Of all the computer consoles ever released, the Xbox 360 has garnered the worst reputation. While it’s not the worst, the scale of its failure has grown due to the easy-to-access media and news coverage and the higher sales that previously released consoles. This is a recipe for disaster and reports indicate that a significant portion of all Xbox 360s have failed at some point during their usage. Fortunately, there are methods to avoiding such problems. One would be to look to what model of 360 it is, whether it’s the first iteration of the 360 console or if its the latest model, the Xbox 360 ‘Slim’. As time goes by, newer and better hardware is utilized by Microsoft to create a superior console that has the same power, but a lot more efficiency and reliability. On top of this, the newer models have some of their own issues, though not nearly as many. Whatever the cases, you should be aware of Xbox 360 faults before you purchase either an older model or a second-hand one.
Perhaps the most notorious of the Xbox 360’s faults it the Red Ring of Death (RROD). This is named as such because when a serious problem strikes the console, three of the four green LEDs become red, almost creating a full red circle. While the full circle is less serious, the third-quarter circle represents a general hardware failure. This essentially means a part of the console is bust and that it will need replacing or fixing. Unfortunately, it’s not that simple to fix and many consoles have been broken in amateur attempts to do so.
The reasons behind the RROD usually reside in the overheating area. Microsoft’s tight-lipped status on such technical breakages makes it hard to pinpoint such sources, but investigations by third-parties suggests that the hardware is subject to such problems. They are incapable of holding electrical currents and high temperatures for too long before breaking and the RROD becomes inevitable with older machines. The newer models suffer less because the hardware is more efficient.
One of the more serious problems with a games console, the disc tray has shown that it’s not complete protective of the media placed within. In some cases the vibrations through the console can cause the disc to be scratched uniformly and beyond repair. While Microsoft takes the stance that it’s user error from the owners moving the console while it’s spinning the disc, independent studies have shown that it can occur during every day, common household vibrations.
This is an error in which the lower-right of the ring flashes red. The E74 System Error is caused by the video, when there’s damage to the hardware. While it is included under the warranty, it can strike in many cases, but gives the user early warning signs, such as video artifacts. Essentially, the video quality will degrade severely and this should be enough warning that the E74 error is about to occur.
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