Instructables

Portable xbox 360

Picture of portable xbox 360
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I originally built this portable Xbox 360 because I am in the Navy and I thought it would be great to take on the ship on deployment with me. after I finished it I realized that its probably to fragile for the boat due to the acrylic. so I built a second one inside of a pelican case. which I will upload in another post, with less detail though. This build took roughly 2 1/2 months and $800 (including some tools and hardware, oh and the Xbox I fried. I forgot to put the thermal pads back on the chips in the disc drive). There should have been several more pictures but I was originally only going to post on facebook. Anyway I will do my best to explain everything.

Audio. I used an audio controller and speakers from portable speakers I got for free from my brother. they were battery operated with an option to use the power supply they came with. I soldered the power supply +/- direct to the battery connections on the circuit board. and soldered an audio input in the form of a male 3.5mm plug to the circuit board, which connects to the Xbox motherboard via female 3.5mm jack I installed. the pin out I have pictured is for the Xbox 360 original. the slim is separated in the center but the pin out is the same.

Video. I used an AOC 20in hd monitor vga/dvi. (I used vga) I have two pin outs for the Xbox’s connector. the simple one was easier to use to figure out how to lock the Xbox into vga mode (solder pin 20 to either pin 18 or pin 22), and the one with the list was better for giving me the corresponding grounds for the signals to shield them properly. I disassembled the monitor and removed the vga connector from the video controller board. I made twisted shielded pair wires and built a vga cable with the Xbox connector, soldering the wires direct to the monitors video control board. the power cable was also soldered direct to the board. this part coming up is tricky. there is a video line going from the video board to the led monitor panel that needed to be extended. I had a spare (and cheap) hdmi cable that I cut to get these twisted shielded pairs from. these are very delicate signals susceptible to rf interference. they need to be shielded properly and the correct type of wire used (most common 30awg stranded). also the signals have a short electrical length. meaning if I extended the wires past eight inches I got no video or it was all green or red. test the video after you extend each of the wires so you’ll know where the problem is if one occurs. when I finished that I threw away the buttons for the monitor. it turned on and off when the Xbox did, so I didn’t NEED them. this monitor has a separate circuit board for the backlight control that has a small, and less fickle harness that I had to extend. there was also a harness in between the two circuit boards that I shortened. I didn’t need to, but I’m an avionics technician and messy wires piss me off lol.

Power supplies. three of them, monitor, audio, and Xbox 360. I had a busted power supply from an old 360 that I used the case from. it had more space in it for the other power supplies and the blower. I fit all three together in the box and stripped and combined the cables to make one connection to the Xbox. I put the cables in steel braiding for added strength and insulated them with a long piece of heat shrink. I super glued the blower in place and shrouded it with hot glue to help direct air flow out of the box. the Xbox power supply will get very hot if there is not enough flow. I changed out the wall end socket to a three pin because the audio power supply had a neutral. I had to make jumpers to install it because I kept burning myself trying to get all three wires on a terminal and solder them there. then closed the box up and installed a 15 pin d-sub connector (vga cable end) on the Xbox end of the cable (female) and in the Xbox as well (male). I also used this to steal 12v for the 120mm fan. pay close attention when wiring this. its very easy to make a mistake here. the fan yes but mostly the wires for the audio, Xbox, and monitor.

Case. I used acrylic I got from home depot, and starboard I got from a marine supply store. cut it all in my apartment with a dermal, skill saw, worlds most adorable table saw, and a drill. most suitable materials ($) for the hinge and lid support were regular zinc plated hinges and some erector set crap I found at Lowes. not happy with it but I spent more than enough at that point frying an Xbox and all.

Misc. mounted hard drive to side wall just under audio control. had to tap the threads because apparently Lowes doesn’t believe in the metric system here. also had to extend the power wires. I bought a longer sata cable because I don’t believe in extending them. I modified the disc drive so I could see the disc spinning and add some color. same deal with its cables. I was going to light the disc with leds but didn’t want that glow in the corner of my eye whilst I’m getting my butt kicked in halo. wrapped the heat sink with foam super glued to the acrylic. lower half of the heat sink is still exposed for good air flow. played for hours and hours, no overheating runs @ 80F full load. the power/sync buttons and remote receiver was removed from motherboard and relocated using old style flat ribbon cable soldered direct to the motherboard. wireless card removed from motherboard and relocated via 22awg stranded copper and hot glue. fully functioning, minus no open and close button. have to do that from the dash board. when soldering in the original location of the ring of light assembly be super careful of the tiny capacitors right above that area. 1 millisecond touch of the iron and they’re gone. they are for the power and o/c...

lessons learned. 1 this is expensive
2 hot glue and super glue are good friends of mine
3 soldering iron is always hot. grab the plastic part idiot

lessons learned more than once. 1 soldering iron is always hot. grab the plastic part idiot

kminnie6 months ago
Thanks josh i will give it a go!
josh5 (author) 6 months ago
also you could water cool it. nice build by the way
kminnie6 months ago
Hi josh i have a question did u get the not enough ventelation error? Any sagestions
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josh5 (author)  kminnie6 months ago
ive gotten this message on my other xbox when it overheated. i would make a shroud over the cpu heatsink that goes to the original case fans (make sure it goes all the way over because itll just suck air over the heatsink if its not) that would make a lot more air flow directly through it. also there are kits for older xboxes like yours, the gpu heatsink is modded and there is a heat tube/ radiator attached to it (if the shroud doesnt work). also you could replace the thermal paste under the heatsinks. it dries out after three or so years. it is also possible that the solder under one of the processors or ram chips has melted (it happened to me then i bought a slim console to do the build with). in that case you would need to get the motherboard reflowed. it would cost as much as a used slim console and slim consoles dont overheat nearly as much as the fat boxes. good luck!
tinkertronix10 months ago

I've built and launched something similar on Kickstarter. Rather than make the 360 super tiny, I've made a case with a screen a high-power battery that can power a 360, PS3, Ipad, Bluray player, and (most likely) the new xbox one and PS4 for hours and let you make your system TRULY portable without any modifications that could potentially void your warranty! Check it out.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1622238956/gobag-the-portable-home-console-and-power-solution
flapjack1000010 months ago
How the hell did u do that it's amazing a big high 5 to u



josh5 (author) 1 year ago
Thank you. And if you ever have any questions feel free to ask. About the xbox lol
sampson1111 year ago
Good job im in the process of preparing to make one this will definitely help
sampson1111 year ago
Good job im in the process of preparing to make one this will definitely help
kondzio291 year ago
Great job! Looks very nice! cheers
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