Print 32 comment(s) - last by Zoomer.. on Apr 21 at 8:20 PM

Image courtesy Joystiq
RIP Xbox 360 (August 2, 2006 - March 22, 2007)

My Xbox 360 is dead, may it rest in peace. My faithful gaming system -- my first gaming console since my Atari 7800 when I was a kid -- is now on its way to Microsoft's repair center where it will most likely be gutted and replaced with a refurbished unit.

I had read all of the reports of the Red Ring of Death around the web and shyly told myself that it could never happen to me. I've always had good luck with electronic gadgets and, with the exception of my original iPAQ 3650 Pocket PC, I have never needed to replace anything or send it in for repair.

That lucky streak started to unravel this past Sunday. I picked up a copy of GRAW 2 from Best Buy and started playing the training mission. Once during the mission, my Xbox 360 froze with a rainbow-ish checkerboard pattern on the screen. This was quite different from the dozen or so times that my Xbox 360 has just hard locked for no apparent reason while playing games.

I restarted the console and played for another 30 minutes or so and all was well. Then this past Thursday, I was using the Media Center functionality to play some music streamed from my laptop. I was about halfway through the first song when it skipped and then stopped. I walked out of the kitchen and again saw the checkerboard pattern and a frozen Xbox 360. I turned the machine off and just forgot about it for a while.

Later that night, I was just messing around in the Dashboard looking at the latest available downloads and it locked three separate times (again with the checkerboard pattern) requiring a reboot each time. It was at that time that I decided to call Microsoft for assistance. While I was on hold, I turned it on one last time and got the Red Ring of Death.

Microsoft tells me that the turnaround time will be around five business days once they receive my defective unit at their repair center, but that's still a long time with no GRAW 2, Gears of War, College Hoops 2k7 or Worms.

And when I do get back what will most likely be a refurbished unit, how long until the ticking time bomb decides to go off again and I'm stuck with another dead console? Maybe this time it will decide to conk out when I'm past my warranty period. Or maybe I'll just go buy a PS3 and enjoy life on the dark side ...

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PS3 isn't any better
By Beany on 3/26/2007 4:27:27 AM , Rating: 2
My PS3 locks up more than my 360. Especially when taking a games disc out while playing, or browsing the net. I have to use the mains power switch on the back to get it running again.

It's funny because when it comes to lock ups and having to restart/power off to get out of it, my PC actually does it less than my PS3 or 360. And 95% of the time i can get CTRL+ALT+DELETE to work on PC, but consoles have no such feature.

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By Legolias24 on 3/26/2007 9:19:15 AM , Rating: 2
Ummm...this may sound like a silly question but; why are you taking your games disc out of the console while playing the game? Perhaps I misread your post or maybe there was something you forgot to include in what you wrote. (And this something would more clearly explain what you are doing when your console locks up.) But if you are in the middle of playing a game on any device and you suddenly decide "I'm going to go and do something else with this device" and you press the eject button, you can guarantee that the device will lock up!

Call me crazy, but usually its better to exit the game and go back to a menu that does not rely on the disc before ejecting it from the device!

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By Spivonious on 3/26/2007 9:44:26 AM , Rating: 2
Umm...I eject the disc on my Wii all the time in the middle of a game. Also did it with the Gamecube and Saturn. The system displays a message to reinsert the disc and I put a new disc in and hit reset. Locking up on an easy to detect situtation is astonishing.

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By deeznuts on 3/26/2007 5:03:28 PM , Rating: 2
Locking up on an easy to detect situtation is astonishing.
I don't think it's locking up. Same thing happened to me when I first got a PS3, I ejected the disk in game, thinking the PS3 would reset to the XMB. It didn't, and it wouldn't respond, so I had to flip the switch in the back. At that point I didn't know how to exit a game, nor use the PS3 button.

Now, I eject it all the time before quitting the game, if I'm near the machine. I'll eject it, then go grab my controller hit the PS button and the machine will exit into the XMB. I've had maybe one lockup and that was user error since I didnt know what the hell I was doing. Now that I do, I haven't had to reboot it ever.

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By glennpratt on 3/26/2007 11:18:09 AM , Rating: 2
While I don't usually pop the disc out in the middle of the game, I have and fully expect any console to handle that. Just kill the game and return to the dashboard.

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By rykerabel on 3/26/2007 1:10:47 PM , Rating: 2

I'm wondering if his ps3 isn't actually locking up, and he just doesn't know about the "PS" button on the controller and remote.

RE: PS3 isn't any better
By bplewis24 on 3/26/2007 4:07:11 PM , Rating: 2
I've never had a lockup on the PS3 during a game. The only lockup I've ever had was while it loaded the F1 demo from the PS store.


RE: PS3 isn't any better
By irev210 on 3/26/07, Rating: 0
RE: PS3 isn't any better
By CoreGamer on 3/27/2007 7:26:23 PM , Rating: 2
Neither is the Wii even though I was sure Nintendo had top notch quality, after a few days of playing my wii overheated and cooked my video card. I thought it might have been something rare, but if you search there internet there are a lot of cooked wii's turning up.

Was it a launc unit?
By Bladen on 3/25/2007 5:35:05 AM , Rating: 2
I never get launch units because;

A. I am cheap.
B. Launch units tend to have a higher rate of death than mature/revised units.

RE: Was it a launc unit?
By JimFear on 3/25/2007 8:52:56 AM , Rating: 2
He got it in August so I doubt it was a launch unit. I had the red ring of death with a unit i got in March 2006 a while back and had it replaced within a week. Its caused by the lead free solder warping under heat thats under the GPU from what I understand, I was kind of dissapointed with the internals of the 360, they look rather amateur in comparison to the motherboard of the PS3.

RE: Was it a launc unit?
By ttowntom on 3/25/2007 9:19:26 AM , Rating: 4
Its caused by the lead free solder warping...
Another strike against idiot environmentalists, and those who bow to them. A tiny bit of lead in the solder...or all the energy and materials wasted when a solder joint fails. Which one's worse for the environment?

RE: Was it a launc unit?
By The Sword 88 on 3/25/2007 10:23:03 PM , Rating: 2
My launch unit still works great!

RE: Was it a launc unit?
By Zoomer on 4/21/2007 8:20:08 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah. Lead free solder (blame EU) is retarded.

Good thing I have lots of good old 60/40.

sorry to hear...
By One43637 on 3/26/2007 7:00:10 PM , Rating: 2
sorry to hear your 360 died on you bud. i have a sinking feeling that mine is on the verge of it. there are certain times where the game loads and suddenly the disc just stops spinning and my console would lock up for odd reasons. i don't eject the disc while it's reading so i'm just hoping that if it fails, it's still under the warranty.

RE: sorry to hear...
By Brandon Hill on 3/26/2007 8:03:35 PM , Rating: 2
Mine used to do that too. I'd be playing a game and all of a sudden the disc would stop spinning and the game would freeze.

According to my tracking information, my Xbox 360 was received today at the repair center in Texas (DHL Ground sure does ship fast. I sent it off Friday afternoon).

Hopefully I'll have a new... err refurbished unit in my hands by early next week.

One of many
By iXX on 3/25/2007 8:52:46 AM , Rating: 2
If your unlucky like me and many other 360 owners, this may well be your first of many R-O-D 360's. I'm on my third console now, and the last repair was a charged one!. The console obviously has a design flaw that Microsoft don't seem to be addressing when the repair it each time. I've read the usual cause for thr Ring-Of-Death fault, is BGA contact pins breaking free on the mainboard from the constant heat and cool down cycles on the GPU and Memory chips. If this is true or not I've no idea, but what ever the fault is, Microsoft should not be charging its customers to repair consoles just out side of the warranty period. Anyway, good luck with that refurb console! Live expectency is likely to be 4-9 months, if they just swapped out your console with the same rev. board.

Red Light of Death
By Mithan on 3/25/2007 9:02:25 AM , Rating: 2
I bought my 360 at launch and it died a couple months after launch. Luckily, I was able to replace it and get it back before Oblivion was released.

It has worked pretty well since then, letting me play through Oblivion, Gears of War, Crackdown and a few other games with no problems.

Still, it is pretty sad this happens and I feel for gamers who have had 2 or 3 replacements. Thats crap.

Mine died just 3 days back
By hrishi2das on 3/26/2007 12:05:52 PM , Rating: 2
I got the same ring of death just 3 days back. I bought mine December 2006, so its a pretty new Unit.

I have called MS, and they are in the process of sending me a box to ship it back. But arent the number of such Faults really too high ? Or maybe I am just unlucky.

my xbox 360 near horror
By gaigebacca on 3/26/2007 12:19:28 PM , Rating: 2
I bought a new 360 off of eBay in Feb. of 2006, and it worked perfectly fine... until 363 days later... I never got any red rings, and it didnt freeze... it just showed bright green pattern on the screen while playing a game... restarted to fix the problem. And never got any video afterwards... could hear the 360 start up properly as the audio still worked and could hear it move on the dashboard... but no video no matter what.. I called Micro$oft... and my warranty expired in two days... so now I have a refurbished system... and no more warranty... I hope it lasts...

By OxBow on 3/26/2007 3:58:12 PM , Rating: 2
I've had no problems with my PS3 locking up or dropping connections, etc. The only time I had to call tech support was when I lost the slip of paper I wrote my network password on (that was a pain, but I can't blame Sony for that).

The 360 seems to run ok, but it does get very hot and I've had occasional trouble with it reading game disks. I don't remember when we started hearing about the RRD, wasn't it about this time last year that it became big enough news to make the mainstream?

We've all heard about the wrist straps on the Wii and the RRD on the 360. Has anyone seen similar reports for "recurring" problems on the PS3?

No problems here
By enlil242 on 3/26/2007 8:28:38 PM , Rating: 2
I've had mine for about 8 months now without nary a problem. I use it for games, streaming music and as my primary DVD / HD-DVD player but I don't play it for over 3-4 hours at a time... I guess I would be pretty sour if I lost 4, but not sure if it might be environmental, or their refurb process stinks.

My friend bought one with a bum optical drive and when he got the unit back, the wireless controller circuitry was disconnected and he had to send it back. He gets it back tomorrow, will se how that goes.

I would by a PS3 as well if there was a reason at this point… since the “format war” continues and no “killer app” is out yet, I will continue to wait. And so far, all cross-platform games look as good or better on the 360 at this point. So why pay $600 for a product I’ll barely utilize. Perhaps next year.

Into the lions den.
By Misty Dingos on 3/27/2007 7:47:29 AM , Rating: 2
Perhaps you would be better served to purchase a PC? It isn't too late you know. If it does have a problem you can fix it or have it fixed. Your software is updated for errors. And they come in a wide variety of styles and colors. You can even customize your own.

Really if you think about it consoles are well unalterable, difficult to repair, and the manufactures work to conceal any issue the devices have. You know they do it would cut into sales. When they do remedy a known problem they seldom down channel the repair, only those buying new consoles are benefited with the repair.

So with all said and done would you not be happier with a beefy PC. A couple of DX-10 capable cards in it. Sound card to channel some 7.1 sound. A terrabyte of storage. You can even have a HD-DVD drive if you want.

If you do you will be happier in the long run.

By ElFenix on 3/27/2007 4:13:45 PM , Rating: 2
I'll probably get another 360 once the price comes down and they're selling quieter, cooler running units. Even still, I'll get it from Costco with their good return policy and extended warranty.

XBox360 Shutting Down
By X360Owner on 4/20/2007 7:49:08 AM , Rating: 2
So many times this "Red Ring" situation has happened to me and my kids while playing. Initially felt that the system had a ROM/OS Crash, just like the familiar blue screens predominant in Win OS Systems. Somehow, we managed to get it up after few trials. The following is what we think made the system recover from this bizarre "Red RIng Crash Incident". We removed the connecting plug for the Power supply from the XBox 360 Console. Waited for few minutes, for the console to cool down. After Reconnecting the Power, we kept the Console Power On Switch pressed for few seconds while it reloads. So far it it is working OK. And, we do a normal shutdown from the menu everytime before switching off the power.

Well, well, well....
By SunAngel on 3/25/07, Rating: -1
RE: Well, well, well....
By bargetee5 on 3/25/2007 11:32:09 PM , Rating: 2
LOL, and tell me, what games does ps3 have that Xbox 360 doesn't? OH, thats right they are all cross platform, so it doesn't matter. Btw, I wonder if ps3 can have cross-networking of games on pc to console. OH thats right microsoft is doing that already.

RE: Well, well, well....
By rykerabel on 3/26/2007 1:22:55 PM , Rating: 2
all of my ps2 and ps1 games for example.

ps3 already has 3 RPG games while the xbox360 after a year still only has 3.

i mainly rpg so its a no brainer for me

RE: Well, well, well....
By Url on 3/26/2007 2:14:33 PM , Rating: 2
Oblivion should count as 2-3 rpgs imo. :)

RE: Well, well, well....
By aos007 on 3/26/2007 3:31:28 PM , Rating: 2
Only because 90% of your time will be spent quicksave/quickloading.

It could've been an amazing game - had they not screwed up levelling system. It's the only game I've played in my 20+ years of gaming that PUNISHES you for levelling up. By the time I realized that, I was at 30+ hours and had to press on to finish the story. As it is, it deservingly missed out on most awards last year.

RE: Well, well, well....
By BladeVenom on 3/27/2007 1:35:08 PM , Rating: 2
A PS3? That's just as bad. Go with as PC, they are more reliable and most of the parts have a 3 year warranty or better.

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