Microsoft Xbox 360 Red Ring of Death

Discussion in 'Odds & Ends' started by superstition, Sep 7, 2008.

?

Had at least one failed unit, or know someone personally with one or more

  1. Yes

    82.9%
  2. No

    14.6%
  3. Original Xbox, not 360

    2.4%
  4. Wii or Playstation 3 failure only

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    Xbox 360 defects: an inside history of Microsoft’s video game console woes

    How many of you or people you know have had failed Xbox machines?
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2008
    #1
  2. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    3 times for me. never once had a system break until i got a xbox 360. great system crappy manufacturing.
     
    #2
  3. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    In case anyone is wondering, as far as I know the primary problem with the design is that Microsoft used a graphics chip that was made with a process that was too large for the cooling system it put into the console. It knew that eventually the process could be shrunk and decided that the appearance of the console was more important than a 100% failure rate for first generation units.

    Chip making continues to shrink the process size (measured now in nanometers) of processors. So, while older generation chips are 90 nanometers, Intel's latest CPU chips are 45 nanometers. If you take the same chip and shrink its process, it uses less energy to do the same work, resulting in less heat, because the distance the electrons have to travel in the chip is shorter. There are other issues that make it a bit more complex, but the basic bottom line is that the smaller the process the cooler the same chip will run, although manufacturers are likely to increase the clock speed to get more performance out of it which could theoretically lead to even more heat.

    The XBox's original graphics chip was a much larger process than what it is now (a similar thing happened with the original XBox which also had a high failure rate as far as I recall). Microsoft should have released the 360 with a much more robust cooling system and decided not to. Instead, the company chose to wait until smaller process chips were available. It was a completely idiotic move. 100% stupid.

    This is my understanding of the issue. I have not followed this closely because I never purchased on of these.
     
    #3
  4. forzainter

    forzainter Semi-Pro

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    I bought an xbox last year and have never had any problems with it, how long does it usually take for something to happen (had it since may 2007)?
     
    #4
  5. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    The newer units are made with a smaller GPU (and possibly CPU) process so the overheating problem may never happen.

    The problem is that Microsoft released the product with cooling that couldn't handle the heat the unit generated. And, it gave people used equipment as replacements. And, many people had to have three or more replacements. It's a fiasco of epic proportions. Just be careful not to get an old-design unit and you should be OK.
     
    #5
  6. mhstennis100

    mhstennis100 Semi-Pro

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    I bought a used 360 about 4 months ago. How can I tell if it's one of the older models or the newer ones? I bought it from Gamestop and the guy said it's a newer one because it has an HDMI port on the back, which the old ones didn't have, but I don't really trust Gamestop anymore. Anybody know?
     
    #6
  7. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    The one on display at the local wal-mart was blinking red one day. I took a picture but lost it... :(
     
    #7
  8. Hot Sauce

    Hot Sauce Hall of Fame

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    This is news?

    I'm on my 4th XBox 360, but as I've stated in other threads, it doesn't bother me waiting for a fixed x360 to be sent to me. It's only a couple weeks of playing time lost.
     
    #8
  9. Breaker

    Breaker Legend

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    My original Xbox died after about 2 and a half years. 360 hasn't had any problems as of yet and I've had it for about a year and a half. Hoping no problems come in the future either.
     
    #9
  10. pmata814

    pmata814 Professional

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    I'm on my 3rd Xbox 360 and I don't even play very much. I only play it during christmas and summer breaks. I wonder how many I would have gone through if I used it on a regular basis?
     
    #10
  11. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    I hope this is satire.
     
    #11
  12. Hot Sauce

    Hot Sauce Hall of Fame

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    I hope you learn to interpret what people write.
     
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  13. jmysun

    jmysun New User

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    the earlier models are prone to the red rings of death and even some of the new elites, but they have been getting more reliable. i've known someone who's had theirs replaced 5 times and it takes about 2 to 3 weeks to get one replaced.
     
    #13
  14. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    I interpreted it in a way that made me want to see it as satire for your sake.
     
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  15. Hot Sauce

    Hot Sauce Hall of Fame

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    Oh, you're too kind. Teabag me, please.
     
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  16. Voltron

    Voltron Hall of Fame

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    Pffft, like I'd know
    You play Xbox? Wouldn't have pegged you as a gamer.

    Back on topic: I'm on Xbox number 3 (and this one is on it's last legs) - My best friend is on Xbox number 3 - another friend is on Xbox number 5

    So yeah, they break, but I've gotten mine fixed for free, so it's not so bad, but it's still quite annoying. Oh yeah, after about xbox number two, they start to figure out who you are, and it gets back quicker IMHO.
     
    #16
  17. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    I used to be a talented gamer. But, no, I don't own an Xbox or anything newer than the Dreamcast. I haven't seen any compelling titles on the market for the newer systems - titles unavailable for computers. In general, I think gaming is lacking in diversity. There are so many FPS games, but there are genres that are severely lacking in titles and/or quality. Gaming still hasn't fully grown up into a mature industry that doesn't overly target teens and kids. "Mature" games have been long erroneously seen as either filled with gratuitous violence or really dry/boring (flight simulators, golf, and the like).

    When I was a kid and teen, though, I was an avid gamer. Now, there just isn't much that appeals to me on the market. I'd like to go into game design, but lack the funds.
     
    #17
  18. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    There was about a month window between the original 1 year warranty expired on mine and the new 3 year waranty kicked in. Of course I got the RROD in between this period.

    But I did some reasearch and basically discovered it was cooloing related. Its was not so much that too much heat was being generated, but it was the way the heatsink was being mounted on the board that caused alot of flex. that flex combined with expanding and contrating of the heat would weaken the solder joints on the board and essentially short the system out.

    People were wrapping thier system in a towel for 5 minutes and it would work again. They would also blast the board with a heat a gun. All this was doing was melting the solders and getting them to reseat perse. That was a temporary fix.

    I opened my 360 and rigged up my own mounting system for the heatsinks (google x clamp replacement). I also added some better thermal compound to aid cooling and added some small GPU Heatsinks to cool even better.

    After all that I fired the4 system up and still got the lights. So i wrapped the system up in a towel and left in on for about 3 minutes. Turned it off waited a couple hours and booted it back up. No RROD and its been about a year or so. I used to be worried when playing, but Its not an issue for me anymore. I logged over 120 hours playing Phantasy star and a good 90+ on morrowwind on my fixed 360 and its been fine.


    So the problem IMO was heat related in a way, but moreso in the enginerring of the heatsink mounting and not the use of 90nm boards
     
    #18
  19. TMCW140

    TMCW140 Hall of Fame

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    My 360 has packed in 4 times-considering using it as a bookend
     
    #19
  20. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    I see. Thanks for the info. I must have mixed up the problem with the original XBox with the 360. Maybe. As far as I hazily recall, the original XBox's first units had an overheating problem that was tied to the use of a big process chip. But, I could be wrong. Since I don't own these things I haven't paid close attention.
     
    #20
  21. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    The smaller boards do help the cooling process. Also the newer 360s have improved heatsinks with larger heatpipes to help dissapate the heat quicker.

    But that heat coupled with the heatsink clamp/mounting design did not help the matter. Its kinda hard to explain without pictures. But a heatsink that did not flex the board the way it does the 90nm board will have no problems. Essentially all I did was evenly distribute the presure of the heatsink across the board. Added some better thermal compound and a few more heatsinks where needed. All it cost me was a bout 15 bucks in material becasue the torx (star shaped) driver.
     
    #21
  22. anbu4ever11

    anbu4ever11 Semi-Pro

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    can anyone tell me if microsoft sends you a box to ship the xbox to them?i just called in i had my xbox since august of 07 which i thought the newer chips were suppose to be in causei i looked it up.turned out i went to the store and saw they were putting new xbox's on the shelves and asked for one of the ones they were putting.too bad it seems they were older ones.mine c****d out
     
    #22
  23. Chicken Neck

    Chicken Neck Rookie

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    The red ring of death has claimed three 360s in my household. Fun machine but a really monumental piece of crap.
     
    #23
  24. anbu4ever11

    anbu4ever11 Semi-Pro

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    when did your first one malfunction?
     
    #24
  25. westside

    westside Hall of Fame

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    Have owned a 360 for just over a year now and have gone through 1 already.

    Most of my mates at school have also had problems with the RROD.

    Kind of a b1tch really :)
     
    #25
  26. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    They used to ship a box to ya. probably still do.

    It kinda sucks that theres a good chance it will fail. but atleast you got a three year warranty. Mine had the one year so I dismantled it then a week later they made them three year. Oh Well I fixed mine for good, so it was better anyway :)
     
    #26
  27. FedererForehand

    FedererForehand Banned

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    I had 3 Xbox 360s (of which died). I got tired of waiting for the 3rd one to die on me so I just went out and purchased a playstation 3 last week. Runs much cooler and quieter than my 360s ever did.
     
    #27
  28. *breaksracquet

    *breaksracquet Semi-Pro

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    I own two 360s for this reason. I have had only one die and it was from the first initial launch (yes, I waited in line at Toys R' Us in rain and sleet for mine.... the most idiotic thing i've done). IMO, i thought mine lasted quite a long time for one that came out on the release date (1 year 7 months to be exact. I bought an insurance policy at Toys R' Us for two more years). about three days after it happened, I went threw withdrawal and went out and bought another one @ B est B uy. They have a good policy if it has a Ring of Death, you can bring it back and grab a new one from off the shelf. So I have been using this one just in case it does happen.
     
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  29. maverick66

    maverick66 Hall of Fame

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    my 360 just went down again. now its time for #4. bad part is my warranty expired and itss 99 dollars to fix it. at least it wasnt the the 3 rings this time. only one on the bottom right with an e74 hardware failure.
     
    #29
  30. FedererForehand

    FedererForehand Banned

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    Your warranty should not be exprired. I thought they changed the warranty on all 360s from 90 days to 3 years. Even if was bought on day one should still be covered... either way- time to buy a PS3- I did, best descision I've made.
     
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