Microsoft details some of the Xbox One's heat management features

The Xbox One console is a fairly large device when compared to other game consoles past and present. Therefore, it might be a temptation to put things like, for example, a pizza box on top of the Xbox One during an all night gaming marathon. 

It's never a good idea to put something on top of any TV set top device because of the threat of overheating, but in the case of the Xbox One, Microsoft claims it has anticipated some of these kind of scenarios when it designed the console. In a new Gizmodo article, Microsoft's General Manager of Console Development Leo Del Castillo states:

The way we designed the box, we don’t actually intend it to ever have to go to maximum speed under normal environmental conditions. But there is overhead. So we’ll allow the fan to go all the way up to its maximum speed and if that solves the condition without the user having to do anything.

In addition, the Xbox One can also cut down its power usage when it detects a large amount of heat inside, which can prevent overheating errors and can even help to stop the console's plastic case from melting. Del Castillo says the power usage can be so low that the console "uses virtually no air flow." Hopefully this will help the Xbox One to run longer even under abusive owners.

Source: Gizmodo | Image via Microsoft

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25 Comments

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sheesh, MS is announcing some features that every single console of the market already uses. Thermal protection is nothing new.

Soon, MS will announce :"and it has buttons!".

So let me guess if none of the systems can handle it then the console will turn its self off? Oh dear, I knew there might be problems with the heat since they shown off the Xbox One, all those vents ...

When U say shut off I mean without warning.

Maybe I don't get something but and not trolling here but never had a problem with say my blu ray and DRV box being stacked why should an Xbox I don't get how else people "manage" their tv stuff in the living room unless you have fancy shelves or something??

Well these are the main causes, which I can come up with (please correct me in case I'm wrong ):

The One is not a simple Blu-Ray player or DVR, it's more like a reduced-size desktop computer which can get quick heat due to the GPU and CPU stress. Meaning it needs to dissipate air to prevent overheat and malfunction of the pieces. Henceforth having a great place to exchange air is a very big plus.

I like that they're taking this into consideration.

What I really hope is that, if overheat has been achieved, the Box turns off and does not RRoD.

Hopefully this time around the solder wont melt, shame they didn't go with full solid caps on the mobo though.

Personally if it came to it I'd rather see the Xbox automatically shut down to prevent permanent damage. I know how to properly vent my electronics so I'm not worried about it. I just don't want other idiots complaining that their console overheated.

I'm sure they've learnt lessons from the RROD fiasco. My only worry is about the case picking up surface scratches. I have a micro fibre cloth, but hopefully the coating will be pretty resistant. I hope.

As long as I can keep my kinect on top of it thats good enough for me. Ive never had anything on top of my STB or Receiver as both of them generate a decent amount of heat.

jerzdawg said,
As long as I can keep my kinect on top of it thats good enough for me. Ive never had anything on top of my STB or Receiver as both of them generate a decent amount of heat.

That's a good point though... It also has to be able to.handle the heat generated by devices that may be under or on top of it...

So it can't even keep my pizza warm. What good is it?

"Xbox, did you keep the pizza warm?"
"---"
"You had One job! Your only job!"

Edited by Phouchg, Aug 13 2013, 8:59pm :

Heat management with anything that produces heat is always an issue. Especially items that are in AV component cabinets and TV stands with closed doors.

Your comment is rather ignorant to be honest.

threetonesun said,
Heat management was never an issue, crap manufacturing was.

crap manufacturing led to heat issues, so yes it was a heat issue. MS seems bound and determined this time to not let that RRoD happen again and for that I have no issues. Make it the size of a receiver if that's what it takes.

threetonesun said,
Heat management was never an issue, crap manufacturing was.

Not really.

The problem was a design flaw in the BGA package. The solder was not the correct type for the temperature cycling that the part would undergo. The particular solder they used would anneal at high temperatures, causing intermetallic interfaces which would be prone to cracking after temperature cycling.

Design flaw. Just another victim of rolling out RoHS too early.

threetonesun said,
Heat management was never an issue, crap manufacturing was.

Please, tell me more. Let us in on your expertise in hardware manufacturing, I beg you.

Mordkanin said,
Design flaw. Just another victim of rolling out RoHS too early.

Are you a hardware designer? Medical devices are still a year away from having to comply. Thanks to the rest of you all for solving (mostly) the longevity issues! :-)

xendrome said,
Heat management with anything that produces heat is always an issue. Especially items that are in AV component cabinets and TV stands with closed doors.

Your comment is rather ignorant to be honest.

I was referring to everyone being so concerned because of the original Xbox's RRODs due to faulty soldering. The fact that Microsoft has to put out a press release to prove that it knows how to cool a CPU is laughable, at best, and any amount of fans and vents won't help if they don't QC the damn components inside.

threetonesun said,

I was referring to everyone being so concerned because of the original Xbox's RRODs due to faulty soldering. The fact that Microsoft has to put out a press release to prove that it knows how to cool a CPU is laughable, at best, and any amount of fans and vents won't help if they don't QC the damn components inside.


I agree.

I liked the fact that MS issued a press release. Why? Because there must be people, like me, who are holding their purchase to prevent an unexpected hardware failure.

Which means that if Microsoft has acknowledged the previous issues, this device shall stand strong for years to come, and early adopters won't be as disappointed as they were when their 360 hit the dust.

threetonesun said,
I was referring to everyone being so concerned because of the original Xbox's RRODs due to faulty soldering. The fact that Microsoft has to put out a press release to prove that it knows how to cool a CPU is laughable, at best, and any amount of fans and vents won't help if they don't QC the damn components inside.

Not faulty soldering: Improperly specified solder on the BGA package.

Faulty soldering would have never made it past x-ray inspect.