Welcome to Valhalla: Inside the New 250GB Xbox 360 Slimby Anand Lal Shimpi on June 18, 2010 1:59 AM EST
Two phillips screws hold the fan in place. You don’t need to remove them to remove the heatsink but I did anyway:
The single large heatsink is a lot heftier than what we'd seen in previous 360s, it doesn't feel quite as cheap or as insufficient. This time around it has to do double duty cooling both the CPU and the GPU.
At this point I can easily remove the motherboard and flip it over, revealing our old friend: the x-clamp.
Place your flathead screwdriver tip here, pointing away from the xclamp, and pry the clamp off at this point. Repeat for 1 - 2 more and the whole thing should come off easily.
Unlike previous Xbox 360s, the Valhalla x-clamp isn’t a pain to remove. In fact all I had to do was slide a small flathead screwdriver in each of the four slots in the clamp and push down to make the clamp pop out. I’ve marked the area on the photo above.
With the x-clamp removed the heatsink pulls off revealing Microsoft’s Xbox 360 CGPU covered with a heat spreader. The heat spreader is great for making sure no one cracks a core while working on these things.
The chip to the left of the CGPU is the 360’s South Bridge, responsible for the SATA and USB ports in the system. The chip is marked as an A0 stepping which is usually the first stepping to come back from the fab. This is probably a pretty tried and true design by now with no bugs to worry about at this point.
Xbox 360 South Bridge (top), 16MB SLC NAND (bottom)
The Hynix NAND on the motherboard is still 16MB in size. It is SLC NAND so it should last the lifetime of the Xbox as long as you don’t somehow mod it into a database server.
The third major ASIC on the motherboard is the HANA scaler/video encoder chip we’ve seen before on Jasper.
The motherboard now has two SATA ports directly on the board itself to support the new HDD tray.
I’ve also included a ton of close up shots of various parts of the motherboard in the dissection gallery for our friends at Xbox-Scene.