Xbox One Hardware Review

Is the third console the charm or a curse?

Site Score
8.0
Good: Hardware Design, Solid Launch Titles, Uncluttered interface, Controller, HDMI Input and TV, Snap Feature,
Bad: Controller Not Rechargeable From Start, Game Installs, No External HDD Support
User Score
7.8
(97 votes)
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Xbox One (1)

Microsoft first jumped in the console game back in 2001 with the original Xbox. Competing against the PlayStation 2 and Gamecube, Microsoft was the new kid on the block compared to the veterans Sony and Nintendo. The Xbox lagged behind the PlayStation 2, but Microsoft got the jump on Sony in the next generation with the Xbox 360, which launched a year ahead of Sony’s PlayStation 3. The numbers of sales for the Xbox 360 actually were behind the Nintendo Wii, but it was largely seen as the most successful for that generation.

Now we have arrived with the release of the Xbox One. Earlier this year, Microsoft faced a lot of backlash due to DRM policies amongst other issues, but luckily those policies were removed and won back the support for some of the gaming community. This time around, rather than being the first new console out of the game like in the last generation, the Xbox One was last, coming after the Wii U last November and the PlayStation 4 a week prior to the Xbox One launch. Since release, the system has been a very hard item to find. With a cost of $499.99, the question is whether or not the Xbox One is worth the price of admission, especially when it is $100 more expensive than its direct competitor.

Xbox One (9)

Hardware Design

The Xbox One is actually a tiny bit larger than its predecessor, the Xbox 360. Compared to the original Xbox 360 design, the Xbox One is larger in width and depth, but is actually a little shorter in height, which while miniscule, does still help to fit into your gaming cabinet better. Compared to the Xbox 360 Slim, the Xbox One is larger in all three areas, including having a 2.5 inch longer width.

While a bit larger than the original Xbox 360, the Xbox One is actually a bit lighter by 0.2 lbs, according to my own trials with the weight. The Xbox One Slim is nearly a pound lighter than the Xbox One though. Due to the Xbox One being a bit flatter and having a longer width, the weight seems to be more evenly distributed to where it feels a good bit lighter than either of the Xbox 360 variations. The bulky nature may make it more difficult to fit in your travel bags than the PlayStation 4 or Xbox 360 Slim, but it still does not feel overly heavy, especially considering its size.

The Xbox 360 implemented the ability to stand the system vertically, even though the system itself wasn’t the most sturdy when standing on its own without the help of a vertical stand. However, Microsoft has reverted back to the original Xbox days by creating a console that should remain horizontal at all times. From actually trying it, the Xbox One is very stable when set vertically, but don’t let that tempt you to try it. Microsoft has warned that putting the system vertically is “at your own risk” due to the new loading disc drive.

Xbox One (10)

Just like the Xbox 360, the Xbox One once again utilizes an external power brick, so you will have to prepare for extra room as it is difficult to have the brick dangling down as to not put strain on the cord. Due to the short cord, you will likely be setting the power brick next to the system. As a result, you must make sure to have a power outlet fairly close.

The Xbox One tries something pretty new for consoles with a almost completely clean front of the system. By that I mean that there are no inputs, such as USB slots. All you will find is the power button, which is not a physical button, and the disc drive that has you insert discs directly rather than a drive that actually pulls out. There is a sticker that warns you not to move the system with the disc inside, but that can be easily removed. This allows you to have a very sleek front of the system that can almost blend in with a black entertainment center.

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Xbox One Hardware Review, 7.8 out of 10 based on 97 ratings
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1 Comment

  1. Chris
    January 6, 2014, 12:09 PM

    After 3 defective PS4′s, I decided to go ahead and jump on the Xbox One. So far I have not had any issues with it. I am very pleased with Ryse, Dead Rising 3, and Zoo Tycoon. I still plan on picking up a PS4, but will most likely wait until March/April when the PS4 has a better line up.

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