Reviews Start To Roll As Xbox 360 Nears Liftoff

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All too often, media hardware that tries to do too many things ends up doing none of them incredibly well. Will Xbox 360, designed as an HD gaming console and a digital media hub, deliver enough of each to be the multi-level hit Microsoft needs? So far, so good and, in some cases, so-so.

USA Today: Tech reviewer Ed Baig likes it. “Xbox 360 is an immersive system whose dazzling cinematic graphics and Dolby Digital surround sound are especially addictive when connected to a high-definition TV.” He also gave the non-game features a workout. “I connected Xbox to a Sony HDTV in my family room. Then I streamed pictures, music and videos off a Hewlett-Packard Media Center PC in my basement. In this way, Xbox functions as a Media Center “Extender.” (I had to download a free software upgrade on the Media Center and temporarily disable my network firewall.)
Those extra features are appealing, but make no mistake: It’s the avid gamers who will be lining up around midnight.”

Cnet : “That the Xbox 360 also has a user interface that rivals TiVo’s in terms of slick presentation and ease of use, plus a host of digital media and networking features, helps elevate the already-good Xbox experience to a whole new level.” Cnet sets its claim to coverage with Xbox 360 Central.

Wired News: “Load a game like the Wild West shooter Gun, and in HD you can make out each individual leaf on a tree — rather than the clumps of color you get with a standard television set.”

BusinessWeek: It’s also proving time for Robbie Bach, head of the new Entertainment & Devices division, and the new connected Microsoft strategy.

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