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JuiceBox Mod
hardware : by Tommy - June 2nd 2005, 08:36PM
I just got back from the local Target where I picked up a JuiceBox. (warning: annoying Flash on that site!)
What the crap is a JuiceBox? It's a kid's portable media player that Mattel released for Christmas '04. They didn't sell very well at their retail price of $50, so stores like Target and Walmart cleared them out at huge discounts. Walmart cleared them out months ago, and according to one source, was selling them for as cheap as $6!
Target, just this week, dropped their in store prices from the already discounted $24 to $12.

"Okay, so why did you buy an unwanted toy?"
Recently, Slashdot ran an article about hacking your JuiceBox into a picture frame. This is my current goal, as it is for several others. The key to the mods surrounding this little gadget is that it runs a version of uclinux. We'll see how this goes.

update: Pfft, well that was cake - no real "mod" involved. The "MP3 Starter Kit" that I bought for $11 at Target includes a CD that converts pictures to a proprietary format (.jbp), compressing each image down to 57k. You can tell the image quality has been lost, but on a screen this small, you don't really care that much. I'm sure as the hacking community grows, there will be more options available. For those interested, if you have an SD card and USB adapter for your computer, you can play MP3s right out of the box. The software kit gives you the image conversion software, as well as an adapter to allow the SD card to be plugged into the media card slot on the JuiceBox unit. (I believe a few people have tried to make their own adapters.) Aside from the JuiceBox card adapter, the kit doesn't actually do anything to the Juicebox.


+ anonymous
  Jun 02, 2005 20:57
keep us up-to-date on how the picture frame turns out.


+ anonymous
  Jun 02, 2005 23:47
good luck with that Tommy


+ Tommy G.
  Jun 03, 2005 00:10
Good luck on overcoming your Refresh habit.


+ anonymous
  Jun 05, 2005 10:36
its a bug punk


+ anonymous
  Jun 16, 2005 21:08
you are supposed to buy the starter kit ($35-$45). It consists of an overpriced SD/MMC card to proprietary juicebox adapter. And software. Basically, the juicebox is ready to do everything you want it to. But, in an attempt to make more money, you're locked out of features until you buy the kit (SCAM!). There is NO good reason they couldn't just make them with SD/MMC ports. And there is no good reason for the juiceboxe's inability to view JPG images without converting them to JBP (juice proprietary format). No good reason = money for mattel.
The good news. The SD/MMC has already been hacked and image converting software is available for linux. So, don't buy the kit. Save your money! It's not necessary.


+ Tommy G.
  Jun 16, 2005 21:33
...oh, ok.


+ anonymous
  Jun 23, 2005 18:16
Well, you need the MP3 kit to adapt the MMC card. Otherwise, you can't load stuff. The SD card, the USB reader you can get elsewhere. The software you can substitute with free software.

For the discounted $20, it's not a bad deal.

Why the adapter? The juiceware videos & music use a new write once memory chip. The box was designed for that. I think the adapter was an afterthought.


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