log of project where a computer system is integrated into a 1997 neon

Monday, September 19, 2005

Tweaking: Software, Shielding, Extigy

Time to start making this thing actually work! I have started to investigate more of the so called "front" end scene and have decided to go with frodo player.

I've found frodo to be well thought out, fast, customizable, and works with embedded album art!!!

The default skin sucks, but I've found that the "brightlife2" skin fixes that problem.

I also think that I might have some interference issues. Either that or a ground loop. Either way there was some noticable noise in the audio from the onboard soundcard. I attempted to add some shielding.

For my shielding, I again went to the piece of aluminium flashing I had laying around. I found that I was able to cut this best by scoring it with a utility knife and then bend the metal on that cut.

The shielding was then wired to the PSU ground and attached use a screw.

Unfortunately, the shielding didn't really help matters at all. I have no friggen idea what is going on.

Instead, I decided to attack the problem another way. I had an external sound card at work that I didn't really need anymore. It is the soundblaster extigy.

Upon investigation of the AC converter, I found that this device requires 1A @ 12V. Perfect fit for the M1-ATX 12V rail!

I plan to modify my wooden case at some point in the future to better house this external card. For now it is just in the back chillin with Poland Spring water bottles.

The good news is that there is no distorition anymore on the audio and the quality of sound is very good.

The only other thing that has been done since my last post was that I soldered some wires onto the XM cigarette power "egg" and wired that onto the 12 volt ignition switched line going into my deck. Don't ask me how but the XM device (and my head unit) must get a pulse signal on this line when the ACC line is tripped from my ignition switch. That basically makes the XM raido turn on and off automatically, as well as free up my cigarette lighter for other things.


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