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The Xbox 360's toasty GPU won't get a reprieve until late 2008

For those of you hoping to get an Xbox 360 with both a 65nm CPU and GPU, your wait is going to be a bit longer. The Mercury News' Dean Takahashi first brought us news of the Falcon motherboard that houses a 65nm CPU and 90nm GPU in July. Takahashi the following month reported that Xbox 360 consoles featuring the new motherboard and revised processor would begin shipping this fall.

While Xbox 360 consoles are starting to trickle into the retail market with 65nm processors and revised cooling, a new 65nm GPU die shrink won't arrive until late 2008 according to Takahashi.

The new Xbox 360 consoles coming late next year feature both a 65nm CPU and GPU will be codenamed Jasper. This would mark nearly a three-year gap between when the Xbox 360 was first released until a solution is finally presented for what has arguably been one of the most troublesome aspects of the console's design.

Many people have reported of DVD drives damaging game discs or failed HDDs, but the overwhelming majority of Xbox 360 failures have come at the hand of the dreaded Red Ring of Death (RRoD) which often points towards an overheated GPU.

"I don’t know why it will take Microsoft essentially three years to cost reduce the size of the graphics chip through a manufacturing shrink," said Takahashi. "Microsoft has had to divert a lot of engineers to debugging problems with Xbox 360 reliability. Even so, you would think that they would have moved faster, since the move to 65-nm graphics chip will likely be one of the best things they can do to improve the reliability."

Microsoft contends, however, that the new cooling solution provided with Falcon is sufficient to provide sufficient cooling for all internal Xbox 360 components. The Falcon cooling solution may be better than on previous Xbox 360 designs, but the solution to the main heat problem is nearly a year away.

"The Falcon board will likely give off less heat," continued Takahashi. "But the real serious heat saver looks like it will come with Jasper."

Reduced thermals aren't the only benefit of the upcoming Jasper-based Xbox 360s. Switching to the 65nm CPU has allowed Microsoft to reduce manufacturing costs for the consoles and cut costs for consumers. Making the move to a 65nm GPU will cut costs even further and could lead to another round of price cuts according to Takahashi.

"If I were Microsoft, I would try to pull in the date of Jasper as soon as possible," Takahashi added. "What they need right now is a lower cost so that they can be more competitive against the Wii and so they leave no openings for Sony."



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RE: Not so sure about this
By Murst on 10/11/2007 11:57:06 AM , Rating: 2
Why would you buy a 2.4 GHz cordless phone if you have wi-fi set up?

Its not like it isn't advertised. I just went to best buy the other day to look at phones, and they had charts all over the phone section about what phone to get if you have wireless networking installed. The phone prices seem to vary with the features too, not really with frequency.

Personally, I find wireless a great thing. It would be a complete pain to rewire my house so that I can get a cable down into the living room.

I guess in a college situation where one person brins a router, another brings a phone, and a third person tries to use it... you could run into conflicts. But I'm guessing such situations are more the exception rather than the rule.


RE: Not so sure about this
By afkrotch on 10/14/2007 9:04:20 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't even have to have all ppl in the same room. It could be the guy next door with a 2.4 ghz phone.

I stick with wired, simply for higher speeds. Not such a big deal for consoles, but for comp to comp transfers, 1000 mbps is ftw!


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