I received a very good question the other day from TeamSugar user melanie RN about which Xbox 360 she should pick up:
I'm on the market for an Xbox 360 and I'm so confused. Do I want the Arcade version or the Elite version?
Since there are only a few features that separate the Arcade and the Elite versions, you just have to decide what's important, and how much you want to spend. Check out my explanation when you read more.
The only real differences between the Xbox 360 Arcade and Elite editions are included accessories, cables, and storage space. The Arcade version comes with 256MB of storage space, which is fine if you won't be storing a lot of media, five arcade games, and family security settings, but you are limited to only playing Xbox 360 and downloaded games. However, since it's so inexpensive — coming in at $200 — it's definitely your most affordable option.
The Xbox 360 Elite has a few more bells and whistles, coming stocked with a 120GB hard drive, HDMI cables, a headset, and capability to play not only XBox 360 games, but over 300 Xbox games and plays DVDs. Although both the Arcade and Elite versions come with an Xbox Live Silver Membership, only the Elite comes with a shiny black exterior. For $400, the Elite is an investment, but you're going to be able to store tons of video, photos, and of course downloaded games on your console.
Although, you could go with your standard Xbox 360, which comes with a 60GB hard drive, plays Xbox, and Xbox 360 games, and will put less of a hole in your pocket at $260.
I hope this explanation helps in your decision! Happy gaming!