Xbox E74 – What Does it Mean?

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The other day as I was playing my Xbox 360, I noticed a checker like pattern of black and white squares appear on the screen and then disappear just as quickly. My display then started to distort and my Xbox 360 froze. Upon powering it back up, I was faced with the dreaded E74 error code. Everyone that has had an Xbox knows about the three red lights of death but this E74 error only displays one red light. What could it mean?

I decided to investigate and see if I could determine the cause of this error. Maybe it is something that I can fix before calling customer support. This error appears to be to be quite popular. My research shows quite a few people complaining about this error and I learned that it is related to the graphics processor or the actual cable that connects the Xbox 360 to my flat screen high definition television. That would explain the checkered pattern that was displayed on my screen and the screen distortions as well.

Well I decided to try the process of elimination and I went for the easiest target first. The A / V cable. I have another Xbox 360 and I changed the A / V cable from the working unit and tried it on the non-working unit. I crossed my fingers, closed my eyes and powered up the box. No luck, I was still getting this dreaded error. The only other option was that there was something wrong with the GPU or graphics processing unit. The heat inside the box can cause the motherboard to warp which can cause the GPU to come off just enough to no longer make a connection. Ouch! So that is the cause of the Xbox E74.