Shuttle making XPCs for automobiles

Written by Brett Thomas

August 21, 2006 | 20:20

Tags: #xpc

Companies: #shuttle

Most people who are fans of the Small Form-Factor (SFF) boxes will be happy to tell you that Shuttle is heads and shoulders above the rest of the pack. With the company's specialty being a box with a footprint less than a third of a cubic meter, it's no surprise that it would find other homes for its technology - like a car. And that is exactly what Shuttle put on display at the first ever CarTronics show in Taipei, Taiwan last week.

The system uses a G-series chassis embedded between the rear seats. It provides everything from GPS navigation to full DVD entertainment on three seperate LCD monitors - one in the back of each front seat, and one mounted in dash. As for power, the system isn't any slouch - it runs on an AMD A64 3700+ and a gig of RAM. For people who like to video-conference, four webcams (one for each very comfortable seat) are also included.

The visuals are rounded out by a pair of subwoofers, thirteen speakers, and a partridge in a pear tree for a sound system. For control, Shuttle put two keyboards in, one on the flipside of each visor (these look more like the projected keyboards, we may contact shuttle to find out specifics) and one trackball. It might also be safe to assume (in other words, this is conjecture) that the front LCD is touch-screen, which would make the whole system much easier to use.

Of course, modding a computer into a car is far from unheard of - but what geeks everywhere will want to know is, what about the power? Apparently it's a direct 12v DC/DC PSU instead of the normal G-series model, but Shuttle wouldn't get into specifics on how (if at all) the unit was modified to deal with a car's fluctuating power levels.

This particular model is just the prototype, and Shuttle is spending $2 million USD to hopefully bring a more complete system into the products of major auto makers for next year, in their 2008 lines. It will start pursuing Taiwanese manufacturers earlier, in fourth quarter of 2006.

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Image is courtesy of DigiTimes
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