Steam Deck, Valve's console to compete with the Switch

Recently Valve released the details of the "Steam Deck" which is positioned as a handheld game console for Valve games (Steam) and it is mentioned that it is targeted to launch later this year.

And it is that while other greats focus on projects of portable consoles for PC that adopt the appearance of Nintendo Switch and run under Windows, Valve has worked hard on its own project and now it is a reality.

Of the characteristics that make up the Steam Deck:

  • Processor AMD Zen 2 custom APU + RDNA 2 (8 CU) graphics chip
    Zen 2 clock: 2.4 to 3.5 GHz
    RDNA clock speed 2: 1000 to 1600 MHz
    4 to 15 W TDP
    Memory 16 GB of RAM LPDDR5 5500 MT / s
    Data warehouse 1) 64GB eMMC
    2) 256GB SSD PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe
    3) 512GB SSD PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe
    Screen 7 ″ 1280 × 800 pixel LCD, 16:10, 60 Hz, 400 nits luminance
    Expansion card bracket Yes, microSD UHS-I (microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC)
    Communication Wireless WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.0
    Additional ports USB Type-C (DisplayPort 1.4 compliant, maximum 8K @ 60Hz or 4K @ 120Hz), USB 3.2 Gen.2
    Battery 40 Wh, play time: 2 to 8 hours
    Charger included with USB C cable: fast charging with a power of 45 W
    Sizes 298 x 117 x 49 mm
    Weight : 669 grams
    System SteamOS 3.0 (Linux-based)


For the part of the hardware we can see that it is quite interesting, since it is based on a non-standard AMD APU processor, whose specification is similar to that of the Van Gogh series, that is, processors prepared for premium small devices in which the base clock is 2.4 GHz with the possibility of increasing in Turbo mode up to a maximum of 3.5 GHz, in addition to promising up to 8 hours of autonomy (characteristic that I am personally quite skeptical and I doubt that the battery can last that many hours, unless you play with the screen off ...)

In terms of connections the steam deck It has a USB-C 3.2 port, a 3.5 jack port, while in terms of the interface, in addition to the screen, there are two touchpads (left and right), two analog sticks, a directional cross, four buttons on the front panel, but also a Steam button and a quick access d-pad, four buttons on the edge and four buttons on the back and a six-axis gyro.

Aesthetically, the console is very similar to the SwitchAlthough the layout of the analog, d-pad, and action buttons is a bit different, so the placement of the analog sticks is interesting. They are usually located above or below the steering panel and front buttons, but Valve places the analog sticks next to them, near the screen.

Another feature of the Steam Deck is that like the Nintendo Switch, has support for a dock that will connect the device to a TV (purchased separately).

For the software part, It is mentioned that the operating system that will power the Steam Deck will be Steam OS 3.0 (based on Arch Linux) with interface: KDE, which means that many of the Steam games should work with Proton (a layer on top of Wine to make the games compatible with Linux).

Also, Valve mentions in their FAQ that they work with BattlEye and EAC to run anti-cheat software, which is a very often topic for Windows games on Linux.

Since the machine is a miniature PC, user can always install whatever he wants (even Windows). Developer kits are in development and should be available for access soon.

The console will be available in several variations where only the storage changes, the starting price of the Steam Deck is $ 400 with 64GB of storage internal, while the next model will cost $ 530, but with 256GB on an SSD and the latest model will cost $ 650 and it will come with 512GB SDD internal storage and anti-reflective etched glass. It should be mentioned again that each Steam Deck model has a microSD slot for additional storage.

The systems will begin shipping this December in North America and Europe.

Finally, if you are interested in being able to know more about it about the Steam Deck, you can consult the details in the following link

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  1.   Gordon said

    Reserved mine, I hope it is a success not only because it would be an incredible support for Linux but because Valve deserves it!

  2.   Chema Gomez said

    They need more than brute force to compete with the Switch. Something they will never have: Nintendo games.