Thursday, June 28, 2007

Xbox 360: A Guy With 8 Dead Consoles Speaks His Mind

In response to a recent Mercury News interview, a user who is on his 9th Xbox 360 speaks his mind about what he believes is the real problem with Microsoft's gaming console.

More after the jump.

These revelations come after Microsoft recently denied having any "systematic issues" with the 360. Reports coming from Australia have also indicated that the failure rate of the 360 is much, much higher than what Microsoft is letting on. Retailers are claiming the figure is closer to 30% than the 5-6% that has been officially claimed. The unlucky user's explanations can be found in a recent interview with Microsoft's Todd Holmdahl.

"... the problem isn’t just with launch units. Of the 8 I’ve had so far, only 2 were manufactured in the first three months of launch. The last one I had red-ring on me was manufactured in November of ‘06 - a full year after launch.

The problem is that the cooling design of the 360 doesn’t hold up. The cooling of the CPU was well done, with a heat pipe to draw the heat away from the chip (and accordingly, away from the mainboard). The problem is that the GPU and its low-profile heatsink sit under the DVD drive, and are given a very narrow channel for air to be pulled acrosss the heatsink by the fans. When the GPU heats up enough, not only does it reflow the solder in the ball grid array slightly, it can cause the entire mainboard to flex - a phenomenon largely caused by the X-shaped brackets that hold the heatsinks on under the mainboard. They hold the heatsinks down to the chips with a tension fit that presses up directly underneath those chips.

So when the system gets too hot, the combination of loosened solder with a mainboard that flexes from heat causes the GPU or CPU to actually break its connection from the board - resulting in the 3 red lights and secondary error code 0102 (the “unknown hardware error” code).

This is true of ALL systems manufactured thus far, not just the launch systems. Hopefully, Microsoft’s new measure of adding a heatpipe to the GPU heatsink will reduce the heat on the mainboard itself enough to keep this from happening. We shall see."

Reports are coming in of Microsoft receiving up to 2,500 broken 360s per day in the UK alone. Another user has just admitted to having 11 broken 360s and yet Peter Moore, head of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business division, which controls the 360, has merely stated:

"I can't comment on failure rates, because it's just not something - it's a moving target. What this consumer should worry about is the way that we've treated him. Y'know, things break, and if we've treated him well and fixed his problem, that's something that we're focused on right now."

1 comment:

Web Turtle said...

Mine's just fine!