Raspberry Pi Media Centre

R-Pi Logo

After a long wait for delivery, I finally received my Raspberry Pi just before Christmas.  Although the Raspberry Pi is being used for all sorts of interesting projects, my first project is to set the Raspberry Pi up as a networked media centre pc, with remote control from a smart phone.  This will essentially turn an old, dumb TV into a smart TV.

Raspberry Pi

Existing Media Server 

I already have a Windows 8 Media Centre PC, connected to a 42″ Kogan TV, which handles Live TV and recording, plus storage of movies, TV and music files.  Live TV signals are handled using a Winfast DTV200DS dual digital TV tuner.

XBMC Screen

This Windows 8 PC runs XBMC 11 (Eden) with PVR support, and is called AMD-XBMC.  It has a static IP address of 192.168.1.3

I setup AMD-XBMC to allow remote control using port 9999.

Installed MediaPortal TV Server to stream Live TV to other instances of XBMC.

 

Raspberry Pi

SanDisk Ultra 16GB SD CardThe Raspberry Pi comes with 2x USB ports, which will be populated with a TP-Link WN821N 300M Wireless adapter, a Logitech MK320 Wireless KB/Mouse dongle.

Using the Windows 8 PC, I downloaded and installed Raspbmc on to a 16GB Class 10 SD Card.  Although a little more expensive, a Class 10 SD Card is designed for HD Video use.

 

Raspbmc Logo

After installing Raspbmc, I inserted the SD Card into the Raspberry Pi and booted it.  After the normal Raspbmc setup procedure, XBMC started and I renamed this instance of XBMC to Pi-XBMC.

I assigned a static IP address to the Pi-XBMC of 192.168.1.4 using the Router administration page, and setup network details inside XBMC.

I purchased licence keys for MPG and WMV codecs from Raspberry Pi store, which cost AU$4.85.  I input the codec details into the Raspbmc settings inside XBMC, which updates the Raspberry Pi’s config.txt file.

I setup Pi-XBMC to allow remote control using port 9999.

 

Toshiba L650 Laptop

I also have a Toshiba L650 Laptop running Ubuntu 12.04 which will be used to display media at times.

xbmc logo

I downloaded and installed XBMC (Frodo) and named this instance of XBMC as Toshy-XBMC.

I assigned a static IP address to the Toshy-XBMC of 192.168.1.5 using the Router administration page.

I setup Toshy-XBMC to allow remote control using port 9999.

 

Samsung Galaxy S2XBMC Remote

I am controlling the XBMC using a Samsung Galaxy S2, running the Official XBMC Remote app for Android.

XBMC Remote logo

Within the XBMC Remote app, I setup AMD-XBMC on 192.168.1.3, the Pi-XBMC on 192.168.1.4, and the TOSHY-XBMC on 192.168.1.5 – with all 3 using port 9999.

I note that the XBMC Remote app is still in Beta form and therefore has a few error messages popping up on screen from time to time, but remote control functionality is perfect.

 

Currently streaming media from AMD-XBMC to Pi-XBMC, using the smart phone as a remote control.

[Project in progress – updates to come]