back to article Microsoft trumps Kinect with 'sleek, silent, sexy' Xbox

Microsoft has unveiled the latest and greatest Xbox 360, along with its new no-controller-required controller, Kinect (née Project Natal). Earlier today The Reg — in our hardware incarnation — caught a rumor from the Italian website Console Tribe about a new Xbox. We doubted it, but we're now happy to say that we were overly …

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Gold badge

Another me too..

I've actually lost track of the time when/if ever MS did something original and conceptually new..

Anyone?

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Unhappy

Lame

This version of the console is 5 years too late. Everyone who has an xbox, won't upgrade, and anyone who wanted one, would have got an elite 3 years ago.

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Happy

RROD?

This isn't about selling upgrades. It's not really the "next generation" console, it's just an X360 that doesn't RROD. They have to get it to market as fast as possible for reasons that have nothing to do with getting the installed base to upgrade. This is of course all a guess on my part.

Hmm, that shiny black finish. What whisper-quiet, refined, next-gen console does it remind me of? Oh never mind, I already have one.

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I'll get one

My ex took mine when we split up :) Good for her, too, since I didn't need it/want it taking up space at the time.

But I'll definitely grab the chance to upgrade.

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Anonymous Coward

PS3 has had hand waving controlling action for a while

although the games are perhaps a bit lame

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Thumb Up

Great bit of innovation

Can see the Dance game being huge, not overly sure on Kinectimals but it might work with the small kids etc. But Forza looked fantastic, can see that being fantastic fun with this. The Star Wars game looks a bit meh, not sure on that. Metal Gear Rising looked great also though. Halo Reach looked ok, but kind of samey and nothing to outstanding other than the spacecraft battles...guess will see later on nearer release.

The new console is nice, but not worth an upgrade. But nice idea though should I ever need a new one if the current one decides to give up on me (it's lasted 3 years already and run's great so doubt it anytime soon).

Is nice to see MS push the boundries and do something utterly new and original and put all those billions spent on research to good use for once instead of sitting on it. The skeletal tracking is a great innovation, and can't wait to see what will occur with it once someones got it onto the PC (probably a few days after it's released since it's just a USB device).

My only concern really is how it'll all work out with limited space in the living room. What happens if you haven't a nice vacant 3m space in front of your telly? will it still work if your closer due to the sofa etc? will the movie control gestures still work if your lounging on the sofa? lot's of unknowns still. But can't wait to give one a try.

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Ahem Fred

Without wanting to sound like a fanboy, can you point to the product MS have copied with Natal?

Unless I'm not mistaken, not having any controller is something new.

The bigger question though - is it any good?

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@Danny Monaghan 1

Eyetoy on the PS2 didn't have a controller

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Boffin

Sure.. they copied the Eyetoy

Can't remember exactly when I brought Eyetoy for the PS2, but more than 5 years ago.

No controller required (though my daughter has a cheerleader game in which the camera tracks the pink and gree pom-poms). So having a camera and not having any controller is quite old - the Eyetoy dates back to 2002; certainly old enough for MS to have ramped up an R&D effort to copy it and improve it.

Try an eyetoy game - you can play the entire game with no controller other than you hands & body. My kids loved it as they jumped around doing dance steps or karate games.

Never took off in the US the same way as the Wii did, but given the age of the PS2 console, eyetoy was very innovative (and it works with the SingStar series and plenty of other games).

The PS3 version of the same also uses some tricks using the camera - i.e. card games that look at the cards. Even saw one good tech demo where the player could draw pictures on a bit of paper, show it to the camera & have the drawing added to the game.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyetoy

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Anonymous Coward

@GrantB

"Even saw one good tech demo where the player could draw pictures on a bit of paper, show it to the camera & have the drawing added to the game"

That's not a tech demo, it's called EyePet and it's readily available for the PS3 and has been for at least 6 months!

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Silver badge

only in North America

Are you sure? So Canada is going to get it too? You don't actually mean US only?

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Troll

What does "Kinect-ready" mean?

Do you need the new console because the older 360s are not ready / capable of interfacing with Kinect?

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Anonymous Coward

No, Kinect will work with old and new Xboxen

but the new one has a special port that does both data and power for the Kinect unit. Owners of older Xboxen will have to use an external power brick.

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Title

I believe the old 360s will still work, but will require a seperate power supply

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Gates Horns

I'll believe it when I don't hear it

They said the original Xbox was quiet. They lied. They said the first Xbox 360 was quiet. They lied. My assumption is that they're lying again.

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Anonymous Coward

Definition

Your understanding of Quiet does not match Microsofts. It's all relative. Quiet = less noise than a PC with a graphics card eqivalent to the power of the graphics card in the XBOX.

Let's be kind, perhaps they have learnt something over the last decade or so...

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Silver badge

That definition is wrong, then

Because my PC at idle is quieter than the 360 at idle.

Under load, the 360's DVD drive makes a racket.

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FAIL

Still noisy, still unreliable, small incremental update.

The free press Xbox "slim" units (bribes) handed out at the show are not very quiet at all, infact about the same as current Xbox according to initial reports. Not unsurprising, as Microsoft have made these claims about every Xbox, and it's turned out to be untrue (they also made false claims about fixing RROD) There is not much heat coming out the back (which is very worrying... as any engineer knows hot air escaping is good for product reliability).

Does this new model include Blu-Ray? -NO

Does it offer ANYTHING aside from Wifi (which the PS3 has included since launch) - NO

Does it still need the HUGE power brick -YES

Worse still, it does not allow you to use your own storage devices, and you have to throw your old overpriced Microsoft devices away and buy new ones.

Honestly, you have to wonder how braindead Xbox owners are, when they allow/encourage Microsoft to continually bitchslap them like this.

If anyone things this is some RROD magic bullet, they are sorely mistaken, it seems the crucual airflow problems have not been fixed and if anything worsened by the smaller case. Still Microsoft know they will sell, so they really don't care.

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wow

youve got quite a lot of hate in you, try some yoga.

Its a games console, the people who play with it will like it, eye toy was a kinda boring this is new and shiny. From my knowledge you can use seperate harddrives there was a patch released that enabled it.

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Hi Mark

Nice to see you're up and about again.

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Stop

@AC "still noisy, still unreliable, etc"

"If anyone things this is some RROD magic bullet, they are sorely mistaken"

- Are you stuck in 2007, Sir? What reports are these, as so far I've not read anything to back up your statements.

I have two elites, both post-Jasper update and they are fine. Never red-ringed. The re-designed internals and the move from two small (noisy) fans to one larger and quieter fan (less rpm's) means much more efficiency.

Lets look at your other gems shall we?

"Does this new model include Blu-Ray? -NO"

-Well of course not Bluray is a Sony standard and MS has been pushing towards digital distribution for some time. Add the delayed seek time on blue-ray disks and its easy to see why they stuck with the DVD. Not to mention the fact that it would render current 360's unable to use anything brought out exclusively to bluray.

"Does it offer ANYTHING aside from Wifi (which the PS3 has included since launch) - NO"

- Quieter, smaller, WiFi N, 5 USB points (up from three), new removable HDD enclosure, TOSlink output. Its a remodel, not a new generation, what did you expect?

"Does it still need the HUGE power brick -YES"

- Actually thats now smaller too. I'd personally take an external brick over an inbuilt one any day. Easier to replace.

"Worse still, it does not allow you to use your own storage devices, and you have to throw your old overpriced Microsoft devices away and buy new ones."

- Actually you can use FAT formatted USB devices. I use a corsair memory stick at the moment. Unless you mean the HDD. The MS memory card is now phased out but easily transferred to old Xbox HDD and moved to USB or swapped with the HDD transfer kit.

I realise you are a PS3 fanboy. I like my PS3, I watch blurays more than streamed movies from Zune. However I think a lot of your facts are in fact not actually facts. You rant about a problem that went away a long time ago wth the RROD, you claim unrealibility on a console that hasn't actually been released yet and quote numerous 'articles' wihtout any reference. I suggest you really think about what you write next time before pouring out-dated generalisms into a comments box.

Have a nice day.

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Coat

But ...

Will there be any game where you have to stay absolutely still lying on the sofa for hours ?

I just can't do with all the jumping ... perhaps a game who's character watches some really good film ! :D

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@Urs Keller

The new Kinect needs to be pluged into the mains. On the new xbox there is a connection on the back the Kinect can draw power from. For the original xbox you have to get power from an adapter (which ships with the Kinect) which plugs into the power brick of the console.

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newbox FAQ

Here's a nice, semi-official roundup of FAQ's about the new system;

http://forums.xbox.com/32975486/ShowPost.aspx

key details:

- Newbox has kinetic power adaptor built-in, oldskool xboxes will need separate power adaptors

- Xbox memory cards won't work, which makes the spring USB update make more sense, now.

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Wow, wireless built in!

My wii had that 3 years ago...

And it remembers 3 sets of network connections so it can be easily moved between different wireless networks (Sony, take note!)

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oh joy

any reduction in noise levels would be appreciated. Quiet nighttime gaming on an xbox 360, ROFL, not going to happen. Vacuum cleaners are quieter than it.

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RE: Sure.. they copied the Eyetoy

It's more of an evolved EyeToy.

For one, it has depth perception. For another, it tracks a number of points of your body, so that it's possible to mimic your movements on screen.

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USB

One of the missed features of the redesigned 360 is an increase in the number of USB ports. There's the regular two at the front (under a flap on the left, if you're looking at the promo picture) but there's now three at the rear, instead of the usual one.

Hardly a killer feature, but it does open up a little flexibility in the 360's expansion options. Personally, I'll be attaching at least one 16GB flash drive at the rear. All the better to run installed games from.

I'm looking forward to upgrading (or perhaps just accompanying) my current 360 with the new one.

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Stop

@Stefan 2

It's not exactly a "upgrade". Save your money and buy a WirelessN dongle. It makes your current Xbox identical..

Better still get a PS3 Slim with Blu-Ray, that's a proper upgrade...

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Stop

The Americans will be awake soon.

pretending to be British Xbox fans defending it....

Just to point out, Microsoft have claimed EVERY update of Xbox360 would fix RROD and be whisper quiet and so far none of them have...

I wouldn't expect this one to be any different. You JUST can't stick it in a smaller box and excpect the previous airflow/overheating problems to be solved... A smaller box usually means faster fans.

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Alien

syled by

alienware if im not mistaken

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Bronze badge

Sony fanboys.........

.....should note that Sony copied the Logitech QuickCam that came out in 2000 with games you could play by jumping around. It was fun 10 years ago playing a basic basketball game in a glass fronted store drawing in quite a crowd.

And yes you can use Kinect from your sofa with hand and voice control for apps but not sure about the games.

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Silver badge

Shadow puppets?

Well if there are no shadow puppets can we at least play charades?

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FAIL

And so it begins....

Xbox slim disc scratching much worse than current models.

http://www.xboxic.com/news/6248

I wonder how RROD fares, now it's enclosed in a smaller case with slower running fans?

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