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I was bored so lets build a car pc.


DWILLWY
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While looking for a Roof mounted DVD player for my 2005 trailblazer (still looking), I decided I would like to build a small form factor pc for it.

I would like it to connect to the DVD player via RCA (pal/NTSC) or s video (I cannot find any that will accept a VGA or DVI input).

I found a small area that I think would be best to mount it under the passenger side rear seat (behind the jack) that is approximately 6.75” x 12” x 5” (wxlxh).

In the future I may also replace the front radio with a dual din LCD with a touch screen.

I will probally mount it on a sheet of aluminum or plexy and build a plexty case for it.

 

Budget: a slowly expanding $500.00 (including the DVD player/monitor)

 

The uses I have in mind for it are:

Media server (audio and video)

ATSC/NTSC tuner with roof mounted antenna

Blue ray player (future)

Wireless internet with roof mounted antenna

GPS (future)

Games (low graphics such as chess/solitaire)

Be able to use as hands free device in car?

Blue tooth keyboard/mouse, headphones, game controllers?

 

Hardware:

A mini ITX board that has a PCI slot and supports RCA or S Video out. The board can be no wider than 6.75” to mount it where I would like to.

I was looking at the M3 ATX power supply (anyone has any info or experience with these?)

I like the fact it can be used to tell the computer to turn on and shut down with the ignition.

At first I would use the DVD player screen as a monitor and later add a touch screen LCD to the front.

For a HDD I was looking at an adapter that allows two CF cards to be used as SSD drives I have bid on two 8 gig cards on eBay if I win will be my first HDD (16 gig for OS and programs I will try to get a second for media as my budget expands (may use an old 160 SATA drive until the bouncing kills it)

Haven’t planned the wireless or TV tuner yet, any suggestions would be appreciated probably USB for size.

I would like some kind of USB or Bluetooth panel that could be programed to change channels/songs and volume from the front of the car until the front touch panel can be installed.

I have a few slim line DVD RW drives laying around and can get an IDE or SATA adapter fairly cheap for an optical drive (blue ray in the future?)

 

Software:

I haven’t decided between Windows XP or a Linux flavor yet, I will probably dual boot.

Looking for a nice media organizer to run.

Looking for good Wi-Fi signal finder/analyzer

 

Thanks for any advice /constructive critisism in advance.

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I have actually been looking to do something like this in my own car. What kind of LCD monitor would you think of using? I cant find anything that would be small enough to install where I would like. That area is about 4" x 7" or so, so its not very large.

I would think that linux for the OS would be better, mostly because the boot times are faster than windows. it wouldnt be much use to turn the computer on, and have it ready to go when you get to the destination, lol

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I have actually been looking to do something like this in my own car. What kind of LCD monitor would you think of using? I cant find anything that would be small enough to install where I would like. That area is about 4" x 7" or so, so its not very large.

I would think that linux for the OS would be better, mostly because the boot times are faster than windows. it wouldnt be much use to turn the computer on, and have it ready to go when you get to the destination, lol

 

At first the computer will just be usuable on witch ever roof mounted DVD player then in the future i plan to add something like This in the dash where the stock radio was.

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that looks pretty nice.

have you used the power supply you mentioned at all? i was always wondering how to get it to turn on and off with the car without just wiring a push button onto the dash and pushing it

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MP3CAR

i think they can help you go in the right direction. they even have a huge app world it seems for the car pc crowd.

 

nice.

any idea if there is a way to connect the car's diagnostic port to the display and get some cool graphs or anything?

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I thought about doing this a long time ago.

 

Honestly though I think you would end up saving yourself a ton of hassle and money in the long run if you just bought yourself a nice in-dash headunit.

Most headunits now-a-days can do everything your wanting.. Well minus Blue-Ray I think. It has been a while since I was in the Market for a headunit though.

 

I picked this up about a year ago: Pioneer AVH-P4000

This unit can be found on ebay for about 200 bucks brand new.

 

This unit is also a few years old and is not a top of the line model. So you can only imagine what you could buy/get.

 

I am not saying don't do it, because the idea of having a computer in your car is pretty slick.

But in sure though of easy-ness. Making/Mounting/Setting up a PC in a car is quite a bit of work.

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nice.

any idea if there is a way to connect the car's diagnostic port to the display and get some cool graphs or anything?

I think you will find a good assortment of that here

 

I am not saying don't do it, because the idea of having a computer in your car is pretty slick.

But in sure though of easy-ness. Making/Mounting/Setting up a PC in a car is quite a bit of work.

The main reason I am doing this is to have something to do for a few weeks ^^ and this way i get to make it my owne.

:foldon:

 

Has anyone here Ever used or have experence with the m3 atx PSU? here is a link

Edited by DWILLWY

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What are your plans for the winter? A friend of mine did this in his Trailblazer and the computer was all but dead in the winter. I assume Maryland winters are similar to ours here in Chicago.

Edited by pezcore

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What are your plans for the winter? A friend of mine did this in his Trailblazer and the computer was all but dead in the winter. I assume Maryland winters are similar to ours here in Chicago.

 

that would be pretty bad. arent computers supposed to run better in the cold though? lol

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What are your plans for the winter? A friend of mine did this in his Trailblazer and the computer was all but dead in the winter. I assume Maryland winters are similar to ours here in Chicago.

 

ok did he mount it in his dash?, next to the heat ducts? and on advarage there arent many days lower then 20-30 degrees

Edited by DWILLWY

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