Play PC games on your Mac? TUAW tests CrossOver
Posts with tag overheating

The Xbox 360 and glitching, six months later

While the occasional glitching is just a part of owning new technology, there's something about that little red power ring that has the potential to send chills down any 360 gamer's spine. IGN set out to investigate the "glitch in the system" that plagued certain consoles last November from a six-month-later perspective.

Some cases are just extreme though. Take Chris Szarek, for example, who had to go through so many replacement consoles that he eventually got a personal call from Peter Moore who apologized for the matter. While he and other gamers with such issues could possibly be storing their consoles in an oven or something, there are other people who are clearly taking the right steps to avoid any sort of problems.

One of the IGN staffers had this to say once his own system bit the dust: "... while I was on the customer support line, I heard two guys in the background giving the exact same 'detach cables and hard drive' speech to other poor souls with dead 360s, so I think the problem of dying 360s is still pretty common." Read on for some interesting information regarding this "common" issue. It makes us wonder though: Are any of our readers out there still experiencing such problems?

Germans foiled again?

Microsoft has issued a semi-heated response to the German sprockets who wondered if a curious piece of foil on the 360 heatsink may be the cause of the console's much-discussed toaster oven issues. From Gamerccore Blog (run by Xbox employees):

The video and photos posted by German blog show thermal interface pads that are not installed incorrectly.  They are installed per specification.  This foil eliminates the need of a protective liner, which simplifies the final assembly process and minimizes shipping concerns and contamination issues.  

The manufacturing team pointed me to the exact part we used.

The part in question can be found here at

THERMFLOW T558 is recommended for applications where rework and ease of disassembly are important. This new material provides the high performance properties typical of free-film phase change materials with the added benefit of easy removal. T558 is the same phase material as T557 which has been coated on one side of a conformal metal foil carrier. It is easily attached onto a heat sink or heat spreader, leaving the metal foil surface exposed. This foil eliminates the need of a protective liner, which simplifies the final assembly process and minimizes shipping concerns and contamination issues.

Note the spec sheet above that refers to gray/silver foil. The Xbox-Scene forums have some interesting discussion on the matter.

So were the Germans off base? Is MS off the hook? Is it possible some 360s got the T558 and some the "foil-free" T557?

[Previously: Achtung! Xbox 360 overheating explained!]

Achtung! Xbox 360 overheating explained!

Ever get drunk and piss on the toilet seat without lifting the lid? I'll explain. The ever-resourceful Deutschland modding community has reportedly discovered the reason behind the 360's overheating issue. Xbox-Scene informs  that a group of German tech-heads from and took apart two independently purchased consoles and discovered the protective foil on the heatsink had not been removed

On the left
[see above pic] you see the CPU heatsink and how the thermal compound should normally look like. On the right you see the ATI GPU heatsink and people who are used to assemble PCs themself known this isn't how it should look like. It's not just a thick layer of compound ... there's actaully a plastic protective foil on top of the thermal compound.

On the right a close-up of the protective layer/foil on top of the heat transfer pad. On the left the protective foil has been removed and placed next to the heat pad. This protective layer is probably placed by the manifacturer of the heatsink and is used to protect the heat transfer pad from dust, but should normally be removed just prior installing the heatsink on the GPU. The way it's installed now by MS the GPU chip makes contact with the plastic protection foil instead of the heat transfer pad. This can of course cause cooling issues for the graphics chip as for optimal cooling performance there should just be a thin layer of thermal pad between the GPU chip and heatsink.

They also have a video (in German) that appears to point out the offending foil.

How many consoles could be affected by this basic issue? Was the overheating scandal really as simple as Friday Happy Hour on the assembly lines? Hardware-savvy readers please weigh in. Also would any German-speakers care to translate?

[Previously: Motion filed to dismiss overheating lawsuit]

Motion filed to dismiss overheating lawsuit

The lawsuit brought by a Chicago man displeased with the Xbox 360's overheating problems is due to be heard on January 10th, but Microsoft are trying to get it thrown out of court before it even begins. It seems that Robert Byers hasn't even contacted customer support about the problems with his own 360--and it's not even clear his 360 is malfunctioning. He may be bringing the lawsuit on the strength of others' complaints, which will make for an interesting argument in court.

In the motion to dismiss, Microsoft notes that "Significantly, Plaintiff omits the fact that his Xbox 360, purchased in November 2005, is still covered by a 90-day warranty, under which Microsoft agreed to repair or replace it, or issue a refund. In fact, Plaintiff does not allege that he contacted anyone at Microsoft about the alleged defect, let alone that Microsoft refused to honor the terms of its warranty. Moreover, Plaintiff does not allege that his Xbox 360 ever malfunctioned. He alleges only that "members of the class have experienced malfunctions" with their Xbox 360s - not that he has.


Unlock the Achievement (1)
X3F TV (30)
Cheats (10)
Console wars (236)
Contests and Giveaways (130)
Deals and Bargains (156)
Downloads (178)
E3 (81)
Fan stuff (994)
Hacks / mods (142)
HD-DVD Releases (64)
How-tos (44)
Interviews (103)
MMO (12)
Multiplayer (116)
News (6230)
Peripherals (235)
Podcasts (75)
Polls (26)
Reviews (43)
Rumors (261)
Shipping this week (54)
Video Marketplace (68)
Videos (330)
What are you playing? (68)
WMC (18)
Xbox Live (736)
Xbox Live Arcade (820)
Xbox Live Marketplace (872)
GDC '07 Coverage
GDC '07 (33)



Powered by Blogsmith

Worth reading

  • 360 Arcadians
  • 360Sync
  • Achieve360Points
  • Gamerscore Blog
  • Gamertag Radio
  • GameTrailers 360
  • Halo.Bungie.Org
  • Major Nelson
  • Planet Xbox 360
  • TeamXbox
  • Unscripted 360
  • XBLArcade
  • Xbox 360 Achievements
  • Xbox Domain
  • Xbox-Scene
  • Xboxyde
  • Xboxygen (French)

Featured Galleries

Velvet Assassin
Ninja Gaiden II (Gamers' Day 2008)
Fable 2 (Gamers' Day 08)
Gears of War 2
Too Human
Assault Heroes 2 (XBLA)
Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise
Banjo-Kazooie 3
Things on Wheels


Most Commented On (14 days)

Recent Comments

Worth reading

  • 360 Arcadians
  • 360Sync
  • Achieve360Points
  • Gamerscore Blog
  • Gamertag Radio
  • GameTrailers 360
  • Halo.Bungie.Org
  • Major Nelson
  • Planet Xbox 360
  • TeamXbox
  • Unscripted 360
  • XBLArcade
  • Xbox 360 Achievements
  • Xbox Domain
  • Xbox-Scene
  • Xboxyde
  • Xboxygen (French)

Weblogs, Inc. Network

  • Autos
    • Autoblog
    • AutoblogGreen
    • Autoblog Spanish
    • Autoblog Chinese
    • Autoblog Simplified Chinese
  • Technology
    • Download Squad
    • Engadget
    • Engadget HD
    • Engadget Mobile
    • Engadget Chinese
    • Engadget Simplified Chinese
    • Engadget Japanese
    • Engadget Spanish
    • Switched
    • TUAW (Apple)
  • Lifestyle
    • AisleDash
    • DIY Life
    • Gadling
    • Green Daily
    • Luxist
    • ParentDish
    • Slashfood
    • Styledash
    • That's Fit
  • Gaming
    • Joystiq
    • DS Fanboy
    • Massively
    • Nintendo Wii Fanboy
    • PS3 Fanboy
    • PSP Fanboy
    • WoW Insider
    • Xbox 360 Fanboy
  • Entertainment
    • Cinematical
    • TV Squad
  • Finance
    • BloggingBuyouts
    • BloggingStocks
    • WalletPop
  • Also on AOL
    • African-American Culture
    • Autos
    • Games
    • Maps
    • Money
    • Movies
    • Music
    • News
    • Radio
    • Sports
    • Television
    • Travel

Other Weblogs Inc. Network blogs you might be interested in:

PS3 Fanboy
  • Prince of Persia hitting shelves before year's end, ideally
  • Beyond Good and Evil 2 in preproduction, awaiting approval
  • April NPD: GTA IV million seller on PS3, hardware sales close to 360
WOW Insider
  • The Guild, season finale: Boss Fight
  • It came from the Blog: Revenge of the Orc-Moms
  • Main hands and one-hands after 2.4.2
Nintendo Wii Fanboy
  • Hand substitutions
  • X-Play gets their hands on Order Up!
  • Virtually Overlooked: Skate or Die
DS Fanboy
  • Disney's DGamer service launches today
  • Tomy passes over Naruto RPG 2 localization in favor of Naruto RPG 3
  • Rock Revolution bringing the whole band to DS
PSP Fanboy
  • April NPD: hardware sales rising, no bestselling software
  • Details on Phantasy Star Portable, import PSU characters
  • American PC Store updates for May 15th