Debunking myths about proper gaming setups

Nathan Mendelowitz

Everyone has his or her own way of playing video games. Whether a person likes to sit in solitude and immerse his or herself in the game, or – like me – get animated at every good and bad thing that happens.

As the old cliché says, “Different strokes for different folks.” However, there are some things with gaming that should be a certain way.

Like how to position an Xbox 360, or the myths of proper ventilation for a console.

Starting with Xbox 360, there is a good and bad position.

In most Xbox 360 commercials, the console is positioned vertically. Unfortunately, this is the bad position.

When the console is vertical the disc wobbles as it spins and is highly susceptible to scratches that ruin the disc.

The proper position is to have the console horizontal so the disc can spin safely. It also prevents disc read errors since the disc does not wobble at all.

Ventilation is a different story, however.

Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 owners have always been concerned with ventilation. There are plenty of ventilation aides that attach to the console to help keep the system cool. Most are oddly shaped fans to help blow cool air into the system.

Unfortunately, these fans do not help.

The best solution is simple: use common sense.

The newer models actually use less energy and do not require anywhere near as much ventilation. The way my consoles are set up in my entertainment center don’t allow them receive much ventilation, but they barely get hot.

If you have an older model, the answer remains the same. If it’s a hot day, pull the console out of the entertainment center and let air circulate.

If that’s too much, then making a small hole in the back is enough for air to escape and circulate inside.

Don’t get sucked into using additional items to help keep a system cool. It’s not like these are computers from the early 1990s that made as much noise and generated as much heat as an aircraft.

Keeping discs clean is another important aspect to gamers.

The answer here is also simple. When done with a gaming session, it’s ok to leave it in the console.

The way game cases are made, constantly taking out a disc puts strain on the center of the disc. It can lead to small cracks that make the disc unreadable.

It’s never fun getting ready to play a game to find out that it won’t work because of a microscopic crack at the center.

Hopefully in then next generation of gaming, developers will ditch the cases and just go to downloads so there will be no worries of this happening again.

Speaking of the next generation, there are rumors swirling that future consoles are right around the corner. These tips should keep your consoles and games lasting until it’s time to upgrade.

Nathan Mendelowitz can be reached at [email protected]