Published to Work on May 25, 2017
Do you know this plug-computer named raspberry pi ?
Based on a Broadcom BCM2836 SOC.
Processor : ARM Cortex-A7 CPU (~6x performance) 900 MHz
Graphics : VideoCore IV
RAM : 1GB LPDDR2 SDRAM (2x memory)
Ports : 2 USB + 1 HDMI + 1 Ethernet 10/100 Mbits
The raspberry pi was designed in England, it is a non-profit project. Major retailers, at the time of this writing, are:
Without highlighting its unbeatable price (35$), I quickly thought of using it as a media center. Because you will be able to install the well known media center : kodi (formerly xbmc) . The advantage is that you can access your samba shares, nfs, etc. and therefore to all shared data of your network. 2 distributions already exist for this purpose :
A distribution based on raspbian for the raspberry pi, made by a talented student (Sam Nazarko), there is a great responsiveness from the community with a very active forum. The installation is very easy with a specific installer, You'll just have to insert a SD card and use it.
A distribution created especially for kodi (formerly xbmc ) and highly optimized. It is not based on any existing distribution and is developed from start to be the most optimal operating system for your device. To install it, you can download the latest images for raspberry pi here and instructions can be found here.
I've tested both solutions and I have to say that the most optimized one is OpenElec but with the version 2 of the raspberry pi I guess you can use anything you want (even windows 10 will be compatible with the new version of the raspberry pi).
A must for me was to be able to use Navi-x plugin. Navi -x is a plugin run by a large community to access a multitude of media streaming. With new versions of kodi (formerly xbmc ) and the new raspberry pi, you can use this plugin without any problems.
Here you are with a media center solution at a very affordable price !
If you already have a raspberry pi, there is a lot of information available on the wiki here .