I recently got my first Rev 2 Rasberry Pi with 512 mb of ram and decided it was time to give Raspbmc another try. I have to say I am impressed.
You download a minimal image from the Raspbmc site (it is somewhere around 56mb) and it will perform a net install. Raspbmc will also keep itself up to date nightly (a good thing and a bad thing – you can configure).
I learned a couple of things along the way. The most critical, make sure you have a good power supply. Raspbmc needs all the power it can get as it tries to maximize the performance of the GPU. If you experience lag, long pauses or freezes – CHANGE YOUR POWER SUPPLY.
If you are going wireless, try using the ‘network-configure’ application within Raspbmc under programs. For many adapters, this is all you need to do. Do not forget that some wifi adapters need extra power to run.
If you have a tv that supports HDMI CEC, you are money. You can control your entire Pi directly from your TV remote. There is also a remote application for iOS (you must turn on ‘web server’ within settings to make it work).
During the course of testing, a UK 512mb Pi arrived. This Pi seems to handle the power a little better and it was possible to run wireless without a hub. Perfect for plugging in behind the TV.
The best insight during the testing, I discovered that I could use the usb ports on the side of my Vizio tv to power the Pi with the Wifi card completely. Runs great.
There are not a lot of add-on programs that are fully working but a few good ones exist beyond your personal media library. Some of my favorites so far – Ted Talks, YouTube, and PBS.
I definitely consider this in the category of PreBakedPi.