Sometimes, when you’re trying to immerse yourself in a movie or television show on an iPod’s diminutive screen, you just need to go bigger. Here’s how: Turn your Classic or Nano into a home theater with a simple, unpowered DIY projector.

All you need is a mirror, some cardboard, and lenses harvested from an old slide projector. Set up your portable iPod projector in a dark room, and the images from the iPod’s screen will be reflected through the lenses, creating a roughly five-by-seven-inch picture. Then grab some Milk Duds and kick back with a downloaded movie or the latest episode of The Daily Show.

Make an iPod Projector
Time: 30 minutes
Easy | | | | | Hard


  • Lens tube and lens housing from an old slide projector
  • Small makeup mirror
  • Cardboard
  • Hot-glue gun
  • Tape


Slide-projector lenses are ideal for use with the projector. Magnifying glasses may also work but can yield blurry image edges.

1 Open the slide projector and remove the lens housing (the plastic box containing the tube with the lenses).

2 Heat up the glue gun, and affix the mirror to a piece of cardboard so that it sits at a 45-degree angle relative to the lens.

How it Works

3 Make a cardboard enclosure for the mirror and the lens housing. Leave a hole above the mirror for the iPod screen, and cut a slot narrow enough to hold the iPod in place. Cover the box in black electrical tape so that no stray light gets in or out.

4 Turn the lights down, fire up the iPod, and set the brightness to max. Adjust the focus by turning the lens tube until you get a sharp image.