You are hereWaah!!! Broken Xbox 360! AGAIN!

Waah!!! Broken Xbox 360! AGAIN!

By Blackwalt - Posted on 19 August 2007

Its a bad news and good news kind of thing.

Update: picture added.

Bad News: My Xbox 360 Core system failed last night. This is my second Core system failure in exactly the same way. Unfortunately not with the 3 red lights of death (free warranty replacement) but with a frozen display with artifacts all over.

Really unfortunately, this second failure is outside my extended warranty. My first one was inside my 1 year extended warranty. This time it lasted 7 months past my second 1 year warranty. I guess their quality control is improving.

Now there is a positive side. Following the instructions on the Microsoft support site actually worked. It seemed to be the "clearing the Xbox 360 Hard Drive cache" that cleared the problem. I was up and running again for 45 minutes of Rainbow Six Vegas. I am a little tired today because of the extra time taken to properly stress test my recovered xbox. Of course, intensive continued stress testing will be required to confirm that the issue is completely resolved.

Good news: If the failures continue, Guba has approved a purchase of a replacement Xbox 360. Woohoo, no more wondering why I married her! Or was it the other way around??? ...doesn't matter, continuing on...

Coxxorz and I spent substantial time last night surfing for Xbox 360 prices and discussing replacement strategies.

This resolved into three major points: HDMI, large hard drives, and price (duh) with no downtime. I could send it back to MS repair and get it replace for $139 but there is downtime involved. Purchasing an immediate replacement leaves the option of ALSO getting the MS repair on the original and ending up with two Xbox 360's with the second available for clan use as required.

  1. Cheapest solution would be picking up a replacement core system (used for $249) and slotting it in with no changes and everything is the same. A new core system would be $299.
  2. Picking up a premium system, $399 with Forza 2. Can slot it in with no change but would end up with an extra 20gb hard drive. If I waited for the newer premiums to reach stores I could get with HDMI.
  3. Waiting until late September to pickup the Halo 3 edition at $450. Cool Halo 3 colour in the xbox, controller and wired headset. HDMI but still only a 20gb hard drive. And I can't use my old one as it doesn't match the case. Ditto with replacing the faceplate or other customization. And what happens if Halo 3 sucks? Unlikely but it could happen. Or it could only score a 7 instead of an 11.
  4. Buying an elite at $499. The ultimate Xbox 360 (U suck MoriceRevek) with HDMI and a 120 GB hard drive. And includes a Optical and Component Audio dongle which the other HDMI boxes don't have - have to buy seperately. Comes in black which works for my gamertag!
  5. I hear they have cut the price of the PS3.

Recap: None of this gets around the fact that my Xbox 360 is dying and its my second one. It is easily solved through varying price points - $150 to $499.

Its good that the problem has temporarily settled down and allowed me the time to debate my next Xbox 360 purchase. If only I could think of a way to get input into my next purchase...

But its a pain that Microsoft's quality control is so poor. Xbox's (from the original Xbox to this generation) are the
only piece of electronics that I absolutely buy an extended warranty for and recommend such practice to any other buyer I speak to. If you don't have one and your Xbox is still eligible get one from your retailer or direct from Microsoft.

Coxxorz's picture

Since the Elite is the clear winner (despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary), now would be a good time to discuss Lot Numbers. Apaprently only the Elites produced very early in the year do not have the heatsink upgrades. This should not be an issue, since they were in such short supply, it's highly unlikely old stock remains in any store unless you're traipsing around the arse-end of Ontario... But to be sure you're getting an upgraded machine, check the UPC label for the "lot number". It should be 0724 or higher.

The other issue is the DVD drive. Apparently the old, noisy Hitachi/LG drive has been replaced with a much quieter BenQ unit. To see if yours has the new hotness, make sure the lot number is 0726 or higher.

The only other potential update is to the processor itself, but the new (cooler) 65 nm chip is not expected until early next year.

Disclaimer: This information has been gleaned off the internets, and as such, its validity should be treatedly accordingly.

Stormblade's picture

Wow, 1.5 million votes for the Premium. I think the world is trying to tell you something ...

Coxxorz's picture

Another argument against new Cores or used Anything is the heat sink situation. There's a whole subculture dedicated to the tracking of lot numbers on the units with newly upgraded, non-incendiary heat sinks, but the common concensus is "HDMI = new heatsink". There is also the fact that some of the new units are now shipping with a quieter Benq DVD drive. Technically that's another post topic, but I'm tired.

Coxxorz's picture

Dell currently has a Xbox 360 Forza 2 Console Bundle with Logitech DriveFX Steering Wheel and Pedals on sale for $429. You could easily sell the unwanted bits to recoup the $30 difference and then some. Forza should fetch that much alone, then anything you can get for the wheel would be pure profit (Dell lists it separately for $99).

Or an AMAZING door prize for the next HOC LAN...

Coxxorz's picture

Fix your damn poll!!!

Nevermind, I did it...

Blackwalt's picture

Your edit resets the votes and I get to vote a second time....

So I did...

Coxxorz's picture

How come I can't vote again...

Q-Bert's picture

"getting the MS repair on the original and ending up with two Xbox 360's with the second available for clan use as required."

Yes, the "clan" can certainly use one.

Blackwalt's picture

In fact, I am sure it doesn't. Positive in fact.

As a matter of I am not sure exactly why we let you hang around.


umm, note to self, maybe you should stop insulting our unpaid (so far) host provider

Q-Bert's picture

for the OFF switch...

Coxxorz's picture

You could always find some way to make your Xbox display the 3 red lights of death...

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