GPU cooling to fix RRoD

[Rbz] fixed his friend’s Red Ring of Death stricken Xbox 360 by improving the GPU cooling. Because an overheating GPU is a common cause of the failure, he first tried to replace the thermal compound for better heat conductivity between the chip and the heat sink. This helped a bit but within two hours the problem was back. Troubled by the heat discoloration on the bottom of the DVD drive, he removed it and screwed a cooling fan to the GPU heat sink. That did the trick, so he moved the drive to the outside of the case with the aid of a longer SATA cable. It’s not pretty, but it worked.

Comments

  1. Xeracy says:

    Could have used this info before i tore apart my roommates xboxes…

  2. Mikey says:

    No warranty for you!

  3. vonskippy says:

    Ya know, to get my new sneakers (cool new green converses) to work, I had to remove them from their box too(although I don’t think it was a heating issue, more like a hard to walk otherwise issue).

    Would you like me to write up that “hack” for ya?

  4. jeff-o says:

    I gotta say, I still have no regrets about buying a PS3 instead of a 360.

  5. wdfowty says:

    it ain’t pretty, but if it works it works. however, that thing should never be vertical. ever. unless you’re in the market for new game disks XD
    what i cant figure out is, how did he burn up his jasper unit so badly? mine have barely even gotten warm after hours of modern warfare…

  6. wdfowty says:

    @jeff-o
    no need for fanboi wars XD

  7. kvmanii says:

    its surprising they didn’t put fans on these in the first place considering the price of the 360 when it first came out..

  8. mikeymike says:

    best fix is just throw it out the window and buy a gaming pc or a ps3

  9. Ian says:

    Interesting… Instead of putting my DVD outside the case I put a fan outside of the case and just drilled vent holes through. Doesn’t do too much… I need to drill bigger holes and get a better fan though. I don’t get RROD though, it just freezes every 30 min or so. So it may not even be the same issue.

    No matter, I bought a second 360 that works still.

  10. sM10 says:

    Instead of adding a fan and removing the disk drive…

    Replace the thermal paste and reassemble leaving the left side of the xbox without its plastic shell. The case will cool much better.

  11. Laminar says:

    Do you know why they call it an XBox 360? Because when you see it, you’ll turn 360 degrees and walk away.

  12. DeadlyFoez says:

    thats a really crappy way to fix RROD. The best way is to reflow it and use the hybrid fix. Even better than that is to reball it with leaded soldering balls.

    I just spent over $2000 getting all the equipment needed to properly do stuff like this.

  13. xorpunk says:

    PS3 slim has 45nm CPU and GPU… no problems, even the old 65nm CPU and 92nm GPU configuration would last days in mp play.

  14. walt says:

    how did they ever get away with releasing such a pos piece of hardware. barely seems legal.

  15. saimhe says:

    Legal or not, the main reason is that most users will just endure the POS instead of returning it to the stores en masse, or even not buying until something radically changes according to reviews.

  16. mrbippers says:

    @Laminar

    …you realize a 360 degree turn leaves you facing the original direction, right?

  17. kvmanii says:

    @ Laminar if you turned 360 degrees you would be right back where you started, what does it whirl you around when you see it…

    just saying….

  18. jamieriddles says:

    @Laminar
    think again about what you just said

  19. zacdee316 says:

    That’s a good idea. But it doesn’t look nice. Just get a empty factory case and put the drive in there. Then bolt the two together so they don’t get pulled apart. Then any one who walks into your living room say “WHAT THE FUCK! WHY DO YOU HAVE 2 360’S?”
    lol

  20. mukmuk says:

    lol laminar, if you turned 360 degrees you’d still be looking at the xbox. I’ve replaced the x-clamps, applied new thermal paste, directed one fan to pull from the GPU and maxed out fanspeed on a few 360s and while they did last a while, the RRODs always came back in about 6mo to a years time. Oh well… better than spending $2000 on a ball grid array reflow setup to fix a $200 game system. :D

  21. saimhe says:

    @kvmanii

    I think there’s another edge to that, an ironic one. You can not turn around; you will still buy the POS :)

  22. MG says:

    I have a first-run 360, use it regularly, and I’ve never had any problems with it, RRoD or otherwise. So overall it isn’t a POS…just in many cases evidently. While obviously Microsoft could have done a lot better to prevent those issues, I still think it’s a solid console overall.

    A quick and dirty hack, but if it works, why not? I wonder if you could get your hands on an old HD-DVD 360 enclosure and put the DVD drive in that to match the aesthetics.

  23. Laminar says:

    @Caleb

    You just had to ruin it.

  24. mrgoogfan says:

    why not just send it to ms to get it fixed for free?

  25. MichaelJackson says:

    Woo!
    (turns 360 degrees, moonwalks away)
    (puts XBOX into a modded case with proper airflow and pwns the rrod!)

  26. _matt says:

    Actually celeb, I think those people replying were trolling too.

    Anyway, a more permanent fix would be to reflow, but any home made reflow station is definitely run the risk of ruining the xbox anyway.

    Try cutting the temperature sensor trace “google it” and see if it still red rings. I bet it does.

  27. CollinstheClown says:

    http://forums.llamma.com/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=21924

    I prefer my mod, looks more pro.

  28. CalcProgrammer1 says:

    You’re right, that is a Jasper unit. Microsoft said these were the “RRoD-proof” units that would end all the problems and create world peace. Mine certainly runs cooler than my old Xenon box (that has RRoD’d many times and is fixed with the Hybrid mod) but I guess it isn’t RRoD-proof after all.

  29. The_Truth says:

    Absolutely terrible fix.

    DeadlyFoez: why on earth would you waste that kind of cash on reflow/reball equipment just to fix 360’s.

    It is actually VERY simple to reflow these semi-professionally. It cost me and my partner around $200 for the equipment to do it.

  30. deyjavont says:

    @The_Truth
    I think there is more uses for a reflow machine that just to fix an xbox 360. I can think of a few other things I would use it on

  31. cinemec says:

    yah it don’t look pretty, but perhaps he could pick up a broken xbox hd dvd drive somewhere (or even a working one), gut it and house the drive in that enclosure.

  32. The_Truth says:

    deyjavont: And what might that be? Aside from here and there work, I see no use for a reflow machine besides the xbox 360 market at the current moment in time. Please feel free to let me know, I am up for people to throw money at me for easy repairs!

  33. zero says:
  34. nubie says:

    anyone got a backup of those pictures? His hosting is hosed.

  35. incognito53 says:

    wow i remember now why i don’t come here as much.. all the trolls and mud slinging that gets downranked on E-G is open season over here

  36. smoker_dave says:

    So his 360 was getting hot… and he added a fan to it?

    Top mod…

  37. space says:

    Got a newer unit (with built in heat pipe) that red ringed recently. Used hotair re-work station, to get it working for now.

    Done this with 4 boxes over the years (for friends), they only last about 1 year before the red ring appears again. Hope this issue is fix in future GPU gens.

  38. McSquid says:

    75% of them just need quality heat compound and they work fine.

    i make plenty of cash fixing 360s without buying $2000 reflow equipment. here is the secret:

    1. go to craigslist and buy a broken 360 for $50
    2. add quality thermal compound
    3. if it works, sell it (or give it to your buddy as a wedding gift) if not, repeat step one switching the word “buy” to “sell” <—-read as "profit!"

  39. xorpunk says:

    @McSquid: If any part of the BGA is loose that wont help. I’m sure you do make money doing that, like people who sale shitty outdated computers to ignorant morons in local shops and online for new machine prices.

  40. pixel says:

    When my xbox was dying due to the gpu overheating I did the same thing, but I also two holes the top and used a cpu fan and a case fan to try to cool it. The damage was already done although it did make it last longer

  41. DeadlyFoez says:

    There is a HUGE market in my area and online for repairing the 360. I get about 10 – 15 inquiries a week about doing the repair. Nobody wants to throw it away to buy a new one that will do the same thing in a few years. Most people would rather have it professionally fixed with leaded solder balls for $100 plus parts. It wont ever break again after that. In just a total of 3 weeks and it’s all paid off. Simple.

  42. Tom says:

    @all people who read this ‘hack’, you just got trolled.

  43. strider_mt2k says:

    @all trolls trolling this hack, you just hacked troll got yes.

    i think

  44. rbz says:

    I replied to the reasonable comments on the forum.

    All of the others who insist on buying >$2000 equipment to fix a small $200 console. Really?

    All I had was a knife, fan and a SATA cable.

  45. DeadlyFoez says:

    When this said $2000+ equipment can be used on MANY things other than a 360 it makes it even more worth it.

  46. cdjstyle says:

    I’m interested in the xbox 360 but all the RROD talk just puts me off. Any word on Microsoft getting their act together about releasing a model that doesn’t have these problems?

  47. rbz says:

    @cdjstyle – apparently theres a rumour of an xbox slim with the fan on the heatsink.

    http://kotaku.com/5495181/rumor-new-xbox-360-model-slims-down-%5Bupdate%5D

    @DeadlyFoez – Yeah I understand the benefits however budget was pretty tight on this one and i don’t usually work with BGA components or do much de-soldering, but hey if you have that kind of stuff around then why not :)

  48. Comments = Comments + 1 says:

    Hey that shit looks pretty good, looks like a nice cheap way to fix the problem, Not sure id use a reflow thing because they can be reallly costly and considering rbz was only fixing and xbox i can understand why he did this, great idea – Good Job

  49. tbk_megatron says:

    Is thinking about modding mine thats laying in pieces in a box. In the process of designing a liquid cooled xbox… But that looks like crap dude!

  50. technoe says:

    This isn’t a bad idea. But there are better ways of repairing an cooling your 360. I repair all manner of electronics including the 360 and PS3. Both have over heating issues. And you really only need a handful of tools to do it right costing nowhere near the 2 grand mentioned earlier. I have a fully functional clean room and the whole build only cost about $600.

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