Video games have been mainstream for some time now, with the release of new games and consoles becoming highly anticipated events. The first commercially available game system, the Magnavox Odyssey in 1972, began the development of game systems, which have increased their capabilities continually, evolving from the constraints of 2D, 8-bit graphics to 3D, high-definition games. Game consoles have typically been categorized by "generations", with similar consoles in terms of age and graphics capabilities being classified together. One of the most celebrated generations of gaming is the seventh.
The first seventh generation console was the Microsoft Xbox 360, which was released in Europe in late 2005. The Nintendo Wii followed almost exactly a year later in December 2006 and was followed by the Sony PlayStation 3 in March of 2007, although it was available earlier in Japan and the United States.
Ranked according to complexity and capabilities from the simplest to most advanced, the three home consoles of the seventh generation are the Wii, the Xbox 360, sometimes referred to as just the "360", and PlayStation 3, often shortened to just "PS3". Each system distinguishes itself from the others with distinctive features and capabilities, but there are also at least two models of every console, not counting cosmetic differences, such as the case colour. All of these consoles are available for purchase on eBay, which offers great deals and a large selection of consoles, plus games and accessories.
Nintendo Wii is a great console for families, casual gamers, and anyone who enjoys iconic series such as Mario or Legend of Zelda; these titles are the intellectual property of Nintendo and therefore exclusive to Nintendo systems. The Wii loads disc-based games and has backwards compatibility with its predecessor, the Nintendo GameCube, for both games and controllers. However, a redesigned console released in 2011, removes this GameCube compatibility. The redesigned case lies flat rather than sitting vertically, as the original model does. Both models are available in either white or black cases.
The Nintendo Wii has built-in wireless Internet and supports the Nintendo Wi-Fi USB connector, but buyers can add wired support by using a Nintendo LAN adaptor. Users can stream content via Netflix and interact with friends in the online community. They can also download additional games for the system. Parents can enable parental controls to limit what games and material children can access. The device has two USB ports for connecting peripheral devices, but a USB hub can be used to connect additional peripherals if required. It does not have a DVD player.
Wii Graphics and Storage
In terms of graphics and storage, the Wii is far outclassed by its competitors. The system supports only 576i, 480i, and 480p graphics resolutions, compared with high-definition offered by both the 360 and PS3. Storage is added to the system via an SD or SDHC card, with a maximum of 2 GB for SD cards and 32 GB for SDHC cards, rather than an integrated hard drive. The added storage enables users to save game data, as well as load compatible media, including photos and MP3 files.
The controllers for the Wii are referred to as Wii Remotes, or informally as "Wiimotes". Older models can add motion sensing to them via the Wii Motion Plus, but later models have this feature integrated. The controllers come in an array of designs, from pink to a replica of the original NES controller. In addition, buyers can purchase a range of other accessories, including the Wii Nunchuck, the Wii Wheel, and the Wii Balance Board to go with the games. In some cases, buyers can find these bundled with the games themselves, or even with the console.
Microsoft Xbox 360
Microsoft ushered in the seventh generation of gaming with the Xbox 360, the successor to the Xbox. The console is great for gamers who are looking for great graphics, a large game library, and substantial online content, including a large network of online players via the Xbox Live subscription service. The Xbox 360 also has exclusive titles, the most notable of which is the Halo franchise. The system has limited backwards compatibility with some Xbox games, provided that it is equipped with an official Xbox 360 hard drive.
The 360 has support for HD graphics, with resolutions including 480p, 576i, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p. It also has a built-in DVD player that allows for DVD and CD playback. The Xbox 360 also allows for Internet access. The device has multiple USB ports; the exact number varies by model. It allows for wired and wireless controllers.
XBox 360 Models
There are a fair number of Xbox 360 models available, so it is helpful to do a bit of research. The earliest models, the entry-level Core and hard drive equipped Pro, were phased out and later replaced by the Arcade and Elite lines, respectively. The key differences between the lines were hard drive size, which range from 4 GB to 250 GB, but some models did not have a hard drive. The consoles are available in both black and white. Later in the production cycle, Microsoft introduced a redesigned, smaller case, appropriately named the 360 Slim, or the 360 S. Available in various hard drive sizes, the Slim adds Wi-Fi support to the built-in Ethernet port of earlier models, as well as two additional USB ports for a total of five. In addition, there are a variety of limited-edition console releases and bundles, including Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Halo 4, Gears of War 3, and Star Wars console, as well as controllers decorated to match the games.
Xbox 360 Accessories
The 360 supports both wireless and wired controllers via USB, giving users plenty of options in terms of design and charging docks for the controllers. There is also a media remote that turns the 360 into a fully fledged entertainment centre. One of the most worthwhile accessories to buy for the Xbox 360 is the Kinect, a peripheral that gives the 360 motion sensing capabilities. It is essentially a webcam that tracks players' movements for use in the game, as well as providing them with voice command capabilities.
If a console does not have a built-in hard drive, buyers can purchase one to add to the system, but they should take care to verify that the hard drive and console are compatible, as these specially formatted hard drives are generation-based and only work with select models. Gamers may choose to purchase a headset and an HDMI cable to make the most of the system's graphics capabilities. For buyers who are upgrading a console, a transfer cable may be useful, allowing them to transfer data from the old console to the new one.
Sony PlayStation 3
The last of the seventh generation consoles to be released, the PS3 is another great console for gamers who want high quality graphics, online content, and exclusive games. Titles exclusive to the PlayStation 3 include entries in the God of War and Uncharted series, as well as Gran Tursimo 5. The system has support for HD graphics up to 1080p HD. It allows for wired and wireless controllers via USB and Bluetooth, respectively. However, while the system only has two four-port USB, depending on the model, it can support up to seven wireless connections.
PS3 models have built-in hard drives, ranging in capacity from 12 GB to 500 GB. Like the Xbox 360, the PS3 also has a substantial online community, the PlayStation Network. It supports both Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections natively. Perhaps most importantly, the PS3 has a built-in Blu-ray drive so that it can play high-definition films from a disc in addition to streaming them.
PlayStation 3 Models
There are a variety of PS3 models available. The earliest have the largest cases, and are sometimes referred to as "fat" models. They are backwards compatible with PlayStation 2 and original PlayStation games. The PS3 later underwent two redesigns: the first called the PS3 Slim, and the second called the PS3 Super Slim. These editions removed backwards compatibility with PS and PS2 games and had other minor cosmetic changes. However, the biggest difference was in the size, as the later models are smaller than the originals. There are a variety of limited edition consoles and bundles for the PS3, including a God of War-themed console and a Final Fantasy XIII-2 console, as well as a limited edition red Slim model. The console is typically black, but there is a limited edition white model available.
PlayStation 3 Accessories
There are a variety of accessories available for the PS3, including controllers, charging docks, and a wireless keypad that can connect to the controllers or can be used independently. Gamers may also want to choose a headset for online gaming, as well as A/V cables to connect the system. One of the most important PlayStation 3 accessories is the PlayStation Move, which is a motion sensing control with a built-in PlayStation Eye camera.
How to Buy Seventh Generation Video Game Consoles on eBay
eBay is a great place to shop for seventh generation video game consoles. You can start by entering keywords, such as "PS3 console" or "Xbox 360 accessories", in the search box on the home page. With a click of the search button, eBay displays all of the products that match your keywords. eBay gives you a variety of options to narrow down the results and find exactly what you are looking for, including price range and item condition. Take the time to read the seller's listing for a description of the game console.
Use eBay's "Ask a question" feature if you have any queries for the seller. Also check the seller's feedback history, which is left by previous buyers. Checking feedback is a good way to ensure that you are dealing with a reputable seller and it gives you a good idea of what the buying experience is like.
Creating Wish Lists on eBay
An eBay account is necessary to complete any purchase on the site. However, registering for an account comes with a variety of benefits, including the ability to save searches, monitor items you are interested in, and create wish lists. You can add and remove items from your wish list and adjust the privacy settings so that the list is viewable only by you, friends and family, or anyone who searches for it. You can learn more about using wish lists through the eBay Help Centre.
The seventh generation of video game consoles began with the launch of the Xbox 360 and continued with the Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation 3. It ended with the announcement of Nintendo's eighth generation console, the Nintendo Wii U, which launched in winter of 2012.
Each of the seventh generation consoles has different capabilities, so buyers need to consider which features are of greatest value. The Wii, for example, has become the console of choice for casual gamers, families, and devoted fans of Nintendo franchises, including Mario and Legend of Zelda, but it lacks the substantial Internet capabilities of the 360 or PS3 and cannot play DVDs. Gamers who are looking for more advanced graphics capabilities and more adult games, in particular first-person and third-person shooters, should look to the 360 or PS3. Exclusive titles, such as Halo, may help buyers to make the decision, as could the PS3's built-in Blu-ray player or the features of the online social networks that both systems offer. However, whatever consoles, games, and accessories buyers are looking for, they are sure to find them on eBay.