The Xbox Series X May or May Not Be Catching on Fire, and Microsoft Is Investigating

This one has not caught fire.

This one has not caught fire.
Photo: Alex Cranz/Gizmodo

The Xbox Series X is so hot right now, and I don’t mean figuratively. I mean literally. Some people are claiming that their new Xboxes are catching on fire, but there’s a lot of skepticism over whether these claims are true. As our sister site Kotaku reports, this could be an elaborate hoax.

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It all started with a tweet from one Xbox Series X owner, Arek Adamowicz. In a video tweeted to Xbox Poland, Adamowicz captures what appears to smoke pouring out from the top of the console after just a couple minutes of it being turned on. Another Twitter user, Nick Blanco, posted a similar video.

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However, other Twitter users said the smoke looked suspiciously like the smoke created by vape juice. The effect would be easy to create, since the Xbox Series X takes warm air from the bottom and pushes it out the top, according to Xbox Studio. All someone would need to do is take a big hit off their vape, blow it into the bottom vent where the Xbox Series X takes in cool air, and then it gets pulled out the top by the other fan.

But according to Adamowicz, his Xbox mishap is no joke, and unlike the video Xbox Studio posted on Twitter, we don’t see anyone blow smoke toward the bottom of the console. Speaking to Gizmodo Adamowicz claims it happened a few minutes after his initial start up and he’s seeking a replacement.

That doesn’t automatically rule out the possibility of some clever video editing; the smoke coming out of Adamowicz’s console versus the smoke coming out of Xbox Studio’s console look similar. Adamowicz denied it.

Regardless of if these Xboxes really did go up in flames, Microsoft is looking into the potential issue. “We take all product safety reports seriously and our products meet or exceed industry standards. We are in the process of investigating further,” a Microsoft spokesperson told Gizmodo.

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In our own testing, we found the Xbox Series X did put out a lot of heat from the vents, up to 115 degrees Fahrenheit after several hours of gameplay. That’s not a hot enough temperature to set the components on fire. Digital Foundry measured a peak power consumption of 211W, which is much lower than the console’s 315W power supply, and a peak internal temperature of 143.6 F (62 C).

Those kinds of temperatures and power consumption would not cause the Xbox Series X to go up in flames unless something was seriously compromised with the wiring or components themselves. Given how this is not a wide-spread issue at the moment, if you have an Xbox Series X it seems like there’s nothing to worry about. But if your Series X does go up in smoke unplug it immediately, and if you get a chance reach out to me at jnelius@gizmodo.com.

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