We have a Home Theater PC (HTPC) in our living room that tucks neatly out of sight in a corner beside our entertainment unit. The location makes the PC very unobtrusive and even though the tower puts out a normal amount of noise it's barely noticeable. The problem however is the location makes it difficult to access the internal DVD drive to play movies or perform any typical DVD-RW functions. Also there are a number of devices that I have connected to the HTPC which are starting to look a little goofy in and around our entertainment unit (USB Remote IR receiver, USB/firewire hub, External Hard disk, joystick, Wireless keyboard/mouse receiver.) Meanwhile our stand alone DVD player sits unused in a prime easy to reach location (the HTPC has kind of made the DVD player redundant.) This gave me the idea to use an unwanted DVD player as an enclosure for many of those devices.
Step 1: Find a DVD Player to mod
If you are not just using the player at hand like me then you will probably want to find a full height DVD player with a USB port in front. Many DVD players have a low profile form factor that would not accommodate a normal internal PC DVD drive. You could use a slim DVD drive that is popular in many HTPC cases but these are quite a bit more expensive than your everyday internal drive. Ideally the player will also have a power supply that isn't integrated into the main circuit board of the player and uses a molex connector.
One more consideration is the front DVD tray cover. The Digix unit that I am using has a spring loaded door to cover the dvd tray when closed. If the DVD player you are considering has a front cover that is fixed on the end of the drive tray itself ,and sits flush with the front of the player, then you will need to mount the internal drive much more precisely and find a way to mount the cover on the end of the internal IDE DVD drive tray - probably with an extender of some kind.