New Raspberry Pi enclosure from Kodi and FLIRC looks slick in the living room

Got a shiny new Raspberry Pi 3 board and want to cram it into a protective case? Kodi, the company behind the popular XBMC/Kodi media software, just launched its own neat little chassis simply named as the Kodi Edition Raspberry Pi Case. It’s actually produced by a “tiny” company called Flirc located in Silicon Valley, which worked closely with Kodi to create this special edition enclosure.

According to Flirc, the enclosure is made out of sand-blasted, machined silver aluminum. It was created with the living room in mind, sporting rounded edges and a fanless design that serves as a passive processor heat sink. That means users could possibly overclock the board’s CPU without having to worry about overheating issues going on within the silver-and-black enclosure.

As a refresher, the Raspberry Pi 3 (Model B), released back in February 2016, is the third generation of the popular Raspberry Pi board series. It features a quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 1.2GHz, 1GB of system memory, Wireless N and Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity, and Bluetooth Low Energy. There’s also four USB ports, one HDMI port, an Ethernet port, a microSD card slot, and output for composite video and audio.

That said, don’t expect the Raspberry Pi 3 to run the new Doom installment. The board packs Broadcom’s dual-core VideoCore IV multimedia co-processor that’s compatible with OpenGL ES 2.0, and can handle 1080p video output at 30Hz and H.264 high-profile decoding. While we’ve seen Quake III Arena running at a Full HD resolution to give you some idea of its graphical prowess, the Raspberry Pi Foundation says the co-processor is capable of one gigapixel per second, 1.5 gigatexels per second, or 24GFLOPs with texture filtering and a DMA infrastructure.

The big deal with the credit-card-sized Raspberry Pi boards is that they can serve as a powerful media center on the cheap. But they’re also relatively wide open for basically any application, providing 40 GPIO pins, a camera interface, and a display interface to expand the board’s basic functionality. The first generation of Raspberry Pi boards went live in February 2012, and since then we’ve seen a number of amazing uses, from replicating the Pip-Boy from the Fallout games to creating a working mobile phone, and on to serving as a built-in car computer.

“Since the first Raspberry Pi was announced in 2012, it was inextricably linked with XBMC/Kodi,” writes Nathan Betzen from the Kodi team. “It was built with the tinkerer in mind and capable of new advanced applications, but always with the perfect fallback of being the tiny living-room Kodi media center that could.”

Kodi’s custom enclosure costs a mere $20 here in the States, and it also supports the Raspberry Pi 2 and the Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+ board. The case will come partially assembled, with the top, black plastic piece already connected to the aluminum housing. Customers merely need to attach the included thermal pad (12 x 12 x 1.4mm) to the board’s processor, place the board inside the case, and then connect the top and bottom together with provided 10mm M.5 screws.

The new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B board can be purchased here for $35. Customers can also grab camera modules, official Raspberry Pi cases, the Raspberry Pi 3 power supply, and more. Fun fun fun!

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Deals

From Air to Pro, here are the best MacBook deals for February 2019

If you’re in the market for a new Apple laptop, let us make your work a little easier: We hunted down the best up-to-date MacBook deals available online right now from various retailers.
Computing

Microsoft's latest Surface Laptop 2 runs past the updated MacBook Air

Apple recently updated its venerably MacBook Air, giving it a sleeker and more modern design. That pits it against the Surface Laptop 2, Microsoft's update of its own traditional laptop.
Deals

It’s time to check out the best Apple Watch deals for February 2019

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years. If you're in the market for an iOS wearable, we've sniffed out the best Apple Watch deals available right now for all three models of this great smartwatch.
Computing

Dodge the biggest laptop-buying mistakes with these handy tips

Buying a new laptop is exciting, but you need to watch your footing. There are a number of pitfalls you need to avoid and we're here to help. Check out these top-10 laptop buying mistakes and how to avoid them.
Computing

Great PC speakers don't need to break the bank. These are our favorites

Not sure which PC speakers work best with your computer? Here are the best computer speakers on the market, whether you're working with a tight budget or looking to rattle your workstation with top-of-the-line audio components.
Computing

The rumors were true. Nvidia’s 1660 Ti GPU, a $280 powerhouse, has arrived

Nvidia has officially launched the GTX 1660 Ti, its next-generation, Turing-based GPU. It promises to deliver all the performance and efficiency for all modern games, but without stepping into the high price range of the RTX series. 
Computing

Confused about RSS? Don't be. Here's what it is and how to use it

What is an RSS feed, anyway? This traditional method of following online news is still plenty useful. Let's take a look at what RSS means, and what advantages it has in today's busy world.
Computing

Everything you need to know about routers, modems, combos, and mesh networks

Modem vs. router: what's the difference? We explain their functions so you can better diagnose any issues prior to contacting technical support. We also talk about a few variants you'll see offered by ISPs and retailers.
Computing

Metro Exodus update brings DLSS improvements to Nvidia RTX 20-series PCs

Having issues in Metro Exodus? A February 21 update for the title recently delivered enhancements to Nvidia’s deep learning supersampling feature and other fixes for low-specced PCs. 
Computing

Limited-time sale knocks $500 off the price of the Razer Blade Pro 17

Looking for an ultra-powerful laptop for yourself or someone else? You're in for some luck. Razer is running a sale on some of its best gaming laptops, cutting down pricing on the Razer Blade 15 and the Razer Blade Pro 17. 
Emerging Tech

Engineer turns his old Apple lle into an wheeled robot, and even gives it a sword

How do you give new life to a 30-year-old computer? Software engineer Mike Kohn found a way by transforming his old Apple IIe into a wheeled robot. Check it out in all its 1980s glory.
Gaming

Want to play as Iron Man or Waluigi in GTA V? Our favorite mods make it possible

Grand Theft Auto V is best on the PC for many reasons, and modifications may be the most important. You can cause riots, spawn unique cars, and play as a cop with just a few extra files.
Computing

Does the GTX 1660 Ti's leaner design make it a better GPU than the RTX 2060?

Nvidia's GTX 1660 Ti is a new Turing GPU without ray tracing or DLSS, but how does it compare to its RTX brethren? We pit the 1660 Ti versus the RTX 2060 to find out in this comparison.