7in Tablet in place of the head unit

Doat

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I was thinking about installing a 7in tablet to replace the head unit, have it plugged in like route the power cable behind the dash to the cigarette lighter so I can possibly charge things with a car charger at the same time as charging the tablet or will that be overloading the cig lighter? Anyway, I need some help on figuring out a mounting system that is as clean as possible and holds the tablet very sturdily. I want to use it as my GPS, radio, MP3 player, movie player, etc. I will also have a cable run out through the glove box or something so I can add things to it like transfer movies and songs through a usb drive or something like that. The tablet I have in mind is the Galaxy Tab T849, I am more worried about the mounting rather than the wiring because worst case I just run the cable from behind the dash and stick out into the car charger if I can't wire it up to the wires directly. Also would it be possible to have it turn on with the ignition instead of having to manually turn it on and off?
 

Backlash2032

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Somebodies been watching MCM.. :p

For the speakers: You will need an external amp. Run the 3.5mm to the high level input i believe... Don't quote me on that.

For USB: I can think of one way which would work great. Run a USB cable from the tablet into the glove box, and have a female USB cable in the glove box ran to your car charger/cigarette lighter wiring (should work fine, even with other things plugged into the front. Or you could use the 12v stereo power and ground as you won't need that anymore) So you can disconnect the tablet from the second USB cable and plug it into your computer for instance to transfer data. Once you're finished transferring, plug it back into the power USB cable and you're done.

And honestly with the turn on/off thing, all you'd really need is it to sleep. A tablet is going to take far too long to power on to be very useful on short car rides. I'm not sure on the settings, but you should be able to have the screen turn off when not charging, and when charging the screen would never turn off. On my HTC Rezound I can set it up to do exactly that. But it isn't running factory ice cream sandwich..

For mounting: I'd go the MCM route and use some epoxy and some metal strips. Or something along those lines.
 

Doat

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While I have been starting to watch Mighty Car Mods I did not get the idea from them lol I had the idea for awhile since apparently a 7in screen fits well in our cars and thought why not put in a tablet to have everything I want and also design the UI myself or customize it at least. I did not know that MCM did this I will definitely hunt for that episode when I get off of work. I want the tablet to sit cleanly and flush with the head unit area. So the only way to get input to the speakers is to run the external amp, I can't use the stock setup like an adapter or something?
 

Backlash2032

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-ALYArl5S4 There's the MCM video.

The stock headunit has no aux. input so no. And the output from the tablet will not be enough to power the speakers. It was mean't for headphones. Even some headphones have a tiny amp in them. So you need SOME sort of amp. Be it either an aftermarket amp, or an aftermarket headunit stuffed away in the glove box or under the seat or something.

Just rewatched the MCM video. I'm not sure if its necessary to add a potentiometer to the amp input, as they were using the ipad dock for audio, not a 3.5mm headphone jack.
 
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Doat

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What kind of amp would I need like a 500W amp or something? I have not dealt with car audio stuff in so long the last time I handled that stuff was in my brother's 96 impala SS helping him install his sound system and we did that in early 2000s
 

Backlash2032

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Depends on what speakers are in the car. You need to match the amp to the load rating and impedence rating of the speakers. Chances are you will need a 4 channel amp, unless you have a 6 speaker setup in your car. In which case you'd need a 6 channel amp.. I however, have not had any luck finding one of these.

Really though, you're only going to have a left and a right coming from the tablet, so it would be kind of pointless to get a 6 channel amp.
 

Doat

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I only really want to hear the speakers in the cabin anyway I don't care about the speakers in the trunk, my spare tire and jumper cables don't need to rock out with me lol I believe my mk3 has 6 speakers it's a 91 turbo targa if that makes a difference. I need to replace my speakers anyway the stock speakers have no balls lol. After I replace my clutch and fix my AFM issue I will look into speakers and setting this all up but right now I just want to plan everything out and make sure it's do-able without crazy modifications I wish I knew how to do some fabrication work I would just make my own brackets that fit into the stock bracket or whatever. OH my main concern is the heat from behind the head unit area because I know how hot the radio and the in dash pocket gets so I was wondering if you guys know a way to block heat from behind the area like maybe make a wall of foil or something.
 

NashMan

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I do like this qoute

Poor mans version.
step 1. obtain Ipad
step. 2. buy mp3 cassette converter.
step 3. connect ipad to cassette to cassette player.
step 4. super glue, duck tape, or nail ipad to car dash.
step 5. enjoy.
 

Doat

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lol I am just looking for ideas at the moment I don't want to glue it to the dash but when I came home I held the tablet over my head unit and I can see it fitting beautifully with a few little modifications to the dash itself like trimming up the trim piece a little bit from behind to let the tablet sit flush AND since our dash isn't plastic it's more of a leather type material it can actually help hold the tablet in place.
 

Doat

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Thanks, I've been checking that site out and it has been helpful but I need some supra specific help with like making mounting brackets and such.
 

Backlash2032

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Honestly just use some thin metal strips and glue them in. Or use some duct tape.

Sent from my terrible HTC Rezound using Tapatalk. Don't buy HTC...
 

Doat

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lol I don't want to ruin the tablet I was thinking of shaping some metal brackets that would bolt to the stock radio cage/brackets
 

gurley0916

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Thanks, I've been checking that site out and it has been helpful but I need some supra specific help with like making mounting brackets and such.
Your going to have to get real creative. I plan to hard mount it in the dash, then have the bezel sit in front because the bezel is so hard to get on with my short throw shifter.
 

Doat

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I actually want another dash so I practice my cut outs with that and test fit everything but it's hard to find MK3s in junkyards in my area.
 

Backlash2032

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lol I don't want to ruin the tablet I was thinking of shaping some metal brackets that would bolt to the stock radio cage/brackets
I never said to screw anything into the tablet. I still stand by that it would be far easier to just glue metal brackets to the stock radio surround or just duct tape the tablet to the surround.. It's not that hard to do this guys..
 

Doat

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Not saying it's hard I just don't like that route because it won't do what I exactly want lol. Tape will get loose over time and since the area behind the radio gets pretty warm the adhesive will get gooey on long drives and tapping on the screen along with bumps in the road and gooey tape won't end well lol. I was thinking of having 2 brackets that bolt into the factory radio bracket to hold the tablet from behind and put some sort of soft or padding around the edge of the dash on the front side of the tablet, so it holds it snug.
 

Backlash2032

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Unless you fasten the tablet to the bracket somehow then its going to be a giant pain to get in. And you'd be surprised at how well gorilla tape holds up in situations like that...

Sent from my terrible HTC Rezound using Tapatalk. Don't buy HTC...
 

Doat

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Once I have time to open up my dash and take a look at everything I am sure I can draw up some ideas to make a bracket that holds the tablet securely. My main concern is figuring out how to block the heat from that area.

I just realized I have a double din dash kit, I shall check that out to see if I can play with it that way I can use the stock radio brackets to mount the dash kit and attach the tablet to the kit itself or something.
 
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mecevans

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Nexus 7 has pogo pins on the side for charging and audio. Would make it much easier to make a removable dock.
 

Albert

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This is what Dustin has been working on. I prefer it personally thats just me. Especially when I started looking into obdii bluetooth adapters. My Proefi uses CAN hi and lo wires to hook up displays. Figured I can hook it up to a obdii plug, buy that bluetooth adapter then Program my gauges in the PID setup so I can have gauge feedback from my Proefi ECU also on the tablet. bonus for me. PLus Id get the 4g lte version from verizon so I can have internet anytime I wanted it. Again, just a nice preference.


Gauge setup:


Changing skins around for personalized look:
 

NashMan

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i still remember the craze were people were putting there desk top computers in there cars and hooking it up to lcd screen and have mini mouse and key bord or makeing it touch screen


think grim jack came close
 

gurley0916

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i still remember the craze were people were putting there desk top computers in there cars and hooking it up to lcd screen and have mini mouse and key bord or makeing it touch screen


think grim jack came close
people still do lol
 

rodel

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I read mention of using glue, metal brackets, duct tape, screws, nails, etc. to mount a tablet. Smh. There are mounting solutions that are clean, very simple, and inexpensive, with little to no fabrication involved.
I was thinking about installing a 7in tablet to replace the head unit, have it plugged in like route the power cable behind the dash to the cigarette lighter so I can possibly charge things with a car charger at the same time as charging the tablet or will that be overloading the cig lighter? Anyway, I need some help on figuring out a mounting system that is as clean as possible and holds the tablet very sturdily. I want to use it as my GPS, radio, MP3 player, movie player, etc. I will also have a cable run out through the glove box or something so I can add things to it like transfer movies and songs through a usb drive or something like that. The tablet I have in mind is the Galaxy Tab T849, I am more worried about the mounting rather than the wiring because worst case I just run the cable from behind the dash and stick out into the car charger if I can't wire it up to the wires directly. Also would it be possible to have it turn on with the ignition instead of having to manually turn it on and off?
Have you accomplished the implementation of a tablet into your stereo system? If you have, how did you do it?

I will be integrating a tablet to my stereo wirelessly, without wiring and installation of an amp. The stock head unit can be retained if desired.
 
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Doat

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I have sort of abandoned this project for now I have bigger issues at hand. That head unit looks perfect for me hex.amilli thanks
 

rodel

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I came across this android double din unit and seems great my only problem with double din screen units is the resolution looks like crap but this one looks pretty crisp and it doesn't seem sluggish or anything at all.
http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Newsmy-android-4-4-quad-core-car-dvd-8-inch-for-univeral-Android-only-without-DVD/2035002543.html
These China brand units often looks appealing, but they also, often, turn out to be low quality. I have considered them...but decided to look past them. So I am going to use a Samsung tablet. The tablet is a much better solution than an Android head unit. Aside from having a DVD player, the tablet can accomplish all that an Android head unit and a lot more.
 

gurley0916

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The best thing to do it to create your own backgound that has the areas you want to touch to open apps. Then you can download another app that lets you build custom widgets that will open the app. From there you can assign a transparent .png as the widget and overlay it on the part of the background that you want. This is old but you can see how I did it. Granted having text and chrome and other apps are useless when driving but just needed something to fill design at the time. http://youtu.be/mdooHFRk5c4
 
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rodel

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Thanks for sharing the video. your interface looks good. You mentioned a name of Internet service provider, Apps, etc. I couldnt make out the names. What are the names?
 

gurley0916

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Desktop visualizer does the custom widgets.
Foxfi used to do the data transfer between the phone for data but android 4.0+ has stopped that.
Image to wallpaper app helped keep the proportion of the background when applying it
Tablet talk connects the phone to the tablet for calls. This app cost money
Navfree usa was the free gps software.
I then used a volume widget for volume control.
For transmitting the sound to the stereo you can get one of those cheap headunits without the cd player. Or if you have a amp you can use a headphone jack to rca plug as the amp input. Hope this helps!
 

rodel

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Desktop visualizer does the custom widgets.
Foxfi used to do the data transfer between the phone for data but android 4.0+ has stopped that.
Image to wallpaper app helped keep the proportion of the background when applying it
Tablet talk connects the phone to the tablet for calls. This app cost money
Navfree usa was the free gps software.
I then used a volume widget for volume control.
For transmitting the sound to the stereo you can get one of those cheap headunits without the cd player. Or if you have a amp you can use a headphone jack to rca plug as the amp input. Hope this helps!
Thanks for the info. I am curious as to how people are using their tablets with their car.
 

rodel

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I still have a radio in my car. I havent done any customization on my tablet. All the resources I need came factory installed in my Samsung Tab4.

This is how how I use my Samsung tablet with the car:

Sound: connects to the stereo system through bluetooth
Internet: uses my Samsung S4 phone as a hotspot
Navigation: Google maps
Phone calls: made through voice over ip Using Facebook messenger app or Google plus


Whether I choose to use my tab4, S4, (or even IPad) in the car, I use the same resources above that are on the respective device
 

Doat

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I have a plan if I go with mounting a tablet that I would get a very large SD card to load TV shows and a few movies onto mainly stuff that I've seen multiple times but are just staples in any collection that I can listen to and it would be the same as if I were watching it. Stuff like Simpsons, Seinfeld, etc. it would be great for road trips instead of just listening to music the entire way you can "watch" some shows lol. My main concern with stuff like this is the resolution and picture quality and smoothness of the apps and transitions and such I want it to be very smooth, responsive, and look great and crisp. My gripe with most screen units is the resolution is crap, the app layout and image quality is crap, and they are not very responsive and when you open an app or menu or whatever it's not very quick to load. That is the reason why I wanted to use an android tablet also I can install a custom ROM on it made for performance or something, so it is very quick, light, and has great customization. Also very easy to customize the quality of app images, layouts, have some sort of sleep mode when the car is off, etc. I can literally make it how I want it to be and tablets now days have amazing image quality and resolution. The hardest part for me is mounting it so it looks very clean and wiring it so it basically always plugged in and comes on when I turn the ignition or have it automatically sleep when there is no more power going to it (i.e. when the key is in the off position).
 

rodel

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I have a plan if I go with mounting a tablet that I would get a very large SD card to load TV shows and a few movies onto mainly stuff that I've seen multiple times but are just staples in any collection that I can listen to and it would be the same as if I were watching it. Stuff like Simpsons, Seinfeld, etc. it would be great for road trips instead of just listening to music the entire way you can "watch" some shows lol. My main concern with stuff like this is the resolution and picture quality and smoothness of the apps and transitions and such I want it to be very smooth, responsive, and look great and crisp. My gripe with most screen units is the resolution is crap, the app layout and image quality is crap, and they are not very responsive and when you open an app or menu or whatever it's not very quick to load. That is the reason why I wanted to use an android tablet also I can install a custom ROM on it made for performance or something, so it is very quick, light, and has great customization. Also very easy to customize the quality of app images, layouts, have some sort of sleep mode when the car is off, etc. I can literally make it how I want it to be and tablets now days have amazing image quality and resolution. The hardest part for me is mounting it so it looks very clean and wiring it so it basically always plugged in and comes on when I turn the ignition or have it automatically sleep when there is no more power going to it (i.e. when the key is in the off position).


A clean tablet install ought to be easy. The double din hole fits a 7" well.

Wiring is also an easy task. Check out the components used by this guy
http://youtu.be/t78bBJ8Bafg

As far as your power on/ off needs, here you go:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.as.powerchecker
 
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