Schedule

Schedule

Wednesday, September 17

1411002000 Ham Nation

Thursday, September 18

1411059600 Tech News Today
1411063200 Know How...
1411066800 The Social Hour
1411072200 Coding 101
1411075800 Home Theater Geeks
1411081200 Tech News 2Night
1411083000 The Giz Wiz
1411092000 OMGcraft

Friday, September 19

1411146000 Tech News Today
1411149600 This Week in Law
1411156800 Android App Arena
1411167600 Tech News 2Night

Saturday, September 20

1411236000 The Tech Guy

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1411322400 The Tech Guy
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1411405200 Tech News Today
1411408800 Triangulation
1411414200 iPad Today
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Tuesday, September 23

1411491600 Tech News Today
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1411502400 Security Now
1411509600 Before You Buy
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1411516800 All About Android
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Wednesday, September 24

1411572600 FLOSS Weekly
1411578000 Tech News Today
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1411601400 redditUP
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Thursday, September 25

1411664400 Tech News Today
1411668000 Know How...
1411671600 The Social Hour
1411677000 Coding 101
1411680600 Home Theater Geeks
1411686000 Tech News 2Night
1411687800 The Giz Wiz
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Friday, September 26

1411750800 Tech News Today
1411754400 This Week in Law
1411761600 Android App Arena
1411772400 Tech News 2Night

Saturday, September 27

1411840800 The Tech Guy

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Know How... 31

Make a Raspberry Pi Media Center with XBMC

February 14 2013

Turn your Raspberry Pi into a $35 Media Center with XBMC!

Why XBMC?

We asked you guys what you would do if you had a Raspberry Pi and overwhelmingly, you wanted to make a media center. We did it and found some things out.

If you're unfamiliar with the Raspberry Pi, it's a $35 computer with a 700MHz processor, 2 USB ports, Ethernet, HDMI, analog video and audio out. You power it with a USB adapter. It's a pretty powerful machine at a low cost and it sips electricity.

We loaded RaspBMC on to our Raspberry Pi. It is a specially made version of XBMC. XBMC is a free media center piece of software that is available for all platforms. It originated on the Xbox (formerly known as "Xbox Media Center") and made its way to the PC. RaspBMC is a tiny version of XBMC that is made specially for the hardware on the Raspberry Pi.

Loading RaspBMC

You have to load RaspBMC onto an SD card. We suggest an 8GB Class 10 card. That SD card is used by the Raspberry Pi as its hard drive because the device does not have any onboard storage. You can use a command line or go with the easier GUI solutions. The official Windows installer is made by the RaspBMC guys. There's also a Mac installer called XPi.

RaspBMC on your Pi

Once you get your XBMC installer on the card, plug in your SD card to your Raspberry Pi. Then attach all the other cables (network, HDMI, USB devices and power). We highly suggest using a powered USB hub to support your wireless keyboard or mouse.

Once you power it up, the installation process will continue on the SD card. It ought to take about 30 minutes to download and update all the components.

Performance

The Raspberry Pi handles a lot of things well. Web streaming video, Airplay (audio better than video), local video file playback were all very good.

We did have issues with playing videos from a network resource. It wasn't an issue every time, but we found a workaround. If you have another PC, use it as a server and run a transcoder like PS3 Media Server or TVersity. PS3 Media Server is free and runs on Windows, Mac and Linux. TVersity costs $4 and runs on Windows Only.

Overall, the Raspberry Pi worked very well as a Media Center with XBMC. Responsiveness could be a little slow from time to time, but it's easy to forgive since the device is only $35.

Google+ Spotlight

We've got a great active community where you can discuss ideas with other folks over at Google Plus. Give it a look and get involved!

Reith Walls with a tip on Media Monkey
- you guys missed a MAJOR feature of Media Monkey. Once you have everything tagged, you can right click your ENTIRE library, tell it to auto-rename and organize the files, and Media Monkey will actually re-name all of your music based on the proper tags, and then organize them into Artist and Album folders. Not only does it get everything tagged, but it gets everything organized too.

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People: Leo Laporte