Using the RPi3 as a Media Centre with Chromium Browser on Raspbian OS for the best of both worlds – watch Videos online or via KODI Media Centre. Control the Pi with your smartphone, tablet or with a game controller (bluetooth)

If you would like to do something similar – here are all the things I set up & the instructions I followed…

My projector is only 720p & I have it greatly oversized too – so the wall resolution is only around 480p. With the Pi hooked up to my 1080p TV & watching a 1080p movie the quality was perfect & played flawlessly.

Update: My make-shift wooden case seems to work well. I bought a plastic pi case off ebay but then the pi starts to overheat, so I went back to the wood version & it’s good again.
If you live in a hot country use a case with lots of ventilation.
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Raspberry Pi 3 running RASPBIAN Jessie (2016-02-26)

GPU memory increased from 64Mb to 256Mb in settings. (less might be ok too, I havent tested)

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Kodi
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sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install kodi

You need to run the STANDALONE instance of Kodi, not the default one in the menu, otherwise you will have problems exiting back to the OS (black screen)
/usr/bin/kodi-standalone
Replace the default kodi app in the app menu with the standalone one & add a desktop icon too if you wish.
You can download an icon here

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Chromium
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Follow the instructions here:

You just need to run these 6 commands & done!

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samba
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If you wish to connect to your Pi as a network share, install samba.

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PS3 Controller – this is a little troublesome, be prepared for some googling & workarounds.
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set up ***

Helpful:

note that bluez-utils is now called just bluez. you should be able to connect to the PS3 controller as this page details.

set up Sixaxis Manager, its troublesome & you need to extra installs as mentioned here:

Once installed it shows up in your Admin/Accesories menu.
You can edit the config file (read the PDF) & change the speed of the pointer (higher number is faster, 8 is good)
To auto-start it use “sixad –start” in an autostart .desktop file

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VNC & Autostart – EASY
===

create autostart files for ps3 and vnc. (autostart files are explained in the rpi forum link above ^^ )

Hippo Remote LITE

– this is for iphone/ipad but I am sure there are even better android alternatives to be found.

1 COMMENT

    • Very Easy. I got a sheet of thin ply wood (2mm) from the DIY store. I cut 2 rectangles (50mm x 90mm) for the top & bottom. I lined up the PI & made some marks where the PCB holes are. I used a hole punch tool to make the holes, but you can use a drill bit by hand or maybe even just push a metal tool through the thin wood. The PI holes are actually “m2.5” size, so you can get some “m2.5 nylon stand-offs” from an electronics store or an assortment box from ebay for a few $. I used m2 stand-offs as I already had some.

  1. I’m planning on making an all around computer for my nephews, a monitor and the pi all inside a wood case and wireless keyboard and xbox joystick. Mainly for small games, youtube and netflix. Great video.

  2. Hi, i am looking at different methods of providing internet access to a stroke patient. Do you think that a rasp pi 3 running chrome would be ok to play hd youtube videos and some basic surfing, also are there any accessibility features that can be used on the pi, i.e. magnifier, on screen keyboard like windows etc. Thanks

    • I think that should be fine. Its not a FAST computer, but it is good enough for basics & its $40 so give it a shot & if you don’t think its up to the job you can find another use for it. As for accessibility features I have not explored that area but being Linux I am sure there are plenty of packages you can install to provide the features you need. There is an on screen Keyboard included, I use it myself.
      Playing video in CHROME full screen on a 1080P TV doesnt work too well, but on a 720P TV it seems OK. The issue is with Chromes video capabilities because the pi itself can handle 1080P fine, just not so well in chrome. You might like to try the Epiphany browser for youtube as it might fair better.

  3. So where are you serving your local media at? From a desktop to the pi over WiFi? I’m thinking of copying your setup because it seems pretty nice

    • Just over wi-fi from another computer on the network. Specifically an iMac with an external USB drive with media on it. Share your drive & then on the pi, in KODI, add a new media location & select the ZeroConf option. Give it a moment & it should work with, well, zero conf 😉

  4. at about 9:10 you probably have around half of the frames dropped in the video renderer….
    for some that’s acceptable…for others it’s not….

    • Yeah, that doesnt look perfect you’re right.
      However, for the most part; it is pretty good.
      You have to remember it’s playing online video in the browser ~ so your connection, the server & the quality of the video rip all play a part in the results. The Chromium browser is a ongoing project & one of its less than perfect features is video. Even on a top end computer, ripped video in the browser is never going to be great 😉

    • that goes for yt videos too(can’t really find video where yt is smooth on pi)….so it should be raspberry…not user generated content, but trailers for movies etc.
      probably browser/video decoder interface is not that smooth….

  5. Mr. RiquezJP you know why all video on my ropsberry pi 3 lag ? I build passiv cooling but this is not help i dont know but all flilms lag when i try RP3 not mater from hdd usb or chromium YT i dont know why that arm procesor is so slow or i have broken RP3 unit? Now is cooling great coz never in rasbian i dont heve temp icon but still i cant watch any video in full screen and only in window i dont have any lag in max 720p. Any help? Please, and thank YOU.

    • Hi i install Rasbian just used NOOB tool this wey is not configurable now? I can checkfile with memory alocation. I can use sudo nano and edit config file to increse cpu gpu ratio too but i look your vid and you dont have any cooling and all video work on fullscreen then i try change my setup now 🙂

    • OK Mr. i change memory in rp preferences>performance to 384 and restart in omxplayer all work great in full hd but vlc smplayer still not work good in chromium lag still exist in full hd on full screen. It is normal? What i must do with that code you give me in link? Another instal with this setting? You test other players? I have only 2 problem with RP 3 i wont full hd in video and i wont enable screen keyboard on login screen i RP 3 if i set up this RP3 will be great miniature machine.

    • I dont think Chromium will play full HD full screen very well. Maybe try youtube 480p or 720p & make full screen?…
      If you want to play full HD video full screen you should use KODI, that will be OK.
      Follow the KODI instructions in the description.
      Good luck!

    • Thanks thats answer is great for me Mr. Riquez 🙂 Rossbery is great as snes or video platform 🙂 I use kodi meny Times on ubuntu as other desktop choice 🙂 now time to format my micro sd 😀 420p is good for me 🙂 i not need more on omx player work good but i not read manual and i dont know how to play on full screen but if i use kodi like smart TV with Netflix YouTube and others this will be great 🙂 Cheers, thanks for answer me. 🙂

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