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|Extending Xbox 360 Controllers|
|Written by Peter|
We recently purchased a new house and with a new house comes new challenges. One of my goals was to centralize all our video/audio sources in the basement and use an HDMI Matrix to allow any tv in the house to view any of the available video sources. I'll discuss the challenges and setup of this in another article, but wanted to touch upon a recent success with locating the Xbox 360 in the basement first. By locating the Xbox in the basement the controller response was flaky on the main floor of our house and completely unresponsive on the second floor. Some research pointed to others extending the wireless range of the controllers through modifications to the controller itself, but with children around I didn't want to tamper with the controllers...
The solution: To open the Xbox case (video on opening the case without special tools here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qaxIB6cXTYM) and then tape (for now, until I solder) a piece of speaker wire onto the antenna, and the other side of the speaker wire to chassis (ground). The photo below shows the location of the antenna, and once the wire was connected I closed up the Xbox case and attached the other end of the wire to some RG6 (coax cable) that was running throughout the house, using the center copper as the antenna wire and the surrounding silver braid as the ground. Initial tests showed perfect connections on the main floor, approximately 30 feet from the Xbox, but spotty connections on the second floor, about 70 feet from the Xbox. Ideally I would have placed an antenna at the end of the RG6, which is much closer to the TV locations, but since I didn't have one around I connected the coax end to another coax which simply extended the length of connected wire to the Xbox antenna, with the hope that the additional antenna length would suffice. Success! There is now a flawless connection 70 feet from the Xbox, however I still believe I'll experiment with various coax screw-on type antennas in the future to create a cleaner installation and reclaim usability of one of the RG6 cables.
I hope this helps others in their quest to have the Xbox farther than the stock 30 feet maximum claimed by Microsoft (likely without obstruction). Next will be to tackle extending the Kinect!