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Black Xbox 360 with HDMI arriving late April?

Black Xbox 360 with HDMI arriving late April?

How the black 360 will look according to Game Informer. Image courtesy Kotaku.

So if the rumours are true, we could be seeing not only a HDMI enabled, 120GB hard drive containing Xbox 360 sooner than we realised, it will come in black. Kotaku is reporting that magazine Game Informer has the exclusive on an upcoming black Xbox 360 that is to arrive as soon as late April.

The HD-DVD drive is still an optional item and the black 360 will contain a standard 12x DVD-ROM, but there's no word whether a black HD-DVD drive will be available to match the new 360 styling. Microsoft are apparently claiming the HD-DVD format isn't yet proven enough to warrant offering an integrated solution.

The 120GB drive will still be available separately and is tipped to retail for under $200. So that'll be $199.95 then. Microsoft will definitely be getting their money's worth, considering a 120GB 2.5" SATA laptop drive retails for half as much.

The retail price is quoted at approximately $479, putting it around the same price as a 20GB PS3. However, the PS3 hard drive can be swapped for any standard 2.5" SATA laptop drive and you still get Blu-Ray support as standard.

If you've ever seen a 360 and PS3 stand side by side (if you haven't, check out TrustedReviews on Friday), you'll know the 360 just looks like it's made out of cheap plastic and the black 360 unfortunately doesn't look any different.

No doubt those who invested in an Xbox 360 over the Christmas period will be spitting bullets at this news, but it will mean the 360 is now more directly comparable with the PS3 in features and colour. Although grabbing yourself a bottle of black vinyl dye should save you a few quid.

Ninja Update: Thanks to eagle eyed forum member DougEdey, Engadget has got some more details for us:

The system will be a limited run of a few hundred thousand and will be dubbed the Xbox Elite, shipping a black controller and Live headset with console.

It will then take the place of the Premium models after the Elite is sold out, but will then return to ship in the usual white, but still offer a 120GB hard drive and HDMI. Engadget highlights that the console will run cooler, but has yet to confirm whether they are built on a 65nm process.

Even though reducing heat output is a plus, hopefully the rather large failure rates will be lowered also with this new process. The move to 65nm should also lower costs and eventually lead to a lower price for the Premium model, although nothing is yet confirmed.

29 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
atanum141 21st March 2007, 14:21 Quote
meh....im happy with my standard premium system thank you.

Also im gonna add my external caddy as extra HDD space when i need it. So maybe with a little help of Black vynal dye ill have a black xbox too!
Bindibadgi 21st March 2007, 14:25 Quote
Yea, I don't know why people just don't DIY if they want a black one. It's not like they've changed it and made it shiney.

Anyone else thing April is strangely soon and kind of out of season?
kempez 21st March 2007, 14:30 Quote
Bit of a strange date but I suspect it's as a response to the shiny black thing out Friday.

I am also pretty happy with my white 360.

The 120gb HDD is only useful if MS implement decent IPTV soon and personally I dont have a monitor with HDMI so it's not needed right now
Lazlow 21st March 2007, 14:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by article
Microsoft are apparently claiming the HD-DVD format isn't yet proven enough to warrant offering an integrated solution.
This could either be a very clever move or stupid. Having integrated HD-DVD would push the standard as the PS3 is hoping to do for Blu-Ray.

Either way, I'll be purchasing a 360 sometime soon, either in black or white. A friend's told me that it's very easy to fill up the standard 20GB.
atanum141 21st March 2007, 14:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kempez

The 120gb HDD is only useful if MS implement decent IPTV soon and personally I dont have a monitor with HDMI so it's not needed right now
I dont see the use of HDMI, sure its for the new fangled DVD formats but with either the Component or even the HD VGA cable im sure the picture quality would be just as good.

I have a VGA cable for my monitor so when i finally get a HDTV it will be plugged in this manner. Same goes for the 120Gig HDD, i'd rather just plug in a external caddy.
DougEdey 21st March 2007, 14:57 Quote
Bindi: Engadget got confirmation from "trusted sources"

http://www.engadget.com/2007/03/20/xbox-360-elite-new-black-limited-edition-xbox-with-hdmi-and-120gb-drive/
Quote:
Originally Posted by ENGADGET
* The Elite will be limited quantities only; that may be as much or as little as a couple hundred thousand.
* The case, controller, and Live headset will all be black. It will have all new packaging.
* Elite will cost $479, and will be a 3rd SKU; it will be sold alongside Premium and Core packs.
* Eventually Elite hardware (in white plastics) will take the role of the Xbox Premium. That is to say, after the Elite is launched and sold out, future Xbox Premiums will have 120GB / HDMI.
* We do not yet know exactly when 120GB / HDMI will become the standard for Premium, but it is loosely estimated to be late summer or fall.
* Elite models run cooler than normal 360s, but they are not yet confirmed to have 65nm chips.
* Prices may remain the same with the 120GB / HDMI hardware upgrade in the Premium Xbox, but we may still see a price cut on the line when 65nm chips start shipping.
* The HD DVD drive will not be internal or bundled -- Microsoft never did or nor does not currently have plans to put an HD DVD drive in the 360.
* There are no current plans to integrate WiFi into the Elite or future Premiums (although that can always change).
[
UnkleRosco 21st March 2007, 15:23 Quote
I'll believe it when i see it.. and when i do i'll prob buy one.. I just hope to god its quiter.. This "Elite" 360 has been floating around the web for ages..... Fri would be a good day for Microsoft to confirm it...
Swafeman 21st March 2007, 15:39 Quote
Good and bad,

Good, it makes it look better than the PS3

Bad, its only 20$ less and doesn't have BR, wont this put people off? Unless they plan to release a 20GB version of the premium too at a much reduced price, say the price of the current core, with the 120GB at the current premiums price

There just increasing the cost and not hittin the PS3 where it hurts, price, people dont want to pay loads for a console, so making a lower price would be a killer blow (And they can because the 360 is now making a profit on each unit sold!)
kempez 21st March 2007, 15:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by atanum141
I dont see the use of HDMI, sure its for the new fangled DVD formats but with either the Component or even the HD VGA cable im sure the picture quality would be just as good.

Ye that's my point. I don't need it right now and even HD-DVD plays through VGA so no problem there. However Blu-Ray is a nice format and is much more supported by Studio's than HD-DVD at the moment so I may need a TV with HDCP and HDMI if I want some nice BR playback. Time will tell
Quote:
Originally Posted by atanum141
I have a VGA cable for my monitor so when i finally get a HDTV it will be plugged in this manner. Same goes for the 120Gig HDD, i'd rather just plug in a external caddy.

Hell if a 120gb one was shipped with mine I wouldn't complain, but unless I am gonna start needing it then 20gb does me fine
bloodcar 21st March 2007, 15:48 Quote
If only they had released this version at launch. :(

I really, really, really, really, really want this new SKU (really). Mainly for the fact that it has HDMI and I'll be upgrading my SDTV to a nice 42" 1080p HDTV before the end of the summer. Also, I refuse to paint my current 360 since it has a lifetime warrenty on it (Yay! for owning a 2005 console) and really don't want to void that. I smoke in my house so I've noticed discolouration on my 360 already. Not to mention the fact that I've bitched about having a white controller ever since I bought it (hence why I did the camo paint job on one of my controllers).

An HD-DVD pack-in would have been a better idea though. Even if not included in the system itself but as a matching external unit would help HD-DVD gain back some ground that it's lost this year.
DougEdey 21st March 2007, 15:55 Quote
If you're in the US Walmart having been selling the HDDVD players for $130
gimpchimp 21st March 2007, 16:04 Quote
Dangit, over in Britain, they are £134.99. £ to $ conversion rate at the moment is 1.9 or so. Brits get screwed again.
Bindibadgi 21st March 2007, 16:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougEdey
Bindi: Engadget got confirmation from "trusted sources"

http://www.engadget.com/2007/03/20/xbox-360-elite-new-black-limited-edition-xbox-with-hdmi-and-120gb-drive/

[


Nice job dougydooberry, updated the article ;)

Bloodcar: Launch was 18 months ago, that's like asking for an 8800GTX when they released 7800s.
samkiller42 21st March 2007, 16:46 Quote
The HD DVD Drive is only £129.99 on play.com

Despite that i actually like the look of the console being black all over, i actually tend to look at my TV more than the console, so the colour wont bother me to much, and if i want to see a black console (because you only see the front), buy this http://www.play.com/Games/Xbox360/GENBRW/3-/819464/Joytech_Faceplate_For_XBox_360/Product.html

Sam
Snaek 21st March 2007, 16:57 Quote
Here's what they should do:
Xbox 360 "Elite" bundled with HD-DVD $479
XBox 360 Premium w/HDMI & 120GB HDD $400
XBox 360 Core w/HDMI & 20GB HDD $300

(Or maybe even drop the prices)
UnkleRosco 21st March 2007, 17:17 Quote
If u have a 20gb Drive how to u move ur stuff onto the 120gb one???
Robotrix 21st March 2007, 21:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by kempez
Bit of a strange date but I suspect it's as a response to the shiny black thing out Friday.

I am also pretty happy with my white 360.

The 120gb HDD is only useful if MS implement decent IPTV soon and personally I dont have a monitor with HDMI so it's not needed right now
I don't know why people keep saying that... you don't need a bigger hard drive for IPTV; 20Gb is fine. With IPTV you don't download your TV programmes and then watch it, because it's all streamed . So you hardly need the hard disk space apart from for the software required by Microsoft TV and the odd movie that you might like to download every now and then.
bloodcar 21st March 2007, 21:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindibadgi
Bloodcar: Launch was 18 months ago, that's like asking for an 8800GTX when they released 7800s.

Not really though. This are very minor upgrades that were possible when the console launched. If I can manage to unload my current 360 for a decent amount, I might just pick one of these bad boys up.
r4tch3t 21st March 2007, 23:59 Quote
language boy, language.
HDMI is good because we as tech enthusiasts know that you don' need a TV to use HDMI, just get a 24", 27" or 30" LCD and one of these:
http://i122.photobucket.com/albums/o267/r4tch3t/HDMI20-20DVI20cable.jpg
Still, the only console games I want are on the PS3, and IMHO the XBox looks crap compared to the PS3.
Neogumbercules 22nd March 2007, 03:10 Quote
I just hope game developers don't start requiring large installs for their games once the 120GB hard drive becomes mainstream. If that happens I stop buying games for it. I'm sure most people are more than willing to pony up 200 bucks for that bigger hard drive because they don't know what the hell they are buying.

I'm with Aman. There's no ******** way I'm paying 200 ******* dollars for a ****** 120gb hard drive.
DougEdey 22nd March 2007, 07:05 Quote
I can guarantee that as soon as the 120GB Hard drive is released there will be a cheaper kit from Team Xecuter that lets you put your own drive in.

£10 down on the table now.
JaredC01 22nd March 2007, 08:11 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougEdey
I can guarantee that as soon as the 120GB Hard drive is released there will be a cheaper kit from Team Xecuter that lets you put your own drive in.

£10 down on the table now.
Team X for the win. Ya know... At one point, I was a beta tester for a breakout box they were developing (which included VGA, no special BIOS required). They were having problems with the unit, and asked for some help. I helped, and never saw anything put out since then. I do still have the dev board though (albeit soldered to hell here and there) :).

On that note, Xbox360 > PS3 any day of the week IMO. I wouldn't personally buy the new version with HDMI simply because it's un-necessary, and should be able to be added (modded) into the current 360's.

On that note, r4tch3t, does the cable you posted work for dual-link monitors? I assume not as all HDTV signals are 1080p or less, and the 30" i'm working on is 2560 x 1600 (1600p). Any confirmation on this would be loverly.
DougEdey 22nd March 2007, 08:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neogumbercules
I just hope game developers don't start requiring large installs for their games once the 120GB hard drive becomes mainstream. If that happens I stop buying games for it. I'm sure most people are more than willing to pony up 200 bucks for that bigger hard drive because they don't know what the hell they are buying.

You're missing the point of the 120GB drive, Microsoft are making a shed load of money at the moment on their Distribution service for movies and videos, they now know they need to provide more space so they've made the driver bigger. They've also increased the maximum size for distributable games over XBLA from 50MB to 250MB and now to 450MB because they can make a shed load of money that way.
r4tch3t 22nd March 2007, 08:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaredC01
On that note, r4tch3t, does the cable you posted work for dual-link monitors? I assume not as all HDTV signals are 1080p or less, and the 30" I'm working on is 2560 x 1600 (1600p). Any confirmation on this would be loverly.
Not 100% sure, but IIRC it should work, all HDMI is is DVI with audio along for the ride. The X1600 Pro HDMI has VGA and HDMI on the back, but supports dual link DVI, it comes with an HDMI to DVI cable. So I would assume it wouldn't have any trouble.
Iago 22nd March 2007, 12:14 Quote
At 479$ is certainly poor value. Too close to the 499$ PS3 but without a HD player. It should be priced at 400$ and include WiFi, Core should disappear and Premium should be the new Core at 300$.

I'm still sitting on the fence regarding which one to buy in addition to my new Wii, but once I get a HDTV, I'm sure the PS3 and it's BD player will look tempting. In fact, as far as pure hardware goes, the PS3 is way sexier...but still, the X360 has got the game catalogue I want to play...
mikeuk2004 22nd March 2007, 12:24 Quote
Im happy with my white 360 I got at xmas. I dont like the black but when you see it in person then maybe it might look better.

Alos I have the Pioneer 5.1 which is sponsored by XBOX 360 and made for it and is white. So I dont care much for the black too much. Im also looking at Westen Digital My Book that is white to match my 360 and 5.1 kit to store my music and music videos and photos etc.

I would like a large hard drive if there are decent tv shows to download and are free. If not then no I dont think I need it.

But seriously...120GB????? With 1TB drives on the market and they want HD downloads. 120GB is like trying to store decent mp3s on floppys. Its just too small.
Swafeman 22nd March 2007, 14:03 Quote
Where can you buy a 1T 2.5 inch drive? I don't think people would like a giant external caddy stuck to their already quite beefy console.
mushky 22nd March 2007, 20:48 Quote
Aren't the dev kits black? Those pics are probably just one of those.
Iago 23rd March 2007, 09:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mushky
Aren't the dev kits black? Those pics are probably just one of those.

As a matter of fact, this pic was proved to be photoshoped a long time ago in Engadget. The Dev kits are bigger, they have a bigger cooler. This is just a photoshop of a normal X360.
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