Several years ago, my brother Gerard gave us an Xbox 360 Elite for Christmas. At the time I was sceptical: we had a PS2 already and I didn’t see the need for another console. But time showed Gerard’s wisdom: the Xbox has been used for many thousands of hours of gaming — I myself have played well over a hundred hours of Just Cause 2 on it.
But time has been catching up with it, and its DVD drive has become increasingly laboured at ejecting and inserting. Last week, it packed up completely, leaving us wondering whether we’d need to get a whole new console. (You can’t just replace the DVD drive: Microsoft go to some lengths to prevent this from working, by requiring matching keys on the drive and the motherboard. Iniquitous.)
Instead, I found a place to repair our Xbox — Console Wizard. I paid a very reasonable £20 for the repair itself, plus what it cost to have the hardware picked up from home, taken to the repair shop, and brought back when it was done. The whole process was done over a weekend. Pretty awesome.
The only problem was: when I tested it, it still didn’t eject. I could hear the motor whirring as it tried its best, but the tray didn’t slide out. I emailed Console Wizard, who said that this problem sometimes crops up during transit, and that I should tap the top of the Xbox to encourage the first eject, after which it should be all right.
Well, a tap didn’t do it. A thump did, but it didn’t flip the Xbox into a mode where it could eject normally thereafter. It needed a thump for every eject, which is clearly not tenable.
Here’s where the story gets really good. The repair shop had the console picked up again and returned to them. They redid the repair, and had it shipped back to me — all free of charge. All that was done in three more days. It’s now working nicely again, and my evening rang to the constant-stream-of-explosions soundtrack that is our first and third sons blowing each other up on Halo 4.
So my hat is off to Mark Stapleton and all the folks at Console Wizard. They went the extra mile to make sure we got the service we wanted, and I won’t hesitate to use them again the next time we need repairs. Highly recommended.