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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am currently contemplating placing a car pc in my 2007 93 vert. Has anyone done this or have any suggestions on premade systems or systems designed from scratch? I have been surfing the web for a couple of weeks now and there seems to be endless possibilites! Any help would be great

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twoie
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thank you diggs. Lots of info and urls within that thread. Anyone else have any experience with car pc's?


twoie
 

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Hi twoie, I've done the car pc thing as well in my '03 93. Sorry for the bad picture(camera phone) but you get the idea. The screen is not in the best spot for nav viewing, but it works well, gives a 'factory' look and meant I didn't have to lose anything.

Currently does nav and mp3's, future will be systems/diagnostics/bus interfacing.

I've been meaning to introduce myself and contact Viscouse for ages as I beleive he's been researching towards interfacing with the CAN bus too. I purchased an OBDPro CAN interface tool for the PC a long time ago and wrote a small filtering app for it, but haven't had the time to start hacking the messages.

mp3Car.com was by far the greatest source of carPC information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
nice clean install. I've thought about removing the OEM radio/CD player and just placing the screen in that openning. Are there any online companies that sell a dash blank? I don't want to modify the current dash part. So one day when I sell the car I can place the stock radio back in it's original openning.

twoie
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dave

When you were looking around at different systems and setups did you ever look at the "Infill G4" on mp3car. They have it in theier store section. A little salty, but seems like a good alternative to placing the pc guts in my trunk. I watched the vidoes and the system seems to do everything I would like it to do. If you get time to look st it let me know what you think. It appears there is an adaptor to allow me to use the steering wheel buttons.

twoie
 

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Hi twoie, sorry for the delayed response...going to be a crazy week.

For me there weren't too many options. From what I understand you guys ('07+...maybe '06?) aren't bound to the MOST system which us earlier models are. I'm not able to get rid of the head unit although my original plan was to transplant it to the glovebox with an optical extension. You fortunately have the luxury(again from what I understand) of being able to completely remove your HU in which case it looks like you have enough room for a double DIN unit such as the infill G4. I don't personally have any experience with them, but they look like a very good all around solution and I tend to trust mp3Car's decsions for the products they carry...I bought my 7" lilliput from them and received fantasic service.

I had read about the steering wheel adapters back when they hadn't released one for the Saab yet, but haven't done anything since so I'm not much help there. My plan is to catch the CAN messages sent by the steering wheel controls (among others) while in Aux mode on the stereo using the OBDPro scantool and then forward those to the software front end....I just need to find the time to parse the messages and figure out what I need to filter for so that I can write the required application....at the rate I'm going, this will never happen:roll:

I don't know of any dash kits made speciffically for the 93, but given the flat nature of that area, fabbing one wouldn't be too difficult for anyone with at least a little bit of DIY enthuisam. I did my face plate by laying a piece of lexan over a few wooden blocks that I had cut to the curve of the console, heated the lexan with a heat gun to bend it over, discarded the wood, epoxied the bezel of the lilliput screen to the lexan, cut the rectangular opening and then filled and reshaped as needed using more epoxy and fiberglass mesh. Hardest part of the install was making the first cut into the $300 lilliput that I no longer had leads on replacement bezel's for...but it worked out in the end:cheesy:

My current install consists of the following:
- AMD 2.2 GHz CPU, MSI motherboard
- 512MB RAM
- 80GB laptop drive
- M2-ATX DC-DC PS/Shutdown Controller
- GlobalSat BU-303 GPS Mouse (soon to be replaced by Garmin 15-W to make use of OnStar's OEM gps antenna...I don't subscribe and never will)
- 7" Lilliput Touch Screen
- OBDPro CAN scantool
- Windows XP Pro (nLited to reduce footprint)
- Road Runner for the Front End(soon to be replaced by my own if I get my butt back in gear)
- iNav iGuidance 4.0
 

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The steering wheel controls are on a low-speed, single-wire CANbus (SAE J2411, I believe) which is connected to the control panel with the screen and the buttons (three-letter acronym I can't recall right now).

The low speed CANbus appears at the OBD-II connector (should be on pin 1) BUT no reasonably priced CANbus scantools or interfaces that I've found can interface with the low-speed canbus. This site here: http://electronicdesign.com/Files/29/4326/Table_01.html says that J2411 is unique to GM so that could account for why I couldn't find one.

So, depending on what exactly the sort of CANbus the device you have can talk to, you may not see the data from the steering wheel controls.

It seems very unlikely that the data from the steering wheel controls would be seen on the high-speed CANbus....I can't think of any reason why the control panel would forward that data to the high-speed bus since there's nothing on the high-speed bus to use it.

So, to recap:

There are two separate CANbuses on this car. A low speed and a high speed. The steering wheel controls are on the low speed. The high speed is what is generally thought of as being OBD-II, and a CANbus capable OBD-II device will only talk to the high speed bus.

EDIT: The OBDPro definitely can't interface to the J2411 low speed CANbus. Already looked at the ELM327 chip it uses. It may be possible to make it work by slowing it down and using a different driver circuit. But I wouldn't bet on it.
 

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Thanks for the info.

I was under the impression that the data was sent to the high speed bus based on the wirinig diagrams etc. that I was looking at in the WIS. I can't say I had really gotten into the nitty gritty of it yet to know what was and was not possible so thanks for the insight.

Edit: Just to clarify, the OBDPro does not use an ELM chip...it just uses the same command structure but adds a ton of functionality...such as setting speeds and protocols.
 

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It may be sent to the high speed bus. It would depend on what the CIM (column integration module) and the ICM (infotainment control module; the device with the buttons and screen) are programmed to do.

These are the only two devices I've found with connections to both the low and high speed CANbus.

Incidentally, the car will start and run just fine without the ICM even being powered up. Some have stated that they have removed it and the car wouldn't start. I just pulled all the fuses for it to test it and it works that way. Looking at the wiring diagram it appears to connect two parts of the high-speed CANbus together so I suspect if you pulled it and reconnected those together the car would run fine without it. (I suspect they're connected together inside the ICM) It was theorized that the ICM functions as a gateway for all of the busses in the vehicle but it really appears that the CIM does that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
thanks for all the info. perhaps I'm getting over my head worrying about the steering wheel controls. The BUS conversation was interesting and made me realize I need to do a lot more research.


twoie
 

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Sorry, didn't mean to scare you off.

Steering wheel controls aside (since I don't know if there is an interface in production or not), you really don't need to worry about the bus conversation for your initial request...a carPC in a '07 9-3.

You should have no problems doing exactly what any of the other users on mp3Car.com do. So your research can really be soley focussed on car pc's rather than worrying about any of the tech talk of the saab itself. Consider yourself lucky to not be tied to the MOST system...you've got a straight forward install on your hands.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
wow this is like being married. build you up to tear you down to build you up again. Just kidding thank you for all your help. I believe I'm going to have to just get a piece of lexan or similar and make my own face plate. It seems like anyone whom has ever done a new head unit has made their own. Worse comes to worse and I'll see what saab wants to chrage me for the part. Perhaps I could stop by a custom shop and see where they get theirs.

Thanks again and perhaps I'll gain some wisdom along the way.
 

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A buddy of mine has a car Mac... He has a 9in screen in the dash of his Bentley Brooklands with a Mac Mini and printer in the trunk.

Its not a windows machine, but if you are a Mac guy the form factor cant be beat!

Just a note though, most companys with programs that monitor signals from the OBDII and such do not make Mac versions of thier programs, which may make this entire post of mine out to be completely useless... oh well, if nothing else it is an idea!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
final evolution


Thanks for the reply. I don't think Iwould go mac because my home pc and lap top are both windows based. No reply is a bad reply. I'm so new to the car pc idea that any info is greatly appreciated

twoie
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
From everything I read the 2007's are not fiber optic. However there are no manufacturers for a harness to plug into the the stock Saab harness once the radio is removed. I've stopped by my local Auto stereo installer and he can't find any through his vendors. Every site I email states that there is none available. Two sites told me the 2007's are still fiberoptic and the head unit must stay in place. Does anyone know of a site that sells them? Does anyone on this board manufacture them?


Thank you,

twoie.

I have searched so please don't hang me out to dry. I believe the numerous posts that state the 2007's are not fiberoptic, but is there something from Saab that states this so I have something to reply (forward) to companies telling me the opposite.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
anyone? I know I can tell if fiber optic is involved if I pull the radio, ( according to what I have read on here) but would rather avoid the poss of breaking something in my new car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hey Fla Saab This is an old post. Since then we have emailed each other regarding the avic z2. There may not be fiber optics but it is a real pain in the --- to get all those wires from the z2 stuffed into place.

Thanks for all your previous help
 
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