New Xbox 360 Elite – big new disk drive, no new CPU, still noisy

Microsoft's new Xbox 360 Elite has notable improvements, but several enhancements that enthusiasts had been hoping for are not present, analysts have confirmed.

The revamped video games console boasts a large 120GB hard drive as well as clear and sharp HDMI output. However, as expected, the console's CPU is not the new low-temperature 65 nanometer part, which is now predicted to arrive this fall.

Despite rumors to the contrary, the main sources of noise that had bothered some users do not yet appear to have been addressed.

CPU sliced

Engineers at research firm Semiconductor Insights (SI) went to the extreme of slicing one Xbox Elite CPU open and examining it under a microscope to confirm that it was built using the older 90nm manufacturing process, says SI's Greg Quirk

Other than the new hard drive, “the new video interface chip which handles HDMI scaling is the only other major difference between the original Xbox 360 and the Elite,” says SI's Rob Hilkes

CPUs built using finer manufacturing process can generally run at lower voltages than their predecessors, and therefore generate less heat. Overheating in the Xbox 360 has been blamed for both reliability problems, and noise – the latter due to the fans required to cool it.

Noisy optical drive

Microsoft apparently has chosen not to address the noise issues with this version of the console, as another key noise source, the console's optical drive, remains unchanged.

“Many people have complained about the loud noise coming from their systems,” noted Hilkes.

“Considering the lengths that Microsoft went to in enhancing the Xbox 360, we found it interesting that they used the same Hitachi LG drive that had been used in other models instead of going with a quieter solution.”

What's new?

The Xbox 360's 120Gb disk drive is the largest ever in a video games console, and now challenges those in popular PVR systems. By allowing users to store large amounts of content, it will help Microsoft further its goal of making the console a true home entertainment center, says Quirk. The larger drive also lets Microsoft ship more pre-installed demos and other content with the game – these can be erased by the user.

The HDMI v1.2 output is an example of the kind of the features that Microsoft had to leave out in order to reach its goal of shipping the Xbox 360 one year ahead of the competition from Sony's PS3 and Nintendo's Wii. Once again, the higher resolutions offered by the new HDMI connection make the console more attractive as a media center, by simply offering better picture quality in games and high definition movies.

While pushing the console onto the market as fast as possible meant that some corners had to be cut, it appears to have given  Microsoft a valuable head start in the race for market share with Sony, whose powerful, feature-rich Playstation 3 was released late, amidst cost overruns and reports of slower-than-expected sales. The long ramp up period also means that manufacturing problems have been ironed our and Microsoft has Xbox 360s on store shelves to tempt consumers while Nintendo struggles to meet demand for its extremely popular Wii console.

It's just too damn loud!

It's just too damn loud!

I have to agree, I bought a

I have to agree, I bought a 360 when it first came out, it kept freezing so under warranty I got it repaired and sold it. I since have owned a ps3, due to their being a limited supply of games and me being a Halo fanatic, I now have the new HDMI premium 360. Even the new 360 is loud. Compared to my Pioneer Elite Receiver, PS3, and TV, the 360 sounds like a harrier taking off. Sadly its just not a well built piece of machinery.

I agree

360 sucks dude

360 does not suck you will

360 does not suck you will be buying games while i play backups on my xbox 360 elite.


ps3 sucksssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss and looks ugly plus i have to say the elite 360 rocksssssssssss ps3 people just jealous that we have better console and better selection of games. so either put up or shut up


Bro are you serious?

1.Microsoft may be making money,but the actual company is a group of fucking flamming homo's.
2.The xbox 360 has had over 11.6 million recalls due to defects.Think I'm lieing?

3.PLaystation 3 has had less thank 10k recalls.

4.Microsofts incorperation with the Xbox360 has done nothing but "jocked" every other systerm....

(( Chacters...remind you of the nintendo Wii Mii's? And the new "online community coming out november 14....remind you of Playstion home?

ps3 has every benefit over the 360..needless to say.We dont pay to play
Before you make an ass of yourself,at least know what your talking about n00b.

they both suck iv used both

they both suck iv used both the ps3 n 360 n both r dead, the annoying thing is they use use cheap components which prob only costs them bout £100 2 make n sell them off 4 3-4x that price. y cant they just make consoles like they used 2 the xbox was a good console n the playstation n ps2 were gr8, still got them n they work fine even with their age only prob i had with my ps2 was the fan died. n another thing y does sony release bricks n then decide 2 release crappy slim vers of their consoles???


I love the fanboyism here. For one comment here is illigal bout the back ups. Just makes you look bad playing games you dont own. and on the elite comment? loud as origional rrod. Why should we be jeleous when our systems actually work?

games you don't own?

You have to have the game in the disc drive to play it from the hard drive. This prevents people from playing games they don't own. I have to say that I am a total 360 lover though. My friend likes the ps3. It's just a difference in gameplay and style. ps3 is way more "sleek" but freezes and locks down all the time. 360 has better multiplayer, and a larger community, yet also "generally screws up" all the time. I've got an elite and the disc drive just failed. Good thing they are cheap and easy to work on at home!

Fanboy fail

perfect example of the pot calling the kettle black

#@%* you

even if its louder abd ps3 has better features 360 still has beter game play better games and more selection. the only games ps3 has is the resistance series everything else is muti platform for #@%*ups

well i own both so #### all u paupers

well i own both so #### all u paupers looooooooooooooooool

Despite rumors to the

Despite rumors to the contrary, the main sources of noise that had bothered some users do not yet appear to have been addressed.


can i just say the reason

can i just say the reason there's been less than 10k ps3s recalled is because less than 10k have actually been bought... The ps3 is better, the controllers better and it's more powerful.. But they seriously buggered up the launch. The 360 is doing much better and has many more gamer over the ps3. Ps3 owners are losing out imo


ps3 sucksssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss and looks ugly plus i have to say the elite 360 rocksssssssssss

I don't like any consoles

I don't like any consoles anymore. The menus and options are too spread out making it difficult to navigate. And what's with game developers: game options should be fit on one or two pages like they used to be, not 7 different pages? And then when you play multiplayer there's another 5 pages of options and more subpages and registering controllers. This is the age of HD and we should fit finer text on one page.

Graphics and performance hasn't increased the way I though next gen system should. The noise is ridiculous. I bought the 360 elite and tried to like it but I couldn't and took it back.

My opinion

I have both - the PS3 and XBOX360 Elite. Xbox is way too loud and is mostly popular because of Halo games. Also on Xbox you need to pay for internet which sound rediculious cause you can get it for free on PS3.
PS3 is easier to deal with in menus and is more reliable. But sometimes the graphics are lot worse than on Xbox (exc. Bayonetta).
All in all I suggest you go outside and have a good day instead of sitting in front of computer.