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Pink Poney
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Just went to play some 360, and was greeted by the infamous flashing red lights that denote a broken console. It's not really my console, but more the family's (I have my own 360 at college), and I'm sure they would like it fixed. Does anyone know about the process for packing up a broken 360, mailing it out, and getting it fixed?
 

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Ya'ver drink Brazilian bold from fkn dunkn donuts!
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You need to call the Microsoft service centre where you will be asked to give them some serial numbers located on the back of the 360 to confirm what the status of your warranty is and for them to put in a repair request. Once everything checks out and you give them your details, they will send you an email with a printable card on it for free shipping. Once you get that, place the xbox in a sturdy box (but not the one it comes in) and make sure that you bubble wrap it nice and good. Once firmly wrapped place the card they emailed you on the box and ship it off from your local post office. About two weeks later you should get your console back and hopefully it will work again. Be advised it can take some time for the phone call to take place. If you need the number, look in the manual which comes with the machine, or check the official xbox website for contact details.

Of note you will be asked to try several things to make sure that the box is warrant for a repair job, this includes what colour is on the power supply light (green if everything is correct, yellow something is wrong) and other things as well. If it comes down to it, they may ask you to send off the power supply as well in a seperate box.
 

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Heroes Might& Magic Champ
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You 'could' try to fix it first via the towel trick. Apparently doing that creates enough buildup of heat that it reseats the damaged solders between the chips and the motherboard.


A Cure for the Red Ring of Death?

The infamous Red Ring of Death (RRoD) has plagued Microsoft since the launch of the Xbox 360. The symptoms are pretty simple: you go to turn on your console and three of the four lights in a circle on your Xbox 360 turn red. I've personally had it happen to two consoles and every single one of my friends who has owned a 360 for longer than a year has had to send it in at least once. By no means is this the largest sample size, but it's a problem that impacts enough Xbox 360 owners for it to be a real issue.

While Microsoft has yet to publicly state the root cause of the problem, we finally have a Microsoft that's willing to admit that its consoles had an unacceptably high rate of failure in the field. The Microsoft solution was to extend all Xbox 360 warranties for the RRoD to 3 years, a solution that managed to help most users but not all.

No one ever got to the bottom of what caused the RRoD. Many suspected that it was the lead-free solder balls between the CPU and/or GPU and the motherboard losing contact. The clamps that Microsoft used to attach the heatsinks to the CPU and GPU put a lot of pressure on the chips; it's possible that the combination of the lead-free solder, a lot of heat from the GPU, inadequate cooling and the heatsink clamps resulted in the RRoD. The CPU and/or GPU would get very hot, the solder would either begin to melt or otherwise dislodge, resulting in a bad connection and an irrecoverable failure. That's where the infamous "towel trick" came into play, wrap your console in a towel so its internals heat up a lot and potentially reseat the misbehaving solder balls.

AnandTech: Jasper Is Here: A Look at the New Xbox 360




On i guess this is only a temporary trick that works from 4-5 days to 2 weeks, then i guess you have to do it all over again. Can't be good for the systems overall life though.
 

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Premium Member
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PCXL-Fan the towel trick can do a lot more harm than good.
 

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Site Owner
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Itll give you rrod a lot faster, thats for sure
 

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Pink Poney
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Discussion Starter #6
hah, thanks for the tip, but i think i'll just send it away and let it get repaired for free. Besides, a broken 360 gives me an excuse to bring all the games back to college with me where a working 360 waits :lol:
 

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if you box is less then a year old send it off tho get fixed for free, my box came back with new dvd drive and seemed to be running alot cooler {they must of put that silicon heat paste stuff all over the mobo} M$ make shift way of stopping your mobo from flexing

it took 15 working days and you get one month xbox live card
 

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Just went to play some 360, and was greeted by the infamous flashing red lights that denote a broken console. It's not really my console, but more the family's (I have my own 360 at college), and I'm sure they would like it fixed. Does anyone know about the process for packing up a broken 360, mailing it out, and getting it fixed?
How many and what lights are red? If 1 or 4 are lit up, you may(definitely with 4) not have a big problem. I'm assuming you know this already, but you never know.
 

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Drowning in a red state.
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360s are still suffering from MFS(microsoft fail syndrome)?

I was actually considering getting one next year. -.-
I won't unless all this ring crap is fixed.

BAD MICROSOFT>
 

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last i heard, original and 2nd gen 360's have full cover regardless of purchase date.
 

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Bill's 1 billion he threw down to cover his rear is being put to good use i guess
 

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Congrats on your red ring of death. Every firstgen 360 must experience it. Sad to say that before I sent my 360 in, I still had all my plastic cover above the infrared and the DV tray. After I got it back I realized they ripped them off for me. :(
 

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Sometimes you turn the console off on the 3 red rings... and then you turn her back on about half an hour later, she'll happily run on for several months. :p

I've had that once or twice, so I can't say I'm agreeing with the solder joint theory no matter how much ground it has... plus the towel trick definitely eliminates heat as the culprit. I'm suspecting it has more to do with something else that is so embarrassing to admit that Microsoft keeps quiet about it. Not like they didn't document all cases of red rings internally, did they? ;p
 

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its the solder joint, its NOT a theory, its a fact. microsoft have acknowledged this when they admitted to an incorrect solder mix being used.

The solder becomes brittle due to this via the heat/cool cycles and cracks occur in the solder causing an unstable power flow.
 

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Level 9998
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its the solder joint, its NOT a theory, its a fact. microsoft have acknowledged this when they admitted to an incorrect solder mix being used.

The solder becomes brittle due to this via the heat/cool cycles and cracks occur in the solder causing an unstable power flow.
I respectfully disagree, Squall. It's one of the reasons. :p

Q: In your opinion what do you think the main cause of the Red Ring of Death failures have been?
RROD is caused by anything that fails in the "digital backbone" on the mother board. Also known as a core digital error. CPU, GPU, memory, etc. Bad parts, incompatible parts (timing problems) bad manufacturing process (like solder joints), misapplied heat sinks or thermal interface material, missing parts, broken parts, parts of the wrong value, missed test coverage. Any one or more, on any chip, or many other discrete components, would cause this. And many of the failures were obviously infant mortality, where they work when they leave the factory and fail early in use. The main design flaw was the excessive heat on the GPU warping the mother board around it. This would stress the solder joints on the GPU and any bad joints would then fail in early life.
It seemed to have been the main one back in the days... but I think something else is failing now, not just the solder joints.
 

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its the solder joints if its a first or second gen, otherwise its the video chip in later models.
 

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Heroes Might& Magic Champ
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one way to determine if it is the solder joints is to localize the heating process to just the area around the 2 chips.
 

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Why that red ring lights up in the first place ?? Were they expecting this would happen when they released the console ? That's suspicious Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm............. oO oO
 

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Pink Poney
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Discussion Starter #20
Well thanks for all the feedback everyone, I didn't know i'd spark this kind of discussion. To be clear, yes, I do have a 1st gen xbox experiencing the RRoD. I guess i'll try it to see if it works (according to rap)...

edit: well it's been more than 24 hours since the RRoD was first discovered, and i'm sad to say it hasn't gone away :(. And what's this about the warranty only being 1 year? I thought MS extended RRoD repair to 3 years since the date of purchase? If they haven't extended it, then I guess my family will be buying a new 360.
 
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