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-   -   Building a HTPC for ... a travel trailer? (http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/htpc-systems-software/58576-building-htpc-travel-trailer.html)

3.0charlie December 16, 2012 09:38 AM

Building a HTPC for ... a travel trailer?
Yeah, you read right. I don't trust and dislike the sound from the crappy Lippert Touch Audio all-in-one DVD player / tuner. And since a car radio with a HDMI output does not exist, looks like I'll have to build a trailer-puter... :doh:


My requirements for the HTPC are fairly simple:

HDMI output for the 27" LCD
TV Tuner for the OTA HD channels (using the already-installed roof antenna - coax connector)
Radio Tuner without using the 'net
Onboard wireless would be a bonus
Sound amplifier

Here's where I'll need a hand: the Touch Audio package has an internal amp for the installed speakers. Knowing that the trailer-puter will not have any amplifier to power said speakers, what could I use (small form factor, please) to get some sound? As of now there are only 2 speakers in the main trailer section, and I will probably add an 8" low-power sub (there are more speakers located in the main room and outside, but I will not be using them).

Same goes for a stand-alone radio tuner, not using the 'net since most camping sites do not offer wireless signals. This could be part of the sound amplifier.

Any ideas? To give a rough idea, I've found this model for 700$... Concertone ZX800 DVD receiver at Crutchfield.com. No thanks.

Arinoth December 16, 2012 09:59 AM

I was going to originally recommend using raspberryPi, though as you want a radio and OTA tv tuner I don't believe that device would work for you anymore.

I may have a couple additional ideas, though let me research them a bit before potentially pointing you down the wrong hiking path.

Quick Update: Something like this may work: AVerMedia AVerTV Global - TV Tuners, Live IPTV Streaming Encoder, Video Capture Card, Media Player and Multimedia Products - AVerTV Ultra PCI-E RDS they have usb and internal versions of it too.

3.0charlie December 16, 2012 10:17 AM

I'm still in the planning stages since the trailer is winter-bound until next April. I don't mind buying parts now, mind you. Additional info: SFF obviously is welcomed, and both 12V / 120V power is available.

Yeah, I found those tv tuners, just like the Hauppage would work. My main concern is radio, alongside powering the speakers.

edit: woah, I just read the specs of the Aver link - FM radio - that's great! :thumb:

Arinoth December 16, 2012 10:38 AM

Yep, that's why I linked you that one, there may be a USB version that'll work too, though if the htpc you are building has at least one internal pci-e slot you should be good.

If you wanted to run off the battery's wiring rather then using a wall receptacle you could go with a Car DC to PC DC adapter such as this, M2-ATX (160w) Intelligent DC-DC Car PC Power Supply though it is a tad expensive from their website, may be able to find something cheaper elsewhere. Though it would/should cover all required for the PSU (not 100%)

3.0charlie December 16, 2012 04:38 PM

That's a great start, I've found a few actually. Need to get my hands on a remote though... so the H777, H788 would fit the bill quite nicely. Any ideas now to power the speakers?

Arinoth December 16, 2012 07:35 PM

Hmm that part is a little out of my knowledge, but I can keep digging and see what I can find. You'll essentially need some kind of amplifier from/off of the sound card (onboard or dedicated)

sswilson December 16, 2012 07:52 PM

There are tons of small form factor amps out there ( Amazon.com: Amplifiers ), but you're probably going to have to do some research on what kind of power the unit you currently have puts out, and/or what the specs are on the speakers.

3.0charlie December 16, 2012 08:52 PM

I know I can use car amps, but using figuring out the remote power On for the amp is going to be an issue without a car radio. I'm trying to find an amp with no volume control since I want the trailer-puter to handle that. I also know I can connect a 1/8" jack / LR RCA cable to an amplifier from the onboard sound card.

Just need to find that amp! No worries about the existing amplifier (18w per canal), and the existing 6.5" speakers will be replaced anyway.

sswilson December 16, 2012 09:16 PM

Something like this then?

Hardware Review: Series DTA45 Internal Audio Amplifier

Hrmmmmm.... even better if you could find one......


JD December 17, 2012 05:50 AM

Why can't you just use a car deck with 3.5mm input? Nearly all of them offer that now a days.

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