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I have an ex-demo Version 1.0 (thanks to the now defunct Techtronics), and it's as good as a couple of mate's brand new machines, not bad for something 3 years old that used to run all day in a shop environment!
Funny reason to choose a new console because it's reliable? Surely the quality of the software should be the deciding factor? You are covered under UK law if the machine goes faulty for at least 12 months for either replacement or repair. I'm still using my launch day machine.
I've had my Xbox for a couple of years now and not had any problems, used to have a ps2 and had to have it replaced under warranty, before that my PS was a nightmare, had 3 replacements on warranty, in the end it would only work upside down !!
Had a PS2 for around 4 years & it's still going strong on 1st laser - has been used for loads of 5 hour + PES sessions over the years. I'd say it's had about 15 hours usage per week on average since I bought it. Had an X-Box since September 04 so can't really comment on the reliability of that. They are supposed to be reliable though.
Like our resident Neo says though, you should buy consoles based upon the games they have on them really. They are all generally reliable and if they break it doesn't cost much to replace them.
The only problem I've had is when trying to play Burnout 3. 50% of the time it says the disc is dirty or scratched but it's a new game. I think the disc drive might be slightly dirty, could you tell me how to clean it Thanks