I am a huge fan of the original Xbox; the controller design, console design, and games are, IMO, some of the best of all time. The Halo series (not counting Marathon) started here, the best versions of many cross-platform releases were released on the objectively faster Xbox hardware, and it was the only console of its generation to actually contain a hard drive.
But it's not without its flaws. Inside every Xbox (even, to an extent, the 1.6 revision) are three ticking timebombs:
- The hard drive. All of them are past their manufacturer's suggested lifespan.
- The disc drive. The belts and plastic gears are wearing out and breaking, and the lasers are getting weaker every time they're used.
- The clock capacitor. This one is a killer - it's a capacitor that's placed near vital traces on the motherboard, it is guaranteed to leak (even the 1.6's eventually) because it's a cheap electrolytic cap, and the effects are catastrophic.
The clock capacitor
The clock capacitor is easy enough to fix. On all revisions except 1.6, you can simply (carefully) snap it off the board. Its only purpose is to keep time . Use gloves when removing it or handling it, as the acid it leaks is pretty aggressive on human skin.