Let’s face it, the original Xbox is ugly. It might have looked cool when it first came out but now most would be embarrassed to display that old beast with the rest of their entertainment hardware. This is unfortunate because the old girl still has some life in her. If you have tools, time, and talent you can give the box a facelift and bring it back to see the light of day. We’ve got six of our favorite Xbox to Home Theater PC hacks after the break to inspire you.
Xbox mini by [Ghostavel]
This case was designed in autocad and laser cut from acrylic. The DVD drive was and the HDD swapped for an 80gig laptop drive to save space. A different heat sink and fan added to both the GPU and processor to keep this puppy cool and quiet. To the right in the foreground you can make out a tiny PSU.
Pioneer DVD Case by [Barney_1]
DVD players are designed to sit in your entertainment center and that’s why they’ve been a popular home for Xbox guts. This hack removed the standard AV connector from the Xbox board and routes those solder points to the connections on a Pioneer DVD player case. An LCD display resides in the window for the DVD player’s display, and a PC DVD-Rom (not pictured above) takes the place of the original DVD tray. The power and eject buttons have been wired to work and the original IR receiver wired to the Xbox dongle, leaving the appearance (at least from the front) completely unaltered.
Xbox Slim by [Coca627]
This case is made from methacrylate. The hardware changes include a smaller PSU, a slim DVD-rom, laptop HDD, and added USB ports. WiFi and wireless controllers have been included in the design. The white is a nice touch and will complement that white Wii that looks lonely next to the rest of your black components.
Minibox by [Themikesssta]
This is more of a mod than a hack but it’s a pretty amazing one. On the hardware side he did remove some capacitors for less current draw during boot. The DVD and HDD have been swapped out for smaller ones and an LCD display has been added. The case is made from MDF but it’s the paint job that makes this look so good. There’s a total of five coats on this tiny box.
Xbox Micro by [Bandit5317]
We featured the Xbox Micro last year because it’s a marvel of slimness. It’s got a laptop HDD and long-thin PSU and almost nothing else. Some serious shoe-horning had to be done to make the package this thin, and the finished look greatly benefits from those efforts.
Svelte XBMC by [Richard Wileman]
There’s not much info on this case but we think it’s rather sexy so we’re throwing it in. As you can see, the DVD drive is gone, the HDD is smaller, and cooling has been upgraded with a fanless heat-sink and two case fans. The controller ports were rerouted to the rear of the case and the IR dongle has been built in for use with a remote control. The case cover has a grill above that massive heat sink and we’d be interested in finding out if both case fans are pumping air out of the case, in effect pulling a ton of cool air past the CPU.