofer is also 160w RMS. When everythings on, heated window, heated seats, audio, lights etc I can get the battery light on to say its not charging because I'm drawing too much power

    Back to subject, you will need to delay the switch on of the amps until the computer has almost booted else you will get a plonk thought the speakers!! Also, what power supply are you using and how is it switching on; Boot with ignition or via a switch. Mine have always booted as you turn the ignition on and I have found it annoying! Also make sure you fit a reset button underneath the dash! Mine crashed on the motorway once and I had no music for an hour

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    Regular Member g33had's Avatar
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    That's a good idea mate, will have to put a reset button in.
    I will be running it off one of those 12v-12v regulator boards, also have found the perfect PC unit for the glove-box, a Acer Aspire L320 which is a media center but is small enough and defiantly powerful enough.

    I do love the power-cap, being able to start the car with the system still running without it "restarting"

    Anyone else building or built a car pc!? :P

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