Motorcycle Computer

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themlruts
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Motorcycle Computer

Post by themlruts »

So I have been toying around with building an android single board computer. My BMW has a spot for a garmin gps but dont really like the GPS so i have purchases a 5" screen and 3d print a case that clips right in where the GPS was. Works great. Now comes to the brains of the operation. I am currently playing with Emteria on a raspbery PI 3 B. I was using it on a B+ but Bluetooth support is not there.
I am using a carlinkit adapter to get car play working and it works ok when the PI is all booted.
The down fall with Emteria is that the BT support is pretty useless no streaming audio over it. Boot times are just ok.

So I was looking at the the Odroid to see if it would be a good candidate better than the PI?.
1. It needs to run Android as the carplay app is a APK
2. Need full BT support. Streaming etc.
3. I need some fast boot times if possible.

Thoughts???
Thanks
Mike

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by themlruts »

So i pulled the trigger since it looks like out of most of the boards this has the best following for Android. I should have the board by this weekend. Excited to be working with you all.
Thanks
Mike

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by rooted »

Did you get an eMMC? This reduces boot times and is nearly a requirement for Android.

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by themlruts »

rooted wrote:
Tue Apr 21, 2020 5:40 am
Did you get an eMMC? This reduces boot times and is nearly a requirement for Android.
Yes I did. :) Thanks

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by alanf12k »

Hello there! Like you I have a BMW tourer (R1250RT) with a bracket in the fairing for a GPS, and I wanted to see what could be done with that, instead of simply buying the (rather expensive) BMW-badged GPS. I was keen to see if I could get CarPlay to work, having used that in other vehicles. I found the CarLinkIt Wireless Carplay adapter, which is designed to work with Android head units. That led me to look at creating an Android SBC with a 5-inch touchscreen, and since I had a Raspberry Pi 3B to spare, I put together a proof-of-concept. I chose a resistive touchscreen as I thought that it would work better with gloved hands. However the Raspi 3B is not going to cut it due to the long boot-up time, and marginal performance. I was considering upgrading to a Raspi 4, but the limited support for Android on the Raspi led me to look at more Android-oriented alternatives, and in particular the Odroid C4. That then led me to the Odroid forums, where I found your post.

Which Odroid model did you purchase, and how are you getting on with it?

I’m currently assembling a break-out cable so that I can analyse the data that passes between a BMW Nav 6 sat-nav (borrowed from a friend, who has a K1600) and the sat-nav bracket connector, in the hope of being able to use the BMW “wonder-wheel” controller as an additional input device for the SBC.

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by themlruts »

alanf12k wrote:
Wed Feb 17, 2021 2:52 am
Hello there! Like you I have a BMW tourer (R1250RT) with a bracket in the fairing for a GPS, and I wanted to see what could be done with that, instead of simply buying the (rather expensive) BMW-badged GPS. I was keen to see if I could get CarPlay to work, having used that in other vehicles. I found the CarLinkIt Wireless Carplay adapter, which is designed to work with Android head units. That led me to look at creating an Android SBC with a 5-inch touchscreen, and since I had a Raspberry Pi 3B to spare, I put together a proof-of-concept. I chose a resistive touchscreen as I thought that it would work better with gloved hands. However the Raspi 3B is not going to cut it due to the long boot-up time, and marginal performance. I was considering upgrading to a Raspi 4, but the limited support for Android on the Raspi led me to look at more Android-oriented alternatives, and in particular the Odroid C4. That then led me to the Odroid forums, where I found your post.

Which Odroid model did you purchase, and how are you getting on with it?

I’m currently assembling a break-out cable so that I can analyse the data that passes between a BMW Nav 6 sat-nav (borrowed from a friend, who has a K1600) and the sat-nav bracket connector, in the hope of being able to use the BMW “wonder-wheel” controller as an additional input device for the SBC.
You and I need to talk :) So I am using a NewHaven display 5" screen. unfortunately its not multi touch. I am using an odroid C4. I started out with the XU4 but boot times are good but not the fastest. The C4 works great.
Here is a link of what i made in the past using a cheap raspberry pi screen not bright enough https://youtu.be/Mv-wzRMdga0. That's why I switched to the newhaven. I have built a custom case for the newhaven dispaly its not waterproof unfortunately. The display does click into the port on my K1600 but not using any pins.
Shoot me a PM we can chat some more. I am looking at at doing the same with the breakout cable. Would love to chat some more. Where are you located?
Thanks
Mike

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by alanf12k »

I'm newly registered here, so I can't yet send PMs. I think I’ll go ahead and buy a C4, so I can start looking at software. The touchscreen I have should work with the C4, I think, but for the final version it looks like a much brighter display will be required. This looked interesting: https://store.makerplane.org/5-sunlight ... pberry-pi/

When I first got the bike, I bought this phone holder which fits into the BMW mounting clip, and has a spring-loaded clamp to hold the phone. https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07VMG93ZC/
It’s a tight fit into the available space in the fairing, but it does go in. It has a small pcb on the back with contacts which mate with the pogo-pins on the BMW mount, but only the power pins are connected - the rest of the pads on the pcb are unconnected. It contains a 12V-5V converter, from which I can power my iPhone (original) SE. The SE is a tight fit into the space in the fairing - there’s not enough room for a straight Lightning plug, but there’s just enough for a right-angled plug.

I’m currently working on the second iteration of a small pcb which replaces the one on the back of the phone adapter, and brings out connections to all of the contact pads. I’m also making a second pcb which will emulate the BMW mount with an array of pogo pins, and will be held in place on the back of a Nav 6 by a clip that I will 3D print. The two pcbs will be joined by a ribbon cable, in the middle of which will be a ‘break-out’ section of stripboard so that I can scope all the data lines. Several of the lines are reported to be audio signals but some are data, and on those I’m hoping to see something that looks like serial data.

I live in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. The weather here is starting to warm up again, and although due to lockdown we can’t go on bike runs for now, I think that will be lifted in the summer. So now is a good time to make some progress on this project!

Cheers, Alan.

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by alanf12k »

Wow, time flies! So, my C4 arrived, and I am very impressed with it! An eMMC is definitely required if you want a reasonably fast boot from cold, but with one fitted, boot-up time is a respectable 30 seconds. I’ve added Wifi and Bluetooth USB dongles, both of which are supported out of the box.

The display of the Waveshare touchscreen (that I had previously purchased to use with the Raspi) also worked ok out of the box, but the C4 doesn’t seem to support touch input on the SPI interface, which is what the Waveshare controller board uses. Also, the Waveshare controller board is quite large and has connector placement that was going to make it difficult to design an enclosure that would fit neatly into the space on the bike’s dashboard. So I looked for an alternative controller, and found the Adafruit TFP401 HDMI/DVI Decoder to 40-Pin TTL Breakout - With Touch. https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-tfp ... tl-display It’s much neater, has the same 40-pin FPC interface to the screen, and includes an AR1100 USB resistive touchscreen controller, which solves the problem of interfacing touch to the C4.

The TFP401 didn’t work out of the box on the C4 - the C4 appears to corrupt the EDID on the TFP401 whenever the HDMI is connected. The solution was just to hard-code the display settings on the C4. These are in /odm/boot.ini and env.ini, where I set it to 800x480. Other key changes were setting autodetect “false” and vout “dvi” instead of “hdmi”.

The AR1100 touch controller worked ok when tested on a laptop, but not on the C4. I found some hints that the AR1100 needs to be reconfigured to ‘digitizer’ mode to work on Android. There is a (Windows-only) configuration utility at https://www.microchip.com/wwwproducts/e ... l-features. Using that I was able to reconfigure the AR1100 to digitizer mode, and it now works very nicely on the C4. Testing in the utility suggests that the AR1100 is sensitive to pressure. Maybe the sensitivity can be fine-tuned for use on the bike with gloves. Further testing required.

The CarLinkit Carplay dongle and app work fine on the C4.

The Waveshare screen is nowhere near bright enough for outdoor use, so the one thing left to acquire is a sunlight-readable, 5 inch, resistive touchscreen. Looks like you need a brightness of around 1000 cd/m2 for sunlight-readability. I liked the look of the Zettler/AZ ATM0500D27K, 1100 cd/m2, but it is capacitive touch. There’s a version with resistive touch, but only 900 cd/m2: ATM0500D27K-T. It was available on Digi-Key, so I’ve ordered one. Delivery should be in a couple of weeks.

Meantime I’m planning to 3D print an enclosure for the screen and controller, to fit into the nav space on the bike’s dashboard, with an umbilical cable to a separate box holding the C4 and CarLinkit.

I’ve also started analysing the data protocol between my BMW nav-prep clip and a borrowed Navigator 6, more to follow…

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by rooted »

Have you thought about making your riding gloves work with a capacitive screen?

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by alanf12k »

I guess it would be possible to modify gloves to work with a capacitive screen, but I reckon resistive touch will do the job, so I'm inclined to stick with that unless it turns out to be a complete dead end. I'll finish the enclosure and do some road-testing with the new screen, and see how that goes.

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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by rooted »

Just offering a possibility which would open up more display options.
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Re: Motorcycle Computer

Post by mctom »

The boot time shouldn't be a problem, if you warm up your engine before riding anyway - I hear that's a common practice to put your gear on as the engine warms up.

What I find more challenging is to gracefully shut down the machine after you stop riding, without navigating menus every time you take a break. I think it would need to trigger a shutdown script on external interrupt from whatever voltage drops to zero after the engine stalls or key is removed.

Maybe a hardware watchdog connected to a spark plug? :D

Anyway, cool project indeed. Once I wanted to build a digital tachometer for my previous bike, but I changed the bike before I finished it.

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