2-in-1 Carputer

Discussion in 'Multimedia' started by Gus Bakas, Mar 21, 2018.

  1. Gus Bakas

    Gus Bakas New Member

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    So for the past 2 years I have wanted to make a carputer. The problem I have had though is I don’t know what I want, Windows or Android. I have done a CRAP load of research on this and I have come to the conclusion that both OS’s have pros and cons sooooooo……why not have both! LOL. The biggest reason that I’m doing this for the customization. There are some great aftermarket double dins out there right now, Im actually really looking at the new one from Kenwood it’s the dmx905s. The problem with all of them is after a year or so the hardware/software is outdated. Even with Android Auto on new double dins it can still get outdated.

    With the hardware/software I have picked out I can set things up the way I want AND I can upgrade it easily.

    Motherboard/Mainboard - UDOO X86 ( https://www.udoo.org/udoo-x86/ )

    I picked this board for a few reasons. First, look at the size of it!! LOL It’s nice and small and it uses very little power (not that it matters, just an added bonus). Second, except for a good audio out (I’ll get to that later) it has everything I need. 3 x USB 3.0, HDMI, Bluetooth and WIFI. Third, it can fully run Windows 10 and the newest Android.

    Screen - 2DIN IN DASH 7" Samsung ( https://www.ebay.ca/itm/2DIN-IN-DAS...902820?hash=item1c9ced9f64:g:TFkAAMXQnYJRAJFs ) That’s the VGA version but he also has one that is HDMI.

    This was a hard one to find, probably took me the longest to research. I had two problems in finding a touch screen, temperature tolerance and it has to work on both Windows and Android. The summers here in Canada can get SUPER crazy hot and I’m sure you all know how cold it can get up here too. LOL. I found 2 or 3 different touchscreens that can handle the temps but I had no idea if they worked on Android. I sent emails to the places that were selling them and NO ONE responded. I found this one on EBAY and sent him a message. He got back to me the next day and a few days later he tested it on Android 7.1 and it worked. It’s probably safe to assume that it will also work on 8.0/8.1. It also has a plug for a backup cam.

    Power - M4-ATX ( http://www.mini-box.com/M4-ATX?sc=8&category=981 ) OR DCX6.360 (360W) ( https://www.opussolutions.com/product/161/DCX6_360__360W_.html#specifications )

    I’m going a little over board on this one because I want the option to upgrade in the future. I can also add some kind of USB 3 hub to it. Extra plugs is always a good thing. I can even add a SSD if I want to. It will also needs to power 2 dashcams. I still need to figure out how to get it to shut down properly in Android. There might be a way to do it with Tasker or IFTTT.

    FM Radio - NooElec NESDR SMArt ( http://www.nooelec.com/store/nesdr-smart.html )

    Before anyone says anything…..YES I listen to local FM radio! LOL. I bought it about a year ago, it’s a fun little toy. It works on both OS’s, but the software is kind of crappy. I can only find 2 apps that can use it on Android and on Windows the only easy (just FM radio) program I can find is actually a plug-in for google chrome.

    GPS – No idea yet.

    I haven’t done much research on this one yet, any suggestions would be nice. It obviously needs to work on both OS’s.

    Dashcam – No idea yet.

    Just like the GPS I haven’t done much research on this one yet, any suggestions would be nice.

    Audio – HDMI Audio Extractor Splitter Converter ( https://www.amazon.ca/Extractor-Splitter-Converter-Optical-Digital/dp/B00ISQ8VB8 ) OR ASUS Xonar U7 MKII ( https://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIABDC5DX8451 )

    I need some help with this one. I want to get the best possible audio out from the Udoo X86. I alredy have 2 amps in the car, one for the doors and another for the subs. The HDMI splitter should (in theory) work on both OS’s since it not being plugged in to the Udoo X86. The downside to it is it only has 2 RCA outs, even though it has a switch for 5.1. If I go for this I would also want a DSP (more money L). I was looking at the jl audio twk 88.

    If I go for the ASUS Xonar U7 MKII it looks like it has some good DSP included, obviously not as good as a proper DSP but still pretty good. The downside as you can guess is Android. I have read that it’s possible to run on mobile devises, but I haven’t seen it yet.

    Frontend Software – There is a lot of car themes for Android even Android Auto if I want it. As for Windows there is only two possible options I can seem to find. Centrafuse ( https://www.centrafuse.com/us/ ) I have tried it and im not a fan, I might try it again once I set everything up. Kodi but with this skin installed ( https://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=320735 ) what do you guys think?

    Bluetooth Connection Software – Again there are a few apps on the play store that will let me connect my phone so I can make calls from the Udoo X86. I can only find one program that works on Windows, bluesoleil ( http://www.bluesoleil.com/products/S0001201005190001.html ) the problem with it is it has crappy software. It works but nicely but it’s ugly. LOL

    GPS Software – For Android it’s easy, Waze….duh!! LOL. Does anyone know if Windows maps is any good? Is there a way to easily run Waze on Windows without an emulator?


    So there you have it, what do you guys think? Will it work? I want you guys to rip it apart and find all flaws you can. This way I can do more research and figure out solutions.
     
  2. someguy

    someguy New Member

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    Sorry, I have never used this forum before but really like your project. I have done a USB OTG + charging setup on a Nexus 7 before with a behringer USB DAC. I have also played with my new miniDSP with a R Pi and my windows desktop to do some 2 way active experiments in a 2.1 setup.

    AUDIO: I HIGHLY recommend the miniDSP hardware, while a tad expensive it is better than most other dedicated audio DSP gear and easily available and not the most expensive. They have 12v aka vehicle kits too. Just go straight USB input, so it's just a single conversion to analog. Relatively easy to do really hardcore EQing including pro-level (though not real time) auto correction.

    GPS: There are write ups for this, basically just go USB and check OS compatibility.

    If you have the time to write up where you are in the project now I can try to help you work out stuff I'm familiar with, and I'd be really curious to see what solutions you have already found.
     
  3. Gus Bakas

    Gus Bakas New Member

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    unfortunately, I gave up on this project for a few different reasons. Most of them are because of the OS/software.
    1- There's no good way to get phone calls from your phone to the head unit (HU) using Android or Windows. I know that some people don't care but I feel like that's kind of important in a HU.
    2- As amazing as the X86 versions of Android are they are hard to get working if a "driver" is missing. If I do get a USB GPS/cam etc working on it, what if something happens to them and I need to change it. It might not work.
    3- Back in the late 90's early 00's Windows carputers were actually a (somewhat) big thing. A lot of people had them. I can think of at least 4 different frontend programs that were made specifically for cars, none of them are supported anymore. I would be using 3-4 different apps while driving and that's a little dangerous. Also, Windows doesn't work with Waze.
    4- Iv looked at miniDSP before. Putting aside for a second that it's strange that you have to also have to pay for the software to use the hardware, the car versions don't have a USB audio input.
    5- Audio out to the amps from the Udoo is the biggest issue.
     
  4. sirrab

    sirrab UDOOer

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    Have you considered Linux?
     
  5. Gus Bakas

    Gus Bakas New Member

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    I have actually, but I would still have a few issues. I don't know of any easy/straight forward app for offline radio and as far as I know, there is no frontend software for a car with all important apps in one.
     

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