Blog - Xbox 360 video card death (no red ring)

| 33 Comments
Another dead Xbox 360 (but mine is much less dramatic than this picture)You may recall that one of my launch Xbox 360s suffered one of the first recorded red rings of death. Well, the replacement unit I received back in 2005 has just died, but it's a new form of failure that I haven't seen reported.

The video just stopped working. Yesterday, when I downloaded Puzzle Quest at 1 a.m., I noticed that the video suddenly went greenish. I removed and replaced the video cable from the back of the console, and that seemed to fix it. Last night it started to go a little green again, and this morning when I booted it there was no video at all.

My first thought was that the video cable was damaged. I did notice a little stress on it, since I have my console sitting horizontally on a high shelf (for maximum ventilation) and gravity does pull on it. But I tried swapping the cable for another and even tried standard definition output. Nothing worked, except to swap in a second Xbox 360 - which worked fine with either cable in either setup. So clearly it's the console.

I called 1-800-4MY-XBOX, and the tech confirmed that the video card has probably failed. So 12 minutes later, they're sending me a box to ship it in for repairs (estimated turnaround: 10-12 days after they receive it). But here's the interesting thing: When I asked if they had a solution for transferring content ownership from my old Xbox 360 to a new one (assuming they provide a replacement instead of a repair), the support person said they do.

If you're not familiar with this downloadable content issue, any purchases you make are locked to both your gamertag AND console's unique ID. So if you buy an Xbox Live Arcade game, map pack, TV show, theme or picture pack, and you want to use it on a different console, you need to be logged into Xbox Live or it won't be authorized. If your Internet goes down, or you're at a LAN party or relative's house with with no 'Net hookup, you're out of luck. And if your 360 dies and is decommissioned, up until now you've just been out of luck. They did issue me a credit for my few purchases in 2005, but I had to use my wife's gamertag to buy them again on the new console - and this isn't a very good system when you have 50 or so items, as I do now.

I pried, and he said the Xbox Live service team can activate my purchased games and downloads for the new console. I suspect that this is a half-truth or misunderstanding. If this problem has been solved, why haven't we heard about it yet? Has anyone else been through this process and had ownership of their Xbox Live purchases transferred to a new console? I sure hope this is true. But, unless someone can confirm it, I'll believe it when I see it.

-=Gamewatcher

p.s. - Here's an example of why Microsoft DRM for the Xbox 360 really stinks. I just realized my primary Xbox 360 will be out for repair when the free Oblivion downloadable add-on Fighter's Stronghold hits next week. It's only free for one week. I can download it to my wife's 360, but if I ever want to play the game offline I'll either need to use her console (which might not have all of the other mods installed to it) or purchase it again with her login on my new console.

This is, of course, assuming Microsoft salvages my other purchased content and downloads (which includes another Oblvion mod that was free for a limited time, and a couple more that came from an OXM disc). The risk is that I might load a saved game that depends on one or more of these mods and it might break it. And this is why I won't actually buy mods for Oblivion, and probably shouldn't take the free ones unless they're permanently free.

Now, in an ideal world, I would simply download the mod next week to her 360 and, when I get my old 360 or its replacement back, remove the license for the Fighter's Stronghold add-on and transfer it to mine. Many DRM systems (such as iTunes) support deauthorization - why can't the Xbox 360?

33 Comments

1.

I also have a launch console. It has served my perfectly in the past. However, while play Halo 3 the fan started to make even more noise than usual. It probably needs to be replaced. Now I am deciding to if I should fix it myself for very little cost or send it in. The only reason why I might send it in is because if the Red Rings hits I could still get it fixed under the 3 year warranty. (I read up on the Red Ring fix and it looks like it takes several hours for even experienced modders) I don't use Xbox Live so the only things on my HD are saves. Are the gamer points locked onto a console or ID? I might just run the fan into the ground, I don't like having the put the volume up high to muffle the 360 but maybe I can cause the Red Ring a get it replaced. All I want it a working 360 when Mass Effect comes out!

2.

It's a tough call. I was shocked that my 360 died first. My wife's is always glitching out, while mine has been rock solid reliable. But then again, I didn't get the red ring this time. Who knew the video card could fail - I've never heard of this happening to anyone else.

My hope is that my wife's 360 will hold out for at least a few weeks, until mine is fixed or replaced.

-=Gamewatcher

3.

My video card just died, 20 days after my warranty expired, microsoft wants 99 dollars, and I am very disapointed.

5.

I also had the same prob. with my xbox 360, no video. I called 18004myxbox and they told me my warranty was up in dec 2006. witch i know for a fact that i didn't get the xbox360 intill late feb. early march 2007. but sence i can not find my reciept for the 360. so i can't prove that they are wrong. Even though i know i am right. i was playing call of duty 4 when my sreen got a greenish light on the screen. then i turned off the 360 and powered it back up and nuthing no video but i had sound. so i gone out a bought a new ac adapter it turned on and i put in call of duty 4 in again and same thing. so then i replace that ac adapter and i had no luck no video at all. i called wal*mart and talked to a friend the to see if she could help me out. So see call xbox help line and called me back and told me that it shows on xbox files dec 2006. but we both knew it was wrong but the computer at wal*mart does not show that system of file. Makes no sence to me. but in order to get anuther xbox360 pay $300. for a new one or $99 for mine to get repaired and a one year warranty. so i prob. get a box and send it in to get it fixed sence i invested lot of money into this system. So what i want to say you are not alone in the topic video gone bad.

7.

XBOX 360 SUCKS GO BUY PS3 WAY BETTER DEAL!! YOU GET Blue-Ray and a sweet game console for the same price as you bought your crap-box.

9.

I Just had a similar problem with my console. It all started when the video went grainy during gameplay. I suspected the HDMI cable had come loose (It Wasn't). So then I restarted the console and ended out with no video or audio at all. I tried my component video cable but that didn't work either.
After waiting a few hours I tried the console again and it started up fine. Then, after a few minutes of running it went grainy again. I restarted the console and the video stopped working again.
All this leads me to believe that the video chip is overheating. Allowing it to cool down probably lets it work again temporarily.
After a call to 1-800-4MY-XBOX they sent me a return slip (Still under the 1 year warranty). They were off a few months on my purchase date though. I suspect they default to the date they sold the unit to the retail store as the purchase date.
As a Side Note, a handy place to keep your receipt so you don't loose it is to fold it up and place it under the hard drive. I've done a similar thing with the expansion slots on my PS2 and my GameCube.
The DRM management sucks, I wasn't aware of such a problem. I guess that means I'll loose all my downloaded Guitar Hero III tracks.

11.

Well i just got the greenish color of dead, so not only the 3 lights is a problem but also the videocard of crapsoft.
I feel bad for the operator who was answering when i called xbox life she wanted to pay 90 bucks, i said: wtf u want me to pay $90 dollars for something that goes inside the xbox360, i didn't even drop my xbox or didn't even break it for u to tell me to pay 90 bucks.... i was piss she tried to calm me down.. i was like what is going on with Microsoft making this crap ass of a console (altho i like 360 better than ps3 only minus is that 360 gets broken easily)
But she was nice with me and sound cute and i got her myspace and IM she is single so not everything was bad, i still have my 360 and trying to find out some info of how to fix it by myself any help will be apriciate.

13.

I've been searching google for this issue and I just got exactly what you mentioned in your main blog post.
I guess 90 dollars isn't horrible, but I still would not like to invest more money into something I spent so much on. (I bought it a year ago and I've been unemployed before-during and after that purchase, up until now even).
The heart-crippling part for me on this thing is, I just rented the new Armored Core and I was very in love with it, I got to the fourth mission and had flourishes of yellow/blue/green, then all hell broke loose and the exact symptoms you posted about were happening to me.
I emailed microsoft but now I guess I know the answer to this, and I'm just unhappy that I rented a game for a week and hardly broke the surface before my gaming console died.

14.

Dude, I just bought gears of war 2, played it for 5 minutes then all the textures started disappearing, green crap started "bleeding" all over the screen till the whole thing just crashed. Tried it again and it does the same thing, still get video signal, it doesnt do this in the menus or anything... just in games.
(graphic intensive games I guess, since it started only in gow2 and then it started to happen in all other games/demos)

Funny thing is that I can only play DOOM or hexic HD. Everything else dies after 5 minutes of green flashes that makes your head burst..I'm 90% certain its the video card.

--------------------------------->
90 usd for them to fix it for you guys? Tell me about it... its the equivalent of 180 usd for me (in my country).. so Yeah.. 20 more and I'd just buy a new xbox arcade and pop in my HDD.

Screw this...

15.

My system just got the green tint of death. After hooking it up to three different tvs and using three different AV cables I called xbox support and they confirmed its probably the video card. Now I have to pay $99 to get it fixed. Third time sending it in. First was RRoD, second was a dead DVD drive, and now this. I complained a little about the cost and they offered me PGR3 for free so there is that I guess.

Still think 360 is the best.

16.

Use Better Business Bureau and file a Complaint on Microsoft Corporation....This was my complaint Description:
Xbox360 not working properly(no video signal but sound is working) checked all plugs and cords even paid for new components. Was playing a game then the colors started bleeding and then fading and now there is no video signal. Checked online and there seems to be a large amount of people with this issue. For such a common problem Microsoft is not taking responsibility to fix this.

Microsoft called me and offer to fix my 360 for $75 with 1yr warranty.

17.

Same thing here. Green fading screen, loss of pixelation , totally unplayable. 2 DAYS OUT OF WARRANTY and they won't fix it for free. They want 99 bucks. I am so pissed.

Sheeshman

18.

Played Halo 3 and it started getting really grainy, almost like the machine was on acid. Thought for sure it was nothing more than a partially disconnected cable in the back, but it wasn't. Not sure if its a video card issue because the sound is completely out too. Looks like I'll be saying goodbye to $100 for a fix unless purchasing a new cable does the trick. If anybody knows of a fix, I'd love to know... But with the hardware malfunctions so many are having, maybe going with a Japanese instead of a Chinese made product is the way to go.

19.

Mine died about a month ago. I was playing Fable (downloaded onto the HDD via live) and it just stopped transmitting. Audio and video have both stopped working. It's a first launch Xbox (no HDMI) and I honestly think I'm just going to go buy an arcade an use my original HDD with it. Sucks, I honestly thought I lucked out...

As far as those saying "Buy a PS3", right. And no, I won't be. Maybe in due time the PS3 will catch up with the 360 software-wise, but for the time being, I'm still an Xboxer.

20.

Hey, I had the same problem recently happen to me. I have the older xbox 360 with the 20GB HD. It's out of warrenty from the orginal purchase but I have a question.. I've had it replaced twice, now wouldn't the newest one I've recieved come with some type of warrenty?

21.

Was playing a game & in game graphics turned hot pink/bright green. Turned system off and unplugged everything. Switched from HDMI cable to component video & resumed playing. After ~30 minutes the same thing happened,the graphics turned bright green/pink. Turned the console off & unplugged everything & let it sit for the night. Turned it on the next day, the system appeared to boot up(light on front,sound) but there was no picture. Tried other HDMI/component cables/TV with no sucess. No RROD. ive had the system for nine months. I submitted a repair request over a week ago and am still waiting for the 'coffin' to arrive.

22.

Bought a referb XBOX for $160. No idea about the warranty at this point but during a game of Call to Duty all the white-ish colored turned a hazy green. Turned the unit off for about 5 miinutes, checked all my connections and turned it back on. Game mode not supported appears on the screen. I get sound of course but no video. So, thinking I would out smart the system I took it another HDTV and used the HDMI cable.. same result. So.. judging by what I have read here, there is no solution that is not going to cost me money. Seeing that sooooo many people are having this probel this may be enough to make me dump the whole seeing as I am not willing to pay more money to have it fixed by a company who obvioulsy didn't think thru the design of this system and continue to release bad unit while not correctly supporting them. Sure it's a referb... but the fact is.. it worked perfectly for several months. Like the rest of you.. I am not happy and can do nothing about it.

23.

MAN, my video card just blew up too, no more CoD4 for me until I pay $100 for repair. They didn't even give me notice when my warranty expired.
Sad days.

24.

Hello All,

My screen went green and now I have no video. I guess I am in the in crowd now on this issue. Well I will be sending my XBOX in. My computer card is still good and I built that 4 years ago. Microsoft must make crappy components for its XBOX.

Good luck to all, Mike

25.

my video card just got fried after about 1 hour of play time on xbox live on cod4. As the end of the game was nearing my screen just grew hazy and it looked almost like a thick cloud of green and red smoke was growing across the screen. I am 15 yrs old and due to that really dont have a job. i have had the system since august 25th, 2006 since its my b-day and havent had any problems since then. i guess its not all bad seeing that the machine waited 3 yrs to do this, but i dont have the money to fix it. I am going to take it tot he local video game stores such as gamestop and video game central, and see if they can repair it. If so i hope it is cheaper then 100 so i can save some money. The upside if they can fix it even for 100 is that i will receive it a lot faster that sending it in because that can take up to like 1.5 months and these stores are a 5 minute drive away from my house. Well in the meantime i still have my alienware computer with World of Warcraft and City of Heroes until then ^.^
Complete Boredom = epic fail Ø_Õ god i hope i can fix it soon.

26.

I've been reading these comments and it seems I am having the same problem you had in the past. But I don't get how you lose all of your DLC if it's on your hard drive. Explain?

27.

This happend about three months ago to me. I was play Halo wars when it started. It would work little less each time about 6 six times before the video went out all the way. I call microsoft and got disconnected.
I was bored about two week ago and turned it on the system worked about two minutes then stoped, all time after that it did not work. I have started to take it apart to give it a slow death if anyone has an information about which chip it might be and how to replace that would be nice.

28.

MS builds their consoles just like their software - poorly.

Just got the video problem today. Booted up and video is completely scrambled. Audio is fine. Have already had RRoD fixed under warranty, but now out of warranty. I'm starting to wonder if Vista is part of XBox 360.

Won't be investing another penny in MS. Have already gone to Macs for computing. Next console will be PS3 - get Blu Ray as bonus.

29.

Gamewatcher,

My friend just acquired a used xbox 360 pro (i believe). The friend that gave it to him said it was broken. He fixed it and was working perfectly...until last night. He got up.. turned it on... no picture...no sound..and for some strange reason all four of the green lights on the controller were on. Even when he only had one controller in. It's getting power, but that's about it. I feel so bad for him..he is on vacation this week :( He has switched the tv cables around..turned it on/off..most likely yelled at it..and still nothing. I don't believe its under warranty either. Poor soul :(. He just got a new hard drive for it too. I am guessing it's the motherboard or something equally expensive. I agree with Diaz for your problems though. The company knows this is a problem, yet they ignore it so the systems will come back for expensive fixes. That's sad, but reality. Anywho, just enjoyed the posts and stopped by to tell you of "my Xbox betryal"..hehe Have a good, safe New Years

Fade

30.

Well here we come to it again boys and girls. This is NOT an issue of PS3 vs XBOX 360.
Everyone here knows which is the better system even if they won't admit it. My XBOX got the RRoD and I sent it in for repair under warranty. While it was gone for a month in a half I bought a PS3. I bought little big planet and metal gear solid guns of the pat. for it. Both games were entertaining for a time. I got my XBOX back and 3 months later it started freezing. XBOX told me to send it back and for 100 bucks they could repair it...I was mad as hell of course my waranty wasn't up but I didn't care I sent it in and shelled out the 100 bucks. All of my good friends have XBOX and I play online consistently with them. I got my xbox back and after having purchesed a few more games for my PS3 I went back to playing xbox. I was playing COD modern warfare 2 and then the video on acid effects hit. Screen bleeding patchy holes black spots sepia colors the works. Xbox tells me I have to pay another 100 dollars if I want it fixed...

Bearing this all in mind It's very easy to see which console is better. The PS3
game titles that are relesed for both consoles are the same game. So the gameplay is EXACTLY the same. Yes I have modern warfare 2 for both consoles. I am not paying any more money to Microsoft. The company is crap, the consoles and systems they make are garbage. They have no respect for the customer and all their products are only about beating the competition in "WOW" factor. Not how well they work. Sony has a solid system it doesn't break and crash like the xbox. NO WHERE NEAR as much and if your sony breaks it's almost always from misuse. I know this from experience and from the MILLIONS of threads about how EVERY xbox has broken in one way or another.
I don't give a crap which system anyone thinks is better
I don't care about fanboy arguments. I want a god damn system that works and I found that in the PS3.
Now what I want to know is, does anyone know of a fix for this problem
outside of paying bill gates garbage company 100 bucks? can I replace the video input device on the motherboard? do I need to replace the video chip? The fact that microsoft charges 100 dollars to fix the problem regardless shows that none of the problems cost 100 dollars to fix. They are really screwing you. So there is a fix for this problem out there somewhere. I don't care if you all have the same problem, WE KNOW IT'S A PROBLEM ALREADY! all we need to know now is how to fix it ourselves.

31.

Yeah my xbox video went too, after a greenish tint had appeared, and its out of warranty. But I believe Microsoft is fixing rrod out of warranty isnt it? I was just curious as to, since i dont have the $100, what if i tried running the 360 a long period of time to give it the rrod, you think microsoft would care that the videos not working?

32.

Looks like the video card went ...I have sound but no video ... yesterday the graphics went green ... today no video. Sad day.

33.

hey guys. Found great sure to use to repair your video card so check it out! Good luck! http://www.ehow.com/how_5730642_repair-video-card-xbox-360.html

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Gamewatcher published on October 11, 2007 9:42 AM.

Wii Update - Keyboard support, Internet and Everybody Votes channels was the previous entry in this blog.

PlayStation Network - Everyday Shooter, Ratchet and Clank Future demo is the next entry in this blog.

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Recent Comments

  • Lexielou: hey guys. Found great sure to use to repair your read more
  • Jason: Looks like the video card went ...I have sound but read more
  • William: Yeah my xbox video went too, after a greenish tint read more
  • Nick Goldpenny: Well here we come to it again boys and read more
  • Fade: Gamewatcher, My friend just acquired a used xbox 360 pro read more
  • planoiceman: MS builds their consoles just like their software - poorly. read more
  • sealrock: This happend about three months ago to me. I was read more
  • Jorge: I've been reading these comments and it seems I am read more
  • Jesse Parente: my video card just got fried after about 1 hour read more
  • Michael Ross: Hello All, My screen went green and now I have read more