New Xbox 360 Elite - Already in a controversy
So, by now you've all heard the news about the "new" Xbox 360 that Microsoft will ship somewhere in May, with HDMI, 120GB and the new beige color, black ? Well, according to some mombo-jumbo geek in audio and video decoding, the HDMI port on the new Elite will use the old 1.2 version instead of the new 1.3. I couldn't understand half of what was said, but here's what the pros are saying:
"Xbox 360 Elite supports HDMI 1.2 profile. For audio, you can select DD, DTS (at 1.5 Mbps), and WMA-Pro (Microsoft high fidelity multi-channel codec supported in some AVRs such as Pioneer). Since it is not based on 1.3, it will not support output of DD+ or TrueHD (even if it did, mixing would have been turned off).
PCM output is available but only for 2-channels (not 5.1). Please, please, donít say you donít like this. There is nothing you are going to say which we donít know. Our goal was to provide a digital connection for video which people wanted for some of their TVs. And of course, single cable A/V connection. So if having analog video bothered you before, you can now use digital. If you lacked component/VGA on your TV, you are in business with Xbox 360 Elite.
Keep in mind that the spring software update for HD DVD substantially improves audio fidelity. Per above, you now have a choice of no less than three output formats.
If you are keen on having 5.1 PCM output, I recommend purchasing the Toshiba A2 player which after the price drop, will be much cheaper than Elite.
Answering other questions, both Xbox 360 Elite and current Xbox 360 units will have a spring (console) update which adds support for different video levels for VGA output (ď7.5 IRE vs 0Ē). And as someone mentioned, using this setting you should be able to use computer monitors in addition to TVs with resolutions all the way up to 1080p with high fidelity and no issues with HDCP handshaking. So for current users, I highly recommend trying this update with your VGA connection to see if it does the job for you. Note that this is a console update and will work for both games and of course, HD DVD. The HD DVD software update is separate from this (and will be available on both Xbox Live and xbox.com).
On output video format, Xbox 360 Elite will perform a handshake and select the appropriate RGB/YUV settings over HDMI. You cannot select it yourself.
The spring HD DVD software update will fix all the lip sync issues that have been reported/we know of."
You can read all about it on the AVS forum by clicking on this link:
... but, between you and me, who got the hardware to support uncompressed PCM and the full spectrum of colors offered by HDMI 1.3? Unless you have an arm and a leg to blow on an audio system and a 1080p HDTV, you will not be able to enjoy those fine full quality audio/video features. Only the PS3 got the HDMI 1.3, but then again, who got the hardware? Also, so far, only Blu-Ray support all this. No games whatsoever are using those high-quality features and will probably not for the next 5-10 years. Some people are bitching about the lack of 1.3 support on the Xbox 360 Elite, but reeeally, those people are bitching for absolutely nothing.
The new Elite version of the 360, if you ask me, is the console to buy if you're planning to buy a 360 in the near future, but if you already own one, i don't see one reason to make the switch. Not one.