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Upcoming Xbox 360 hardware to have cooler IBM CPU, but not the revised ATI GPU

The Mercury News’ Dean Takahashi reports that the first Xbox 360 CPUs manufactured on the 65nm process are now on ships in the Pacific bound for North America. Should the consoles, which are made in China, arrive soon, then they could be on retail shelves sometime this fall.

Last month, Takahashi reported that the 65nm Xbox 360 chips would come in a revised hardware version that Microsoft has coded “Falcon.” The new chips are not only smaller and roughly 50 percent cheaper to produce than their 90nm counterpart, but they are also cooler – and presumably less prone to the Red Ring of Death defect.

Those expecting the 65nm die shrink to affect the two main chips inside the Xbox 360 will be disappointed to learn that only the console’s main processor will be the manufactured on the new process.

“Falcon is the name for the board that houses the 65-nanometer microprocessor from IBM,” wrote Takahashi. “The board does not include a 65-nanometer version of the ATI graphics chip for the Xbox 360. That version of the graphics chip is coming later.”

The new 65nm chip from IBM will work with both the current 90nm and the future 65nm iteration of the 65nm ATI GPU, according to Takahashi.

Oddly enough, it appears as though the main culprit behind the Xbox 360 reliability woes may be linked to the ATI GPU rather than the IBM CPU. As part of a recent fix to all 90nm-based consoles, Microsoft has been adding additional cooling measures into the Xbox 360. Found first in a repaired European Xbox 360 was a new heatsink with a heatpipe that leads to a secondary “daughter” heatsink helps to further cool the GPU.

The latest Xbox 360 Premium consoles with the HDMI-enabled “Zephyr” motherboard also features the extra heatsinks, providing further evidence that an overheating GPU is the main cause behind the Red Ring of Death.

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RE: Send it in
By Knowname on 8/28/2007 10:14:09 PM , Rating: 0
you're right, the Wii fails as a gamer machine. Succeds in the market it has made up, but fails in the gaming market. How long can the big N last on it's portable gaming profits??

Oh but you'll come back with, with the low development cost of the Wii, the Wii is BY FAR the most profitable home console... possibly the only one of it's generation making a profit! I'll give you that point. But riddle me this, Joker, how many Ninny 'gamers' do NOT have a DS/ Nintendo gaming system. If it wasn't for Ninny's portable userbase NOBODY would care for their home consoles!! Atari also had a VERY good and innovative product and so did Sega! But did anybody care??

Apple fans
Red Sox fans
and Wiitards
populate the VERY bottom of the evolutionary ladder as far as I'm concerned. All three pander to the lowest common denominator.

RE: Send it in
By kellehair on 8/29/2007 8:18:46 AM , Rating: 2
1. I don't have a DS so maybe you can answer this for me... has Nintendo even integrated the DS and Wii? I don't think they have.

2. Nintendo also had the best selling handheld last generation so by your logic the Gamecube actually won the last round of hardware wars. Oh wait, they came in a distant 3rd.

3. Playing off the success of other products seems like a smart business move. Why would you demean Nintendo for it? Did you badmouth Microsoft when they brought Xbox Live to Games for Windows?

RE: Send it in
By Knowname on 8/29/2007 11:20:02 AM , Rating: 2
>1. I don't have a DS so maybe you can answer this for me... has Nintendo even integrated the DS and Wii? I don't think they have.<

I don't have a DS (or any current gen console) either so I can't tell you for sure, but like you, I don't beleive so either.... but what's your point?

What I said is it's the POPULARITY of their francise' that make the system, interconnectivity is just an afterthought.

2 I have no clue where that came from. I never said anything about most popular anything, but Gamecube was very likely the most pofitable system last gen. At no time did N ever incur a loss. MS didn't even profit off of Xbox, it was 2nd most popular though, but...

3 I am not a fanboy by any length... heck I'm more a gaming analyst now than a gamer per say lol. I'm not 'demeaning' Nintendo, I am 'demeaning' blind Wiitards (Wii fanboys) that think their machine is popular! Market share is one thing, but popular is another and the Wii is NOT popular at all.

RE: Send it in
By kellehair on 8/29/2007 2:40:36 PM , Rating: 2
"Market share is one thing, but popular is another and the Wii is NOT popular at all."

Priceless. Thanks!

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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