help me buy an xbox 360!

Okay, this is embarrassing. I’m a fairly tech-savvy guy. I worked as a PC tech in college, for god’s sake. I ran a hackintoshed netbook, use Linux on a regular basis. I am not a chump.

But I just can’t figure out the whole xbox 360 thing. There are too many different models that have been released, with overly-subtle variations in feature set, price, and so on.

So, here’s the deal: I want to buy an xbox 360, with one or two games to start. (Bioshock in particular). I’d like it to have a sufficiently large hard drive that I won’t feel like newer games are pissed at me, and I want to be able to stream Netflix on it. I’ll need an HDMI adapter, I think. And wifi would be good.

So - what do I buy? Arcade? Pro? Elite? Are these all the same thing? Can I risk buying refurbished/used, or do I really need a new box to avoid the Red Ring of Death? Is there a solid “guide to buying an x-box 360” somewhere?

And ye gods, when did buying a bloody videogame console become so complicated?

This’ll get kicked over to the game room, but I’ll try and answer. If you want a hard drive, you can forget about the Arcade. The Elite is basically the new version of the Pro. Pros are no longer in production. Supposedly the newer XBoxes have a lower rate of RRoD, but the biggest problem with buying used/refurbished is no/shorter warrenty. Fixing a RRoD out a warrenty is pretty expensive. And the Pro isn’t that much cheaper.

You’re best off going with the Elite. It’s HDMI capable, but cables aren’t included with the newest models. The (horrible overpriced) WiFi adapter is sold separately as well, but you can hack a router to do the same thing or just run it through your laptop.

If you want the hard drive, go with the Elite. Otherwise, go with the Pro. The Pro that I currently have has an HDMI output.

Is not complicated.

I think you’re a bit confused. There’s only two versions of the Xbox 360 that are currently sold - Arcade and Elite. Elite comes with a harddrive, Arcade does not. Get the Elite. They don’t even make the Pro version anymore. The wireless adapter can be expensive if you really want to go wireless.

Also, don’t buy used. Besides the fact that you’ll want a new warranty in case yours RRoDs, there are tons of used Xboxesbeing sold online that have been permanently banned from Xbox Live.

Cool - thanks for the help, folks.

There are a lot of really good bundles being sold for the Elite that come packed with some decent games. Make sure to shop around. You can get a used copy of Bioshock for less than $20 as well.

The question’s been pretty well answered, but just another chip in – you want an Elite. The Arcade is fine, but you’re going to want an HDD at some point and the overpriced 360 hdds mean that upgrading the Arcade will ultimately cost as much as just buying the Elite.

So you may as well spend the extra up front and get the nicer-looking black system.

Would you kindly let us know what you wind up buying?

I bought an Arcade and upgraded later when I found a cheap 20GB hard drive later (for $29 on sale at Microcenter). Slapped it on and have been fine ever since.

Best Buy sells a Modern Warfare 2 XBox pack for $400 that has an extra controller, 250 G hard drive, headset, Modern Warfare 2 and a month of Xbox Live Gold membership. That’s a good deal.

That’s not that good a deal.

Game: $40-60 ($40 if you’re not all that excited about it and want to sell on CL)
250gb HD: $0 (anything beyond the 120gb of an Elite is superfluous right now)
Extra controller: $40
headset: $0-$20 ($0 if you’re never online, $20 used at GameStop)
Live: $0 (you get a free month with the Elite as well)

Of course - it’ll probably be the Elite, as that seems to be the consensus. Since I’m using it as a desktop gaming system (hooked up to my PC monitor), it’ll be easy enough for me to hook it to my desktop for internet access.

(And yes, I know that the best desktop gaming option is a proper gaming PC. :slight_smile: However, it’d be hard for me to get a new gaming-capable desktop for under $400, and I can’t upgrade my desktop video card - my “desktop” is a macbook with a busted screen. Works splendidly, but won’t ever be a gaming machine. )

BTW - thanks for pointing out that bundle, Sitnam, but I’m more interested in Bioshock, Fallout 3, and Oblivion than Modern Warfare. (I like adventure/RPG games).

This bit I disagree on. Over 120 is UNNECESSARY, but it’s not like you CAN’T USE more. Because you can copy discs to the drive for faster loading now as well as the fact many demos range upwards of a gig and a half, it’s not impossible to fill or nearly fill the 120. I’m nearly there.

If they add any new functionality that needs space, I’d have to seriously start pruning off my drive.

heh. Subtle. Well done.

You know - I totally forgot about copying discs over. What extra value would you place on that extra memory?

Spoiler! :stuck_out_tongue:

Damnit! Lousy

brainwashing

bastard.

All Xbox 360 play all Xbox 360 games, the only difference is color and the size of hard drive.

I definitely wouldn’t get the Arcade edition, as it doesn’t have any hard drive, and to buy them separately is a ripoff. Like others have said, it’s just a matter of whether you want toe 120GB version or the 250GB version.

I have the lowly 20GB version, since I was a first-dayer, but it hasn’t really been a problem for me. I can have 2 disks installed on the drive at any one time, along with some XBLA games, and it’s not likely that I’m going to have more than 2 games in the hopper at the same time, and if I do the only expense is a few seconds of load time.

Not knowing you or anything about you, I’d say to go with the Elite Holiday Bundle and its 2 free games (Lego Batman and Pure Racing, I think).

FTR, you need a hard drive to play any game online, so living without one is near impossible.

I don’t know if any place will still have them in stock, but after the “pro” was discontinued, stores dropped the remaining stock to $250, so if you can live with a 60 gig drive, you might look around and see if you can find one, otherwise, yeah, Elite. I don’t know why they even bother selling Arcades without HDD’s other than so they can be all “we’re cheaper than Sony”.

If you plan to play on an HDTV, remember that Elites no longer come with any HD cables, just composite. If you do find a “pro” still in stock, it will have component cables.

Nope. All new Arcade versions have 256mb of internal memory to let you store your Live account on your 360.