AfterDawn: Tech news

Xbox 360 HD DVD drive to cost 199?

Written by Ben Reid @ 11 Sep 2006 9:44 User comments (47)

Xbox 360 HD DVD drive to cost 199? Microsoft will reportedly bundle an external HD DVD player with the Premium package of its Xbox 360 console in Europe next month.
According to gamesindustry.biz's sources, the standalone HD-DVD drive stands to retail at GBP 199 (293 Euros), and will be bundled with two HD DVD movies. It's also suggested that Microsoft will bundle the Premium console along with the HD DVD player for under GBP 400 (589 Euros) and that the price could even be as low as GBP 375 (552 Euros).

Next-gen format support will likely be a key selling point of Sony's PlayStation 3 and Microsoft's Xbox 360 consoles. This HD DVD package could retail around GBP 50 (74 Euros) less than Sony's machine, which will feature the rival Blu-Ray format.

Microsoft only recently reduced the price of the Xbox 360 Core package, following a similar move by retail outlets.

The bundle could be an ideal opportunity for Microsoft to capitalize on the fact that the PS3 will not hit the European market until March 2007, and increase sales ahead of its rivals' belated launch.

Source:
GameIndustry.Biz

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47 user comments

111.9.2006 10:28

unless devs jump on and make games for the HD DVD format the 360 only has one leg to stand on without support for the new format to fight the PS3 as a equal its not going to be pretty for MS this brings to mind so many nightmares of Sega in the late 90's..... the 360 has enough of a base to properly fight the PS3 if MS is willing to put effort into it but I see them giving up in 2 or 3 years and rolling out the Xbx 2 0_o Of coarse they could just make a 360 model 2 with full Xbx support a HD ,HDMI and a HD DVD or BR drive and sell it for 300ish in 08 or 09 that could possibly work...mmmmmmm

211.9.2006 13:07

Wow big news! So they are selling it for basically even price, at least when it comes down to it here in the US. so let the real war begin... And to all those people who said that the PS3 is going to be too expensive :-P suckers, Microsoft basically just proclaimed its even waa waa waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa P.S. GO WII!!!!

311.9.2006 13:22

Quote:
unless devs jump on and make games for the HD DVD format the 360 only has one leg to stand on without support for the new format to fight the PS3 as a equal its not going to be pretty for MS
I hardly consider that "standing on one leg". The real benefit of a ps3 over the 360 was Blu-ray movie playback, not the convienence of having a game fit on one disk. The war did just get a little more interesting, though. Prices just got a lot more even.

411.9.2006 18:45

oofRome So you dot see Disc size playign a roll in acouple of years when they will be fighting for every MB on a disc s they can max out the textures and such? Have you forgotten the industry worships the graphical god?

511.9.2006 19:20
OzMick
Inactive

No game even fully fills an 8.5gb disc yet, and when the game gets too big, access times become a bitch. As far as I recall, normal Blu-ray read speed is comparable to 16x DVD. So if you have a game 10 times as big, you either have a game 10 times as long (never going to happen, games are on the whole getting shorter to finish) or 10 times as long to load. I'd much rather play a game that fits on a floppy disc that has an actual story and depth to it than another bloated, brainless kill frenzy fps.

611.9.2006 19:36

OzMick true true add the fact are studios willing to pay the extra money for mobetter graphics and voice overs for every character.. but doesn't it take less time to use "true" textures without havening to unpack them and such? Resistance:FOM will be the first BR game what I thinking they will use a less heavy compression setup using 10-20 GB and it will be no faster or slower than any other high end fps. in 2-3 years time every game will be using "less" compression and as studios on a whole relax MAX MB quotas ,its only a matter of time before a normal game wont fit on DVD 9.

711.9.2006 20:30

The difference I see between PS3 and 360 is that on the xbox it is an optional package. However, I doubt that the HD DVD Player has anything to do with games (if it is optional, they cannot release any games that will not work on the core xbox 360). I think it is just for people who want the PS3 because it is also a Blue Ray player, but for $400 less than the Samsung and others. What this does is give the 360 some competition in the system + player market. Those who want a next gen player and are waiting for the PS3 instead of shelling out $400 now for a HD DVD only or $1000 for a BD only. As far as game sizes go, I don't see the need for BD for quite a few years. It is easy to fill up tons of GB when making games though, so with the option available, you will start seeing more games that take up some serious space.

811.9.2006 20:55

JaguarGod the way the industry tends to worship the graphic goddess I think it will be sooner 2-3 years rather than later 4-6. if anything the PS3 is ready for it and thats a bonus but it comes at a price...blah the 360 is still suffering from coming to fast,but like the Xbox will in time gain enough games to warrant a purchase..

911.9.2006 23:19

Quote:
oofRome
So you dot see Disc size playign a roll in acouple of years when they will be fighting for every MB on a disc s they can max out the textures and such?

Have you forgotten the industry worships the graphical god?
No I don't see Disc size being a factor. Did you go out and buy a n64 because final fantasy was on more than one disk? no. did you see "too many disks" cited for a bad review? No. You got arguably one of the best games on a system propelled by massive developer support.
And the industry does NOT worship the graphical god. Give me a console war in which the most powerful system won.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Sep 2006 @ 23:22

1011.9.2006 23:20

I find it amusing that most seem to concentrate on what each console will cost,regardless of what price drops there are for either console there's still the cost of the new tv (well why bother buying a next gen if you don't get the full benefit),so before one even has games the combo of decent size tv and console is at $3000.00 nz,then i ask myself a question,how long will it take for the software to be up to speed to take full use of that power and will the developers even bother or just continue to push out new games that are pretty much already been thrashed to high heaven,except now they have diff names,nahhh up em i say i'll stick with me lowley old gen consoles for now,besides everyones into retro gaming these days :p

1111.9.2006 23:25

Unable to edit above post, for some reason that function is'nt showing,so to add more the HD-DVD drive is for movies only and to date microsoft have'nt said anything difffrent

1211.9.2006 23:25
johnodd4
Inactive

first off they wouldn't make games on the hd dvd format second the hd dvd format will be cheaper while gamers with ps3's will be forking out $70.00 u.s.a for games and movies hd dvd owners on xbox 360 will only be paying $20.00 per dvd disk and movie

1312.9.2006 2:21

hmm, what is the read speed of the x360 HD-DVD drive?

1412.9.2006 4:00

didn't m$ also say that no game would be released that would only work if you had a hard drive? how long did that last 6, 10 month? if they dont use the hddrive for games the 360 will be dead in the water within 36 months of launch. but may be thats there plan, release a new console every 3 years. it makes me think of sega aswell 32x, megacd then the saturn too late when peeps have lost faith. then a next gen machine without the next gen features, that gen was won by sonys dvd drive not segas false start. just my opinon.

1512.9.2006 4:10
Anrkist
Inactive

"if they dont use the hddrive for games the 360 will be dead in the water within 36 months of launch." You do realize many of us could care less about the HD-DVD aspect of the console? I am glad it's an addon because you can see with Sony, they are jamming so many crappy parts into their Blue-Ray player to cut costs, PS3 owners will be lucky if the system works in 36 months.

1612.9.2006 4:31

I reckon disc size will become a major problem that MS cant avoid, after not including next gen format in their system. Look at ps2 games, started out on CD's, then for newer games went to DVD at about 2.5gb, now most games are being cut short due to the size limitations of 4.35gb. The graphics/detail aren't suffering much but the length of them is. Most games are cramming every last byte onto the disc. The 360's games after a few months of release are already using DVD9 discs, think of how much the size will increase over the next year once the 360 starts running at full power.

1712.9.2006 4:51

Quote:
You do realize many of us could care less about the HD-DVD aspect of the console? I am glad it's an addon because you can see with Sony, they are jamming so many crappy parts into their Blue-Ray player to cut costs, PS3 owners will be lucky if the system works in 36 months.
hmm, i remember, some website said that SONY "burn test" their PS3 system..
and there also a site said that sony quality standard for PS3 is high

im sorry, cant remember the website name.

1812.9.2006 5:07

Andrew691 thats what I am thinking I am looking 2-3 years down the line when they break the DVD9 limit because they have run out of space.

1912.9.2006 6:02

zippy/andrew thats what i mean, its only a matter of time. @arnkist please tell me more about these crappy parts that sony are using

2012.9.2006 7:00

I wonder what impact the triple layer DVD will have on games, this could work out well for MS!

2112.9.2006 7:07

tnarulz maybe I say maybe because HD DVD is a add on thus half the devs will over look it then thos that make BR games will over look it because they don't want to go thru the trouble of going to different factory to make HD DVD games..its just not looking good for MS anyway you look at it right now,sure they can double their efforts and get devs on the HD DVD bandwagon but MS is not even trying right now and I don't see them doing much other than making normal 360 games.

2212.9.2006 10:37

Isn't the HD-DVD add-on just for movie playback. I thought I remembered MS saying that movies could be played, but not games. Bah.

Quote:
its just not looking good for MS anyway you look at it right now

I wouldn't exactly put it that way.

2312.9.2006 10:43

oofRome
right now this min thigns are not great for the 360 in 6+ months that can change.

it wont take much for MS to pull a sony and say the add on can do games.
that said an add on for HD DVD and HD DVD gaming will add 2-3 years to the 360s life span,but will devs jump on the HD DVD band wagon most likely...not.....


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

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2412.9.2006 12:31

Quote:
oofRome
right now this min thigns are not great for the 360 in 6+ months that can change.
I disagree. Things have only been getting better for MS ever since sony delayed the spring 06 ps3 release.
Then sony dropped the price bomb at e3.
With the announced ps3 shortages, microsoft is poised to capitalize on it's second holiday season with little ps3 competition.
And there is still little information on ps3's online service, one of microsoft's real strengths.

The format war has barely started, and the general consensus is that Blu-ray just doesn't have the momentum it should. And now with this dvd-add on announced, you have another next gen system that can also be a cheap High-Def player.

Quote:
but will devs jump on the HD DVD band wagon most likely...not.....

What is this based off of?

There's no doubt in my mind that Sony can and will easily rebound from this year. But at the moment, Microsoft is in a great position.

2512.9.2006 14:29
hughjars
Inactive

You got to laugh at the desperate believer fan-boy element. All those strident claims to know and declaring this that and the other about their fav foreign manufacturer. Strange. $ony or M$. $ome choice, huh? ;) Did anyone else notice that this headline comes with a ? at the end of it? Before getting too carried away it's surely worth bearing in mind that it's not like it's an official announcement, is it? Maybe it's more like water testing - or how about a tease, raising an expectation only to come in lower to and please some people, hmmm? I think those determined to imagine that a mere game machine is going to be the deciding factor in this ridiculous High Def DVD 'format war' (for either system of High Def DVD) are just fooling themselves. Blu-ray is supposedly potentially the higher capacity system (but can't get the dual layer 50gb disc working outside the lab nevermind 100 or 200gb discs) but their player is almost twice the price of the HD DVD player (and as for recorders!? Both are ridiculously priced but again Blu-ray to be grossly more expensive than HD DVD). HD DVD has demonstrated 60gb (2 layer 15gb on 2 sided disc IIRC). That's more than plenty for any credible HD movie application and even if it isn't to the limit of Blu-ray's capacity it is already way way more capacity than joe-public has right now and at a price that seems much more attractive. It kind of reminds me of DAT, plenty of interesting technical bells and whistles but when it came down to it, so what? There just wasn't enough to really attract the paying public at the asking price and it became a niche technical special for the professional studio and a handful of regretful early adopters and those just determined to be different. Personally I would not be in the least bit surprised to see Blu-ray go down that path.

2612.9.2006 15:24

point is blu ray wll win in the end meaning ps3 will beat out the 360 in the end.ps3 at 600.00 is high for most people,but the value overall,makes 600.00 looks cheap for what you are gettin for the ps3.ps3 easily a 2,000 system.

2712.9.2006 16:10

hughjars true BR is buggy as hell sony jumped the gun to on the format war,but they are still in the best position to gain something from it. MS has made mistake after mistake with HD DVD they could get into the gaming side of it but I am thinking they wont. right now HD DVD has a leg up on BR witch is still being worked on. In any case I wonder just whats ging to fill that PS3 BR game R:fall of man MarkDogg1 yyyyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa *pats you little head* nice to live in a fan boys dream.

2812.9.2006 17:25

The thing is, HD-DVD isnt critical to anything working yet so theres no real need for it. Bluray WONT be going anywhere anytime soon as its being carried by the PS3 and until the death of the PS3 BD will still at least be being used for games, thus it doesn't really lose. The only thing im worrying about is that games will be made for the 360 (at 8.5gb limit) then just ported to the PS3 wasting alot of space and money. Does anyone know if there is a PS3-DVD format?

2912.9.2006 17:30

Andrew691 Uummm the PS3 can play CD and DVD games of the PS1 and PS2 so yes the PS3 will have DVD games,so far there is only ONE known BR game. UUmmm HD DVD already has movies out and they are clearer than what BR can do,mostly because of MS's codec. In all HD DVD is doing ok for movies and BR is still in the works.

3012.9.2006 17:42

What i meant was an actual PS3 game format, because Sony have said that ALL games will be BD. Yea the BD movies are currently below standard, because of codec choice, i believe they are still using MPEG-2 so standard DVD. When REAL BD HD movies are released it will only get better. With BD's extra space it doesnt need to be to reliant on its codec so much. The whole triple layer hd-dvd/dvd thing looks to be very good for the HD-DVD team, as it can sell discs with the movie in both formats then people will buy the disc for SD, then may just try the HD copy of the movie, think its a great improvement and upgrade.

3112.9.2006 17:47

Andrew691 Sony LIES there is only 1 BR game so far.

3212.9.2006 18:28

Yea everyone knows Sony if full of BS, i should have known better than to believe it but somewhere it was said by Sony that all ps3 games would be BD to combat piracy.

3312.9.2006 18:33

Andrew691 well the PS3 was going to do dual HDMI at 1080p so Sony has a tendency to overstate shit,in all the PS3 is ok but I don't have 600 to blow at once if I did meh 50/50 on getting it *L*

3413.9.2006 1:43

dual HDMI? LOL that's typical Sony for ya. So the stripped down version of PS3 won't have HDMI, what will that mean for the person who goes to Wal Mart and gets a cheaper HDTV then you can get anywhere else, decides their budget doesn't allow for the more expensive version of PS3 but wants to try and watch Blu Ray movies on it.

Also the games are supposed to be Blu Ray to prevent piracy, um are all the anti piracy measures going to be on the disc or will that depend partially on HDMI too?


Spellcheck is a nice invention.
Using BitVomit hurts the swarm your in, get a decent client.

3513.9.2006 3:23

Quote:
Andrew691
Sony LIES there is only 1 BR game so far.
No. All the ps3 games are on bluray NOT just 1.At least the last time I heard it was.Resistance is the only one reported at those high file sizes but they will still be on bluray.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 13 Sep 2006 @ 3:26

pc games with gamepad support by tycobb.
http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/360823

3613.9.2006 7:30

tycobb
wait....they are going to make all the PS3 games BR but so far R:FOM is the only one to use more than 13GB?
0_o
no wonder everyones confused ><

can you give my a link to some hard info? I been looking and Resistance is the only game I can find.


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

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3713.9.2006 8:28
hughjars
Inactive

I see folks just can't let go of the idea that a mere games machine and the 'nth degree' of unnecessary capacity for future games is going to be the deciding factor in this. I think some folks could do with a reality check; it isn't. The fact that High Def DVD is split between 2 formats is what is going to hold both back mightily and a games console with *whoever*'s logo on it makes no difference to that. Just as PS2 did not become the 'main DVD player' in any home I know of so, IMO, PS3 will not either. (nevermind the quality issue, PS2 didn't exactly inspire as a quality DVD machine, does it?) IMO it will all be decided when the machines become available at a mass-market friendly 100- 200 price point (and HD DVD is the front-runner for getting there soonest, by a country mile). But just watch the consumer take their time over this. My bet is there will be no hurry to move either way (and this stupid format war just entrenches this further). ......and what's with this idea that any game seriously is going to 'need' more capacity than a disc which can already hold a full-length Holywood movie in HD (and all the extras they insist on cramming in these days)? To say Blu-ray is a plus for gaming is a bit like claiming a double-decker bus is a plus for motoring because, even though no-one is making use or even about to make use of it, the extra space will come in handy some day. Probably. That might be a fair point, in theory, but if you never truely need or use it then what's the point of all the extra costs it brings with it? In any case surely the only way that will ever be remotely approaching 'true' is if they cram even more boring FMV cr@p into games? Frankly I could care less either way but the clamour of one particular side in this is ridiculous and at odds with the market reality. Of the 2 I'd say HD DVD is in a far better position because - 1) the quality is proven and consistently excellent, 2) the larger existing user base, 3) the likelihood of that user base being vastly expanded as it becomes an affordable PC component (nevermind the XBox 360 stuff) well supportd by MS and every other games manufacturer, 4) it already offer a huge increase in storage capacity compared to existing device 5) There are less DRM and region coding issues with HD DVD and 6) it's enormous price advantage. Half the price of the competitor is not to be dismissed lightly particularly when the competitor is only offering a theoretical storage advantage which was already boosted hugely by the HD DVD system. Still, no doubt those who insist on seeing the PS3 as the salvation of all mankind will continue much as before.

3813.9.2006 13:58

Andrew691 Meh I cant keep up with all the mis infermation and the voices in my head *L* Sorry it seems Sony dose plan on making all PS3 games BR this is a anti copy measure not a size measure. Altho in time it will give the PS3 a edge but that dose not mean if they will use it. hughjars I see your point but I have to say he PS3 is jump starting the new format and its cheaper but with that said where are the BR movies MS already has a leg out the door,sure theres going to be a few neck and neck runings before a winner is declared but the PS3 dose has the advantage and potential the 360 dose not have dose this mean they will actually use its potential to the fullest....I don't see the SIZE gimmick becoming NOT A GIMMICK for at least 2 years and then by that time will be having more WHOLE games,games that are at the least a bit longer,and have more voice acting in them I am playing Dragon Quest 8 right now and some what amazed that the VAing is good but 8 ours in theres barely any of it 0-o sure theres a good bit in the beginning but once you hit the 2nd town the VAing almost vanishes,size will matter in time but only once the devs are willing to go that extra mile to use it. I got this feeling R:FOM will be neat but it wont be any longer/larger than any other fps since 05. the trick is they can fill 20GB rater fast without using compression so I wonder what the space usage on the game will be. Like I said the PS3 dose have some potential but as it is now its a freaking gimmick 0-o

3913.9.2006 13:59

I can't find any links right now either, but I am sure I remember hearing sony had mandated all ps3 games be on BD.

4013.9.2006 14:07

oofRome
I know its hard to find info when its just Sony taking about it ><

I recorrected myself is the post above so :P


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Lets renegotiate them.

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Check out my crappy creations
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4113.9.2006 14:23

Yea you would have seen what i had seen,(BD games) but i cant find it either. @hughjars

Quote:
well supportd by MS and every other games manufacturer
Where did you pull out of? the reason Microsoft didn't add internal HD-DVD is mainly because they didn't want to get involved in the format war until someone was going to be a clear winner. Games manufacturers have not announced any loyalty to either side (provide a link) more movie company's have sided with BD than HD-DVD. For some reason i cant get onto the official bluray website to find out who is supporting what but its there.

4213.9.2006 14:50
hughjars
Inactive

Where did I get the idea HD-DVD would be well supported by MS & the games manufacturers? It's obvious. The instant they start going into PC's as the first and only affordable HD drives to be had (for the vast majority). That's not far off now (NEC have been showing off theirs IIRC). HD-DVD movie player prices primarily & fitment as PC OEM are going to be the killer issues, IMO. Not the XBox 360 or PS3's HD capabilities. Home cinema set-ups are what is going to decide this. (Well that and the fact Blu-ray can only offer the same quality of image, a bigger leap in capacity compared to the leap HD-DVD is offering, that no one really needs, and all at twice the price). The most damning 'strategic' fact as far as Sony are concerned (tho neither they nor their fan element would care to admit it) is that they have gone from being class leader (out-selling all the rest put together) to largest minority share this time around; a huge reversal for them.....and no serious market watchers expect any different with PS3. IMO it has always been a long-term strategy. But the stage is set for the gen after this one to see MS dominate, for better or worse.

4313.9.2006 14:51

Andrew691 I believe hes saying that HD DVD is stable and MS is behind it and is in a position to make games and put computer software and such on it. But you are right MS has said they don't want to get into HD DVD gameing,... also since the 360 was not made for it from the start they have a larger cliff to climb....sure the 360 can do HD DVD games I have no dout it can but will it be worth MS and game stuidos time to do it....

4413.9.2006 14:55

hughjars ahhh to set the stage for a Xbx 2 in 2-5 years with full HD DVD and such If BR worked I would be happy with it as a backup sulution,bit right now its wonky *L*

4513.9.2006 15:26

HD-DVD/BD aren't yet needed for PC games, im not sure if HD-DVD PC drives have been released yet but Sony already have their Viao laptops equipped with BD already. These HD formats are NOT yet needed for PC gaming, look at Oblivion for example...

4613.9.2006 15:32

http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/394034 looks like M$ just screwed all current 360 owners over, have a look at the links.

4721.9.2006 9:47
hughjars
Inactive

Not trying to spam the board but this seems relevant here -

The BBC are today reporting Microsift's XBox 360 HD DVD add-on will retail in Japan at 89 - approx $160 US.

Quote:
At a pre-TGS event in Tokyo, Microsoft said it would be releasing a HD-DVD player for the Xbox 360 on 17 November in Japan, priced 19,800 yen (89).

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/5342836.stm

It remains to be seen what they'll charge elsewhere but if this is the pitching point in Japan it's got to look good for the rest of us?

Major bargain of the year or what?
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 21 Sep 2006 @ 16:11

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