After months of video gaming chair waiting Microsoft
confirmed months of suspicion when Bill Gates officially announced the cheap high powered gaming computer for the
best free internet games Xbox console via a Web-wide news feed in March 2000. The Xbox was then unveiled in full at the Consumer
Electronics Show in Las Vegas where the WWF's The Rock joined Bill Gates on stage. At E3 2001 in May Microsoft announced
that the console would be launched in the US on 8 November, 2001, for $299. The launch was delayed and the console was released 15
November 2001 in the US, with its UK launch to follow in March.
Equal in size to a VCR, the Xbox
could go down in history as the largest video game console ever, its basic rectangular shape is augmented by a large
X formed into the top of the console. In the top of the console rests a circular green jewel bestowed with the Xbox logo.
The console includes four USB controller ports, a front-loading 5x DVD drive, as well as eject and back buttons on the front.
The back of the console houses
a standard audio/video-out port, a digital-out port for HDTV, and a power supply outlet. The Xbox will also include an extensive
front end viewable from the video gaming chair that's being called the Dashboard. The Xbox Dashboard will let you adjust
the console's settings and control its operation.
Instead of splitting its user
base by offering add-on components at a later date, Microsoft is placing all the hardware it needs for the next five
years into the Xbox now for the best free internet games. The Xbox will come with an Ethernet port to connect to both
DSL and cable broadband connections and an 8GB hard drive that will be supplied by Western Digital. Neither the GameCube nor
the PlayStation2 can boast of such inclusions.
Microsoft has stated that the cheap
high powered gaming computer hard drive will be used to rip your own soundtracks for games right from your video gaming
chair, to decrease loading times by caching data, and to save game data. In conjunction with the Ethernet port, it will also
be used to download new characters, levels, and more.
Although a small minority of those
online use broadband connections from their video gaming chair, the Xbox will not have dial-up capability. It's a bold
step on Microsoft's part: it's banking on its theory that many will be securing a broadband connection within the next five
Inexpensive DVD add-on
The Xbox will not come with the
ability to play DVD movies. However, for $29 you can purchase the DVD Movie Playback Kit, which will unlock the feature in
the Xbox hardware. Xbox software will be stored on 4.5GB DVD discs and will be sold in standard DVD cases just like PlayStation2
and GameCube software.
The Intel-developed Xbox cheap high
powered gaming computer CPU is based upon the company's Pentium III line of processors and clocks at 733MHz for the best
free internet games. While chip architectures vary, making them virtually impossible to compare, the PlayStation2's CPU runs
at 294MHz, and the GameCube CPU clocks at 486MHz.
Needless to say, Microsoft's upcoming console
can more than compete from your video gaming chair with the competition where computational operations are concerned.
The Xbox will come with 64MB of unified DRAM, compared to just 32MB of the same memory in the PlayStation2 and 43MB of total
RAM for the GameCube.
The Xbox's memory can be allocated
however the developer sees fit, eliminating the bottlenecks associated with the PlayStation2's limited amount of VRAM.
The 250MHz Xbox cheap high powered
gaming computer GPU was initially announced as 300MHz and is developed by nVidia for the best free internet games, the
company behind the popular GeForce video cards for the PC. Specifically, the Xbox GPU is based upon nVidia's recently released
GeForce3 technology and is classified as the NV2a.
Dubbed the X-Chip, the Xbox's graphics
processor is capable of a multitude of onboard special effects from your video gaming chair including full-scene antialiasing,
four simultaneous textures per object, fog, environment mapping, pixel and texel shaders, bump mapping and real-time lighting.
Despite the X-Chip's ability to display just four textures per object compared to eight for the GameCube, the Xbox's textures
should be a marked improvement over those on the PlayStation2, thanks to onboard texture compression at a 6:1 ratio.
The Xbox's unified DRAM should also
aid in texture clarity since developers have the freedom to allocate it however they wish. The X-Chip can display graphics
at a maximum resolution of 1920x1080.
Microsoft's specifications for the
Xbox cheap high powered gaming computer state that it is capable of displaying 125 million raw polygons per second for the
best free internet games, but this figure is misleading. The most visually impressive Xbox games shown at E3 looked to be
running at around 10 million polygons per second, and some with drastic frame rate problems.
In Microsoft's defence, the games
were running on unfinished development kits, but it may have been a better idea to hold back games that weren't running smoothly
to maximise a positive response. While most weren't overly displeased with the Xbox's performance at E3, what was shown
failed to demonstrate that the Xbox is three times more powerful than its competition, as Microsoft has stated.
One definitive advantage the Xbox
has over its competition from the video gaming chair is producing sound for the best free internet games. Despite the fact
that Xbox development kits still lack sound hardware, the Xbox computer will ultimately be capable of in-game Dolby Digital
surround sound -- a first for video game consoles.
The Xbox will also be capable of
broadcasting 256 simultaneous stereo voices through 64 different channels. Dolby Surround will be a snap for the Xbox, and
overall, the auditory experience found in cheap high powered gaming computer Xbox games should be superior to that of
both the PlayStation2 and GameCube.
The Xbox architecture is said to
make it easy to develop the best free internet games for the console, and PC developers have found it to be the same environment
they've become accustomed to working with. Microsoft has had somewhat of a spotty history where the Xbox hardware is concerned.
Even now, major third-party developers are still waiting for final Xbox development kits. Microsoft had previously stated
that completed kits were shipped to developers prior to E3, but the ship date was missed.
The latest kits developers received
are fairly complete, and Microsoft will upgrade them with software instead of supplying developers with entirely new units.
As mentioned previously, developers have stated that the Xbox beta kits still lack sound hardware. Apparently, developers
are still constructing the sound for cheap high powered gaming computer Xbox games from specifications given to them by Microsoft.
The Xbox controller is a hybrid
of most controllers that came before it, but it owes a great deal to Sega's Dreamcast controller from a visual perspective.
Similar to the console itself, the US Xbox controller is rather large and features a large face with a circular green jewel
emblazoned with the Xbox logo.
Force feedback will be included
in the Xbox cheap high powered gaming computer controller for the best free internet games and will be powered by two
separate motors for varying degrees of response. There are two analogue sticks, and their placement closely mirrors that of
the GameCube controller in that the left stick is located above a directional pad and the right stick is below the face buttons.
Both analogue sticks may be pushed down and clicked for added functionality, and the thumb dimple on the top of the left analogue
stick is slightly larger than that of the right stick.
Microsoft has brought over the eight-way
directional pad from its Sidewinder controller for the PC, which could present some problems for fighting games because of
its slick surface and stiff action. Menu navigation buttons are located in the centre of the controller for both start and
The face of the Xbox controller
has six buttons. The four primary analogue buttons (A, B, X, and Y) are configured in a diamond shape. Just above the diamond
configuration are two more analogue buttons -- one black and the other white. On the back of the controller are two analogue
trigger buttons, which are nearly identical to those found on the Dreamcast controller, and two slots where memory cards and
other peripherals like headsets and microphones may be plugged in.
Based upon our time with the Xbox
cheap high powered gaming computer controller at various trade shows, there are several problems that should be corrected.
The most pressing issue is that the face buttons are too close together. It's often difficult to press one button without
Also, the black and white buttons
located above the diamond configuration are nearly impossible to reach. Video game journalists were quick to point out the
controller's shortcomings at E3, and rumours have circulated that it is currently being redesigned for the best free internet
At the Spring Tokyo Game Show, Microsoft
unveiled the Japanese Xbox controller. Its face is significantly smaller than the US version, and it features shorter handles
and a drastically altered button configuration. Both versions of the controller feature cords that are more than nine feet
in length and analogue buttons with 256 degrees of sensitivity.
All the extras
Xbox Memory Unit
Despite the fact that the Xbox comes
with an 8GB hard drive, Microsoft knows that portable data storage is an important asset of a video game console. How else
can someone take characters and game saves to a friend's house and play from their video gaming chair? Similar to the PlayStation2
memory card, the Xbox Memory Unit will hold 8MB of data. That should be enough to hold saves for well over a dozen games.
The Xbox Memory Unit plugs into the top of two expansion slots located on the back of the Xbox controller. Pricing for the
Xbox Memory Unit has yet to be announced.
Xbox Advanced/High Definition AV
This combination of S-video and
standard AV inputs lets the Xbox connect to virtually any television set. A high-definition AV pack will also be released
to take advantage of televisions that support HDTV. The high-definition pack supports 480p, 720p, and 1080i component video
signals, analogue audio inputs, and digital receivers. Pricing for either AV Pack has yet to be announced.
The Xbox DVD Playback Kit
As mentioned earlier, the Xbox does
not have the ability to play DVD movies out of the box. To enable DVD movie playback, a separate remote must be purchased.
A small module plugs into one of the Xbox's four controller ports, and the remote communicates with it. The remote comes with
all the functionality you'll need to enjoy DVD movies to the fullest from your video gaming chair, such as scene selection
alternate angles and menu commands. The DVD Movie Playback Kit will retail for $29.
Thanks to its Ethernet port, the
Xbox has the ability to include voice communication in the best free internet games. Recoton recently announced that it is
jointly developing the Xbox Headset with Microsoft for use with online games that use voice recognition. Presumably, the Xbox
Headset will let you both send and receive voice transmissions during play. The headset is currently scheduled for release
alongside the launch of the Xbox network in the spring of next year. Pricing has yet to be announced.
Several companies have already signed
on to make Xbox peripherals. Nuby announced in April that it is currently developing Xbox controllers and a yet-to-be-disclosed
console interface. InterAct has also announced that it is currently researching and developing Xbox peripherals, including
controllers, driving wheels, and arcade sticks for use. You can also count on InterAct to provide alternate forms of Xbox
Memory Units. Pricing and images of third-party Xbox peripherals have yet to be released.
Microsoft Xbox the cheap high
powered gaming computer for the best free internet games right from your video gaming chair