Print 104 comment(s) - last by robinthakur.. on May 15 at 5:30 AM

Microsoft preps 65nm GPU for cooler Xbox 360s

Chip process evolution is a usual thing in a console’s lifecycle, but rarely has it been as important as in the case of the Xbox 360.

Known for its relatively hardware fragility, the original design of the Xbox 360 would frequently fall to the “Red Ring of Death” failure, which Microsoft terms as the three flashing red lights. While improvements in cooling and a CPU die shrink to 65nm in the Falcon revision have surely improved the situation, the problematic GPU still sits with its 90nm process.

The 65nm drop for the GPU in the Xbox 360 revision codenamed Jasper isn’t expected until August, a time frame backed up by a report from CENS. Microsoft has contracted Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc. (ASE) and Nanya PCB Corp. to build the chips that will ship with the Jasper consoles later this summer.

TSMC will produce the 65nm chips, ASE will package and test them, and Nanya will supply the flip-chip packaging substrates. Microsoft has supposedly booked a production capacity at TSMC estimated to be at around 10,000 300mm wafers.

Inventory of the existing Falcon chips are reportedly depleted, paving the way for the transition to Jasper. The next step for the Xbox 360 console is dubbed “Valhalla,” which will integrate both the GPU and CPU in a single package as a cost-cutting measure, isn’t expected until a year after Jasper.

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RE: Perfect
By erector16 on 5/9/2008 12:40:16 PM , Rating: 2
Uh oh, that's exactly how my console acted before I got the RROD. It did that for about two weeks, and then eventually would freeze during the boot process. Then the RROD.

RE: Perfect
By FITCamaro on 5/9/2008 2:41:56 PM , Rating: 2
Ok. Well if I have to exchange it this weekend, at least I'll be getting the Falcon model. Glad I bought the replacement plan though so I can just take it in and exchange it instead of having to mail it out for a few weeks. Also this way I'm guaranteed to get a new one instead of a refurb.

RE: Perfect
By FITCamaro on 5/12/2008 1:15:14 PM , Rating: 2
Exchanged my console on Saturday. The new one seems to run a bit cooler, but the first didn't really seem to run hot anyway. After about 4 hours of playing GTA IV, I put my hand back there and the air coming out seemed pretty cool. I know my graphics cards in the past have put out a lot hotter heat than my 360 ever has.

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