I recently made a neat little gadget with my Arduino Mega that controls my Xbox 360. It uses the remote control codes from the lirc project. I used an old keypad and an infrared led I found at a hamfest. Its works really good for controlling Hulu and Netflix. I used to have to turn the controller on and wait for it to connect when all I wanted to do is pause the video. With this I just turn on the Arduino and press the pause button and the Xbox pauses the video. It is so much easier now to control the xbox. What I would really like to do is turn it into a permanent device with maybe a touch screen and learning capabilities. Then it would be just like one of the logitech 100 dollar remotes. As of right now it runs on my breadboard. The infrared led is controlled with a library from the experimental branch of Ken Shirriff’s IR library. My version of the library also includes the ability to control Panasonic devices. I previously used it to control my 50″ Panasonic. The library uses the pwm output of timer 2 on the arduino, which on the mega is pin 9. Ken’s blog says pin 3 but that is for the Arduino Uno. The circuit includes a transistor because it is drawing more current than a pwm pin can supply. I didn’t have any low value resistors, so I hooked four 220 ohm resistors in parallel. I also modified the Keypad library from the arduino.cc playground to work with my old non-matrix keypad. Both modified versions of the libraries are available on Github here KeypadSimple and here IRremote.
Here are some pictures of it wired up on the breadboard. Click on any of them to get a close up.