The Xbox 360 Arcade with the Jasper 65nm chipset is a great budget video game console for poor gamers who wants to play Current Generation Xbox 360 games for the Xbox 360 Arcade like Fable 2, and Forza 2. I will talk about all the things to look out for when buying a game console like entertainment value, controller functionality, game saves, media playback, value for the dollar, video and audio quality, noise, and durability.
The Xbox 360 Arcade is a good console for someone who does not have a lot of money, but want to get into playing Current generation games like Need For Speed : Most Wanted, Halo: Reach, Oblivion, Project Gothlan 4, Ridge Racer 6, Final Fantasy 13, etc. It is also good for streaming video or music files from your Windows computer or laptop to the Xbox 360 connected to your TV. You can also use the Xbox 360 as a DVD player if you do not have a DVD or CD Player in your TV room.
The Xbox 360 comes with a 1 month free Xbox Live Gold membership which can go online to game with other players, download demos, watch netfilix or zune market place, go on Twitter and Facebook, video chat, voice chat, and use your Windows Phone 7 to go and game on Xbox Live.
The Wireless Controller bundled with the Xbox 360 is very easy to use and fits well in my hand because it is ergonomically design like most of Microsoft accessories. The vibration feature of the Xbox 360 makes games feel more realistic. You can feel the bumps in the road when you are playing your favorite racing game like Forza 3. The battery life for the Xbox 360 is very great. I can use my Xbox 360 wireless controller for weeks before I need to charge or replace the 2 AA batteries in the Xbox 360 with a fresh pair of batteries. The Xbox 360 is bundled with two fresh pair of alkaline batteries. The controller can also be used to turn on your 360 and eject the DVD drive like a DVD player remote. This means you would not have to walk up to your Xbox 360 to turn it on like older consoles. You can also buy the Xbox 360 quick charge kit or play and charge cable to charge your batteries while you play.
I use Energizer 2 AA NIMH rechargeable batteries and a NIMH AA charger to charge my Xbox 360’s batteries since my Energizer rechargeable NIMH AA batteries work very well, and last a long time before it needs recharging.
The Xbox 360 has 256 MB of built-in Memory for game saves, updates, and Downloadable content. The 256MB of built-in storage is not a lot of space, but it is enough for a few game saves and 1-2 Downloadable games bought from Xbox Live Marketplace. I recommend getting a 20GB or 60GB refurbished Xbox 360 drive if you are poor, and can’t afford a new 60GB or 120GB Microsoft Xbox 360 Drive. Also, you can use up to 16GB of drive space on a USB external hard drive or flash drive after you update your Xbox 360 to the latest firmware update. There are also 2 USB on the front of the Xbox 360, and 1 back USB ports for plugging in a keyboard for entering in gamertags of the Xbox 360.. The Xbox 360 arcade can also play music and videos from a USB drive and CD, and DVDs.
It is also awesome that the Xbox 360 arcade has a built-in HDMI high definition video port, so you can just buy a standard HDMI cable at a local or online TV retailer to use on your HDTV and enjoy gaming, and watching videos in HD. This means you can just buy a HDMI cable for a few dollars online from a store like Amazon, and enjoy HD video and sound on your HDTV. There is also a proprietary VGA or component cable for the Xbox 360, so you can enjoy HD video and sound on older HDTVs.
I don’t have a HDTV, but the standard RCA Red, Yellow, and white cables which come with the Xbox 360 Arcade make my games look great on my regular non-HDTV Sony tube TV.
I notice the Xbox 360 arcade runs cool when I put my hand on top of the console’s case or close to the air vents, so the newer Xbox 360 arcade should be more reliable and is more power efficient then previous Xbox 360 which got more hotter and use more electricity. The built-in cooling and fans for the Xbox 360 arcade is good since I never experience an overheating problem on my Xbox 360, and I sometimes play it for hours.
The noise levels of the Xbox 360 fans and DVD drive when it is spinning is slightly noticeable when I sit close to it with the volume set to low. However, if I sit 4-6 feet away from your TV, and the volume on your TV is set to medium or high, it is not very noticeable. If you want to decrease the sound level of the 360 even more, you can buy a 60GB, 120GB, 250 GB hard drive for your Xbox 360 and copy your games from the disc to your hard drive, so your DVD drive does not spin when you play games because the more quiet hard drive will be playing the game you copied to it.
It is possible to place the Xbox 360 arcade on it’s back in a horizontal position, or on it’s side in a vertical position.
I been using the Xbox 360 Arcade for nearly a year, and have not experience any problems while enjoying games like Fable 2, Forza Motorsports 2, and Burnout Paradise on my Xbox 360 Arcade game console.
If you are really short on cash, you can probably get a used or refurbished 20GB or 60GB hard drive from Amazon, Gamestop, EBGames, Ebay, a friend or family member or Craigslist for 20-50 dollars or less which is a lot cheaper then buying a new drive for your Xbox 360 Arcade.
I also read online some people buying the Xbox 360 arcade to replace an aging or broken Xbox 360, and reusing their Xbox 360 hard drive and HD component video cable on their new Xbox 360 Arcade, so the Xbox 360 Arcade can be a good option to turn it into a cheap premium Xbox 360 20GB or 60GB 360, or even an elite if you have the 120GB or 250GB drive console by reusing your old hard drive and cables from your older or broken 360 console.
In 2010 after E3 video game conference, the Xbox 360 Arcade has been replace with the Xbox 360 Black Slim 4GB Console with built-in wireless N which is also compatible with Wireless B and G wireless signal, S/PDIF optical digital audio out for 5.1 surround sound, the regular 360 Video/audio out for RCA and component video and analog audio, HDMI video port for HD video, 5 USB ports (3 USB ports on the back, 2 USB ports at the front), Wired Ethernet network port for connecting to Live and your computer with a wired network connection. The Xbox 360 Slim 4GB Arcade also has a Kinect port for Xbox 360 Kinect. The Xbox 360 4GB slim is more power efficient, is whisper quiet, and is smaller. The New 4GB Xbox 360 slim also looks sleeker with a shiny piano black finish and slim shape. There are also more air vents for the Xbox 360 slim, so it runs cooler when it is on. The Xbox 360 Slim Arcade comes with 4GBs of built-in memory which is 3744MB more storage space compared to the fat Xbox 360 Arcade. The Xbox 360 Slim also use less space, so you save a little bit of space in your room. You can also buy a 250GB drive for the Slim to upgrade it to the premium money when you run out of space, or just buy USB drives to add more space to your slim Xbox 360.
The Xbox 360 Slim has all the features of the Xbox 360, but in a nicer slim package with built-in wireless, more storage space for games, Kinect port, more USB ports, and runs quieter and cooler by using less electricity vs the Xbox 360 Fat.
In summary, I recommend you get the newer Xbox 360 slim since it is the same price as the discontinued Xbox 360 Arcade. But, it has 4GB of built-in memory, built-in wireless, is quieter, and looks nicer. However, if you are short on cash, or already have a Xbox 360 hard drive and video and sound cables from an broken premium or elite Xbox 360 you can still get a used or unsold Xbox 360 Arcade for a few dollars cheaper.