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Discussion Starter #1
Posted this in the SQ forums first, and got input that I should post it here. Hopefully you guys can help me out. :)

Ok, so there is a company that is designing an Android based headunit specifically for my car, and if they make it nice I will probably buy one. It's for the E39 series BMW, would be factory fit, with a large capacitive touch display and a specially tailored version of the Android operating system which opens up some cool options for navigation etc. The really cool thing to me though, is it has 2 usb inputs, designed for use with flash storage. My idea is this. Why not buy a large capacity external hard drive with USB interface, and install it permanently in the vehicle, then load all of my music into this drive in loss-less format? I could then access my entire music library at a touch of the screen, and not be stuck with MP3 audio quality.

The only problems as I see with it are adapting a power supply for a PC hard drive, which can be relatively easily overcome, and will the drive be reliable in the car environment due to shock etc? I know solid state would be better, but the cost ratio is a bit nasty at the moment, and it would be much cooler to have a 1 TB drive in my car than a 64 GB. You know?

So, has anyone ever done this before? At the current cost of storage, it's not a huge risk if I should burn out a hd, but I wandered if anyone had done this before or had any input into it's feasability. Worst case I can always invest in a 64 GB flash device and just swap out music occasionally, or just also use the CD player when I want to listen to something not currently on the memory.

It would be really cool to just have a TB of memory available at my fingertips in my car though Could even put movies and pics in there if I want. Not to mention could tether my droid to it and surf the net if I got stuck waiting somewhere LOL!.
 

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Ive done it with a 120gb notebook drive, and mounted the drive in the dashboard. I just used some foam to cushion vibrations, but notebook drives are usually more tolerant anyways. You can find external enclosures that run solely off of the usb for power, so no need for external power.

Ran great for 2 years until the cheap enclosure I bought had the mini-usb port fail. I was using streaming over bluetooth more and more though, so I never redid it.
 

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I have used USB external drives for quite a while with no problems. Using a Kenwood DNX9140. Have used 80GB, 120GB, now 500GB packed with *.WAV files.(so noi tags, just file names)

No issues with the drives at all.. 500GB takes nearly 5 minutes to be read into the system before playback starts, of course the smaller drives were much faster..
 

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I would rather take the risk on the cheaper drive running for years before spending big coin on the SSD, that is reliability vs storage. If simply looking for speed then for sure go with SSD.

I saw run the larger drive, my old IDE drive has been rocking out in my truck for almost 3 years now through New England single digit winter nights, and the rough ride of my F350 pickup. I may have simply gotten lucky with a rock solid drive, but I would much rather try it before spending the coin on a SSD drive.
 

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Depending on the hard drive:
SSD is using way much less power consumption 3.2 m-amps
2.5 SATA hard drive use : 5.7m-amps

2 things come in to a factor spinning vs non movable parts!.
Now days regular hard drive are dirt cheep, flash drives are cheep as well. I'm still waiting for SSD drive to go down the price so i could buy it to have a faster boot time on my head unit.

Just make sure when you do go with a regular hard rive, they heat up a little, Make sure you get a nice case that goes along with it.
Wester Digital and Segate have nice portable drives with short cable's.

Personalty I use WD hard drive 500GB 7200rpm with external case that i have bought from newegg.com

Let me know if you have any more questions.
 

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I have used USB external drives for quite a while with no problems. Using a Kenwood DNX9140. Have used 80GB, 120GB, now 500GB packed with *.WAV files.(so noi tags, just file names)

No issues with the drives at all.. 500GB takes nearly 5 minutes to be read into the system before playback starts, of course the smaller drives were much faster..
First off, I have no idea what you are talking about, why would you even want to use .wave files? when you converted your cd's did you use windows media player???

there are options to convert to mp3 and you could select what kind of format of a file you want 128, 256, 320 and so on.
i think 128 is good enough.

I also have a hard drive hooked up to my Kenwood DNX 9140 and have no problems with it. its almost filed 1/2 way over 200gb of data.

Have you format your drive to FAT32 instead NTFS?

for my hard rive to be recognized by my HU unit it takes about 30 seconds if not that.

That radio has 2 USB outputs, one for flash drive and one for IPOD.
My question is, do you use dual source of power from both usb's that are coming from the radio?
I have dual power/usb connection hooked up to my HU unit, one of the usb's delivers power and the other one delivers the data. I made my own connection or you could even buy spited usb power adapter with data transfer.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I want to use a loss-less format like wave or flac because it sounds better, plain and simple. MP3 loses detail, especially in high and low frequency ranges, and if I have storage space, why sacrifice quality needlessly?

The idea I am tossing around right now is to use a WD TV Live Hub. It's obviously a home product, but it has a toslink output, which I could plug into an Audison Bit Ten D. There is an Android application out there to control the WD unit over wifi. This way I could use my droid to select music without having to modify and install a screen. It also avoids the load time issues that come with connecting android directly to the drive.
 

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First off, I have no idea what you are talking about, why would you even want to use .wave files? when you converted your cd's did you use windows media player???

there are options to convert to mp3 and you could select what kind of format of a file you want 128, 256, 320 and so on.
i think 128 is good enough.
that is your opinion, but I can hear a BIG difference between 128k and 320k VBR.
 

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that is your opinion, but I can hear a BIG difference between 128k and 320k VBR.
yes correct you will hear big difference, sound is a lot cleaner and volume is louder @ 320kb, but that takes more room of storage, I haven't done it a conversion to 320 yet so i'm not sure if HU unit could read it.
 

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I am sure HU vary, but mine does 320vbr just fine. as for storage space, meh. 160gig ipod and I have 32gigs on it for 5000+ songs. if it ran 24/7 I have over a week on shuffle :p
 

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First off, I have no idea what you are talking about, why would you even want to use .wave files? when you converted your cd's did you use windows media player???

there are options to convert to mp3 and you could select what kind of format of a file you want 128, 256, 320 and so on.
i think 128 is good enough.

I also have a hard drive hooked up to my Kenwood DNX 9140 and have no problems with it. its almost filed 1/2 way over 200gb of data.

Have you format your drive to FAT32 instead NTFS?

for my hard rive to be recognized by my HU unit it takes about 30 seconds if not that.

That radio has 2 USB outputs, one for flash drive and one for IPOD.
My question is, do you use dual source of power from both usb's that are coming from the radio?
I have dual power/usb connection hooked up to my HU unit, one of the usb's delivers power and the other one delivers the data. I made my own connection or you could even buy spited usb power adapter with data transfer.
Which part are you confused about? I would not let Windows media player within 100miles of my music...

FLAC is my choice for all of my audio rips, but wav for the drive hooked to the 9140 as it does not play FLAC.

Waves, Same as having a cd playing in the 9140. If you can not tell the difference between 128 kbit/s and .wav files, by all means, use the smaller files, makes sense. I like .wav, and have plenty of storage for them, soo... The only shortcoming is the 9140 has to read the whole drive prior to playback. after it does the preliminary read, switching files and folders is quick and painless.(one folder per artist)

Have had no issues with power from just the single USB plug up to 640GB mobile drives.
 

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Which part are you confused about? I would not let Windows media player within 100miles of my music...

FLAC is my choice for all of my audio rips, but wav for the drive hooked to the 9140 as it does not play FLAC.

Waves, Same as having a cd playing in the 9140. If you can not tell the difference between 128 kbit/s and .wav files, by all means, use the smaller files, makes sense. I like .wav, and have plenty of storage for them, soo... The only shortcoming is the 9140 has to read the whole drive prior to playback. after it does the preliminary read, switching files and folders is quick and painless.(one folder per artist)

Have had no issues with power from just the single USB plug up to 640GB mobile drives.

Have you formated your drive to FAT32? I know that might be a issues if you ran it as NTFS.

Since you have 9140, i was thinking for a long time to put windows machine in my car. Will I be able to somehow control pc with Kenwoods monitor? I don't think this is possible but I figure i ask anyway :)

Since you rip music, i'm sure you rip video files as well.
If you don't mind sharing the info, what program are you using and as you rip, do you use divix or mpg... I have a hard time finding a good program that will rip/convert videos from mp4 to divix or mpg format file.

I have tried ton of different software, and I can't really find the right one.. If you have the info please share it with us.
Thanks

Mario
 
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