Picture of Portable XBMC Lunch Box

I wanted a portable XBMC system. I want to take this in my trailer camping, to hotels, friends house etc. Basically this is a Raspberry Pi running XMBC, powered USB hub, 2.5" USB SATA enclosure with a 250GB laptop drive. This case needed to be all self enclosed. I can carry all the cables and accessories.

Parts List:


* For some reason my USB hub quit driving my hard drive. I tested everything and swapped it out. I used a 4 port hub with a 2.6A power supply. This seems to power the hard drive fine. This new hub had vertical ports. I unsoldered the ports and directly soldered wires in their place. This lowered the profile.

asteadman made it!3 months ago

Thanks for the inspiration!

We absolutely LOVE our new media center and we can take it anywhere.

I had a blast building it.

D10D35 months ago

I used the same lunchbox for my Pi project!

Nixylix921 year ago

I hate to ask a stupid question but what exactly does this thing do?

This goes along with my question... What is a XBMC? Show screenshots of it doing something.

pcgate n0ukf1 year ago

X Box Media Center. Think of it as portable HTPC. Home Theatre Personal Computer.

Its so that you can easily watch films from your hardrive... you could just plug your hardrive straight into the tv if it has a usb slot but some tv's wont register it, or play some of the films, and the files aren't displayed very nicely.. so this pro's got a rasberry pi with XBMC on - this is just a software which includes a very attractive interface for viewing your film collection with all the coverwork etc. I think that's what it is anyway. i'd love to make one with a mini projector in!

Ale Cylon1 year ago

Forgot to add the SD card to the part list, but of curse anyone using a raspberry knows you need an sd card.

tomhung (author)  Ale Cylon1 year ago

thanks. I got it added. I dont think raspbmc is very picky about SD.

bmingo1 year ago
Awesome build! This gave me some killer ideas for a portable Windows version!
ykyk1 year ago
tomhung (author)  ykyk1 year ago

"Powerful! This is the make up of the"



jongscx1 year ago

You could totally put a battery in there and add an external LCD and you have a portable media player/streambox/emulator...

Awesome work!

tomhung (author)  jongscx1 year ago

I thought about that. A larger lunch box would have enough room. This mini is just a bit too tight for all that stuff. Almost every I would take this has a TV so I'm not worried about that.

Wingloader1 year ago

How do you see what you are doing with the keyboard? Does it display something on the TV? Sorry for the noob question.

tomhung (author)  Wingloader1 year ago

The SD card is installed with a linux operating system and XBMC media center running on top of that. The Pi boots directly into XBMC.


it's new and nice thinking

4drive1 year ago
Are you able to connect a wireless card to it so it can pick up a wifi signal instead?
tomhung (author)  4drive1 year ago

There is an Edimax Wireless N dongle in there. It works fine. But I prefer to plug in when available. You can't beat wired for streaming. However from the HD its not necessary.

Umm ok I am not a super tech guy, could you explain what this actualy is?
tomhung (author)  firestormRc881 year ago

With this media center I can take my media to many places with or without internet. I can show off the awesomness of XBMC without any setup. I hated the pain of throwing all my cables, laptop, harddrive, etc in a bag. This is all self contained with everything I will need. I like the Raspberry Pi but its form factor is a squid with the cables.

xbmc is a style of home thearter entertainment center if you ever used like say windows media center its almost like that where you have your media all together can pick from all of it and this thing ontop you can add plugins such as youtube netflix and different stuff i suggest looking up home thearter pc or xbmc if you would like to know more

bob30301 year ago
Nice build. Thanks for posting.
Tex Arcana1 year ago
excellent build! I hope you submitted to other tech pubs as well!!
bhalliday1 year ago
use openelec and the amber skin it speeds up xbmc on the pi quite a bit ive build literally dozens of rpi htpcs i love the little buggers
snakelips11 year ago
slick. how is the performance overall? any other mods you would suggest? How have you used it so far?

Xbmc runs pretty well on the raspberry pi. Mine is overclocked to 950mhz and it plays 38mbps blu-ray rips perfectly over ethernet. The interface is a bit sluggish though. A mouse is too laggy to use, but a keyboard or ir remote works great.