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Xbox 360 v. 2 revealed, codename "Zephyr" [update 1]


Update: We now have video of the 360 v.2 in action! Check it out here. (Also, readers have pointed out that the 360 uses more expensive 2.5" hard drives, so you can't get 250 gigs for $100. It's more like 80 gigs. Oh, and for the record, the redesign doesn't bother me at all. I just want a reasonably priced HDD.)

Boy, that picture looks familiar. Our fine brothers at Engadget received quite a tip today, the first images -- and overall revelation -- of the second version of our beloved Xbox 360. The new box, codenamed "Zephyr," features a dedicated HDMI port -- meaning the long rumored HDMI cable for the current 360 probably doesn't exist -- and possibly a 120GB hard drive as well. The 120GB may or may not come bundled with the unit, but more space is certainly welcome. One thing is for damned sure, the hard drive price has to come down, considering we payed $100 for 20GB already. Engadget's tipster claims that the new and improved 360 will be available "soon." We have to wonder just how soon that will be, considering the smaller, cooler processor for the 360 was recently delayed. Engadget suspects that the unit will cost roughly the same as the current 360. If Microsoft can manage to get the smaller, cheaper CPU crammed into the 360 v. 2, then the same pricing structure would certainly be viable.

Of course, as 360 owning fanboys, our biggest question is how Microsoft can release this without pissing off early adopters (if you consider the entire first year of availability as "early"). The easy answer is that they can't, especially if a 120GB hard drive is included with the premium pack for the same price as the current pack. Not many people even have an HDMI capable TV, so we won't feel snubbed by its inclusion, but hard drive space is something any 360 owner can identify with. Come on MS, savvy shoppers can buy 100GB 2.5" HDDs for $100. It's time to stick a reasonable price on yours.

Keep in mind this isn't confirmed, but most of us have suspected it. How do you feel about it? Should MS decide to include the 120 GB HDD in the new HDMI enabled premium pack, is there any way MS can keep an angry mob of 20GB HDD owners from storming Redmond?

[Thanks, Mat Parker]

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