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The Coolest Accessories and Gadgets for Your Xbox 360

Updated on October 9, 2011

The Versatile Multi-Media Machine

The Xbox 360 is a seventh generation gaming and media console produced by Microsoft. The sheer versatility of this machine to function as a multi-media base is amazing. Many gamers have the basic console, controllers, and a few games, but without seeing the full range of add-ons, gadgets, and accessories, many gamers are only achieving a fraction of the media possibilities of their Xbox 360's!

This lens will step you through the wide array of amazing components for your 360, and show you how to unlock its full potential!

Xbox Kinect

Controller Free Gaming

Kinect is a "controller-free gaming and entertainment experience" produced by Microsoft for the Xbox 360. Released in 2010, it uses a webcam-like peripheral which enables users to completely control and interact with their Xbox 360's without even touching a game controller!

Navigation of the menus and gameplay are achieved through a natural user interface using spoken commands, physical gestures, or simply a presented object or image. This high-tech device includes full-body 3D motion capture, facial recognition and voice recognition capabilities. It can accomodate up to six players in its field of recognition, and also allows for headset-free online chatting.This opens a whole new world of gaming, great for all ages and ideal for families

As of late 2011, their are 42 games which can be used with the Kinect, and another 44 are planned to be released shortly. The product itself comes with the "Kinect Adventures" games, which offers a diverse range of kinect-specific games!

The popularity of the Kinect cannot be understated. Within the first 60 days of its release, a total of 8 million units were sold, and it holds the Guinness World Record of being the "fastest selling consumer electronics device".

Xbox Kinect On Amazon

Wireless Gaming

Controllers, Chargers, Headsets, etc

One great concept thats generally universal to gaming consoles these days is wireless controllers. This allows for unrestricted movement, and eliminates cord hassles and clutter.

Up to four wireless controllers can be connected to an Xbox 360 console.

The Chatpad is a nifty gagdet that features a full keyboard, and plugs perfectly into the centre of the Xbox 360 controller. Its primary function was for Xbox windows live messenger chat, available on the Xbox 360, but can be used for any typing or information entering application.

While using the chatpad, a wired headset cannot be used, however a wireless headset can.

Featured here is the Play and Charge Kit for the Xbox 360 wireless controllers. The problem with wireless controllers is that they require two AA-batteries to operate, and seem to die at the most inopportune time. To remedy this, a range of these style of gadgets have been released, icluding self-contained rechargable battery packs.

The Play and Charge kit offers a rechargeable battery pack, with charging post base, and a USB charging cable, which plugs into the Xbox itself. Use of the charging cable may be used without interruption to game play and also allows the use of a wireless controller without a battery pack.

Chargers such as this one by Niko, offer two battery packs and a dual charge base which plugs into your house outlet. Simply set down your controller (with battery pack still inside) on this base when done playing, and your packs will begin recharging.

Universal Media Remote

The Universal Media Remote allows basic control of games, along with being able to navigate the dashboard via infrared. It also assists in the playing of DVD movies and music, and has the ability to serve as a control for a number of TVs or Windows Media Center-based PC.

Joysticks, Guitars, Racing Wheels, Gaming Buttons

The first of our featured additional peripherals are the dual joysticks, which were included with a special-limited edition package of Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation. The Ace Edge package was officially released only in North America and Japan.

These sticks pay homage to a gaming history when joysticks were all the rage. This game, when combined with the throttle shift and joystick, create such an exhilerating experience, combining the best of flight and combat simulation.

Guitars

Throughout the life of the Xbox 360, a number of guitar/band simulation games have been released. Along with each game, a new type of guitar, usually with a few tweaks and a new body style, is released alongside the game.

Shown here is a Nyko brand guitar with interchangable pick guards.

Racing Wheel

The Xbox 360 Wireless Racing Wheel was released in November 2006. Featuring realistic "force feedback" technology, the steering wheel controller includes the standard gamepad buttons and floor-mounted accelerator and brake pedals. Although the wheel is capable of running off the rechargeable battery pack, use of the force feedback and active resistance features requires an external AC adapter. The original also incluede a copy of Project Gotham Racing 3. The wheel is compatible for over 30 xbox 360 games.

Big Button Pads

The games "Scene It? Lights, Camera, Action" and "Scene It? Box Office Smash" come bundled with four Big Button Pads, special wireless controllers resembling game show buzzers. Each controller has one large "buzzer" button at the top and four smaller buttons for answering multiple-choice questions. The large buzzer button doubles as a 4-way directional pad, to help navigate the Xbox 360 dashboard menu and for use in minigames. Additional games such as "Uno","1 vs. 100" and "Wits and Wagers" have added support for the Big Button Pads.

Xbox Live Vision Camera

The Xbox Live Vison Camera is a webcam like device, and was a sort of precursor to the Kinect. There are many games which have camera functionality including: Uno, TotemBall, Burnout Paradise, Texas Hold'em, Spyglass Board Games, Pinball FX, Hardwood Backgammon, Hardwood Hearts and Hardwood Spades, and many others. The ability to create an in-game representation of a player is possible using this camera and a suitable game, such as Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Vegas and Vegas 2 where players are allowed to create an in-game version of their faces. The Live Vision camera also players to video chat with users of the Kinect as well as start video conferences with Windows Live Messenger users.

Intercooling Add-Ons

Intercoolers are designed to reduce the internal operating temperature of the 360 and as a result, prolong lifespan and improve extended gameplay. These intercoolers require no internal modification of the system.

The Intercooler TS (right) is the latest from Nyko. Powered by its own AC adapter, its main feature is called TempSmart, a temperature sensing technology which automatically powers on the Intercooler's fans when needed, and will continue to cool the console after shutdown, until a proper ambient temperature has been reached. Reviewed by many different users, this is considered a must if your Xbox is kept in any kind of confined space, or just simply for improvement and peace of mind.

This Mini Cooler Cooling Fan is another great product which will save your console from meltdown and improve gameplay. The perk with this unit is it has a USB cable which plugs directly into the Xbox 360, avoiding cable clutter, and promoting ease of use.

This last intercooler is for the older Xbox 360 models, but has some very interesting features. The design allows for the console to sit on top off a dual-fan system, which blows air up through the core and out the top. Additionally, it features a recharge port for two AA batteries in a controler case, as well as a universal remote holder. To top it all off, this entire system runs off the Xbox console itself, through a USB port.

Xbox 360 Customization

Faceplates

While default faceplates on the Xboc 360 are just black or white, they can be replaced with a range of custom designs, each sold separately. Since the 360's unveiling years ago, a number of third-party manufacturers have created a massive library of different faceplates for every style and theme of gamer.

These are a great way to put some major style into your console for a minor price, and just make it aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Here are a few, just to get your imagination going, but there really are semmingly endless possibilities!

Controller Plates

Just like the console, the Xbox 360 controller faceplates can be removed and replaced with a range of custom designs. Again, this is an awewsome way to express yourself and truly make your system your own, and again, the range of different faceplates is unbelievable.

Custom Cases

Perhaps the coolest way to customize your Xbox360 console is the complete changeover in casing. Many unofficial custom cases can be purchased from independent manufacturers and are available in a wide range of colors and styles. These cases do not change the size or shape of the console, only the aesthetics, allowing for the ultimate perceptive personalization of your 360!

Clear cases, special paintjobs, personal themes, LED's, the list is endless!

Options for the Hardcore...

The Ultimate Gaming/ Media Tool

Get Your Moneys Worth

I hope you've enjoyed this little jaunt through the beautifully versatile Xbox 360 world. My goal was to educate people on how to get the most out of their gaming experiences with the 360, as it has so many possibilities, it's a shame to see them wasted!

Anyways, I hope you've found this informative and interesting. Leave me a comment to let me know if you liked it, or tell me something I missed!

Thanks for Checking out my Lens!

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