Valve unveils Steam Deck, a handheld gaming PC powered by AMD

Valve, the company behind the popular Steam game distribution platform and maker of games like Counter-Strike and Half-Life, have unveiled Steam Deck, a handheld PC designed specifically for gaming.

Steam Deck looks like the powerful cousin of Nintendo’s Switch, but the two devices cannot really be compared. Valve calls it an all-in-one portable PC gaming device and claims that Steam Deck runs the latest AAA games “really well”.

Steam Deck is powered by Steam OS and AMD hardware. The device plays Steam games using Valve’s Proton technology. Since it is a PC, it can also be used for other activities thanks to the full Linux-based environment.

The device supports Bluetooth, which means that gamers can connect mice and keyboards to the device. A direct connection to external displays is supported by the base device, but Valve revealed that it will release a dock in the future which will expand the capabilities further.

Steam Deck will launch in select regions, United States, European Union, Canada and United Kingdom, with more regions to come in 2022. Interested gamers may reserve a single unit on Valve’s SteamPowered website; first units will be shipped in December 2021.

Three packages are available for preoder:

  • A 64GB eMMC storage version with a carrying case for €419.
  • A 256GB NVMe SSD with a carrying case for €549.
  • A 512GB NVMe SSD with a carrying case, premium anti-glare etched glass, for €679.

Every other hardware spec is identical.

Steam Deck: the hardware

Steam Deck is powered by AMD hardware. A Zen 2 processor with four cores and eight threads, and a RDNA 2 1.6 Teraflops GPU. All devices have 16 Gigabytes of LPDDR5 RAM (5500 MT/s), and come with 64 to 512 Gigabytes of storage space. A high-speed microSD card slot is available to extend storage on all devices.

The touch-powered display has a 1280×800 pixel resolution and a 16:10 aspect ratio. It has a size of 7″ diagonally, a refresh rate of 60Hz, and a brightness of 400 nits.

Connectivity-wise, it features Bluetooth 5.0 and dual-band Wi-Fi support (IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac). The base device

Steam Deck supports stereo audio channels, has a 3.5mm stereo headphone hack, a dual microphone array, and multichannel audio via DisplayPort.

A 40Whr battery is in the device which is good for 2 to 8 hours of gameplay, depending on the game.

The device’s dimensions are 298mm x 117mm x 49 mm.

IGN published a hands on video on YouTube


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