The main unit of the Xbox 360 has slight double concavity in matte white or black. It features a port on the top (when vertical, left side when horizontal) to which a custom-housed hard drive unit can be attached in sizes of either 20, or 120 GB. Inside, the Xbox 360 uses the triple-core IBM Xenon as its CPU. Graphics processing is handled by the ATI Xenon which has 10 MG of eDram. Its main memory pool is 512 MB in size.
Xbox 360 CPU and GPU
The CPU, named Xenon at Microsoft and “Waternoose” at IBM, is a custom triple-core power PC based design by IBM.
The First Xbox had a graphics processing unit designed by NVIDIA, while the Xbox 360 has a chip called Xenos. According to The Tech Report, in an early issue concerning the Xbox 360; “Xenos can do 4x FSAA, zbuffering, and alpha blending with no appreciable performance penalty on the GPU.”
The cooling system of the CPU is composed of aluminum fins with copper based heat pipes.
Audio and Video:
The console works with over 256 audio channels and 320 independent decompression channels using a 32 bit processing for audio, with support for 48 kHz 16-bit sound. the video from all games can be scaled by the hardware to whatever resolution the user has set in the console’s settings; from 480i NTSC and 576i PAL all the way to 1080p HDTV. Up to 1080p, the resolution the console will output is only limited by the TV or Projector capability and the video cables used to connect the two.
Games are stored on standard Dual Layer DVD-ROMs with 7 gigs of usable space available for game content, according to gamespy. The system is also capable of playing standard CDs along with CD/R/RW, CD-DA, CD-ROM, XA, CD-Extra, WMA-CD, MP3, and JPEG CD. Microsoft has no plans to include an internal HD DVD player in future Xbox 360 designs.
Hard Drive Storage:
The Xbox Premium comes with a detachable 60 GB Hard drive, and is an optional purchase for the Arcade style. With the reserve GB incorporated by the Xbox 360, you are left with 53 GB in the dashboard for saving games, downloads, music and video files.
Microsoft is skittish about revealing production of new Motherboard production as well as their availability on the Market. It is said there are 3 new Motherboards; Jasper, Opus and Valhalla.
The “Falcon” was revised to create the Opus. The “Jasper” Xbox 360 motherboard includes both a 65nm CPU and GPU, which differs from the Falcon.
The Jasper has a lower cost of production which makes it attractive both to Microsoft and gamers. (Jasper, as stated, has no date to be officially set on shelves, but is expected to begin appearing by the end of 2008.
Reportedly, The Valhalla Xbox 360 Motherboard includes a CPU and GPU both in one chip. This too, is expected to reduce production costs. There is also a rumored cheaper cooling system to be utilized.