Wall of Silence over the Xbox 360's "Red Ring of Death" failures has been broken by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper.
The newspaper has talked to an unnamed person within Microsoft who reveals that Redmond expects more than 30 per cent of Xbox 360s to fail. This means a quarter a million of them will get the red ring of death.
He blames the fact that Microsoft under resourced that product unit in all engineering areas since the very beginning. It also wanted to beat Sony to the marketplace when the indications were that it had serious flaws. Whenever a test result revealed there was a problem, management solved it by removing the test.
The fault is caused by anything that fails in the "digital backbone" on the motherboard. Any bad CPU, GPU, memory, bad parts, incompatible parts, bad manufacturing process, misapplied heat sinks or thermal interface material, missing parts, broken parts, parts of the wrong value, or missed test coverage could cause it.
Our source, 'Deep Throat' said that the main design flaw was the excessive heat on the GPU warping the mother board around it. This would stress the solder joints on the GPU and any bad joints would then fail in its early life.