So, looking at 360's and wondering about whether to go premium or go core... I must, must recommend premium. Why, well at launch, I could only get a core system, and to eventually get to the premium package, cost me in excess of £150... So, why bother.
The Core system is only worth it if you are not thinking of or own an HDTV, if you have no plans to connect to the fantastic Xbox live (Trust me, getting your xbox on line is as essential as having your PC online) if you do not wish to try out free demos off xbox live, play a fantastic range of Arcade games or challenge gamers from all over the world.
I remember after battling to get an Xbox 360 in December 2005 how gutted I was as I connected it to my TV and PGR3 looked worse than PGR2 on the original Xbox. Finding the component cable (included in the premium pack) a week or so later was like I got a new 360. It showed the crystal clear, photo realitic graphics of Xbox, and games such as Gears of War, PGR3, GRAW2, Rainbow 6, Viva Pinata all showcase the console's brilliance.
Firstly, in the core system, you cannot save a game, as there is no memory to save. you will at the very least need to buy a 64MB memory unit which is about £20, this will let you save around 10games worth of progress. So for an extra £50 you get an arcade game (Hexix) around 16GB of storage which you can fill with demos, trailers and TV shows. A wireless controller. The ethernet cable to connect to you router for Xbox live, and both the standard and high definiton connection and a wireless controller. Well worth £50, or you can spend an extra £100 on top of this like me if you wish...
The composite cable supplied to attach to your TV does not show at all the power of the 360... If your in Standard Definition you will need to purchase the Xbox360 Scart cable which will sharpen and brighten up the image.
Alot of reviews have said its not worth it as many Xbox's break down. Indeed, this has been a problem and around 30% of all Xbox360's sold have needed repair. But there is no need to worry, the service by microsoft was astounding. I got the 3 red lights which indicates its broken, called Microsoft, they sent a UPS label to me to print off and a UPS man to my house to pick up the Xbox. Then 5 days later it came back and I've had no problem since. Plus Microsoft have now extended there warranty to 3 years, costing them $1billion.
X360 is currently the champ of the next Gen consoles, trust me, I have all 3 (wii, PS3 and X360). The game libary is currently the biggest - Over 200 games and 100 Xbox Live Arcade games, they have the most exlusive titles and developers working for them, so most games are X360 first or only. Obviously multi format games, like spiderman 3, Transformers appear on all... But PGR series, Halo, Forza, any RARE made game all xbox only. Xbox first, all Tom Clancy games.
This core system will let you play any X360 game, you won't however have access to Xbox live which is just simply criminal.
Lastly, the Xbox's cooling fan is very loud, and clearly audible when you play at low volumes, but the pro's of the massive games library, Xbox live, Xbox Live Arcade the Gamercard which tracks the games you play and accomplishments in them that unlock achievements.
See one of my premium pack reviews to compare why you should go premium. the extra £100 on this web site will get you a premium pack and 2 or 3 games.