Steam Deck is Valve’s first entry into the mobile games industry, and it is a portable device that can run any game in your Steam Library.
With this device, it hopes to become the Nintendo Switch of PC gaming, and hopefully, with a little hands-on time with the device, it may live up to that expectation.
Given the fact that it isn’t really a game console at all, but rather a portable computer, As stated by Valve, you may connect it to a monitor or television, watch streaming video, install apps and software, and even install other game stores on it.
It will run on a new version of SteamOS, Valve’s Linux-based operating system, though you will be able to use Valve’s compatibility technology, Proton (Steam Play), to play Windows games that do not have official Linux support.
You may also simply uninstall SteamOS and reinstall Windows to use the steam deck.
Here is everything you need to know about Steam Deck.
When will the Steam Deck be available?
The Steam Deck will be available for shipping in December 2021.
That doesn’t mean you’ll get one this year if you ordered one, as the Steam Deck site currently shows “anticipated order availability” in the Second-quarter of 2022 for each version of the Deck in both the UK and the US.
What’s intriguing is that the ETA date has been pulled in, at least for the 512GB variant.
It was originally set to hit the Third-quarter of 2022 nearly immediately after reservations went live, but it has now been pushed back to the Second-quarter of 2022.
This, too, may vary depending on your location, but it might either indicate an initial miscalculation in the predicted shipment date or that Valve has received more orders for the higher-spec Deck than it had anticipated and has now modified production priorities appropriately.
How much does the Steam Deck cost?
The cost of the Steam Deck depends on whatever version you choose, and there are three options based on storage capacity.
The Steam Deck is priced at;
- $399 – the 64GB version (The entry-level model includes a carrying cover and 64GB of eMMC storage).
- $529 – the 256GB version (an improved edition with the same carrying case, 256GB of faster NVMe SSD storage, and a Steam profile bundle).
- $649 – the 512GB version (a top-of-the-line model with unique anti-glare glass, 512GB of “high-speed” NVMe SSD storage, a specialized carrying case, and the aforementioned Steam profile bundle).
|CPU||AMD Zen 2|
|CPU clock speed||2.4–3.5GHz|
|GPU||AMD RDNA 2|
|GPU Compute Units||8|
|GPU clock speed||1–1.6GHz|
|RAM||16GB LPDDR5 @ 5,500MT/s 32-bit quad-channel|
|Storage||64GB eMMC / 256GB NVMe SSD / 512GB NVMe SSD|
|Display||7-inch LCD touchscreen|
|Resolution||1280 x 800|
|Audio||Stereo speakers, 3.5mm jack, dual mics, USB Type-C/Bluetooth|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB Type-C with DisplayPort 1.4 support|
|Size||11.7 x 4.6 x 1.8-inch (298 x 117 x 49mm)|
|Weight||Approximately 1.47 lbs (669 grams)|
|Price||$399 (64GB) / $529 (256GB) / $649 (512GB)|
Valve disclosed the Steam Deck specifications alongside the system, so we now know everything about what’s underneath the 7-inch screen.
The most crucial thing for PC gamers to know is that the Steam Deck is powered by an AMD APU, something we haven’t seen before.
This chip is based on two of AMD’s most popular architectures: Zen 2 and RDNA 2.
The Zen 2 architecture is the same as in AMD Ryzen 3000 CPUs, and there are four Zen 2 cores in the Steam Deck, each capable of eight threads, ready for your portable gaming demands.
The RDNA 2 architecture powers the handheld PC’s graphics grunt. The Steam Deck is equipped with 8 Compute Units (CUs), totaling 512 cores.
That isn’t a huge number—the Xbox Series S has 20 RDNA 2 CUs—but it appears to be plenty to get by at 720p without too much trouble.
Valve has chosen a 1280 x 800 display for you to enjoy your games while on the go. The Steam Deck’s touchscreen is a 60Hz LCD panel with 400-nits brightness, which isn’t much to write home about.
However, because it’s only 7 inches wide, its flaws may not be as obvious as they would be on one of the top gaming monitors.
Finally, Valve recently updated the Stream Deck’s RAM specifications, making the memory specification better than it had been previously.
Instead of the dual-channel RAM that was previously indicated, we now have 16GB of quad-channel LPDDR5 at 5,500MT/s.
For an APU-powered workstation like this, that’s a major deal—the more memory bandwidth, the better.
What Games will Play on the Steam Deck?
With the thumbsticks, D-Pad, face and shoulder buttons, and mouse-like touchpads on the portable, it can play almost anything, including games that weren’t built for handhelds.
However, because the Steam Deck runs SteamOS, a substantially customized version of Linux that’s been available for a while, games like Destiny 2 and Apex Legends may not work.
This is due to the anti-cheat software used by some of these games, which has caused problems booting the games.
Rainbow Six: Siege and Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds are two such games that may not run.
Again, the system isn’t out yet, so we can’t say for sure whether or not these competitive online games will run into issues once the portable is released.