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Xbox Mini: a Great Unfinished Masterwork

by Paul Strauss

Some guy over on the Xbox-Scene forums started to work on what will hopefully one day be the finest Xbox casemod of all time. The Xbox Mini case that he fabricated is a thing of beauty, reducing the ugly black behemoth that was the original Xbox into a svelte little package.

Xbox Mini Casemod by ghostavel

Modder ghostavel used computer-aided design to put together the minimalist gloss black case. From the looks of things, he’s made good progress on getting the motherboard and power supply down to a reasonable size in order to cram them in there.

Xbox Mini Casemod by ghostavel

While he did manage to squeeze an 80GB hard drive in the case, I’m not seeing a DVD drive anywhere. I’m guessing that it’s strictly for homebrew and copied games.

Xbox Mini Casemod by ghostavel

It’s unclear if and when he’ll finish this project, but hopefully he will. If only Microsoft had designed something like this and released a low-cost Xbox Mini when the Xbox 360 came out, they might have taken some business away from the Wii.

[via digg]

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Comments (41):

  1. fable says:

    Looks pretty darn sweet to me; I’d buy one.


  2. dude says:

    How would a smaller Xbox take business away from the Wii?

  3. JOn says:

    Why not have an x-box portable, just find the smallest possible mother board and power supply and making it into a portable unit. Microsoft would then also be able to compete with PSP and the DS. If only.

  4. Maniac says:

    Microsoft already had the capabilities to have a portable gaming system just ready and waiting, they’ve had one for over 4 years. It’s called the pocketpc. It’s undermarketed and underadvertised.

    It supports 3d graphics, and has for some time.

    nvidia has even made graphics cards for them capable of pixel shading, and other such things, years ago.

    Too bad no manufacturers or microsoft have taken advantage of this.

    not to mention the pocketpc supported portable video long before the ipod video came out. With the right programs you can play xvid and pretty much anything else.

    it’s had the nintendo ds’s touchscreen since its launch.

    they don’t use proprietary memory formats (most use SD, some use CF)

  5. Athanasios Condax says:

    It looks really nice. I’m sure microsoft is looking at it and wondering “aww crap…” and apple is looking at it in disgust…
    Nice work, eyecandy for sure

  6. Joe says:

    “Microsoft already had the capabilities to have a portable gaming system just ready and waiting, they

  7. xmido says:

    microsoft need to learn about elegance from apple, and about gameplay from nintendo.

  8. eric says:

    It is like a fancy USB multimedia hard disk. It’s fantastic.

  9. @xmido

    Yeah – because games like Halo and Bioshock are totally crap. Wii Sports – talk about heart-pounding!

    Apple have certainly got designing in the bag, though.

  10. jason says:

    hell yeah, it just needs a slim dvd player for it, like the ones on laptops. other than that its freakin sweet. go ahead and put an adapter in the box to run off of 12v for the car.

  11. d2d3 says:

    the xbox really your about 2 years two late. slim down version of the xbox 360 sure but xbox no.

  12. stefan Cameron says:

    ms had to scrap making xbox awhile ago due to contract issues with nividia..

    otherwise they would have phased it out properly..

  13. nice says:

    I’d definitely chop down my existing modded xbox for this.. how much was the case to build though.. that’s the question

  14. warplayer says:


    if you knew anything about the xbox open-source community and all the great things you could do with a mod chip ….xbmc, emulators, etc…. you wouldn’t be saying the same thing.

  15. jim says:

    Uh, it’s a design project. It doesn’t actually work and it looks cool although generic and derivative of an upright Mac Mini.

    Bummer, dude.

  16. Smarky says:

    A smaller XBOX without an optical drive has no chance in the great wide universe to even spit in the Wii’s direction. Do you know what the Nintendo Wii does? How does an XBOX that plays retro games touch that? Duh.

  17. adam says:

    looks like a mac does it not?

  18. Michael says:

    I’m sorry, but is so f’ing brilliant!!! Man, that looks super slick, but at the same time, it’s absolutely a rip-off design of the Wii…although, I guess that was also a rip-off of the Apple Muni…o’ well.

  19. GHOSTAVEL says:

    i guess its design is based on the wii and the mac mini

  20. Xaguta says:

    @ David Wilkinson

    How can you even compare Halo 3 and Bioshock next to Wii-Sports? the Xbox 360 had way more time to develop great games! i’m sure the Wii will get great innovative gameplay.

  21. This is a pretty sexy mod. I want one :P

  22. Geeba says:

    Couldn’t spit in the same direction as a Wii???? Are you sure? Xbox1 isnt far off hardware wise as powerfull as a Wii mate! If M$ had taken a case like that and thrown a few $$ in the direction of the XBMC team then who knows what would of come of it..
    But I would imagine most people looking here are like me pretty keen on the open source stuff and it makes a media center 2nd to NONE!
    Sweeeeeeeeet case!!!

  23. Dudey says:

    Modchips are obsolete.

    Just get Softmod Installer Deluxe (SID) and a copy of Splinter Cell. Presto…

    Yr Xbox is now a PC with 4 controllers/usb ports!!

  24. technabob says:

    What does this have to do with modchips, exactly?

  25. IVIonsterAddict says:

    Ok, you can not compare the wii to the 360. There no where near the same thing. And this is just a cool case mod! STOP BASHING ON IT!

  26. Benfica says:


  27. Taylor says:

    Wow, a geeky mod that is actually well thought out from a design standpoint, really nice.

  28. goldcoaster says:

    It looks like he used a case from a NetGear router.

    – GoldCoaster

  29. Big Daddy says:

    7. xmido | September 9th, 2007 at 12:54 pm
    microsoft need to learn about elegance from apple, and about gameplay from nintendo.

    -First of all apple’s stuff looks like crap, we can’t decide if its good. Its called and opinion. Gameplay from nintendo??? Yeah because nintendo has gotten so many video game awards and have great games and graphics…

    9. David Wilkinson | September 9th, 2007 at 1:42 pm
    Yeah – because games like Halo and Bioshock are totally crap. Wii Sports – talk about heart-pounding!
    Apple have certainly got designing in the bag, though.

    -Once agian you can’t judge Apple, its an opinion. By Halo I hope you mean the whole series and Bioshock tops Wii Sports and any other game for nintendo. The Wii is for family’s though… and old people who can’t deal with a Big Daddy (preferably a Bouncer) storming you and smashing you in to the wall. You can’t compare any Xbox 360 games (excluding Viva Pinata) to the Wii or the PS3, they just top them in graphics and quality.

    20. Xaguta | September 10th, 2007 at 12:31 am
    @ David Wilkinson
    How can you even compare Halo 3 and Bioshock next to Wii-Sports? the Xbox 360 had way more time to develop great games! i

  30. matt cunningham says:

    looks cool-id buy one 4 under

  31. observer says:

    an * xbox * with such a case and some extra high-speed usb ports, even without hard disk at all (could be optional through usb) and a slim, decent dvd reader, could kick off hardly in terms of longevity and attractiveness of this platform.
    I would deinitely buy one if one day..

  32. Camping says:

    Wow. Who woulda thought a little case mod would cause such bickering between the fanboys. Personally I think the case is really nice. And,,, I would take an original xbox with a 320gig hdd and xbmc over any of the other consoles out there any day.

  33. you says:

    mann, you ppl…. arguing over which games console is best .. tbf i dnt really care they all have strong and weak points and are just a fun as each other!! OK!! now onto a comment about the actual thing! WOW i was chewing my plec b4 i saw this and almost chocked!! this thing is SWWEETT!! if only i could buy one.. i would, most certainly! in fact im probly gunna try this for myself.. this has inspired me greatly! u know, it’s easy to get hold of a 2nd hand xbox for a few quid.. im not using mine coz ill screw it up! lol. the only thing is, is how much did this case cost to produce?

  34. Joe says:

    @Big Daddy
    Actually, you can say what makes things look attractive, it’s partially opinion and mostly hardwired into the human brain.
    I mean, think about it, many, many people like things that glitter. Very few like rotting corpses. Coincidence? More than likely not. I recently read an article about this ( http://www.androidblues.com/visualperception.html ), mentions some of that right at the start.

    And also, Apple are known for designing elegant, good-looking pieces of hardware. Microsoft isn’t. Compared to the Wii, both Xboxs look like a massive hunk of plastic. However, both the Xbox and the Wii release games aimed at different audiences, so it’s really not fair to compare them. :P

    All the same, love this mod, and would love to see Microsoft make an Xbox mini! XD

  35. c4v3m4n says:

    @ big daddy:
    if it’s an opinion then you can judge all you want.
    and if it’s an opinion, NOBODY is right.

  36. JANITOR says:

    …whoever is bashing this masterpiece doesnt know DICK…this thing is not only an xbox but a whole media center…

  37. Nigro says:

    Wow live

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