Valve officially announces Steam Deck, its handheld gaming PC releasing this December

steam deck.JPG

The Nintendo Switch (OLED model) wasn't the "Pro" upgrade many expected it to be with 4K support and new internals but before its announcement, other handhelds aimed to take the role of the "Switch Pro". The AYA NEO and GPD Win 3 are among those devices shooting for that nickname since they are able to run recent AAA PC games on the go, given that they are handheld gaming PCs. Their efforts and popularity, although niche, enticed companies like Lenovo and Tencent to make similar concepts or patents; indicating that these indie companies might have more serious competition in the future.

It seems like this will indeed be the case and these handheld gaming PC manufacturers will need to brace themselves as Valve is itself entering this market with a Valve-branded handheld gaming PC. This news was actually reported back in May and today we have the official confirmation. In a Steam post today, Valve revealed the Steam Deck, an AMD-based handheld gaming PC that is expected to begin shipping in December 2021 in select regions.

The software giant partnered with AMD to create a custom APU for the handheld that is said to be "optimized for handheld gaming". "It is a Zen 2 + RDNA 2 powerhouse, delivering more than enough performance to run the latest AAA games in a very efficient power envelope," reads the announcement.

It will run on SteamOS 3.0 (Arch-based) and there will be several models of the Steam Deck, which differ on the storage capacity, with the base model starting at $399. However, every model will include a microSD slot for additional storage capacity. For more details about the models available and their price, refer to the image below:

steam deck models.JPG

You can find additional specs details in the images below (click/tap to enlarge):

specs 1.JPG specs 2.JPG

And just like the AYA NEO and GPD Win 3, the Steam Deck will also have a dock which will be sold separately. This accessory will provide ports for external displays, wired networking, USB peripherals, and power. More details about the dock's pricing will be announced at a later date but you can find some specs details in the thumbnail below:

dock.png

specs dock.JPG


Valve says that the Steam Deck will start shipping this December to the United States, Canada, the European Union and the United Kingdom, with more regions coming in 2022. However, to be able to purchase one, you will need to book a paid reservation which will let you pre-order when the time comes. This reservation fee will also count towards the Steam Deck purchase price.

"The main reason for reservations is to ensure an orderly and fair ordering process for customers when Steam Deck inventory becomes available," writes Valve in the announcement FAQ. "The additional fee gives us a clearer signal of intent to purchase, which gives us better data to balance supply chain, inventory, and regional distribution leading up to launch."

Reservations for the Steam Deck will open Friday July 16th, 10am PDT. For more details about the new handheld gaming PC, head to the source link and official Steam Deck website linked below.

Are you interested in getting one?

:arrow: SOURCE
:arrow: Steam Deck Official Website
 

EvilJagaGenius

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Something came to mind a while ago: since Valve is marketing this as a PC, you can install/run whatever you want, access the Linux desktop, I wonder if we'll see versions of desktop software reworked to use the Steam Controller-esque layout of the Deck. Like a Photoshop version or other art app that uses the touchpads, a DAW for music using the buttons and sticks. Someone could probably build a whole IDE around VS Code or Atom and the GNU compilers. There could be a whole suite of tools built for this - if someone builds the tools, we could see it become a portable game development machine, not just a portable games machine.
 

such

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Here's another consideration after having watched that IGN ad: you're paying a minimum of 400$ (more, realistically speaking) for a squishy d-pad and squishy triggers. But hey, apparently it's "serviceable". What makes me worried is that even in that ad IGN isn't comfortable enough about the controller to avoid a warning. And the ending to that video... Imagine a film critic reviewing a movie and wrapping it up with a "in your local theater now, for only 9,95! Yeah, crap like this is why I have games "journalism" trust issues.

Would definitely need some time with it to consider buying - and that's not happening with the way Valve is (/have been) handling hardware.
 

FFTfanatic

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Here's another consideration after having watched that IGN ad: you're paying a minimum of 400$ (more, realistically speaking) for a squishy d-pad and squishy triggers. But hey, apparently it's "serviceable". What makes me worried is that even in that ad IGN isn't comfortable enough about the controller to avoid a warning. And the ending to that video... Imagine a film critic reviewing a movie and wrapping it up with a "in your local theater now, for only 9,95! Yeah, crap like this is why I have games "journalism" trust issues.

Would definitely need some time with it to consider buying - and that's not happening with the way Valve is (/have been) handling hardware.
On the flip side they were rather complimentary about the touch pads saying that after the initial acclimatisation period, it was pretty close to the mouse experience.

There is also still time for them to tweak the design to be less squishy or to add actuation limiter locks (like on the Xbox Elite controllers). The promo material contains the disclaimer that it was a prototype and not the final retail unit.
 
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such

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I'm thinking it's getting a bit tight if they want to make that December ship date. I have no clue how such a change would affect manufacturing deals. logistics etc, so it's pure speculation on my part.

This is also part of the issue: I have no point of reference for how a Valve controller feels like, so I hear a brown-nosing IGN say it's squishy and I assume it's on the cheapo half of the spectrum which may very well be wrong - but I've been taught by experience that more often that not it's a correct assumption.
 

Skelletonike

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Got a seller offer for $120 on a Western Digital 1TB 2230 SSD, should I take it despite not knowing how accessible the slot will be? I feel like I could sell it for more after Steam Deck is out regardless.

I mean, they did mention it would have a 2230 slot, so I don't think you'll be wasting that SSD anyway.
SSD prices have also been increasing lately (like everything else, sadly), so if you can afford it, I'd say go with it.
 
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sarkwalvein

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Got a seller offer for $120 on a Western Digital 1TB 2230 SSD, should I take it despite not knowing how accessible the slot will be? I feel like I could sell it for more after Steam Deck is out regardless.
I believe, unless you bought the 64GB version or you consider that price super convenient, it is better to wait.

You can hold on with 256gb for quite some time, in the future there will be more info and video tutorials regarding what to use/ how to open it, and price of tech always goes down. You sure won't get the deck before December, so why hurry up with the ssd purchase?
 
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Xzi

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I mean, they did mention it would have a 2230 slot, so I don't think you'll be wasting that SSD anyway.
SSD prices have also been increasing lately (like everything else, sadly), so if you can afford it, I'd say go with it.
Yeah I can just grab an enclosure for like $15 and use it for extra PC storage space until Deck's release. No open slots on my motherboard unfortunately. New they seem to be $200, and most of the used ones are in the ballpark of $170. This one was supposedly in a laptop that was "powered on less than 100 hours."

You can hold on with 256gb for quite some time, in the future there will be more info and video tutorials regarding what to use/ how to open it, and price of tech always goes down. You sure won't get the deck before December, so why hurry up with the ssd purchase?
True, I doubt I'm gonna end up switching from the 256GB model now and add 6+ months of wait time for my Steam Deck. The tear-downs and tutorials aren't really an issue since those will be out December and I won't be getting mine until sometime in Q1 2022. TBH though, I don't see prices going down much in this form factor, as it's fairly uncommon. $120 for 1TB is approaching SATA SSD prices, so I see some value there.
 

sarkwalvein

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For those that might've missed them: we got a bunch of new hands-on videos today from the big tech Youtubers like LTT, Tested, GamesRadar, etc. All the first impressions seem really positive, and the bulkiness of the grips seems a good thing for comfort reasons.
After watching LTT's hands on videos I'm happy I was able to get an early ticket to preorder. My impression on the device has only improved.

It looks very well made and comfortable, and it runs the games they tried very well.
 
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Xzi

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Figured I'd give a heads up: the seller I bought my 2230 M.2 (1TB) from changed the base price to $130, and afterward quickly sold through almost his entire stock. There's just one left at that price, and the next cheapest on eBay is $150 (also with only one available).

https://www.ebay.com/itm/184975539024
 
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