Handheld or portable options for Steam and PC games

neko_koneko

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Hello,

I've been looking for a way to play my Steam games in a portable, most preferably, handheld format. The Steam Deck seems to me like the best solution for this, but of course, the price is pretty steep. I've heard of the Logitech G handheld with the cloud gaming, but it is just $50 less than the Steam Deck, so I think, why not just get the Steam Deck? Lol. If there is something about the Logitech G I may not know, I am open to any input by the way!

Then, I've looked at streaming services to perhaps stream from my laptop or desktop, onto a tablet, or my phone. But, that sounds like a hassle and a lot of trouble just for a gaming session. Plus, I cannot find much information about whether or not you can close your laptop lid, put your PC to sleep while streaming, shut the monitor off and so on. It seems like it could burn your computer out or ruin the monitor if it isn't being used. It would be great to put your laptop or desktop to sleep remotely even after you play as well. Do any of these services like Moonlight, Steam Link, etc. Let you close the lid on your laptop or turn off your monitor while playing? And also let's you do this remotely like wake and sleep?

There was a service, Shadow PC, where you don't use your own PC at all, it is in the cloud, and you can stream to any device. That is one I am most interested in. Do any of you use or have used Shadow? What do you think?

Anyways, I have been trying to figure this out for a long time now. So, anything you guys could offer, advice and so on, would be appreciated! Thank you.
 
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Blauhasenpopo

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I'm a Deck Owner, and as far as i can tell you, that's the best solution, if you have to look after the price, then take the 64GB Model, and if you have spare money, upgrade your ssd inside .
At the beginnig, take a micro sd 1TB and you will be safe .....a little :)
 
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I've been looking for a way to play my Steam games in a portable, most preferably, handheld format. The Steam Deck seems to me like the best solution for this, but of course, the price is pretty steep. I've heard of the Logitech G handheld with the cloud gaming, but it is just $50 less than the Steam Deck, so I think, why not just get the Steam Deck? Lol. If there is something about the Logitech G I may not know, I am open to any input by the way!
$400 is by no means steep for a portable PC, let alone one powerful enough to play next-gen games natively. Before Steam Deck came along they'd routinely run $1000+. The Logitech G is way overpriced for what it does, however, considering you can just as easily stream games to your phone at the same or better quality.

Then, I've looked at streaming services to perhaps stream from my laptop or desktop, onto a tablet, or my phone. But, that sounds like a hassle and a lot of trouble just for a gaming session. Plus, I cannot find much information about whether or not you can close your laptop lid, put your PC to sleep while streaming, shut the monitor off and so on. It seems like it could burn your computer out or ruin the monitor if it isn't being used. It would be great to put your laptop or desktop to sleep remotely even after you play as well. Do any of these services like Moonlight, Steam Link, etc. Let you close the lid on your laptop or turn off your monitor while playing? And also let's you do this remotely like wake and sleep?
Streaming isn't gonna put any more strain on your PC/laptop than regular gaming would, perhaps even less depending on your resolution/quality settings. No way to do quick sleep/wake in the middle of a gaming session though, Windows just isn't set up for that. Nor will you be able to stream while the source device is sleeping or shut down.

There was a service, Shadow PC, where you don't use your own PC at all, it is in the cloud, and you can stream to any device. That is one I am most interested in. Do any of you use or have used Shadow? What do you think?
You'd end up paying monthly for any such service, and I personally just don't think it's worth it. Might as well be paying for Game Pass instead, or buying a couple Steam games each month.
 

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Steam Deck is the best option here, as the folks above have said. If the price is too steep and you want a bit of a stop gap though, I've found GeForce Now to be a fairly good streaming service for playing your own Steam library. Assuming the games you play support cloud saves, you'll be able to pick up where you left off when you do eventually take the plunge on your own PC or Deck.
 

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Streaming isn't gonna put any more strain on your PC/laptop than regular gaming would, perhaps even less depending on your resolution/quality settings.
actually it would, the laptop/pc would need to do video compression to be able to send it over the network, if the cpu is too weak or the gpu doesn't have a dedicated h264 encoder, that's going to cause a sizable strain on the system depending on the specs, and the software used to stream
 
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So it seems Geforce Now, I can look into while contemplating the Deck. Does the Steam Deck play other games as well? Not just through Steam? Does it run emulators and/or retro games? N64, Gamecube, Saturn, etc.?
 

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So it seems Geforce Now, I can look into while contemplating the Deck. Does the Steam Deck play other games as well? Not just through Steam? Does it run emulators and/or retro games? N64, Gamecube, Saturn, etc.?
Yep it's basically just a PC running Linux. Because it's so popular, you have really good community support too. Projects like EmuDeck make emulation a really seamless experience.
 

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I see. Can it run the Windows games on Steam? Or just the Linux capable ones? I would like to run Stray if that is possible.
 

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I see. Can it run the Windows games on Steam? Or just the Linux capable ones? I would like to run Stray if that is possible.
Have a browse through Steam and look for the Steam Deck compatibility. Every game will either say works great, kinda works, doesn't work, or not tested. Windows games are run through Proton, so you can play a lot of otherwise Windows-only titles. I'm fairly sure Stray is in the "works great" category.
 

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I see. Can it run the Windows games on Steam? Or just the Linux capable ones? I would like to run Stray if that is possible.

Steam OS integrates Proton to run Windows software, according to the Steam page Stray is verified so it should work by default:
(I’d insert a link here but the site hates me and converts it to embedded)

However, Proton isn’t some panacea and not all software will run on it or may require additional fixes to run.

In the case of the Steam version of SADX, I was able to get the stock version to run ok with a launch option despite being ‘unsupported’, but the mod I installed gave me terrible performance. I dual boot on my Steam Deck though and when installed on Windows the game and mod ran fine.
 
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I'd vote for Steam Deck too. Cloud gaming requires really good network connection. No lags, delays... (at least from the point of view of streaming game video to the device...). But you also need to send (and probably receive as a feedback) game data like movements/button triggers etc... and if an action is time critical (like you need to press the button as fast as you can), cloud gaming may play a bad joke. So, dedicated device definitely. I'm also thinking about buying Steam Deck, just didn't make my mind about which one.
 
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neko_koneko

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Steam OS integrates Proton to run Windows software, according to the Steam page Stray is verified so it should work by default:
(I’d insert a link here but the site hates me and converts it to embedded)

However, Proton isn’t some panacea and not all software will run on it or may require additional fixes to run.

In the case of the Steam version of SADX, I was able to get the stock version to run ok with a launch option despite being ‘unsupported’, but the mod I installed gave me terrible performance. I dual boot on my Steam Deck though and when installed on Windows the game and mod ran fine.
That's good to know about Stray. I will take a look at some other games as well. Do you happen to know if.it's possible to see the.Steam Deck before making a purchase?
 

tech3475

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That's good to know about Stray. I will take a look at some other games as well. Do you happen to know if.it's possible to see the.Steam Deck before making a purchase?

As in view the console IRL? Only if you know someone, as of now AFAIK there’s no (official) retail stores.

I'm also thinking about buying Steam Deck, just didn't make my mind about which one.

Only real differences between the models is storage size and the 512GB model has anti-glare.

As for which model, I’d only go for the 64GB model if you plan on upgrading it yourself as I’ve heard the shader cache can cause issues (although it may be possible to move this to an mSD, I don’t know about performance).

The 256GB model seems to be a sweet spot for those who don’t want to upgrade the internal storage themselves and run games off an mSD.

I only got my 512GB model because I didn’t know how easy/difficult it would be to upgrade when I placed the reservation and I always planned on dual booting with Windows. Otherwise I would have bought the 64GB model and upgrade it myself.

Games run fine from my experience off my Samsung mSD card.
 

k0walski

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Only real differences between the models is storage size and the 512GB model has anti-glare.

As for which model, I’d only go for the 64GB model if you plan on upgrading it yourself as I’ve heard the shader cache can cause issues (although it may be possible to move this to an mSD, I don’t know about performance).

The 256GB model seems to be a sweet spot for those who don’t want to upgrade the internal storage themselves and run games off an mSD.

I only got my 512GB model because I didn’t know how easy/difficult it would be to upgrade when I placed the reservation and I always planned on dual booting with Windows. Otherwise I would have bought the 64GB model and upgrade it myself.

Games run fine from my experience off my Samsung mSD card.
I was thinking about buying a 512Gb model basically due to one reason - It's not an easy thing to find an upgrade SSD card. I'm sort of a fan of Samsung EVO Pro SSDs (used in my old laptop and the performance was really impressive). Also, basically buying a mid-level Steam Deck (256Gb) would mean that I need to buy an SD card (I guess they claim the SD interface is fast enough so U3 class SD cards should be acessible). And this is the funniest part:

1. U3 (UHS-3) V90 class SD card speed is up to 100MB/sec of write speed. Here, read speed will be fast enough so I guess it can be ignored.
2. NVMe PCIe gen3 card r/w speed is around 3000Mb/sec.

Not complaining, of course NVMe will always be faster than SD... Just my calculations... And as a conclusion/question: is buying a 256Gb model (64Gb model has gen2 PCIe interface, while 256/512Gb have gen3 PCIe interface, which directly affects the I/O speed) a good choice (considering possible upgrade to a bigger storage capacity)? Considering, as you've said, the difference is anti-glare screen only.
 

tech3475

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I was thinking about buying a 512Gb model basically due to one reason - It's not an easy thing to find an upgrade SSD card. I'm sort of a fan of Samsung EVO Pro SSDs (used in my old laptop and the performance was really impressive). Also, basically buying a mid-level Steam Deck (256Gb) would mean that I need to buy an SD card (I guess they claim the SD interface is fast enough so U3 class SD cards should be acessible). And this is the funniest part:

1. U3 (UHS-3) V90 class SD card speed is up to 100MB/sec of write speed. Here, read speed will be fast enough so I guess it can be ignored.
2. NVMe PCIe gen3 card r/w speed is around 3000Mb/sec.

Not complaining, of course NVMe will always be faster than SD... Just my calculations... And as a conclusion/question: is buying a 256Gb model (64Gb model has gen2 PCIe interface, while 256/512Gb have gen3 PCIe interface, which directly affects the I/O speed) a good choice (considering possible upgrade to a bigger storage capacity)? Considering, as you've said, the difference is anti-glare screen only.

I've never looked deeply into 2230 options, I know there were numerous relatively cheap 128/256GB SSDs on ebay, Dell makes a 512GB/1TB card and Sabrent is introducing a 1TB (but I'd wait for reviews, I'm personally a bit weary of the brand after I had one of their SSDs fail under 1 year):
https://www.scan.co.uk/products/1tb...-3d-tlc-nand-4750mb-s-read-4300mb-s-write450k
https://www.dell.com/en-uk/shop/del...e-drive-1tb/apd/ab673817/storage-drives-media

I also just remembered ifixit sells an upgrade kit with different sizes:
https://www.ifixit.com/products/micron-2400-nvme-pcie-gen4-2230-ssd?variant=40034191835239
instructions:
https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Steam+Deck+SSD+Replacement/148989

As for performance, it might be worth checking in game loading times, just did a quick test with Portal 2 going from launching in Steam to loading the first chapter:
mSD: about 1m
SSD: about 50 seconds

As for whether to get the 512GB over the 256GB, I think it comes down to three questions:
1) Do you want to avoid upgrading yourself?
2) Do you want to avoid using mSDs as much as possible?
3) Do you plan on installing Windows internally?

In my case, it was Windows that really pushed me to get the 512GB model over the 256GB model.
 

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As for whether to get the 512GB over the 256GB, I think it comes down to three questions:
1) Do you want to avoid upgrading yourself?
2) Do you want to avoid using mSDs as much as possible?
3) Do you plan on installing Windows internally?

In my case, it was Windows that really pushed me to get the 512GB model over the 256GB model.
Thanks for your thoughts above... Concerning these points... well, I'd rather say yes for the first two and no for the last one... Just out of curiosity... why should I consider installing Windows? Is it just for "normal" usage or for being able running native Windows games on it? If so, then it will be all three yes...
 

tech3475

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Thanks for your thoughts above... Concerning these points... well, I'd rather say yes for the first two and no for the last one... Just out of curiosity... why should I consider installing Windows? Is it just for "normal" usage or for being able running native Windows games on it? If so, then it will be all three yes...

I mentioned Windows because I didn't know if that is something you'd want to do.

Main reason to look at Windows will be for software which doesn't run/run well under Steam OS, such as my previously mentioned heavily modded SADX.

One to note though, as of now it's not 'officially' supported but custom drivers are available and there are workarounds for certain issues e.g. using refind to allow easy multiboot (for some stupid reason Windows is the default bootloader in a dualboot and can't be changed through BIOS).
 

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