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Xbox boots to black screen and solid orange light


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Im looking for some ideas to try before I look for a replacement xbox. Im not sure if i can do anything else at this point.

My xbox was soft modded for some time, but I wanted to do a tsop to unlock the drive and then put in a 2.5 inch 500 gb sata drive. I did the tsop (i have a v1.5) soldered the 2 point and flashed the tsop with hexen 2021 disc. Put in my sata driver with adpater and 80 pin cable and everything was great. I started uploaded the library that i have. I also removed the supercap.

I was down to my really scrached discs and was trying to see i could get good copies from them, but gave up. I picked up some new titles and went to install them and the xbox wouldnt boot. I get the evo/xbox splash screen to a blank screen with the orange led. Tried booting hexen or soft mod or game disc and nothing.

I tried cleaning out the dvd drive, that didnt help. The last thing i did with the drive was watch it with the cover off. It doesnt appear to be trying to focus nor does it appear to be emitting a laser. It does move the laser head unit on the rails. But i dont think this should stop a boot to harddrive?

I went back to the ide drive and the 40 pin cable and no change. I tried combinations of hooking up pc cdrom to the ide and dvd on the power. Thought maybe the dvd drive was corrupting the ide bus.

Ive checked my caps and board multiple times. The only thing i was suspicious of was a pin point spot on the nvidia chip, i hope it didnt melt itself inside.

So thats where im at, i think my dvd is toast and maybe the ide on the motherboard is broken.


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I would suspect the HDD. Have you tried disconnecting the harddrive completely and see if you get the service screen with a error code then?

Also take a good look at the IDE cable connectorpoints, where the cableleads themselves are properly into the ide adapters copperhooks or whatever it's called.

Ah, i see you've done that already. ok. Well, one thing i noticed while i was busy with a problem was that the error code reporting on the led updated itself when i tried to like do as with cars to empty the bios memory completely so it doesn't hang on to old fault codes. just pull the plug on it while it's running. Other then that IDK.

Edited by hubbanubba
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yeah i can leave the dvd or hdd off and get the error code screens. I dont expect anything wrong with the 40 pin cable, and ive tried multiple 80 pin. I initially thought it was the cable at first. But when i went back to the 40 pin and original hdd I knew it had to be something else.

i can try a hard power cycle like that, i suspect that would only prevent the eeprom from being updated. But im up for anything at this point.

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The orange LED is an indication of a softmod, depending on what was used to install that. For example with SID/AID it typically goes to orange on cold boot before going to the default, green. It is a good confirmation when using a softmodded Xbox that it is functioning OK. 

My guess is what KaosEngineer implied ie. that after TSOPing you didn't clean up the original softmod files.

Unless customised the Evox M8+ BIOS by default looks for "C:\evoxdash.xbe" as the primary dash. After you rebooted that is what it was looking for and if it didn't find that, eventually, it would try "C:\xboxdash.xbe". With a softmod that is reassigned from its original use, launching the MS dash, to launch the online updater or Xbox Live, now both redundant and usual result is a blank screen. Again that depends on the softmod.

Slightly worrying though is why "C:\evoxdash..xbe" wasn't found.

HeXEn EvoX M8+ BIOS boot priority is:-




then finally C:\xboxdash.xbe

However depending on the HeXEn version used the BIOS priority may have been changed, the second two are only useful if you'd previously installed a softmod or main dashboard using HeXEn.

It is probably the previous softmod interfering and that is why the C:\evoxdash.xbe was not used to launch your main dash but unless that wasn't actually installed (my suspicion) I don't understand the cause of the problem.

Its not really a big deal whateve the cause, with a TSOP/chip it can be easily sorted via FTP or an installer disc.


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1 hour ago, sweetdarkdestiny said:

Näääää, you don't have a 1.5.

Do a clean install with an installler to set up new dashboards etc. in the right location so the TSOP will find it.

Right the 1.5 is basically a unicorn version. I have the focus chip so it should be 1.4.

So that probably the biggest issue i have is that the dvd (phillips) wont read the discs anymore.

Im thinking of using that tool i saw to create an image on a harddrive from windows. I have another ide drive I think i will try this on.

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2 hours ago, Pickle said:

Right the 1.5 is basically a unicorn version. I have the focus chip so it should be 1.4.

So that probably the biggest issue i have is that the dvd (phillips) wont read the discs anymore.

Im thinking of using that tool i saw to create an image on a harddrive from windows. I have another ide drive I think i will try this on.

unicorn is a good term because everything you search says it exists except NOBODY and I do mean NOBODY has ever seen one. 

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So very good news using a pc dvd worked. So i was able to boot the hexen dvd.

First I installed a dash board on another ide drive with the 40 pin cable and it booted.

Second I switched to the 80 pin and it booted.

Third i went back to the sata drive, reinstalled dashboards and it booted.

So seems I somehow had a dual failure with the dvd drive dying and the boot on that drive corrupting. I will accept that the original ide conflicted because of the soft mod.

Just dont understand how the sata drive goofed like that. But it sill had my games and could load the ones i tried.

I will have to get another dvd drive cause i really want to be able to get new titles and back them up.

Thanks for the input so far Im glad ive received as many responses as this. Any suggestions on the phillips dvd drive is welcome. I do know about tweaking the pot and i might try that. Im just not expecting anything since the head doesnt even try to focus.

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