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Modding putting a "full sized" PC in a car

Discussion in 'Modding' started by THEkorean, 13 Feb 2007.

  1. THEkorean

    THEkorean 42

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    I want to replace the broken tape deck in my car with a car PC, i have a pretty good grasp on the basics, and just had a few questions.

    1. I read from mp3car.com that both laptop and regualr harddrives preform fine in the rough environment of a car trunk, can anyone verify this?
    2. Same as above with optical drives
    3. Would there be any unforseen problems with running an old 1.8GHz P4, 512MB of Ram, and 40gb hard drive out of the trunk of my car? (assuming that i have decent cooling solution and proper mounting)
    4. What other procautions sould i consider taking if i were to mount a "full sized" PC in the trunk of my car (I.E. vibration dampening, stronger screws, etc.)
    5. I also wanted to route the power button and the CD drive to the dash and was wondering if i could afford to extend the power button wire several meters and still have it work. As for the CD drive i was thinking of constructing a USB slot loaded CD drive would creating this just be a matter of:
    1. gettting the drive
    2. Getting the notebook-> IDE adaptor
    3. Finding an IDE -> USB adaptor
    4. wireing it all up
    5. and putting it in an enclosure?
    and would this create significant losses in data / power consumption?

    Im sorry if this sounds rude, but for those who want to talk me out of it, PLEASE dont bother posting a reply
     
  2. Duste

    Duste Sierra my delta, bravo!

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    1. I'd assume so, but if I were you, I'd get silicon covers for your HDDs just in case.
    2. I guess so, but would your optical drive be in the cab of your car, so you can insert discs without the need of your car's boot?
    3. Shouldn't be.
    4. Not sure.
    5. It'll work fine.
     
  3. Pookeyhead

    Pookeyhead It's big, and it's clever.

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    Unless Im missing something, why would you need an optical drive at all? Surely you're not building a car PC, and then using CDs are you? If you have a CD, and you have a computer... just encode everything. I've had a HD based system in my car for 18 months now, and never once felt the need to use a CD.

    Once all your software is on there, you dont need to KEEP the optical drive in the car.

    Micro ATX system booting from a CF card, with a HD wrapped in foam.... sorted :thumb:
     
  4. Springs

    Springs Boing boing

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    remember you will need a power inverter to run the PSU in the car...

    tbh if u wanted a cd drive in the car then maybe a mini itx board would be better then you can put the whole thing in the glove box and get a pico psu to run it..
     
  5. Duste

    Duste Sierra my delta, bravo!

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    Yeah, I reckon an ATX motherboard would be a waste; it's not as if you'd be using all of it to it's capabilities.
     
  6. THEkorean

    THEkorean 42

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    thank you for all the replies!
    The reason im using a full sized ATX mobo is because a friend gave me his old system afteri helped him build his new one.
    I dont plan to purchase anything more than building materials and maybe a GPS receiver for this project.
    As for the CD drive, i decided to scrap that idea, but i still want to have a slot loaded one in the front so i can at least play CD's does anyone have an idea on how to build this?
    also, is it possible to extend the Power button several meters and still have it work?
     
  7. keir

    keir S p i t F i r e

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    If its just gigs and gigs of music what your after surly this would be a lot better.

    linkage
     
  8. allforcarrie

    allforcarrie Banned

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    if you are concerned about music, get one of these.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. DonCorleone76

    DonCorleone76 Modmaster deluxe

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    Why should he get a ipood, He's probably concerned about music and the reason that whe mod around here is because we can...... :dremel:
    Don't go for the obvious solution, MOD..... :thumb:
    Secondly, i would get a slotloading dvd drive instead of a cd-rom, because there just a little bit more expensive and maybe in the future worth having.
    The power button can easily be extended a few meters, i wouldn't see why not, but you can always try it out on your home-pc.

    I think it's a great project and a great way to recycle old pc's.. :rock:

    Theo.
     
  10. Flibblebot

    Flibblebot Smile with me

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    An alternative (and neater) method of extending the power button is to get something like an M2-ATX power board.
     
  11. allforcarrie

    allforcarrie Banned

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  12. Springs

    Springs Boing boing

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    for dvd drive maybe something like this and just mount it somewhere?
     
  13. THEkorean

    THEkorean 42

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    @ kier & allforcarrie
    i never said i wanted this only for music, and i already have an ipod (not that 3rd gen one though :hehe: )


    @DonCorleone76:
    haha! right on dude.. its funny cause i said that exact same thing to my friends today :thumb:
    and about the slot loaded drive, i was thinking that too, but there is very limited space on my dash, i was thining of maybe putting one in my arm rest box (not sure what its called)

    @ fiddlebot:
    i saw that on mp3car.com looks like the perfect thing for the project, but i was planning on utilizing the old 220W PSU that came with the PC in junction with something like http://www.crutchfield.com/S-OPaQUdci9Ez/cgi-bin/ProdView.asp?g=850&I=539XP175P
    (i know its only 150W but its just an example)

    ------
    I thank you all for your repies, they have been most helpful
    most of my quesitions have been answered except the one about precautions for mounting
    I was thinking of having the case (which i will custom fabricate) lie on top of gigantic rubber feet (think hokey puck sized)
    I was also thinking of using bubber washers when mounting the hard drive to further isolate movement from the car.
    would these precautions be necesary at all, or would it be better to have everything screwed on tightly so nothing moves at all?
    is there anything that should be adressed that i have missed?
    please keep the ideas coming

    thanks in advance :thumb:
     
  14. mick90

    mick90 What's a Dremel?

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    Hi,
    Ive got a pc in my 1996 golf. Its fitted into the glovebox (no case just screwed to the plastic) to avoid the hassle of routing the wires all the way to the boot. I wouldn't be worried about protecting the hard drive, im using a laptop hard drive stuck to the glovebox lid with velcro. Its been like that for about 3 months now with no issues at all, even with the mega stiff springs that are fitted to my golf. The full specs of my pc are:

    gigabyte GA-K8N51GMF-RH miniatx motherboard
    AMD Turion MT-30 CPU
    Creative Sound Blaster Live - 24bit External Sound Card
    Fujitsu 80GB 2.5" 5400 SATA HDD
    M2-ATX DC-DC power supply

    At the minute im only using it for music so the system is more the enough. My first attempt was usingh a full size asus AMD socket A atx board but the PSU couldnt power it at all. My advice would be to read as much of the mp3car site as possiable then make a decision about what components you want.
    Hope my ramblings help!
     
  15. Buzzons

    Buzzons Minimodder

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    you could have some kind of auto ripping software so if you want to play a cd you just whip it in the boot, and wait a couple of mins and it will auto rip to mp3 for ya etc?
     
  16. Sebbo

    Sebbo What's a Dremel?

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    i'd try and run it from a pico-psu or similar that runs from the battery rather than putting 12V through an inverter and then having to bring it back down again
    rubber grommets on the hdd mounting holes is a god idea, but i'd prob try and bolt the chassis down so it all doesn't move too much
     
  17. Slim Slotloader

    Slim Slotloader What's a Dremel?

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    I agree with this, as you'll still have to buy a device, might aswell be smart and get a smaller one than the inverter.

    On anoter note: Don't know where you live, but remember the weather too. Computers don't like moisture :jawdrop: I would have problems especially in the winter with ~-20C outside and then warming up the car=condensation.
     
  18. THEkorean

    THEkorean 42

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    thanks for all the advice, honestly i thougth this thread would die. Please if anyone has anymore advice go for it!

    Southern California, USA perfect weather.. always :thumb:
     
  19. DSquareD

    DSquareD What's a Dremel?

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    this isnt much advice but more like a surity...im pretty sure that a full pc can be put into a car, i mean look at pimp my ride on Mtv. they do it all the time and they show it 2 the world so doing something stupid would only evber be done once on a show like that...so if it didnt work i think they would have stopped doin it but they havent. food for thought.
     
  20. Springs

    Springs Boing boing

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    does a pico psu give enough power to run a full sized computer... it was designed to run a mini itx board...
     

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