Raspberry Pis makes great media players, and we love seeing the creative ways the Pi community at large houses them. Whether you put one inside a tiny Simpson’s TV or build one just for Twitch streams, it’s hard to beat the fun versatility of this classic SBC. Today, we’re sharing another Pi-based TV project. This one was created by maker and developer Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno, who’s brought a broken Sony TV back to life using a Pi 4.
We contacted Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno, who told us his idea was to find an old TV with a specific aesthetic and retain as much of the original hardware as possible. Ultimately, he gutted most of the original internal components and ditched the knobs and dials but left the central volume knob connected to a rotary encoder. He also modified the holes left behind to support some new ports and 12mm buttons.
The TV he settled upon ended up being a Sony TV-750. Its compact design works great for housing a Pi, and Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno retained the rounded plexiglass front for a cool retro feel. The original screen was removed and replaced with an LCD panel while the new buttons were mapped to OSMC controls.
The operation is powered by a Raspberry Pi 4 connected to a set of 3W speakers from Adafruit that work using a Waveshare USB sound card. The screen is eight inches across and was picked up from AliExpress. He also included a small on/off button to the rear of the TV.
Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno is using Open Source Media Center (OSMC) to operate as the primary operating system, but you could run any OS you like with a setup like this. In this case, Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno has set up the TV to run a loop of his favorite movies on a repeating loop. It wouldn’t be hard to turn this into a gaming rig with something like Retro Pie.
If you want to get a closer look at this Raspberry Pi project, check out the original thread shared to Reddit, and be sure to follow Joe_vs_the_Jalapeno for updates, as there are already plans in the works to add new features like an Ethernet port and 3.5mm audio jack.
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Ash Hill is a Freelance News and Features Writer at Tom's Hardware US. She manages the Pi projects of the month and much of our daily Raspberry Pi reporting.