Customer Review

62 of 67 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still a must-own for most gamers, September 29, 2012
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Xbox 360 250GB Console (Video Game)
My five-year-old Xbox needed replacing. It wasn't because of a failure with the console itself (I'd already gone through the red-rings a few years back, and the console was repaired under warranty, and worked fine), but the attached hard drive was slowing down/wearing out, causing lag in multiplayer and error messages during video streaming. Because my Xbox was an older non-Slim model, I couldn't buy a new hard drive for it, and the "refurbished" drives that Gamestop sells (really not refurbished any more than simply wiped of data and re-sold) were as old as my hard drive, or older. Thanks to Microsoft using a proprietary hard drive format, I was having to replace a working console.

For cost reasons, my preference was just to wait until the next-gen Xbox. With Halo 4 coming out, and the prospect of missing out on multiplayer with friends, I decided to buy a new Xbox.

Fortunately, Amazon had cut $50 off the price, and I was able to get the machine on this page before Amazon sold out. Because I selected Super Saver Shipping, Amazon sat on the order for a week, then shipped it in two days (go figure). As much as this new Xbox was a grudge purchase, I have to say the Slim model is a treat to use after the old white model I have.

First, I can't hear it under my desk. The white model sounded like a hair dryer, and the noise alone pushed me to use my PS3 more often. Now, the Xbox Slim and the PS3 are equally pleasant to use. Also, the smaller form factor of the Slim is appreciated. In a world where an iPhone makes headlines for getting a few mm thinner, it's also nice that consoles are shrinking.

The Slim's design looks like it was made by a hardware company, finally, and not a software giant that reaches for white plastic as a case solution. Since it is wise for console owners to keep their machines in well-ventilated areas due to the heat these things generate (I have mine out in the open), how the Xbox looks is relevant, even though it is simply a game machine.

What is most enjoyable about this new Xbox Slim, for me, I am now certain that any lag in function, either online, or with the Xbox dashboard, is due to my internet connection, or to the Xbox software, and not an aging console or hard drive. Having confidence in your hardware, especially when playing multiplayer games online, is a bonus, since lag or slow write speeds impact the performance you're striving for in a multiplayer environment. If I were just playing single player games, for example, I would have ridden the white Xbox until it literally broke down.

Moving from older hardware to the latest version also gives me perspective on what Microsoft has failed to improve on. The Xbox dashboard is laggy, and has been since before Xbox avatars were introduced. It's not a deal-breaker, especially given Microsoft's advantages, including an excellent chat feature that "just works" every time you use it, but you would think Microsoft could tap into some hardware acceleration, to give later-model users a bit faster load times on the dashboard. The same complaint could be levied against the DVD-ROM drive, which takes just as long to install a game to the hard drive as my five-year-old machine did. It's a moot point now, as Microsoft is undoubtedly focused on the next-generation Xbox, but if these small advantages had been implemented when the Slim was designed, it would have given upgraders like myself, forced upgraders some of us, a little bit of extra value. (I realize every Xbox needs to have the same performance capabilities in online settings, to keep a level playing field. It may have been problematic, but the Xbox still feels needlessly slow to use.)

If you find yourself with an Xbox you don't trust anymore, or are tired of the loud noise of an older model, there is still a year before the next-gen machine arrives, at least. A multiplayer gamer will get a lot out of a new Xbox, especially at $249. I went back and forth on it, but now that I upgraded, even this late in the cycle, I find the Slim just good enough to justify the expense.
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Comments

Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 15 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 6, 2012 1:27:51 PM PDT
El Flechero says:
You could have gotten a new hard drive for your non-slim xbox right here on amazon.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 6, 2012 4:45:38 PM PDT
C. S. says:
There are options for new HDD's, but some are 3rd party, with conflicting reports of performance/quality. Others are true Microsoft brand, but they run up to and over $100. Putting that money into an old console is a judgment call, for sure.

Posted on Oct 16, 2012 3:09:22 PM PDT
wickeddr says:
a year for the next gen xbox? rofl ust to reinform everybody of this guys mistake the new xbox wont be arriving untill 2o14 or 2o15

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 17, 2012 8:38:07 PM PDT
Good, that'll give me more time to save up, granted I won't be buying until almost a year after release to see what happens with glitches and such.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 18, 2012 10:43:31 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 18, 2012 11:14:28 AM PDT
C. S. says:
@wickeddr

The mistake is yours. Read more closely. I said, we are a year away from the next Xbox, "at least."

Some reputable, connected tech sites believe the next Xbox will arrive in 2013, and the PS4 in 2014. Others put those dates out 1-2 years. There are legitimate reasons to believe any of those dates.

The point is, there is a lot of time to use a new Xbox Slim model.

Posted on Oct 28, 2012 8:35:04 PM PDT
MD Babas says:
"What is most enjoyable about this new Xbox Slim, for me, I am now certain that any lag in function, either online, or with the Xbox dashboard, is due to my internet connection, or to the Xbox software, and not an aging console or hard drive. Having confidence in your hardware, especially when playing multiplayer games online, is a bonus, since lag or slow write speeds impact the performance you're striving for in a multiplayer environment"

I think I read this paragraph 3x. So, you are just saying the newer model being that it is "new" provides you with a gaming performance that has less lag? > If so, wouldn't that be expected of any new gear. I didn't see the point to that paragraph. It looks like you wrote 3 sentences to say nothing at all. Of course, that's what it seems to me.

Are there more couch co-op (local co-op) games for xbox than ps3, or is it about the same?

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 29, 2012 10:55:03 AM PDT
C. S. says:
@MD Babas

I read your question as many times as you say you read the paragraph. I don't undertand your question either! So, sorry that I can't offer a reply.

(I did understand your games question. It is about the same in my experience.)

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 29, 2012 6:02:12 PM PDT
MD Babas says:
I'm so sorry too. :(

But at least you answered my second question.

Stay safe, Sandy is pounding us as hell for a category 1.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 22, 2013 5:20:13 AM PDT
Sam says:
hahahahha more like Holiday 2013. The next Xbox is getting announced at E3 this year.

Posted on May 26, 2013 2:07:48 PM PDT
kevin says:
"proprietary hard drive format" Is he talking about how it uses FAT32? That's not proprietary. That's fairly common. And easy to format.
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