Leaked Xbox 360 "Slim" board tips incoming refresh?

In our collective haste to pester Nintendo about the next-gen update to the Wii, we sometimes forget that Microsoft's Xbox 360 is beginning to look a little long in the tooth too.  A new image purported to be of the refreshed Xbox 360's mainboard has emerged, and most obvious is that Microsoft have put the console on a diet – it's considerably smaller than the current 'board in use.

According to the source, the 'board isn't intended to go into the existing 360 chassis but into a new, refreshed casing similar to Sony's move with the PS3 Slim.  Part of the reason for the dramatic size decrease in Microsoft's case is the fact that they've combined the CPU and GPU into a single chip.

Of course, it could all be here-say and make-believe, but as Kotaku suggest, with Project Natal set to arrive later in the year it would make reasonable sense for Microsoft to have a refreshed version of the 360 to go along with it.  It would also make sense if the company could use newer chips and other components to cut build costs for the console.

[via Kotaku]