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#23179 - 30/11/2000 15:53 mobile video suggestions
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
I've been looking for a while for a good LCD monitor for mobile video applications in my little Civic. My plans are to mount a PSOne in the glovebox and a 4 to 5 inch LCD on the roof so that the passengers can have a little game of CoolBoarders or Tony Hawk Pro Skater on the way up to the mountains. So far i'm leaning towards these monitors (which are made by Sharp)... Pyle's, MobileAuthority's, or this one...which can be had for a tad over $200.

Sooo... has anyone had any experience with any sort of mobile video install? (or more specifically with any of these products?) Stories, hints and tips are much appreciated!! Thanks.




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#23180 - 30/11/2000 16:35 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
Smoker_Man
member

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 165
Loc: Calgary, CANADA
Other than the fact that it is illegal (in Canada) to have a tv/display in the drivers view or line of sight, or visible from the driver position.

Just make sure you take into account:
power - you will need a fair bit, unless you bypass the ac/dc converter in the PS - not easy, but it has been done.
line of sight from you - make sure that you "cannot" effectivly see the display(s) - or make it look like you can't (nudge, nudge, wink, wink.....)
storage - will a PS really fit into a civic's glove box?
what about a vcr? dvd? etc.... the possibilities are endless (so can be the cost!)

Have fun!

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#23181 - 30/11/2000 16:37 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Smoker_Man]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31307
Loc: Seattle, WA
Nah, the most important thing is to get the PlayStation controller buttons integrated into the steering wheel. Gran Turismo, anyone?

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Tony Fabris
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#23182 - 30/11/2000 16:43 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
Liufeng
member

Registered: 14/09/1999
Posts: 149
Loc: Alaska
Just a thought but the Playstation uses CDs right? Well, when you hit a bump wouldn't the game restart or pause? Unless sony has built in Shock protection.. but I doubt that in a home console system. Better to get a N64 or a different cartridge system.

Tom

Reg #2845: Mark 1 #00173, Mark 2 #119
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#23183 - 30/11/2000 16:50 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Smoker_Man]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Other than the fact that it is illegal (in Canada) to have a tv/display in the drivers view or line of sight, or visible from the driver position.

Yeap, that's supposedly the same here in the US from what i gather. But then again, i don't know how those in dash DVD players with the motorized screens get away with being legal then...hrm...

I'm pretty sure i'd have to mount it behind my sunroof anyhow, but i haven't measured the dimenstions yet... but none the less it folds up so that it can be fairly well hidden. The hard part is going to be resisting the temptation to play when sitting in traffic on the 101!!!

storage - will a PS really fit into a civic's glove box?

The PSOne will ... that thing is TINY!!! it's a scaled down version of the regular playstation that's not much bigger than the cd itself depth wise. Neat stuff.






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#23184 - 30/11/2000 16:52 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Liufeng]
Smoker_Man
member

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 165
Loc: Calgary, CANADA
I have seen both types of systems installed into an automobile. The playstation was a bit trickier, but this was in an SUV, and they used something similar to the shock-mount in the empeg, but mounted it to the whole chassis of the PS. But I am sure a lot of rubber, duct tape can solve anything!

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#23185 - 30/11/2000 16:53 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Liufeng]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Just a thought but the Playstation uses CDs right? Well, when you hit a bump wouldn't the game restart or pause? Unless sony has built in Shock protection.. but I doubt that in a home console system. Better to get a N64 or a different cartridge system

The PS uses a cacheing system for most of the in game aspects, the only time it's really full on reading the cd is during cinematics or cutscenes or when loading a mission or level. Regardless, i plan on having a small shockmount rigged up.


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#23186 - 30/11/2000 17:02 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
Smoker_Man
member

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 165
Loc: Calgary, CANADA
Other than mounting LCD's in the headrests for the rear passengers, or in the seatback, the ceiling mount is apt for problems, especially in a car, if it was my head that hit the lcd, I would swear a lot and tell you to go someplace not nice if I broke it!

I have never seen the PSone, if it is that small, perhaps it is shockmounted somehow? is there a url where one can pique his interest in such a device?

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#23187 - 30/11/2000 17:06 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Smoker_Man]
ricin
veteran

Registered: 19/06/2000
Posts: 1495
Loc: US: CA
Try Here, or here, or both.

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Donato
MkII/Blue/40GB/080000565


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#23188 - 30/11/2000 17:12 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: ricin]
Smoker_Man
member

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 165
Loc: Calgary, CANADA
Now that is one cool unit! Whay cant they do that for the original/future units? too easy for your neighbours 16 yr old to walk out with it?

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#23189 - 30/11/2000 17:52 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: tfabris]
eternalsun
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/09/1999
Posts: 1721
Loc: San Jose, CA
That's twisted tony!

Calvin


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#23190 - 30/11/2000 19:20 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
jstrain
enthusiast

Registered: 18/08/1999
Posts: 202
Loc: philadelphia pa
Yeap, that's supposedly the same here in the US from what i gather. But then again, i don't know how those in dash DVD players with the motorized screens get away with being legal then...hrm...

i was under the impression that these types of installations had some sort of feature that only allowed the visual aspects (at least for those units that can play music as well as video) to operate if the emergency brake was applied. i have a feeling that any installer would set the unit up like this for liability purposes. of course once that is done, there is nothing stopping you from disengaging the emergency brake and leaving it on all the time :)

jeremy

12 gig, green...
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#23191 - 06/12/2000 22:31 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Okay, i ended up getting the Pyle branded Sharp 5.6" LCD screen off of EBay
for $200... not to shabby. It'll be here next week...

In the meantime i've been doing some research on the power for this project.
The main issue is that i want to be able to remove the gamesystem and put
any other AV type device in it's place (namely a PS2 as soon as i get my
hands on one so i'll have in car DVD as well as gaming). I'm going to mount
some female RCA jacks in the glovebox so that anything with an AV signal can
be shown on the monitor. SOooo.. that leads me to the power issue. I don't
want all this stuff wired directly to the power system, i want a good ol'
standard wall socket type plug to plug whatever the device may be into for
power. I've been looking around on the web for power inverters made for car
use and have come across a few so far (here's one, and here's another).
Has anyone installed anything like this or seen anything like this
installed? I know a lot of newer SUV type vehicles come with AC plugs in the
rear, and that's sorta what i'm going for, only i want to mount it somewhere
accessable in the front, hopefully in the glovebox. The problem i'm seeing
with the ones i've found is that they all plug into the cigarette lighter
socket, which is a no no. I want to power the inverter straight from the
battery or from the distribution block that my amps are coming off of (which
has two open ports). Sorry for being longwinded, but i hope that explains
what i'm looking for. Hints tips suggestions??

ANYONE? Bueller? Bueller?



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#23192 - 06/12/2000 23:12 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
mcomb
pooh-bah

Registered: 31/08/1999
Posts: 1649
Loc: San Carlos, CA
Hints tips suggestions??

Chop the cigarette liter plug of any old inverter add a fuse and wire it strait to the battery?

-Mike

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#23193 - 07/12/2000 01:46 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: mcomb]
mardibloke
addict

Registered: 14/08/2000
Posts: 468
Loc: Penarth, UK
. . . and maybe install a bigger battery / alternator

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Rod, UK Mk2 64gig Red S/No.341
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#23194 - 07/12/2000 02:46 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: mcomb]
TommyE
enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 356
Loc: NORWAY
This is what I did too, works like a charm.
Cannot have more load than about 1amps at 230 volts, but it works for laptop and the likes.

TommyE


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#23195 - 07/12/2000 11:00 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: TommyE]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
This is what I did too, works like a charm.

Sweet. Could you fill me in on your setup? hardware at the likes? do you use the cigarette lighter or did you wire it straight up? Thankee =]


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#23196 - 07/12/2000 17:49 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: mardibloke]
tanstaafl.
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/07/1999
Posts: 5403
Loc: Ajijic, Mexico
. . . and maybe install a bigger battery / alternator


Naaah... What he's talking about doing is really a pretty trivial draw, compared to what his amplifiers etc. are pulling. Of course, there's always the "straw that broke the camel's back" theory to keep in mind...

tanstaafl.

"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"
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#23197 - 08/12/2000 14:06 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
TommyE
enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 356
Loc: NORWAY
I wired it to the lighter outlet, except that I connected it 'behind' the plug itself.

TommyE


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#23198 - 11/12/2000 02:22 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
Wire
member

Registered: 11/09/2000
Posts: 143
Loc: Jylland, Denmark
Hi,

Regarding caching, sure it caches textures and levels. But games with in-game music usually plays it directly from the CD (meaning the CD would be running all the time). Also the PS is very bad at handling CD read-errors - in my experience it just dies if it can't read from the CD (no errors, retry options).




Lars
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#23199 - 11/12/2000 02:27 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
Wire
member

Registered: 11/09/2000
Posts: 143
Loc: Jylland, Denmark
Hi,

I would avoid the power-inverters if possible for several reasons.

1) High-voltage AC isnt something you want in your car. It's dangerous, you can't have common ground to the car, it makes noise (literaly and induces noise in your stereo AFAIK)
2) Why go from DC to AC to DC? The PSone uses low voltage DC - and doesn't the PS2 do the same? As you mention yourself you can buy a lighter-plug adapter which provides the power you need (wire it directly to the car if you wish).



Lars
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#23200 - 11/12/2000 02:37 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Smoker_Man]
Wire
member

Registered: 11/09/2000
Posts: 143
Loc: Jylland, Denmark
Hi,

The PSone has the usual Sony Playstation shock-mounts (3 small rubber feet), but the unit being to small the CD-drive really has no space to move.

I'd opt for some sort of shock-mount, perhaps just placing the PSone on a thick layer of foam sheet (I don't know if that is the correct term?).

I took a PSone apart the other day, everything is so small. Still I wonder why the regular Playstation has to be *so* much bigger.




Lars
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#23201 - 11/12/2000 11:45 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Wire]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
2) Why go from DC to AC to DC? The PSone uses low voltage DC - and doesn't the PS2 do the same? As you mention yourself you can buy a lighter-plug adapter which provides the power you need (wire it directly to the car if you wish).

Agreed, i originally planned to do just that. BUT, the problem is that i want to be able to switch out game systems without having to rewire my car. If i had a standard AC plug, i could bring whatever my little heart desired, including any myriad of portable AV devices, and just plug em in. I'm still doing some research on the topic, but my installer ensures me he's done it before with no problems, so we'll see. Unless i can come up with a better solution for being able to swap out the systems, this is looking like the best way to go.


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#23202 - 11/12/2000 11:59 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: Wire]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
True that. I definately plan on building some sort of shock mount platform. As soon as this game is done and we are out of crunch here at work, that's my first project.

The display should get here today or tomorrow, i'll take some pictures of it in action and post them on my site. I'll definately be documenting the install as well. (i'm going to be doing a bunch of stuff at once, including installing some MB Quart PSC 216's in the front, thanks to the ceaseless recommendations of tanstaafl and my installer.) I'll be doing it soon after the Holidays, so i'll keep you all posted on the progress. Thanks!


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#23203 - 11/12/2000 12:11 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Re: the caching issue. I asked around at work and got this info from a couple of the game programmers in case anyone is interested:


PS1 has only a 1 sector read ahead cache for data loading

The special format streaming audio has in the region of 32k internal cache (can't remember exactly but it is of no real help in shock proofing)

aside from that, the CD operation is application specific - some games with a lot of streaming audio never spin down - and a lot of games just use CD-DA for their music all the way through.

Some games load up and then spin down for play until a level is restarted

PSX is renowned for accelerated CD hardware wear and tear, and CD reading difficulties generally.

Not much help I'm sure, other than there is no mechanism for shock protection - try playing a game in a PSX and jolt the unit - that will show you.


and


its also not a very good predictive device (no esp) it will retry a number of times to make sure it gets the data... it reads only when it needs something, not when it thinks it MIGHT need something...this can result in music stopping for no apparent reason, big lags loading... like _big_ lags... sometimes crashing. But once everything is in ram, most of gameplay wont be interrupted by bumps as you arent hitting the disk for anything (ie: you have music off).


So, basically i'm going to have to shockmount that puppy good. A big pad of foam seems like a fairly easy solution, if not unnatractive, but it'll get the job done. (the mind churns with visions of spring mounted platforms.....)




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#23204 - 11/12/2000 12:16 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31307
Loc: Seattle, WA
Something to consider if you're using foam rubber as a shock-mount: It is an insulator. I don't know how much ventilation your game console needs, but you probably want to keep that in mind. You wouldn't want to overheat your game console by giving it a cozy warm snuggly bed of foam all around it, blocking all the air holes...

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Tony Fabris
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#23205 - 11/12/2000 12:35 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: tfabris]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
ahhh, hadn't thought of that. Good call. I'll have to be careful of that. The PS2 has a couple of fans and an airvent (pic), but the PSOne is all heat sinks....


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#23206 - 12/12/2000 07:33 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
smu
old hand

Registered: 30/07/2000
Posts: 879
Loc: Germany (Ruhrgebiet)
2) Why go from DC to AC to DC? The PSone uses low voltage DC - and doesn't
> the PS2 do the same? As you mention yourself you can buy a lighter-plug
> adapter which provides the power you need (wire it directly to the car if you wish).

Agreed, i originally planned to do just that. BUT, the problem is that i want to be able to switch out game systems without having to rewire my car. If i had a standard AC plug, i could bring whatever my little heart desired, including any myriad of portable AV devices, and just plug em in. I'm still doing some research on the topic, but my installer ensures me he's done it before with no problems, so we'll see. Unless i can come up with a better solution for being able to swap out the systems, this is looking like the best way to go.


If you really want a AC plug in your car, I really advise you to make it switchable (on the 12V side of the inverter), because the inverter itself drains quite some power from the battery even with no AC device connected and even without that, 110V/230V are a security risk as well (fire, shocks etc.).
However, I would choose the following setup:

  1. Install a high power DC plug somewhere near or in the glove box to connect any devices that will stay there for a while (PSone/PS2)

  2. Optionally install an AC plug somewhere to provide power to devices that are only to be used for short term use (AV devices like DVD player, VCR, ...). Make sure you are easily able to disconnect the inverter from the battery for the above reasons.

Anyway: Have fun with your play-mobile (aka car).

cu,
sven
(MkII 12GB blue, #080000113)
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#23207 - 12/12/2000 10:09 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: smu]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Hrmm... good idea. I was definitely planning on having a switch for the AC plug installed on the floor console which would switch on the monitor and plug at the same time. But, I could just install another DC "cigarette lighter" type plug in the glove box for the PSOne to plug into that is always on... and... hrm... okay, you've given me something to think about. Good points. I gotta talk to my installer and see exactly what he's planning....


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#23208 - 13/12/2000 17:46 Re: mobile video suggestions [Re: loren]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3826
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
<brag>
Well, looks like i'll have to make that shockmount for the PS2 instead of the PSOne. We just had the company party here at LucasArts, and the president of the company announced everyone will leave here today with a PS2 in hand for the company holiday gift. Aww jeah... in car DVD here i come, free ta boot. Now the shockmounts gonna have to be DAMN good!
</brag>

This brings up another question though....

how would i go about mixing the audio...say if i wanted to listen to music AND the gamesystem/DVD at the same time through the car audio system? I seem to remember this coming up elsewhere.... but i couldn't find it.



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