Let’s open this junkyard wp site with my new DIY car stereo: a Samsung Galaxy Tab. Initially I planned to setup up a classic old-school carputer, with the xenarc mdt-7000, kilomteres of wirings, a powerful yet low profile case with all powerful but narrow (= expensive) periphericals, like 12v surge, solid state hdd.. Then I realized the huge amount of money needed, and all the time wasted for opening up my Mito like a thanksgiving day turkey for connecting all the stuff, and decided to check the size of a Galaxy Tab (all-in-one carputer to me) going to a Mediaworld store with a centimeter in my pocket. And guys, what a surprise when I found the tablet is almost 2DIN standard size! In landscape orientation, good for car usage, the width is EXACTLY 2DIN, well, it does exactly fit the Phonocar plastic 2din frame replacement for the stock stereo. The height is half centimeter taller of the aperture, but nothing that my brave dremel can’t face with a couple of spins.
I carved the frame in a way that lets me insert and remove with ease the Galaxy Tab from the frame, I just carved 2 extra holes for the earphone jack to one side, and for the usb power cradle to the other. None of the cables are in sight while mounted, and let me say that was my topmost concern with my carputer. Alfa Romeo are too gorgeous cars to messing up panels, covers, pulling plastics until they may break.. Even the amplifier which I need because the tablet can’t (of course) provide enough soundpower to the 6 bundled speakers, can be simply inserted and left at its own destiny inside the wide space I spared in the dashboard when I removed the stock radio and its sharp metal supports. I bought a small 45watt x 4 rms amplifier to do this, the model is an Alpine ktp-445 or something.
With a little modification of a 12v car-plug usb charger I can let the tablet stay at maximum screen brightness all time long without worrying about discharge. But the car-charger plug thing must provide at least 2 ampere or won’t be enough to keep full-brighness together with battery indicator going UP.
Next time I’ll show you some OBD app from the android market, as soon as I get back my bluetooth OBD adapter I did lend away to a friend of a friend (bad idea, usually :P). The project can be empowered if I figure out how to extract the wheel-buttons (of the car) signals for volume +/-, prev/next, phone up/dwn etc and passing it to my Tab. If someone knows about a CAN-BLUETOOTH interface for this purpose (not a common OBD key, besides I already have one and I know it won’t work for this one) it will only take me the effort of coding a small android application, a service to handle the incoming signals.
Well, there is no need to say how cool is to have such a PHONE, google-earth navigator, voice recognizer… video player and whatever you may imagine at your finger(s)tips in your car!
Thanks to Samsung for producing such an unbeatable harware piece in 2DIN format :D