Raspberry Pi Media Center Setup

by Ashen Page

What you will need.

This list of items will be, the first step for the 'Pi'

The List:

  • An Rasberry Pi
  • An HDMI Cable
  • A 8GB Class 10 SD card (or better)
  • A USB keyboard and mouse - to setup, then you can start using a remote.
  • An ethernet cable (nothing fancy just a regular one will do)
  • A good quality, micro USB power supply that can provide at least
    700mA at 5V
  • A remote


  • A USB hard drive
  • A 3.5mm stereo audio cable
  • A case for your Raspberry Pi


What you will need for this is The Raspbmc Installer as well XPi Installer for Mac Application

How to Setup Raspbmc installer

Ok, now you are equiped you can get started.

Step 1:

First thing before you get digging into the Pi is to setup your SD.
which will consist of:

Before you even hook up your Raspberry Pi to your TV, you'll need to get the Raspbmc installer on your SD card.

So, to start, insert your SD card into your computer.

If you're using Windows,download the installer from this page and run it on your desktop to put Raspbmc on your SD card.

Once you've got the installer on your SD card, eject it and move onto the next step.


Instead of using terminal commands, I found a way of setting up the XBMC on a mac more simply which will help to widen the range of users.

  1. Download and Extract the XPi Software to your Desktop
  2. Insert your “SD Card” into your computer or SD Card reader
  3. Launch the “XPi Installer.app” and choose “Open” the first time to confirm that you want to use the application.
  4. Select your desired “SD Card” from the available devices listed in the center of the application. It won’t necessary be named anything to do with what it is.
  5. ress the “Install Raspbmc” button and answer “Yes” when prompted to continue the process.
  6. Wait a few minutes for the installation files to transfer. You’ll now when it’s complete because it will eject the SD Card from your computer and the progress bar will stop moving, and it’ll display the text “Success!” at the bottom.
  7. Remove SD Card from your Mac.
  8. Insert SD Card into your Raspberry Pi and connect it to your television as well as to your Internet connection by ethernet, electricity, and wireless mouse.
  9. Follow the on screen prompts to complete installation.

Connecting Everthing UP.

Tweak Those Settings!

Once your Raspberry Pi boots for the first time you'll need to follow the screen prompts which will lead you to the completion.

Now the best settings I found out there is to set the:

  • Resolution, you this found under Settings > System > Video Output. If you're only going to be watching 720p videos, you should change this to 720p. It should help the system and menus feel a little snappier.P
  • Overscan, found under Settings > System > Video Output > Video Calibration. If you find that the XBMC interface stretches beyond the edges of your TV screen, you'll want to calibrate your video using this wizard to fix it.P
  • System Performance Profile, under Programs > Raspbmc Settings > System Configuration. This is a Raspberry Pi-specific setting that basically allows you to overclock the device, making everything run a little bit faster and a little bit smoother. I recommend trying the "Fast" setting, which will speed everything up without sacrificing stability. The "Super" setting will be significantly faster still, introduces the possibility of instability (Update: it does not void your warranty as previously stated; your warranty will stay intactat high overclocking levels). You can also perform more advanced overclocking tweaks if you're familiar with overclocking.P
  • MPEG2 Codec License, which you'll need to buy from the Raspberry Pi store and enable under Programs > Raspbmc Settings > System Configuration. This allows you to play MPEG-2 videos, which the Pi cannot play out of the box. If you don't have any MPEG-2 Videos, you can skip this.P

You are officially done installing XBMC on your computer.

You have now Set up the Pi Congrats!!