Release Date: 6/14/2010
MSRP: $299.99 (250GB HDD Model)
The Good: Sleeker design, built-in Wi-Fi, Kinect ready, HDD is built-in, smaller power supply, a lot less noisy, lighter
The Bad: Memory unit slot removed, can’t swap out HDD’s, casing feels cheaper, only worth the upgrade for hardcore gamers
The Xbox 360 has probably struggled the most hardware wise since its launch in November of 2005. With extreme overheating issues, loud disc trays, and high-pitched disc spin-ups it’s been rough. After the new Xbox Elite came out with fixed some issues with a smaller 45-nanometer processor for slightly faster load times and less heat. It featured a bigger 250GB HDD and more solid hardware, but it was still having overheating and RROD (Red Ring of Death) issues. Now that the Xbox 360 S is out it fixes all these issues with grace.
The console has a new slick gloss finish design with stylish air vents and the whole concaved thing is out the window. All the buttons are touch panel buttons and release an awesome “ding” tone when touched. The tray is quieter, and the HDD is now built inside as well as there is a much smaller power supply/brick. This is all noticed right out of the box and makes it worth another purchase. The biggest addition is probably the built-in Wi-Fi as well as a Kinect port. The Xbox memory unit slot has been removed since you can now back up saves on a flash drive, but people who have items saved on one will be out of luck here.
The console also has built-in HDMI and can support up to 1080p, but other than these new features nothing else is really new. The console also can’t technically RROD anymore due to there being no red LEDs. The console’s plastic casing does feel a bit cheaper and less sturdy than the other consoles, but with being 10x lighter it really makes up for it. I highly recommend upgrading to the 360 S if you really hate your old console or it’s about to bite the dust. Trading in your old console could make up the difference and make it well worth the purchase.
Note: There’s an unknown misnomer that the Xbox 360 displays true 1080p, it does not. The PS3 does, but this is mainly due to the fact that the original Xbox 360 didn’t have HDMI and only Component. HDMI was added later in the Elite systems. Some games are upscaled making them look blurry and messy and a 1080p display and even the dashboard is upscaled. People will say, “But it says 1080p!” Yeah, it supports 1080p but isn’t displaying true 1080p resolution. Games are just upscaled in the hardware (think stretched out) thus why PS3 games look much clearer and sharper. Can the GPU really render games in 1080p? Probably not when you push the console to its limits. The PS3 does have a slightly more powerful GPU with the custom built RSX card by Nvidia. The RSX runs at 550Mhz while the ATI Xenos GPU in the 360 run at 500Mhz. I thought I would clear that up.