back to article Kinect blamed for Red Ring of Death outbreak

Some gamers are blaming Kinect, Microsoft's motion-controlled peripheral, for the loss of their XBox to the dreaded Red Ring of Death. Red Ring of Death One Reg reader says his Xbox was just over a year old when he plugged in his new Kinect device this Christmas, only for the console to break down. Microsoft says that …


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  1. Bilgepipe


    If it's not co-incidence then are MS saying the XBox really is just that crappily built?

    1. Anonymous Coward


      The disaster in all it's glory... (6 pages worth of dirt)

    2. lansalot

      well yeah..

      It was crappily built. Which is why MS admitted responsibility and upped the warranty period for RROD. Where have you been hiding ??

      1. Bilgepipe
        Thumb Up


        "Where have you been hiding ??"

        Apparently the same place as the Microsoft engineers who should have been fixing a problem from, what, three years ago now? Unless they're only just getting around to selling those Xboxes they were channel-dumping at the time.

  2. Lottie

    Certainly coincidental

    I wonder,t hough, how the prefiferal would cause RROD? I thought it was down to mechanical issues between certain soldered joints (hence the "fix it with an oven" thing)

    Could it be that there's an issue that's causing something to work too hard and cause overheating?

    It'd be very interesting to see what the cause is.

  3. lansalot


    From memory..

    RROD were caused by Forza 2 (when it came out).

    They were also caused by GTA IV (when it came out)

    Also caused by Gears of War 2 (when it came out)

    Also caused by (whatever is currently popular).

    Co-incidence. Get it repaired (and yes, it's a shitty thing that happens, it happened to me) and move on. It's no more kinect's fault than it is watching Sky player, playing Red Dead Revolver, or whatever else you were doing when it struck.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Gates Horns


      It's caused by :-

      applying power


      making the chips do some work


      just pushing it over the bleeding edge. (sic)_

      chuck it out of the window and don't bother with another one.

      You won't get it repaired, you'll get someone elses' that has it's own latent psychosis waiting to be triggered.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge


        "You won't get it repaired, you'll get someone elses' that has it's own latent psychosis waiting to be triggered."

        I repaired my own when it happened, got rid of M$'s shonky heatsink and put my own on there properly seated and the machine hasn't missed a beat since.

        My machine is also first gen, so as long as someone has done the replacement properly (and not stinted on cleaning the chips before adding new heat paste) then it should be good for years.

  4. Semaj


    Well ours hasn't broke (thankfully) but the upgrade has made the interface a lot slower. I've not talked to anyone who has said they like it yet.

    I have the feeling that this may be just as coincidental as there was no antennagate ;)

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Kinect killed my Xbox Slim

    No RROD, as Microsoft conveniently removed the display that shows the dreaded ring, but it killed it nevertheless.

    In the four hours we had Kinect before it destroyed the XBox, it wasn't much to write home about either. Laggy and boring were the general comments from friends on Xmas day.

    The Xbox is off for warranty repair, the Kinect has gone back to Argos for a refund.

  6. Mr Brush
    Gates Horns

    Take a look at the forums...

    Just after the release of any big game...

    Guitar Hero 2 breaks your Xbox

    COD:MW broke my 360

    Rock Band gives you the RRoD

    Kinect fries your console

    Etc, etc, etc.


    I'm surprised it's taken the BBC so long to catch on to this non-news event that gives them good chance to bitch about MS after every game release.

    Simple fact is the 360 is quite capable of destroying itself with no outside assistance (I'm on my third). That fact that some consoles spontaneously combust just as their owner trots in the door with the latest, greatest thingy is a shame, but nothing to do with that new game (or shiney new hardware).

    What's more worrying is that the same basic fault still persists after umpteen hardware revisions.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      yes its my opinion that it is very convenient when something new arrives, as there is a rash of boxes suddenly failing... is it just the blame game...

      But its the price the manufacturer MUST pay for designed in obsolecence. these boxes are designed to fail at the point the warrantee expires. this forces you to buy a new upgraded box, so more cash for the manufacturer, and means that the old slow boxes just phase, out keeping everything seemless and upto date, the Kinect works great on the newest xbox but yes it runs like a dog on the oldest machines. the extra stress could well be pushing them where it has not been pushed before...

      Its about time that a hard copy of the Sales of goods act was forced to be included with every sale. OK maybe not the whole thing but specifically the section about goods being fit for purpose, and non consumable non expiring lifetime goods being fit for SEVEN Years.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        which bit of the sale of goods act (pedant alert)

        I'm sure it's section 14(2) that you're referring to when you say goods must be fit for purpose but I don't seem to recall anything about seven years in the act itself. I think that the language that Parliament saw fit to use was 'last for a reasonable length of time' or words to that effect.

      2. Your Retarded

        @AC 14:45 Sale of goods act

        Dear Coward, it appears you are confused about your facts.

        The sale of goods act does indeed say that goods must be fit for purpose. This includes the fact thatt they should last for "a reasonable length of time". What is considered a reasonable length of time depends on the type of goods, usage patterns and their cost.

        In a completely separate vein, the act also states that you can make a claim for goods being faulty at the time of purchase for up to SIX years afterwards. This is not related to the requirement for them to be fit for purpose or last a reasonable length of time.

        FInally, when you buy a product with a WARRANTY, the entity that offers the warranty is the WARRANTOR, and the person receiving the warranty (you, the buyer) is the WARRANTEE. As in, the manufacturer WARRANTS that the product will not fail due to defects in workmanship, etc etc for a certain time.

        Rather than a warranty, you may be offered a GUARANTEE instead, which has a similar meaning when talking about consumer rights but is a very different word.


      3. Connor

        SoG Act

        They must be free from inherent faults for SIX years, not seven and only FIVE in Scotland, and life time doesn't mean your lifetime, but the product's. I'm no legal expert, but if this is a hardware problem and one that Microsoft acknowledged and extended the warranty for, then it is inherent.

        Incidentally, I am still on my first Xbox, but it is only two years old, I'll certainly be claiming another Xbox or repair, should it fail.

  7. Joseph Bryant

    usage patterns

    RROD is often triggered by overheating. If you get an exciting new game, or new peripheral, and suddenly start playing on your console for much longer periods, then you're disproportionately likely to suffer RROD.

    1. Elmer Phud


      Sounds like a manufacturers excuse.

      If you use the console for popular games (like wot you are supposed to) then you don't exepct it to overheat. The product should be able to be used for the purpose you bought it for, namely spending 36 hours non-stop on Xmas presents.

      Not sure if there is anything in the manual about the thing getting too excited and needing a lie down.

      1. Robert Hill

        Not an excuse...

        Well, more of an explanation. From what I have read, the RROD really is often caused by overheating. Thermal problems are a side effect of everyone wanting a really small box with very limited active cooling, and lots and lots of graphics and processor power. The designers had to make a trade-off, and a difficult one at that. When pushed, the thermal demands of the box will exceed their balance point. IF they had doubled the case size, or added more active cooling fans - this would be a non-issue. But then MOST people (that don't play 36 hours straight) would be stuck with a huge box or an obnoxious whine from the fans.

        They designed a balance point that best meets the needs of MOST users, in most situations. They probably thought they had more headroom than they did, but at least MS have extended the warranty and taken care of the affected boxes. It's an "OOOPS", but not enough to say MS is evil or even incompetent...more of a lesson as to how hard product design is.

        1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge


          It isn't just the amount of cooling, it's the type.

          M$ used a really crap mounting system for the heatsink, it was basically mounted on springs.

          After a lot of heated use, the metal would heat and expand, levering the heatsink ever so slightly off the chip (and breaking the bond with the heat-paste). This would lead to more over heating etc. which is why you should stop and repair your box after the first instance of overheating and get it fixed before you damage the chips too much.

          There are mounting kits for the heat sink that pretty much just does away with the springs, so you're screwing the sink onto the board more securely. A clean up of the old paste and a good spread of new and the problem just goes away.

  8. Pahhh

    Most reliable XBOX was in the closet...

    When a new game comes out, gamers play it. More time a gamer is on the console greater the chance the console will burn itself out.

    If the console happens to be an XBOX 360 (probably worse if its an older model) then greater chance there will be a spike in console failures.

    Most reliable console is the one stored in the closet for 6month....

  9. David Lawrence

    Simple fix

    Some time ago I looked into the 'RROD Fix' arena and tried several of the so-called fixes that were being touted around on the web. I have developed a hybrid of the best ones that has so far been 100% successful in resurrecting dead xboxes, provided it is the classic 'RROD' or related 'corrupt video' problems.

    The fix requires a full strip-down but I can now do them in less than an hour. It does not work on machines that have been 'bodged' in the past.

    From experience I would say most are caused by people leaving their machines on the floor (where they act as a very efficient hoover and suck in lots of dust) or running them in places where ventilation is poor. Both cause overheating which in turn causes the RROD.

    This is not an advert - I am just saying that RROD can be avoided, and that when it occurs anyone with the right tools an an hour or so to spare should be able to fix it.

    I very much doubt that Kinect is to blame - unless if puts axtra load on the CPU/GPU, causing them to heat up more than usual.....

  10. cnorris517


    It's well known that RRoD is caused by dodgy soldering/connections. Perhaps the Kinect is simply encouraging (possibly drunk) people to jump around in front of the xboxes more and therefore vibrating the connections loose.

    1. Yag

      And the most precise old fashioned clock...

      ... is the stopped one.

      It display the exact time twice a day.

    2. OldBiddie

      Yup - observant *thumbs up*

      Dust build up kills laptops and PCs too so I'm sure that doesn't help, but there's no doubt Xbox360 has suffered a higher than usual mortality rate though - I've suffered from two dead machines myself and my machines are kept on a proper well spaced TV stand - regardless of how much you clean that build up happens.

    3. OrsonX

      Well done that man!

      An actual plausable explaination for the Kinect effect!

  11. Cool Hand Luke
    Gates Halo

    Original Xbox 360 nothing wrong here

    I have an original Xbox 360 and bought Kinetic in December. Been playing it loads and not had any issues. (touch wood).

    I did have a RROD about 2 years ago, but sent it off and had it repaired. Video card after playing GTA IV, funny enough.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Motion sickness

    Seems to me the perceived link between RROD and Kinect might be due to vibration of the console due to the extra leaping about Kinect demands / encourages.

    As I recall failures were seen for similar reasons when Guitar Hero was all the rage.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Of course the other critical problem

    Is Kinect and disc scratching. All XBoxes, even the latest ones will totally destroy the inserted DVD when given even the slightest tremor. Kinect jumping games (which is the only type of Kinect game from what I can see), will guarentee that your Kinect games are destroyed in no time at all. Mandatory HDD installs methinks....

    Microsoft should stop making hardware, as they suck at it.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm disappointed

    Not knowing anything about Xbox failure modes, I was sure this article was going to contain a gruesome medical pun.

    Maybe because I was reading the exploding dildo story just before?

  15. LinkOfHyrule
    Paris Hilton

    blow hole

    Back in the day, if our Atari 2600 or Ninty NES started playing up we just blew into their slots and that always sorted the problem!

    I think the 360 needs a hole you can blow into - big FAIL Microsoft engineers for not including a blow hole of some type!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    its a cheap poorly made console

    Ever wondered why its cheaper than a ps3 well im sure you know why now! It's a console made of string and bits of blue tac for those that cant afford a proper console! And for everyone else there's apple! You pay loads for something that you can buy half the price that actually works properly but you do it cos everyone else has one! Ever heard the expression lambs to the slaughter? Well thats what its describing! Steve jobless wouldn't that make a good headline after his advice following the iphone 4 problems.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge


      "for those that cant afford a proper console! And for everyone else there's apple! "

      Wow, Apple have made a console? I bet there are just thousands of games waiting to be played at just $0.99 each, each one a doozer.

  17. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    is, as a rule, caused by the BGA on the GPU. I recently had mine properly repaired with an infra red rework station, however, ultimately the problem will reappear and then its time for a "re-ball" of the GPU.

    1. TakeTheSkyRoad

      Sony Fanboy FUD ?

      Does ps3 owners posting on xbox forums to bitch about the xbox count as terrorist activity ? Maybe since a hit of a few ring or death phase is enough to strike fear into any xbox owner since most have "been through a few" and don't want to have to face warranty return or buying a new one.

      The rest of referenced paragraph simply isn't worth commenting on and is pure troll... posted as anon too of course.

      Disclamer : Long time original (60 gig) ps3 owner, not one single problem. Have considered buying an xbox/wii as well but "do I really need it ?"... no, not really.

  19. Marcus Aurelius


    The Kinect links to the XBox through a USB port, like any other peripheral; its virtually impossible for it to be responsible for XBox failures. Given the huge number of Kinects sold and plugged in, its far more likely that the XBoxes have demonstrated their ongoing bad build quality and failure rate by crapping out at around the time the new toy was coincidentally added.

  20. cre@mstick360

    Still on my original xbox 360...

    ...and it's still going strong after hours playing the Kinect at Christmas.

    Don't believe the hype.

  21. jabroni83


    I've had my 360 since the summer 2006 and never had one rrod problem. I plug in the kinect and all is well. Come back to it later that same evening (mid dec) and get rrod. Hmm...that's strange. Give it a reboot and all is well.

    Come back to it tonight (havent used it since) and the damn thing is rroding almost every time as soon as i power it on. If I keep trying i eventually get it on and all seems well, but there is defiantly something wrong since the kinect update. Wouldn't have thought it was a physical problem like it was with overheating as it happens immediately when powered on from cold and if i keep powering it off and on it eventually works.

    Fess up microsoft and sort out whatever dodgy update you've rolled out.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      Does sound more like hardware if it intermittantly boots.

      If the BGA is starting to come away then you may find that when cold there is a gap, and when warm the gap closes as the balls expand slightly. If you keep powering it up it'll warm up and contact will be made, if it's left to cool the gap opens up again.

      You can try turning it on from cold, leaving it to warm for a while, then reboot. This if you're lucky should warm the chip, close the gap and it'll boot. Then you can get it fixed! :)

  22. Michael 43


    Anonymous Coward,

    How can you remotely assume what people do with their 360s and how you can remotely link it to the PS3 is beyond me .. ? Sounds like you are real fanboy -- MS Fanbo

    BTW the YLOD is a such a small problem as comparted with RROD..

    BTW , the 360s were hacked a long time ago !!

  23. Anonymous Coward

    @Michael 43

    Well put Michael.

    I had to look up YLOD as I've never heard of it. . Cant say its been plain sailing on the PS3 as I've had the blue-ray die on mine. Twice. I got an early model. The bought a slim and thats been going fine.

    Our XBOX which is new-ish, a year old, no problems so far. I know as many people that have PS3 and XBOX and all the XBOX owners have had console failures appart from us.

    Our WII is also be ultra reliable, but that because its never on as its a useless piece of white plastic suitable only for 5 year olds or dunken parties. Guess we dont have enough drunken parties and my son is way past that age.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have also had Kinect/XBOX 360...

    Plenty more with the Kinect/XBOX 360 issue here:

  25. gav_taylor

    has happened to me..

    my xbox is 4 years old, Im not a heavy gamer which is probably why its not happened sooner.

    I got the kinect last wednesday, played it wednesday night for about an hour, turned it off, played black ops sunday afternoon for 10 minutes and it died... RROD

    a little too much of a co-incidence if you ask me.

    I know the RROD is caused by overheating, but its been in a well ventilated horizontal position for 4 years and I only use it for an hour or too tops, a couple of times a week.

    the kinect must be doing something to cause the console to overheat...

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