Microsoft Xbox 360 Elite Dissected, Layout Changes Revealed

News Posted 20/04/07
Author: PV5150
Source: DailyTech

XBOX 360 logo have managed to get their hands on one of the new XBOX 360 Elites and disected it for your viewing pleasure. Let’s have a look and see what significant changes Microsoft has made this time around.

Although rumours have it that the IBM 90nm Xenon PowerPC processor will be replaced in favor of a cooler running 65nm variant, it is as yet unknown whether this is in fact true.

Popping off the heatsink reveals a different CPU revision. It is unknown if the different revision correlates to a 65nm Xenon, however, other changes to the PCB raises further speculation.

Microsoft has revised power delivery on the new Elite.

The Xbox 360 Elite makes use of smaller capacitors arranged in slightly different arrangements. Microsoft has also reduced the amount of MOSFETs installed in the power supply section of the PCB. There are also fewer resistors located above the CPU as well.

However, despite the power changes, the die size remains the same as with the HDMI-less Xbox 360. One could speculate the Xenon CPU is still 90nm but Microsoft has opted to integrate a different thermal bin, similar to how AMD bins its regular Athlon 64 X2 and Energy Efficient models.

Microsoft has also made an attempt to rectify PCB warping issues associated with heat.

Xbox 360 owners have had issues with the ‘red ring of death’…which is possibly due to the BGA packaging of the CPU and GPU. When things get too hot, the connection between the BGA part and the PCB can disconnect when the PCB warps.

Microsoft has attempted to address this problem by surrounding the CPU and GPU with epoxy on the Xbox 360 Elite. It is unknown if newer revision Xbox 360 Core and Premium bundles feature the same preemptive measures.

Elite motherboard

It’ll be interesting to see how these new changes are received come the 29th of April when the Elite is officially released.

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