For years I’ve wanted a dedicated Media center computer. I’ve briefly had a few older computers with mediocre video performance and some bulky desktop setups but nothing permanent until now, and for cheap. Using Open elec and a raspberry pi model B I have made a small, quiet, lower power, cheap media center.
What you need.
1. Raspberry Pi a $35.00 computer platform capable of 1080p graphics
2. SD Card-I suggest an 8gb or larger class 10 card, this will be plenty fast and have some room for storage
3. Computer-Not required but makes for easier installation
5. USB Micro B cable and 1amp USB power adapter: to power Raspberry Pi
Step ONE: Prepare SD card
using SDFormatter you can format your SD card to FAT32
Next write the image of the OPEN elec build of xbox media center to your SD card. Download and install WIN32 Disk Imager
Also download a copy of the latest Open Elec image (at the bottom of this link)
Using WIN32 Disk Imager complete the following
Find the location of your image file, make sure your SD card is the correct drive letter for device and click write.
Step 2: Insert SD card and Enjoy
Next insert the SD card into your Raspberry pi, plug in a keyboard, mouse, and ethernet connection and voila you have yourself a mediacenter capable of playing 1080p video and digital audio.
Media Center in action
I forgot to add. If your SD card is large the install won’t take advantage of the full size of the card. What you can do is use GPARTED, to expand the storage partition out to the size of your sd card. GPARTED is a linux build that you can run off of a USB stick or CD that is very simple to use.
basically all you do is boot up in gparted, and expand the storage partition.