Modded Xbox Incorporated Into a Scion TC




This project is not for the procrastinators who are faint hearted.

In doing this project the DIY'er holds all responsibilty for any type of damage. Whether it physical, mental, or property.

The brain of the project is a Xbox softmodded with linux running XBMC (Xbox Media Center) and a 250gb hard drive. There will be no section in this tutorial on how to softmod or instal XMBC on your Xbox. There is more than enough information already out under that subject. This project will show how you can take an Xbox and have the on/off, eject/close buttons, and the dvd drive in the center console for your convenience. It seems like a silly idea but imagine carrying your entire itunes library and any shows or movies you would like to watch on a long drive (as long as your not driving, Dangerous!!).

In this project I handled all the hardware situations but the software installations was all my friend BJ (so thank you, sorry missed halloween)

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Step 1: Opening the Xbox

First we will open the Xbox and get comfortable with what lies inside. To see how to open the Xbox or Xboxscene have excellent tutorials. After opened use Xboxscene to decipher which version the box is. If you have V1.0 to 1.5 you can use's atx to xbox psu converter.

I unfortunately did not have version 1.0 to 1.5 so i do not know exactly how to but you can use the converter to take the power from the car (12v) and use it to power the xbox directly. I had to use an old fashion inverter, which isn't bad but it would of made the project so much cleaner, more built in, if you will.

Well this is what my boxed looks like now. Pretty simple stuff. The bottom left is the two inputs for the 4 controller ports. Top right (bigger box) is the Ide cable which I kept as the flat ribbon style. I definitely think it is possible to get the rounded type of Ide cable for this project but I have not tried it. The small top right box is the power to the dvd drive, incredibly small wires. The mid right is the fan which I thought I should keep in there since it will be under a hot seat with not a whole lot of ventilation. The big middle box is the power cables to the hard drive, pretty self explanatory.

Step 2: Layout

Before you extend the wires or get busy buying wire you must figure out where the items will be setup. You can literally put any item anywhere you would like, given functionality and style, except the Ide cable. The Ide cable has a limit on how long it can be while still functioning correctly. I bought my custom cable from stone wall. Order a cable with the longest distance being from the motherboard to the hard drive because then you can tuck the hard drive under the carpet or anywhere incognito. Unless your seat is high enough to house the Xbox with the hard drive in it. You should figure out where you want the dvd drive and the Xbox, make sure it is not more than 48 inches and somewhere in the 48 inches plan where to put the hard drive. Anything else can go wherever you would like. Ports built into the console or in a cubby in the car. Whatever you want but be creative and buy a dremel to make precise cuts.

Don't Forget: This picture does not included the A/V cable.

Step 3: Modding the Car

Now that you have fiugred out how the Xbox will lie in the car. Where the dvd drive will pop out from and where the hard drive and controller ports will stay out of site. It is time to measure twice and cut once. Measure the place for the Dvd drive make sure it fits. If cutting needs to be applied be careful and make sure measurements are accurate and that the ide cable will reach that far with the hard drive attached. Take out any necessary parts like the center console, seats, glove compartment, stereo, molding, and anything that could hide wires or any hardware. In the TC I took out the cenbter console by taking the shifter top off. Then prying up the piece of plastic that attaches to the boot and don't move it too fast because there will be a wire to unhook.. Then the cup holder piece and finally the stereo piece. Then unscrew the two phillip head screws. Then in the bottom of the center console cabinet is two bolts. When bolts are removed Put the stick shift in the farthest position to the back. Also undo The console is a power cable for the power outlet, undo that. Take the farthest back part of the console and pull towards the rear of the car. When it comes away from its screw spots in the front just remove carefully out the door. Probably have to trim a bit of the front corners for the dvd drive opening. Just measure and be careful with the dremel.

Step 4: Tedious Work.

Alright everything has its place but no power or information to make it work. This is the part that I messed up on and you can improve. I used single wires for each individual wire of each individual piece in this project. All you have to do is find out how many wires one cable has and find cable in Home Depot or Lowes or the Internet with that many conductors in it. Not too thick though, try to match the gauge. Cut a wire at a time and solder it. Keep doing this until all the wires are the lengths you need to fulfill the projects demand.

At this time you should also be waiting for your ide cable to come in the mail.

Now it is time to cut the Xbox down to size (only if your seat can not accommodate the height of the Xbox). Remove everything such as the mother board and the tin if it comes off. I had trouble removing mine.

I chopped the Xbox at the point of the middle of the vents. I cut the tin inside but be careful it sharp. Wear some gloves if you can. With no hard drive, dvd drive, buttons, or usb ports. You can chop it down tremendously.

When it is all said and done should fit quite nicely under a seat in your car.

Step 5: Removing Items for Work Room

The seats, center console should be removed, and anything else in the way that could hide wires or objects. The seats in my car was five bolts. Three in the back covered in two plastic pieces that pop right off. Take the 5 bolts out and tip back the chair, but do not pick up. There should be a couple of wires to undo. Undo them and fold the chair up and carefully remove it.

Step 6: Finishing Up

Wires and controller (if thats what you want) are tucked away. Buttons are in place and tight. The power is hooked up and all the cords are plugged into its respective place in the motherboard. Now start it up. Does the xbox logo come up and then the Microsoft under xbox pop up? If it doesn't and the lights are flashing red. You may have not connected the a/v cable. If you get that far and an era code comes up. Google the era code and it will tell you what is wrong. Then fix accordingly. If you are running normal xbox I hope your game, dvd, or cd played. If your are running XBMC I hope the home page popped up. Congrads on a ridiculous (in a good way) project.

Step 7: Transfer Files.

This took me forever. I used the wireless router for xbox but that sucked and the speed was unbelievably slow. So I just bought a long Ethernet cable and plugged one end into my router and the other end into my Carbox. I downloaded FTX which is a program that can manually connect you to a computer. In XBMC set the network connection to static and put in the address and port number, name and password. Remember them and then put them up in FTX and do connect. It should show all the drives on the hard drive. It is as easy as taking a file, be it a movie, music, or show and dragging it over to the xbox drive you desire. Also with the dvd drive You can burn dvd data disks of music and play 4gb of music off of that or even transfer the music from the dvd to the xbox hard drive.
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    65 Discussions


    8 years ago on Introduction

    I think I'm going to do a classier version of this mod in a scion XB. Anyone want to fund the research? :P Just kidding. I do have a serious lot of ingenious ideas for my XB, maybe ill just be that guy on instructables.


    8 years ago on Step 7

    thats cool but did it destroy some of the car parts though


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Just wondering where you are? Just curious about effect from the climate? I'm in Canada, so hot and humid in the summer and freezing in the winter.

    Squaretek Spenser

    9 years ago on Step 3

    You didn't need a power converter for the Xbox. Most gaming systems actually use around 12v of power. Instead of spending the extra $50, you could have just found the inverter that is inside the xbox case and disconnect it. Then run the 12v from the Xbox to a regulator then to a fused line to your battery.

    I've got a '95 Chevy Astro which I have converted into at "Shagin Wagon" and this modification is great. It's a rolling box of awesomeness. What the cool part is is the fact that I also have a projector set up so when I press a button in the front console, the rear window opens and I can project up to 112 inches of awesomeness onto anyone's wall (or on the side of a tractor trailer :))


    9 years ago on Introduction

    you should try this with a 360 and try to somehow connect it to live. or even try to connect this one to live. your choice.

    1 reply

    To connect a moving car to live, you would need to get a Verizon or ATT 3G USB router on a laptop and bridge the connections. The thing is, if you're out of cell phone tower range, no Live for you. BUT, if you wanted to, you could get a WiFi reciever for your 360 or PS2 and if you are on the road and stop at a WiFi-enabled hotel/motel, you'd have a nice little system. (no guarantee that the network would be able to handle that though. Might want to use a laptop or PC and see what the network settings are)


    9 years ago on Step 7

     Just wanted to add that you can also use USB sticks to transfer data to your xbox's HD or play media right from the USB stick.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    i am getting a mini van so that we are more comfortable when we visit family in new mexico "im in NE colorado" and this would be perfect to put games on but i might do it with a modded 360 


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I have a Scion tC.. if i had enough money,and didnt care about damagin my car forever, i would totalllyyy do this

    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    you just don't have enough experience at modding your car  i have put so much stuff where it shouldn't be in cars and trucks


    11 years ago on Introduction

    And the sound...?? Read it 3 times now and still can't find reference... In built into the existing system...? Yeah it would be... How's it sound? I only have a inverted PS2 with the joytech monitor in my glove box... I have wireless controller's to so it's pretty sweet... Are you looking into any eng/comp management intergration with the car? When I add my supercharger, i'll need the comp/fuel sys info setup so i'll be switching to an xbox... which I have ready to go in....