Setting up RaspBMC and PS3 PlayTV

Setting up RaspBMC and PS3 PlayTV

I decided to make use of some tech I had lying around the house.  There was no real need for this as I have most of my streaming and viewing issues solved, but a friend had asked about using a Raspberry Pi as a PVR as well as for watching pre-recorded media so I thought I would cobble together something from what I had lying around the house.

You will need:

  • Raspberry Pi
  • Sony PS3 PlayTV device (or other USB tuner)
  • SD Card
  • Powered USB Hub
  • Power Supply for the Pi

The first thing to do is format the SD card.  I tried running the RaspBMC installer without doing this and, although it reported success, it didn’t actually work.  Use the SD Formatter located here.

After that, download the installer for RaspBMC located here.  Unzip the installer and run it.  Make sure to select that you accept the licence agreement, and for heavens sake, select the right SD card device to install on.

Connect your Raspberry Pi to your network, an HDMI (or composite) display.  Insert the previously created SD card and power on the Pi.  Hopefully it will boot up and start doing the RaspBMC installation automatically.  Go make a cup of coffee, read the web and wait patiently for this to all finish.

Once this is completed you should have the XMB display on your screen.  The first thing I did was go into System->Settings->Appearance->International and set the correct timezone so that the date and time were correct.  I also set the region to Australia(24h).

Next you need to ensure that the appropriate firmware for your USB Tuner is available on your Pi.  To do this you need to SSH into your Pi.  I use Putty to do this.

Once logged in (user pi, password raspberry):

cd /lib/firmware

You are looking for the file: dvb-usb-dib0700-1.20.fw for a sony Tuner.

If it is not there, and you are using a Sony Tuner than:

sudo wget --no-check-certificate

sudo chmod 755 dvb-usb-dib0700-1.20.fw

The chmod is to make the file executable for all users

Next I followed the instructions from for setting up TVHeadEnd with RaspBMC

Had a little trouble with the EPG but found that hitting reset on the web interface once everything was working appeared to fix this.

Needed to purchase an mpeg2 codec from  A guide to doing this and installing the key is located at

I am currently awaiting my key.  Other than that, everything is working perfectly.

One unexpected bonus is that this is working as a TV Server, so I am currently sitting in the study watching tv streaming from my Raspberry Pi in the bedroom.


2 thoughts on “Setting up RaspBMC and PS3 PlayTV

  1. Thanks for this write up. Is it still working well for you? Any hiccups?

    I want to extend my Raspbmc set up and the Sony Play TV seems to be a fairly reliable way to do it?

    1. No real hiccups, and easier to setup now as the firmware is already in the kernel so you don’t have to load that. Unfortunately, my PlayTV seems to have died so not using it anymore.

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