Media player for Raspberry Pi

raspberry Pi hookup
raspberry Pi hookup to power, HDMI, USB keyboard and mouse and ethernet

Media player for Raspberry Pi

This post will explain how to setup an Open-source Media Player on a Raspberry Pi. LibreELEC is an Open-Source Media Player created by the Kodi foundation. It can play many different types of media, including images, sounds, and videos. Kodi is especially useful for streaming TV shows and movies from the Internet.

What is a Raspberry Pi?

It is a minicomputer for about $35 but you also need a case, a memory card and a power supply, so all together about $100.

What components are needed for plug & play in order to watch some movies from the internet?

  • Raspberry Pi 3 (64 bit Quad Core ARM Cortex-A53, 100 Mbit/s RJ-45 (LAN), HDMI, 4 x USB 2.0 Typ-A, 3.5 mm Audio, WLAN and Bluetooth)
  • housing (case)
  • Power supply 5.1V 2.5A (2.5Amps is important since you might plug in an additional USB HD)
  • extra cooling (heat sink)
  • USB Keyboard Logitech K120 (with key layout US or CH or any other country)
  • USB Mouse Logitech M90
  • Storage micro SD card I suggest 32GB (for 64GB or 128GB you need some extra steps to do the setup)
  • RJ-45 (LAN) cable
  • HDMI cable
  • Optional HD: 2TB or 3TB USB powered WD Elements (comes with USB cable)
  • Raspberry Pi housing (case)

Operating System & Software

As of April 2019 I suggest the following:

  • LibreELEC (current Version 8.2.5)
  • RaspberryPi OS (use the lite Version) it includes Raspbian, you will see a menu prompting you to install one of several operating systems into the free space on the card –> choose LibreELEC  (Advantage here is when booting and holding the ‘shift’ key you have additional options)
  • Plugins: (Video & Program Add-ons)
    • You install them by inserting a USB stick with a zip file on it. First install a Video Add-ON (my suggestion is Quasar, this is a torrent finding and streaming engine) Homepage Quasar (V0.9.78)
      • first: plugin.video.quasar-0.9.78.linux_arm64.zip
      • 2nd: plugin.video.quasar-0.9.78.linux_armv7.zip
      • 3rd now reboot and setup Quasar (Download and Library path)
      • 4th install Burst (a Quasar Repository V0.5.10)
      • you are ready to download or watch movies
  • A few things to setup
    • Timeserver: pool.ntp.org and time.nist.gov
    • Keyboard layout should be set (for switzerland: de_CH_latin)
    • if the heatsink is installed, then I like to set the CPU freq to “performance”
      • enable SSH in the UI
      • then use ssh root@<ip> with default pw: libreelec
      • mount -o remount,rw /flash  (because by default it is read only mounted, otherwise you can not change config.txt)
      • cd /flash (this is where config.txt is)
      • use nano or any text editor and add or change 2 lines
        • force_turbo=1
          boot_delay=1
      • Verify in the UI under System Info – Hardware the CPU speed: 1200 MHz (Pi 3) and 900 MHz (Pi 2)
      • disable SSH

Setting up the micro SD card

  1. Follow these instructions
  2. or in short, format microSD in SD Adapter using SD Formatter V5.0 (Windows), for Linux or Mac follow these instructions (for >32GB you need to format first using the SD Formatter then an extra tool.
  3. download NOOBS Lite V3.0, unzip and copy files to microSD card
  4. put microSD card into raspberry Pi 3 and power up
  5. install LibreELEC

Open-Source Media Player on a Raspberry Pi

Let me know if you run into any issues. A slight change in setup is to be expected but it should rather be easier when trying to setup this OS after my initial post.

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