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Old 08-21-2007, 06:05 PM   #61
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Are there any of these free in car frontends for linux?
ive seen several but the problem is with gps. there simply is no decent gps for linux!
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Old 08-21-2007, 06:08 PM   #62
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I'll put the screen in the dash, but the computer is going in the trunk.
I don't want a flip out monitor, and I'd rather have the pc hidden.
Only drawback is I can't change CDs while driving, but since I'll have an MP3 collection at my fingertips I don't care.

I'll probably make a blank out panel that covers the screen when the car is parked. Maybe do something like a abs plastic with a thin metal band around the inner perimeter, and glue magnets on the back side of the center dash console.
ive seen that done. guy also glued/molded face from old stereo so it doesnt look suspicious
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Old 08-21-2007, 06:13 PM   #63
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Linux will still load faster from disk than CF.

The OP said that Windows was included in the price of his setup. I was more answering the claim that it would load it 10-15sec off CF. Aint' gonna happen. Look at the read/write stats.

As for installing Linux on CF. You will want something like an IDE to CF adapter. From there you treat the CF card as a harddisk and install. So easy Magna could do it.
we have a collection of different configurations we use most often and we just "dd" them from our linux console to cf or hd. fast and easy
also, initial boot is about 25-45 seconds. it depends on system. from there, we hybernate systems on shutdown event (key off in ignition) onto hd and next boot takes anywhere from 10 seconds to about 30 seconds. again, it all depends on system and amount of ram. if you have 256mb ram it will be super fast. if you have 2gb ram - it will take some time.

loki, if you need an os installed on cf card - let me know and maybe ill be able to help you in my spare time. by the way, if anyone is in los angeles area, feel free to contact me and i will help you with whatever when i can
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Old 08-21-2007, 06:15 PM   #64
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yeah I did something like that in one of my Oldsmobiles. I found the optional factory installed under dash 8 track player for the car. I gutted the 8 track player, but kept the "face" of the player, and held it over the cd player with magnets. that way the car looked completely stock. No one knew but me, in fact I used to show the car and I won 1st place in a national BOPC (Buick Olds Pontiac Cadillac) show. That was 99 maybe? I have the trophies in boxes somewhere.
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:03 PM   #65
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does it have to be a CF carD?
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:30 PM   #66
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not really. as long as your motherboard will boot from it you can use anything you want. best thing about cf cards is that once you make a solid config of os you can always back it up to your regular hd and set failover boot so if your cf card dies or something is not right with it it will still boot.

if you are going with mac mini i wont be able to help you much. i simply never had enough time to research them enough :/
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:45 PM   #67
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yeah im in a pickl about it. The nice part is that its pre configured and cheap with an optical drive. Bad part is that is preconfigured, so booting from a CF isnt possible. Im gonna look into running XP on it and instead of booting the windows shell ill boot right into my front end which would bascally mean that all that boots up is the bios then im going.

So much cool stuff so little time.
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Old 08-21-2007, 07:54 PM   #68
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I was thinkng of one of those small vaio's or maybe a real new laptop for me and use this one as a standalone i already have an inverter in place etc. i just need to sort the mounting.
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Old 08-21-2007, 08:03 PM   #69
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standalone? you mean you want to hook it up to your megasquirt perhaps? yeah, that will work but looking at current laptop pricing scares me.
oh... also... i think i forgot to mention... our company doesnt only sell car computers - we sell any kind of computers and parts (except for mac). website also is down at the moment - trying to get everything designed properly.
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:18 PM   #70
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For those looking to go the cheaper DIY route, I will have all the parts and costs posted on my thread titled "My Miata is Back". Also I have a demonstration of flushing the 7" touchscreen into the dash for 15 dollars + materials. I'm in kentucky now but the pics will be up next week at the latest. Sorry to thread jack, just know this is a DIY board and wanted to support those who wanted to take that route.
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Old 08-21-2007, 11:05 PM   #71
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cheap not equals good. we try to use only top quality parts. eg: ram is kingston ddr400, hd is seagate 5200rpm, psu is m1/m2 atx. i personally had a LOT of problems with crappy parts in past so i would suggest to stay away from it.

in other news, my miata is for sale/trade. check link in my signature.
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Old 08-22-2007, 03:01 PM   #72
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Is the via epia 10000G much faster than the 8000? I know most CarPC applications don't require much computer horsepower, but I'm curious. I'm in the process of assembling parts for a core2duo based CarPC using an AOpen i945GTt-VFA mobo. I'm expecting my assembled price to be between $2500 and $3000. Most of the premium over your high end system is in the monitor (sunlight readable transflective screen costing nearly 700 bucks).

In taking CarPC's to the mainstream, I think the biggest value that companies can provide is two fold - combining components that play well together and play well in the car environment and making it easy to install.

The latter is the more difficult of the two given the variation in car's. All this to say, why not provide an Miata specific installation kit for a really clean install? (and I'm not talking about the motorized 1-din screen thingy - I'm talking about the 7" in dash - looks like it came from the factory that way - monitor). For the NA's this probably requires creating a standard fiberglass replacement for that center dash panel versus the fabrication that is required today.

My 2 pence and, as usual, YMMV.
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Old 08-22-2007, 04:06 PM   #73
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Is the via epia 10000G much faster than the 8000? I know most CarPC applications don't require much computer horsepower, but I'm curious. I'm in the process of assembling parts for a core2duo based CarPC using an AOpen i945GTt-VFA mobo. I'm expecting my assembled price to be between $2500 and $3000. Most of the premium over your high end system is in the monitor (sunlight readable transflective screen costing nearly 700 bucks).

In taking CarPC's to the mainstream, I think the biggest value that companies can provide is two fold - combining components that play well together and play well in the car environment and making it easy to install.

The latter is the more difficult of the two given the variation in car's. All this to say, why not provide an Miata specific installation kit for a really clean install? (and I'm not talking about the motorized 1-din screen thingy - I'm talking about the 7" in dash - looks like it came from the factory that way - monitor). For the NA's this probably requires creating a standard fiberglass replacement for that center dash panel versus the fabrication that is required today.

My 2 pence and, as usual, YMMV.
cant do installation kits - no time for it and not cost effective. the most we can provide is double din monitor. and there are already installation kits available for most cars so no need to invent wheel all over again.

as for sun-readable monitor - i dont really think its that big of an issue, its not like you are gonna look at it much while driving and unless sun is shining right at it you can pretty much see everything. if you play around with contrast and brightness settings then you can make most monitors work just fine in the sun. i personally never had a problem seeing what turn to make (plus there is always voice guidance ) or to choose a different song. again, it all depends on brightness/contrast of your screen and frontend theme you use.

as for taking carpc mainstream - its something i dont worry about. most companies who tried and failed in this industry simply didnt plan enough. that makes perfect sense when you dig up some information on owners/employees. most people who tried that were in their mid-20s and didnt have proper business education. also they didnt have enough resources to run business. as for us, i am oldest of 3 partners and im still 21 (22 in october). just to give myself a little bit of credit, i was in computer business (professionally) for past 6 years and did work for companies like coke, 20th century fox, nissan, disney, digital domain, etc, etc. plus this is not my first business. currently i am engaged in 2 companies - clocwise (car computers and comp hardware) and positive blue / finch & melrose - website development house with office in moscow, russia (6 people full time + my partner). so yeah, i wouldnt worry about mainstreaming this product

as for your system, make sure you choose low power cpu. i personally wouldnt go for flexatx form factor. try to stick with something smaller - it will require less cooling which is huge factor when designing car computer.

also, 10000g scored 5/5 in our tests. 8000 did 3/5 if i recall correctly. we tested by the following factors:
- expandability
- built-in features
- speed
- heat
- case compatibility (both of them did 4/5 in this test)

i will post test results on the website once its up and running to help people choose correct system.
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Old 08-22-2007, 04:54 PM   #74
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good news! we are finalizing deal with gps manufacturer and are ordering a stock. so official price for gps receiver is $55. they will be available within 2 weeks or so.
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Old 08-22-2007, 05:00 PM   #75
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whats the website?
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Old 08-22-2007, 05:05 PM   #76
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I certainly will be using the low power core2duo merom chip. My mobo is mini-itx. I'm not putting the system behind the dash. So, I'm less worried about it being tiny (though mini-itx is tiny!).

My experience with Nav software is that the voice prompts are not sufficient. I need to (maybe I'm just compulsive) to visually verify the voice prompt with a map. And, changing music is the other on road application that's it's useful to see the screen. I have had problems with the screen washing out with the top down. Much less of a problem with hard top on or in other non convertable cars. For most people, however, the problem is not worth the current price to fix it. But, for me, why do it unless it works well in your environment (i.e., convertable ready)? So, it's a price of entry point for me.

On the installation kits, I suppose that's why they are not widely offered. The double din installation kits on many cars does not result in a "factory installed" look. With the NB's this seems to be less of a problem. With the NA's, the best installations require a great deal of fabrication to get that seamless look. I have an NB - so I don't really care. Just making an observation about a large unmet need.
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Old 08-22-2007, 05:18 PM   #77
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loki, website will be announced once its launched

carlb, you should check out thread on mp3car.com forums. someone bought screen overlay which doesnt reflect light and that makes it sun-readable. i believe results werent as good as on sun-readable screens but it definitely beats extra $300 for sun-readable screen! (i believe overlay was about $40-50)
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Old 08-22-2007, 11:19 PM   #78
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The only installation kits on the market are made for specific cars. The best way to do it, is buy a xenarc or lilliput 7" monitor, buy the headrest shroud for 15 bucks, and mold that in to the double DIN spot.
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:26 PM   #79
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urbansoot y do current laptop prices scare you? I picked up my brand new dell inspiron 1501 about 2 months ago for 450 shipped to my door and it has 1GB of ram, 80GB HD, DVD Drive,cd burner, 15.4" widescreen and an amd dual processor. I have megatune loaded on it and its great...you folks are talking about gps and bluetooth and what not...its a miata guys, not an escalade.
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:31 PM   #80
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Im thinking of doing the laptop when i can get one for cheap. Cuase some of us live where there more than one road/stop sign and have to deal with traffic
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