My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Stereos, amps, phone kits, Navi...

My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Statts » Sun May 05, 2013 3:36 pm

Well, I know worklogs are normally done over time with updates now and then showing the progress, but as the Internet says, "Ain't nobody go time fo' dat!".

I had been thinking of putting a tablet in 2005 Liberty 3.0R-B for a while, ever since seeing some people putting carputers in an area of the dash seemingly made for it. I figured given how far the Android OS, and the apps for it had come, a tablet had to be a better option, requiring less hardware, and having more car-focused software available.

Did a little research and quickly came across [url="http://rootzwiki.com/topic/37755-timurs-kernel-usb-rom-usb-host-power-management-usb-audio/"]Timur's USB ROM[/url] OS. It's based on CyanogenMod 10.1, and the developer had been hard at work getting Nexus 7's to charge and provide USB OTG connectivity at the same time. The progress was really good so I decided to go with it. Shortly after, I found a deal on OzBargain for a price-matched Nexus 7 32gb WiFi for $204. Bang, that bargain sealed the deal.

In the 2 weeks it took for my dash parts to facilitate the install to arrive, even more advances were made on the ROM, making it possible for the Nexus 7 to deep sleep and airplane mode when not charging, and wake up and de-airplane mode when charging. That meant no need for Tasker or anything fancy, the ROM is truly incredible in what it provides for fixed installations.

I'm a bit fussy when it comes to music, so when I saw that the USB-ROM supported USB DAC's there was no other option, I grabbed a reasonable USB DAC and never looked back. A 1TB external HDD takes care of music and video storage.

Parts used:

Nexus 7 with Timur's USB-ROM
Subaru 7" AV Panel Kit
Subaru Info Panel Relocation Kit
Electric Design FSL-21 McIntosh AUX in unit
Mini-Box DCDC-USB Power Supply
USB OTG Y-Cable
Behringer USB DAC
4-port USB Hub



Anyway, pics or ban and all that, here you go...

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Genuine 7" AV Panel kit, ordered from JapanParts

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Info Panel relocated from where the screen now sits to where the ashtray used to sit

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Required wiring including the Mini-Box DCDC-USB power supply (for a more robust power source), 12v constant lead from fuse box, acc power lead from the old cigarette lighter plug on the dash loom and the DCDC-USB's output plug with a female USB socket soldered on.

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Mounting was done with a hard case for the tablet, with 90deg brackets araldite'd on. USB cable goes into air vent, then back out again behind the tablet. Holes silicone-d up to stop air leaks.

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All mounted up, slightly crooked at the time of this photo, but that was squared up prior to install.

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Everything pulled out of dash ready for install. Not as daunting as it looks really.

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Wiring in the top area behind where the Nexus is mounted. Here is where the DCDC-USB, 4-port hub and USB DAC live.

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1TB HDD now lives in this area, and the switch at the back allows me to leave the tablet powered for charging, or playing while the car is off.

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Here it is all installed.

APPS:

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Torque Pro

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Google Maps Navigation

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Google Maps

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TuneIn Radio

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Tablet Talk



I guess that's it for now. I've probably missed out a whole lot of details, so if there is anything you'd like to know just ask. Feel free to compliment, ask questions or tear it to shreds. I'm all ears.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby blacktop™ » Sun May 05, 2013 3:39 pm

Looks awesome Chris. Great work.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby alessandro132 » Sun May 05, 2013 3:43 pm

Nice work :good:
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby circlethesky » Sun May 05, 2013 4:06 pm

Very clean install, good work.
I was considering putting the info panel where the ashtray is but thought the gear stick might get in the way of it. How's the view from the drivers seat?
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Victripper » Sun May 05, 2013 4:50 pm

Looks amasing... One of those times when you had a tablet with a side charger. I know I liked the side charger on my HTC but still wouldn't swap it for my new samsung.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby DJC » Sun May 05, 2013 4:51 pm

Fantastic, looks the goods.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Victripper » Sun May 05, 2013 4:57 pm

Not sure if this has already been done or not but...Do you have any controls on your steering wheel and is there any way of using them if there is?

I like the integration with your phone. Is this possible to an iPhone? Not for my car as I have the inbuilt sat nav but my wife has asked for her stereo to be replaced so she can get a GPS.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby rrussh » Sun May 05, 2013 5:11 pm

Awesome job mate, such a neat install.
Now you aren't stuck with a proprietary OS\SYSTEM. The sky is the limit!
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Statts » Sun May 05, 2013 9:41 pm

blacktop™ wrote:Looks awesome Chris. Great work.

alessandro132 wrote:Nice work :good:

circlethesky wrote:Very clean install, good work.

DJC wrote:Fantastic, looks the goods.


Thanks guys, really appreciate it.

circlethesky wrote:I was considering putting the info panel where the ashtray is but thought the gear stick might get in the way of it. How's the view from the drivers seat?


Doesn't bother me at all. Might hinder the clock a little when in 5th, but I've not really noticed. I will take a pic for you.

Victripper wrote:Looks amasing... One of those times when you had a tablet with a side charger. I know I liked the side charger on my HTC but still wouldn't swap it for my new samsung.


Yeah charger would be handy, but for all the benefits of running Nexus 7, I won't complain :D

Victripper wrote:Not sure if this has already been done or not but...Do you have any controls on your steering wheel and is there any way of using them if there is?

I like the integration with your phone. Is this possible to an iPhone? Not for my car as I have the inbuilt sat nav but my wife has asked for her stereo to be replaced so she can get a GPS.


Yes, my steering wheel has controls, obviously volume still works as it goes through the stock McIntosh system. There is a unit called a Joycon which I am looking into read the controls and turn them into any kind of command for the Android tablet. More research to be done, but definitely a possibility.

The phone integration is great. The only downside at the moment is that the audio and mic side of the phone calls remains from the phone, but you have control to make, answer calls and select loudspeaker on the phone. I'm not aware of a similar way for an Android tablet and an iPhone to communicate in this way.

rrussh wrote:Awesome job mate, such a neat install.
Now you aren't stuck with a proprietary OS\SYSTEM. The sky is the limit!


Thanks mate. Yeah, Timur has done some incredible work with this ROM, and there is still a lot more he wants to achieve.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby wcefan » Wed May 08, 2013 1:12 am

Looks good man.

How is the angle of the tablet? and do you get much sunlight glare?

Also would you mind measuring the Length and Width of the opening of that AV Panel Kit for me? Starting to plan my install and it would really help.

Cheers.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Robbks » Wed May 08, 2013 8:31 am

Sweet install.

I'm definitely doing this.

now just need to find a cheap second-hand 7" tablet
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Statts » Wed May 08, 2013 9:29 am

Robbks wrote:Sweet install.

I'm definitely doing this.

now just need to find a cheap second-hand 7" tablet


Enjoy, it's a fun project to do.

Re: Tablet choice, be careful what you choose, as the USB-ROM only works on Nexus 7. It is far and away the best option for in-car use. There are some good deals on refurb N7's floating around at the moment.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Robbks » Wed May 08, 2013 10:24 am

yeah, i'm not fussed with having usb or hdd access.
mainly accessing mapping and running audio from a nice big touch-screen
coyote wrote:Sure, a GTR is fast ... but it's about as interesting as listening to grass grow.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby yardman » Wed May 08, 2013 10:25 am

You've really gone to a lot of effort to put this together and the finished product looks very nice, good work.

I’d be interested to know a little bit more about the audio set-up though. You’re using the Electric Design FSL-21 McIntosh AUX in unit. How does this connect up to the McIntosh physically, as if it were a separate CD Stacker?

Also, does that mean you can only listen to a single source, so output from the Tablet or output from the McIntosh? What I’m getting as is, say you’re in google maps nav mode with spoken directions on the Tablet, you couldn’t listen to McIntosh radio in the background.
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Re: My In-Dash Nexus 7 Project

Postby Statts » Wed May 08, 2013 10:40 am

Robbks wrote:yeah, i'm not fussed with having usb or hdd access.
mainly accessing mapping and running audio from a nice big touch-screen


OK, far be it from me to tell someone how to spend their money :mrgreen:

[quote="yardman']You've really gone to a lot of effort to put this together and the finished product looks very nice, good work.

I’d be interested to know a little bit more about the audio set-up though. You’re using the Electric Design FSL-21 McIntosh AUX in unit. How does this connect up to the McIntosh physically, as if it were a separate CD Stacker?

Also, does that mean you can only listen to a single source, so output from the Tablet or output from the McIntosh? What I’m getting as is, say you’re in google maps nav mode with spoken directions on the Tablet, you couldn’t listen to McIntosh radio in the background.[/quote]

Thanks for the compliment.

Yes, the FSL-21 connects in line at the changer (?) port on the back of the McIntosh unit. Not the square CeNet connector, the larger rectangular connector next to it. You then press the DISC button on the head unit a second time to get to the FSL-21 input. The only downside is the fact that the head unit sees it as a changer, and hence displays track number and time on the screen that just counts on forever.

That is correct re: single input. This is countered by running TuneIn radio on the tablet, that gives me access to live streaming local, Australia-wide and International radio stations (both FM based and digital) over the internet. Data usage from TuneIn is very little.
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