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June 3, 2008 AT 10:54 am

New Kit! YBox2, a DIY networked set-top box

The YBox2 is a DIY networked set-top box. Connect it to your TV and you can design customized content to be delivered direct from the Internet.

This project is great for people who want a new platform to experiment with. The video and Internet cores are ready to go and easy to work with. We have some example widgets that demonstrate the YBox2’s capability, and the whole project is open source so you can start hacking your own. If you’ve ever been curious about the Parallax Propeller chip, the YBox2 is a perky little platform with tons of accessories. Check it out at the YBox2 page

Here are images of some sample widgets you can run on a YBox2 kit:



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The YBox was first invented by Uncommon Projects, as part of Yahoo Hack day. The project was a resounding success, and the following year 80 kits were commissioned by Yahoo for workshops at Maker Faire 2007. Robert Quattlebaum was one of the lucky few to attend that workshop and decided to see if he could design a second generation YBox. After much hacking, success! With a little of my help, we were able to design this kit to have more accessories than the original, and just as easy to build, yet less expensive.

We are proud to present the YBox2 kit, now available as a kit in the Adafruit webshop. There is a lot more information about the project at the YBox2 page.

  • Built using the new Parallax Propeller chip – 8 cores, 32KB of RAM running at 80MHz!
  • Works with any NTSC or PAL TV that has composite (RCA) input
  • Works with any network router that supports DHCP, just plug in an Ethernet cable and you’re ready to go
  • Kit comes with an Internet-enabled bootloader, so you can upload new programs directly from your computer, without a special cable or prop-plug (Propeller chip programmer)
  • IR receiver for using a TV remote control
  • Full color status LED
  • Piezo Buzzer for generating beeps, alarms, and tones
  • Pushbutton for input
  • Lots of examples programs to try out
  • Fits in an altoids tin!

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