Microsoft to offer $199 Xbox 360 'Slim', Kinect bundles

By on June 21, 2010, 10:31 AM
Microsoft recently launched a 250GB and Wi-Fi equipped Xbox 360 'Slim' model priced at $299, effectively replacing the 'Elite' as their flagship and cutting prices on older models across the board. No cheaper 'Arcade' model was revealed at E3 last week, but according to an internal marketing Q&A document from Microsoft there are indeed plans to release a $199 version of the redesigned console this fall.

Besides its souped-up specs and slimmer profile, the new Xbox 360s are smarter about trying to avoid potential RRoD problems. If the system's fans aren't properly cooling the console, the power button will turn red and the system will shut itself off in order to avoid any serious damage. It'll display a warning message like the one you see below, which explains the situation and informs you that the Xbox 360 can be turned back on once the power light has stopped flashing.


The new Xbox 360 is said to run cooler and use about half the power of the original console, so this shouldn't be a common occurrence (or we hope it's not). If anything, when it happens at least players will have the chance to wait a few minutes before powering their consoles back on rather than waiting a few weeks for it to be repaired.

The Q&A document also stated that Kinect would be available as a stand-alone product and in bundles with the Xbox 360. Although no specifics were given as to which SKU would get Kinect bundles, GameStop has already begun offering pre-orders for the Elite priced at $399 and Arcade at $299, for a savings of around $50 versus buying Kinect separately. These prices are not official, though, so things could change the launch of Microsoft's new peripheral nears.




User Comments: 29

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TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Or you could spend that $300 on a new video card and play cheaper, better looking and more functional games.

BMfan BMfan said:

LoL,really like the picture techspot has used.

Guest said:

X-Box 360 players don't have to worry about the red-ring of death anymore there is the rare red dot of death...

princeton princeton said:

TomSEA said:

Or you could spend that $300 on a new video card and play cheaper, better looking and more functional games.

/offtopic

Ok tom .That makes me want to to answer. Why are only console gamers so dumb? They have shitty emachines pc's and they think that pc graphics suck. Obviously that means console gamers are so unintelligent that they think every PC on the planet is EXACTLY the same. And they think console graphics are better and have better controls. I'm fine with when they say they PREFER console controls but the whole JOYSTICK BEATS MOUSE arguement is a load of ******* bullshit. If a joystick is so good why do most console games have an aim assist function? God that was a useless rant but I'm tired of this whole PC SUCKS bit from stupid brainwashed tech-tad console ******.

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

I'm sure everyone here knows i'm not an Xbox fan, but i believe that this new machine is a good MOVE from MS, in order for newer owners not to fear the RROD. If the machine becomes mo reliable it will be a good thing for those who also replaced 2-3 consoles in the past.

OT:

What i don't like also, is when PC owners 'think' console owners are dumb. I'm sorry i used to respect you guys but you do sometimes act like some lame console fanboys ... PC fanboyism ... pfff where is this world going.

I know that some, mostly those teeny ones are real pain when they go in some stupid crusade about who's console can fry an egg or create ice, but believe me there are also some adults playing on consoles, i'm not looking for best looking GFX, but for some fun playing my fav franchise so you 'adult / mature PC Owners' should also be careful with your statement.

@ TomSEA - yes i can even ditch more than $300 in a GFX card, but will it be enough for me to play Diablo III !? well till then i'm still playing Diablo II, will also play Indigo Prophecy, Beyond good & evil & some other old games & maybe Crysis 2 soon, so yes i may need a high end adapter, but not all my games require that power.

@ princeton - please don't put all the eggs in the same basket, even if i agree with you that some are rotten though (*ouch*)

I'm a PC techy yet don't own a mega gaming monster yet, for i don't have time playing all games & most of what i have are old & it's been 8 years since i stopped the upgrade every 3 months thingy. Yet I've had a few monsters built for others for the past years & my fav way to test the machines is to launch some high end games on them...

Since i stopped doing that job & went for some telecom company, i don't have enough time for all the games, so having a console helps for i also love the franchise / exclusive games coming to that platform. I won't get PS3 exclusive on PC, while most game coming on PC are multiplats, but the ones best played on PC will find their way to my PC.

BOT:

MS had an unreliable console in the beginning, too bad the fanboys would come up with lame excuses & always bash the PS3, but its factual, the former Xbox would have given me headache & most exclusive titles were indeed MS exclusive, i.e. they come also on the PC so like i always say, for me the best combo is PC + PS3 ...

with the 'slim' model of the Xbox & some overheating protection, it will help those Xbox fans have something they can actually use not only to play Halo or Gears of War (what else!) ... but also play without FEAR (except if FE3R the game is inserted) ... so it's always a good point, i just hope this model won't be easily MODded .. for then for me MS still has a lot to do...

well time will tell if this one actually works fine & we won't use it to fry eggs ...

cheers!

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Well having a warning pop up instead of just frying the system seems like a very smart move on M$'s part, just wonder why they didn't do it sooner.

As for the on going PC vs Console debate. I game on both, and like features about both. PC has more versatility and for some genres better input control. But with the Console being more specialized you have less to worry about. With the console you aren't racking your brain for the specs on your video card and CPU while your standing in walmart thinking of picking up a new game. You just pop it in your console and it works - well unless its and xbox :P.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I don't begrudge console players their form of entertainment. There are some advantages to console gaming. First of all, it's *****-proof (no offense intended). Put in the DVD, grab the controller and go. The games are dumbed down in order to use the limited functionality controllers so anyone can pick up a game and play effectively in seconds. You can also share DVD's and of course, now there is the ability to play online which was a big drawback to consoles years ago. The arguments over which console is "better" seem absurd to me. They both have their pros and cons. But now with these motion detector add-on's you might see one or the other legitimately pull ahead depending on what games are released and how well these motion controllers work.

But in comparison to PC games? Any console gamer who claims a console game is better than a PC game truly doesn't know what they're talking about. Just kids talking crap because they're kids. With the possible exception of convenience, these is not one area of video gaming that the PC doesn't rule - and by a long shot. Whenever I see one of those "console is better than a PC" rants, I just make note of the poster so I know from here on out to ignore them because they're clueless and move on.

Bottom line - if you're a serious gamer who expects the best out of games and video gaming is an important part of your recreational lifestyle, then PC is the only way to go.

Guest said:

@TomSea:

I consider myself a "SERIOUS GAMER' and I game on the next best thing...A PS3 console, not on a PC as I used to. PC cost way too much to maintain and as you rightly said... the convenience is also a deciding factor. As it relates to graphics we all know the PC is superior but my PS3 exclusives give me that graphic fix.

PC ftw... but a PS3 the next best thing.

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

the major CONS i see about consoles remain the lame fanboys & they are everywhere (for Xbox & PS3) .. i've seen little of WII fanboys yet.

I rarely come accross PC fanboys & before the PS2 i was a full-time PC gamer too, then some of my favourite games went console exclusive, that was it & i really hated that time, but then i went towards the consoles & found new games not available on PC & they were fun too ...

so sorry, i don't agree that a hardcore gamer must be ONLY on the PC ... for this generation a combo: PC + WII + any handheld or PC + PS3 + PSP is great for any gamers (I omitted xbox because i don't like unreliable machines & this gen SONY had also better consideration for developers & it's starting to pay, a lot of 3rd party are going to PS3 as lead platform (EA / UBISOFT) & even Valve is comig to it)...

now to be BOT, MS had to do something to fix the Xbox & Kinnect isn't a bad option, but it will not be used at full potential for the system is not powerful enough to do so, but i'm sure next gen with 3D/new higher level HD + glass-less monitors & improvements with 3D cameras, controller-less gaming will be much a standard & would be just wonderful.

I play games, PC & PS3 & happy about it :P

cheers!

Chazz said:

Good move by Microsoft. Its about time they started dropping their price and got rid of that crap arcade.

And for all of the RROD talk, that problem was already drastically reduced 2 revisions ago..and has steadily gotten better and better. I've been lucky and have a first gen xbox with no problems at all but honestly thats the only ones that have this problem(First gen consoles).

On to the consoles vs PCs debate: Who cares? No one arguing for either side says anything good about the other. They're just biased opinions being shoved in other's faces.

@Tom Sea: Console gaming is dumbed down? Seriously? There is a complexity to PC gaming? PC gaming gives you superior customization but just like a console I pop my disc in and play(unless I buy through steam).

PC and Consoles are so vastly different in their abilities and functionality, that if you can't say great things about both than you aren't telling the whole story.

Chazz said:

Also..back in my extreme gaming days if you were a serious gamer you had every platform. Fanboyism would not get in the way of playing the best games no matter who has exclusive rights to them.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

@Chazz - well, I've seen and played a number of the same games on both consoles and on PC. Three good examples are Mass Effect, Fallout 3 and DragonAge: Origins. In all 3 cases, the graphics were significantly more detailed in the PC versions. I mean it was quite noticeable if you lined them up side-by-side. And of course, you can boost the resolution to whatever your card on your PC will handle. With consoles you get 1080 max. And if you're stuck with an older 720p HDTV, that's all you're going to get. Menu options are considerably reduced or turned into a nightmare on console versions. One of the complaints against Mass Effect was the clumsy inventory option on the console versions. And it was awful. Pressing five different keys to scroll through who knows how many menus to change one item - not fun. On the PC version it was a one keyboard mapped key. Views were also skewed on console versions. Kind of like watching a wide-screen view in comparison to full screen. And lastly, in console versions content is sometimes reduced. This was especially noticeable in Dragon Age. So yes, I would consider console versions of games dumbed down. But I will agree with you about your "if you can't say great things about both" comment. Like I said earlier, consoles most definitely have their place in the market, are without a doubt more convenient and have provided many, many jobs in the gaming industry which benefits all formats.

As far as cost in keeping a PC hardware up to snuff as a deterrent, I don't buy that argument. You really only need to upgrade a video card and CPU once every 4 - maybe even 5 years - to play most games at very high graphics levels. You're talking probably a $500-$700 investment if you do your own upgrade and that's it. In the meantime, console players are also buying their own units at $300-$400 a pop, plus a ton of add-ons. Hard drive upgrades, custom controllers, carrying cases, peripherals like light guns, fishing rods, guitars, drums, custom controllers, Wii fit stuff - you name it. AND...they're paying more for games. $60-$70 as opposed to $40-$50 for PC games. And lately with Steam offering their crazy sales (FIVE BUCKS for Mass Effect this past weekend), I believe in the long-run you are paying just as much and more likely more to maintain a console setup and library than a PC.

Just my 2-bits...

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

i agree about the 'dumbed down' version when it is about multi-plat games, but as for gaming in general, console & PC gaming are just complementary & it's as easy with one as with the other, that's why i buy ONLY console exclusives for my PS3 & most multiplats on the PC, except for a few i wanted to try right away for @ that moment, i don't have a gaming rig ... but soon for sure

I don't believe that a PC cost that much, for i've paid more to play with my PS3 (counting for HDTV / Internet access / higher prices games ...) & like i said before, i do build PCs & have wholesale price for the components & with a mid-range PC you can play decently most title out there & still beat the Full HD ONLY resolution limitation & @ higher refresh rate.

The best remains playing PC exclusives & multiplats on the PC, & console exclusives on their respective machines.. then would be living in gaming paradise

cheers!

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

TomSEA said:

With the possible exception of convenience, these is not one area of video gaming that the PC doesn't rule - and by a long shot.

As I Wii owner, I can tell you that the Wii does its own kind of games way better than the PC can. Take something like Rayman Raving Rabbids -- PC version pales in comparison. Wii Sports? PC can't do that. Mario Kart Wii is IMO more fun than any PC racer. And I could come up with more examples. I agree that it'd be harder for me to come up with examples for the PS3 and 360, but that's probably because I've never owned them.

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

TomSEA said:

Menu options are considerably reduced or turned into a nightmare on console versions. One of the complaints against Mass Effect was the clumsy inventory option on the console versions. And it was awful. Pressing five different keys to scroll through who knows how many menus to change one item - not fun. On the PC version it was a one keyboard mapped key.

I have noticed the same thing on most games that were either wrote for PC and later ported to consoles or just wrote for both platforms. The developers don't seem to put a lot of effort into optimizing the menu for the console controls.

Of course its easy to make a good menu system for a computer, you have the mouse to simply click on whatever you want. I would say that they are not 'reduced' versions of the menu, just lazy versions. Where developers try to turn the analog sticks into "mouse" controls or some similar abomination.

Because I have seen plenty of menu systems that worked wonderfully with console controls, but they all seem to be console only games.

So that isn't an issue of being on the console so much, as the developers getting lazy and not working to optimize the menu for the console, just swapping in a tweaked version of the PC menu.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

"As I Wii owner, I can tell you that the Wii does its own kind of games way better than the PC can."

Agreed 100%. Notice that whenever "which is the best console" discussions come up, the Wii is never really mentioned because they are their own unique identity. The first with the motion controllers, the games are more family oriented, the graphics are cartoony/caricature (not a bad thing) looking, etc. You really can't compare the Wii to PC gaming or to the PS/XBox either. It's in it's own world and frankly does a terrific job at what it is and does. I've seen PC ports of Wii games and you're right. They're awful. BEYOND awful...just go buy a Wii and be done with it rather than messing with really bad ports.

Guest said:

One word: PS3.

Guest said:

ps3 is overpriced piece of junk, xbox rocks hard. The main reason playstation was popular to begin with was because it had a huge game catalog but the graphics were horrible and people still ate up the poorly developed games like it was a ipad num num. (n64 owned it by the way)

Now that ps3 has the higher end graphics at a higher cost and pretty much the same games come out on both xbox and ps3. Yet still fanbois carry on like ps3 is the greatest thing ever made when you can purchase an xbox and still be content on a great gaming platform at a better price and imo a better controller. I laughed when f13 came out on xbox it was enjoyable great game and i didn't need to buy an overpriced ps3 to enjoy it. Thx for selling out developers no one cares about xbox vs ps3 they just want to make as much money as they can so they can keep making great games.

Guest said:

yea screw that. why don't you save up money in your piggy bank and get both.

LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

I still have yet to buy anything but a wii, but I told myself when MS and Sony's price points both get to sub 300usd I'd buy them both. So I guess ill be diving in now.

Guest said:

To the comedic guest that posted "ps3 is overpriced piece of junk, xbox rocks hard." Let me correct you. "both the ps3 and xbox are junk, computer gaming ftw"

Guest said:

whatever.

Some titles are better on the 360 period.

Great visuals does not help if the gameplay and storyline suck. An overpriced, power hogging PC is not always the best tool for the job.

gobbybobby said:

''Some titles are better on the 360 period.''

AGREE

I own all 3 consoles (and all 3 of them still work) but devote most of my gaming time to my PC. The graphics are better and at the moment my PC spec is higher then the 360 and the wii. PS3 has a weird spec, with its weird CPU and weird GFX card and its weird way of doing things. I hardly every use my wii but that may change.

Some games better on PS3 and some better on 360 becuase especially exclusivers becuase they aere designed to run on there respective console. The Xbox 360, wii and even the PS3 are cheaper than a mid spec gaming PC, just the way it is, so people are gonna go for the console over the PC. PCs are also confusing with all this hardware, software problems having to tweak the games to work better, diagnosing crashes, poor performance some people just can't do that, not becuasde there stupid but becuase they either don't want to/ care thinking the consoles look as good as the PC games.

Just Cauce 2, AvP, Unreal 3, ALL defo look better on PC. I don't want to put people off PC gaming, I encourage anyone to go out and build there own Machine to play games on, its a learning curve for the novice PC user. (Not everyone who goes on technolodgy websites/ reads magazines is a ''Tecky''

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

to summarize, i see so many lame fanboyish comments about consoles that i wished i was one of the manufacturers, LOL i'm sure i'll make a lot of money, just based on the free ad.

All major gaming platforms are worth it & it's not the hardware that makes the difference, but the games themselves. I don't see the point of bashing other systems but i do understand constructive criticism to help evolve the actual one to a next near-perfect one. We won't change anything from current gen but for sure in 5-10 years why not, by voicing out our requirements & crushing some form of abuse.

If someone come & say that any single platform is bad, just because he/she prefers or own another one, sorry but actually i see this as pure jealousy that is being pushed by maybe frustration.

I believe that each & every gaming machine out there are really good in their own way, I would gladly own an Xbox360 to play @ least Gears of war 3 (not 2 - not the best of the series & 1 i already have on PC), the WII to go for the raving rabbits games & certainly the super mario titles.

but i have other responsibilities with work, the wify & bills, mostly i don't have enough time to play (4 hours / week is all i get) so I've stuck with my first love - The PC, for i can't stop playing Diablo series (I even pre-ordered Diablo III, it may take a lifetime but i'll wait), i still love some minor shooters, puzzles & action adventure games that are still enjoyable to play with Keyboard + Mouse combo.

also having a preference for the action adventure games like God of war, i had no choice than to go on PS2, then PS3 when the former died on me, so you see i own a system for the games not the way around.

the exclusive titles on each & every platform make it the real idea of choosing one or owning all. a PC gamer can be also a console gamer, there's no limitations except time & money so i think fanboys better stop acting like lamers & see the truth about these things.

If as a PC + PS3 owner i see this as a better combo (or maybe PC + WII) - just because the Xbox360 failed at some points in delivering a lot of 'true' exclusive - i'm not bashing here, but this is a fact. Most Xbox360 exclusives are in fact MS exclusive & are also on PC, where they do look better there, except for a few bad ports. I also mentioned why i didn't like the machine - i think MS didn't work that much to give a reliable system, OK they came with a 3 year warranty but still it's a problem for me to lose my saved games & downloaded contents - The PC can die, but easily fix & with some luck & the ease of backup, we rarely loose anything. The PS3 can YLOD, the the statistics showed that the WII & PS3 are most reliable with fail rate below 6% & 15% respectively while the Xbox was above 50% - So the True nature of this article being about a new, more reliable console makes it better to my eyes & i also hated the fact that the former Xbox, like the WII, PC, PS2 all do accept to run pirated games. I agree the PS3 do play pirated media (movies & music), but the games developers are still safe, so it's a better ROI to have exclusive content or full games on SONY's machine, giving me more choices from 1st party as well as 3rd party developers. after all it's my point of view & not a general one, so anyone should respect my opinion, for i'll do so if you come with the right argument instead of fanboyish statements that shows you don't know anything, even about your system.

I know the limits of my systems & i maintain that for this generation - Nintendo proved that it had experience, MS learned from past mistakes but still did some new ones that i hope they correct for next gen, as usual SONY pushed the technology & even if it was a slow start, it's starting to payoff. So now if you want to play - Go pick your fav games, on whatever system they are & enjoy yoursellf.

cheers!

RealXboxMaster said:

I disagree. Why spend $300 on a video card so you can only play 1 0r 3 games that will support it and worry about your video drivers, sound drivers and other pc specs not being up to par inorder for you to play it! I'd rather spend the $ 300 on a already sucessful console that is already opimized for ANY game the developer can create and make it run on the 360 with no problem and in HD 1080p.

mattfrompa mattfrompa said:

@realxboxmaster

though I prefer consoles to play my games on (to keep work and play separate) I can see why someone would rather invest in one high end machine that can play games, watch videos without restrictions ( disc regions anyone?) and complete demanding work as well. Also I doubt anyone would argue graphics or sound quality when it comes to pc vs console. there is simply a wider range of options available, with a higher ceiling. Also keep in mind that many xbox 360 games do not meet the requirement Microsoft had set for all games to be at least 720p. However I also wouldn't say that well polished games look bad on xbox 360 or PS3, and hopefully more than a handful will look good on the wii 2 or whatever they will call it. perhaps next gen would be the time to bring back the name Revolution? lol

Guest said:

Lol. Windows has the "Blue Screen of Death" and now X box has the "Grey Screen of Death".

@ RealXboxMaster

Correct me if I am wrong but the X box cant actually do 1080p right?

tengeta tengeta said:

Sleeker and smaller, AKA easier to overheat. Stupid consumers want everything out of one thing, and complain that its the companies fault. Yeah, they really set that trend right?

Guest said:

I always enjoy reading the comments for gaming articles. People are so opinionated about what gaming platform is best. Frankly, I think they are all great!

I used to play PC games exclusively, and they were always a blast. But I guess I just got lazy and didn't want to have to worry about maintaining my computer for games and went and bought an Xbox 360 last year. Totally fun! Xbox has some really good games. This year, I bought a Wii and a PS3. Both of those consoles are also really fun to play. And Bluray movies look awesome on the PS3!

But, I am just going to have to throw it out there. Still the best/most addictive game ever made - Dr. Mario. I have been playing that game since the original NES and the new Wii port is excellent.

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