Static News Archive

   (22-Jun-07 15:31)  Removing TV, adding Media HD!
The TV in the Gita is pretty much useless. Even if it could pick up NZ channels (which it sort of can - I think its just a ntsc/pal thing), why would i want to sit there watching TV in my car on a tiny screen?!?!

Instead, I'm going to wire in a MediaGate MG-25 portable media HD:

This allows you to load the HD up with music, pictures, and movies (again - why would I watch a movie on a tiny screen?!?) and connect the device to a TV.
It comes with a remote, that allows you to control the device, and choose what you want to watch/play.

But, finding the right device was only half the problem. The device outputs 3 different formats: composite, component, and s-video. Unfortunately, I need to convert one of those to 'RGBs'.
RGBs? don't you mean RGB?

It turns out that there are no less than 3 types of RGB analog video connectors.
RGBHV is Red, Green, Blue, Horizontal sync, and Vertical sync.
RGBs is transmitted using 4 wires. Red, Green, Blue, and 'Sync'. The sync channel combines horizontal and vertical sync.
RGB is transmitted using just 3 wires. Red, Green, and Blue. Synchronisation is sent down the green channel.

To convert from my portable HD to RGBs, I need to use two devices. The first is this surprisingly expensive device from jaycar:

This will take the composite output from the HD, and convert it to a standard 15pin VGA plug - which just happens to contain pins for red, green, blue, horizontal sync, and vertical sync.
Then, all that is required is to combine the 2 syncs into one channel. This will be done using this small circuit.

All that is required then, is to wire it all into the car :)

The media HD will be wired in to replace the existing TV module. By pressing the TV button between the seats, the media HD will then be displayed on the nav screen.

Overall, this will solve the problem of having an mp3 player in the car, but without having to change the look of the center console by replacing the factory stereo. It will also mean that I don't have to bother with removing headunit faces every time I get out of the car.
It's also a reasonably cheap solution when compared with the cost of a decent mp3 playing head unit, although the quality of the sound remains to be seen (heard).

Installation starts next weekend :)

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