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  1. #1
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    Valve's 300 prototype specs out (Steambox)

    http://steamcommunity.com/groups/ste...28928746175450

    Thanks for joining the Steam Universe community group. As we get closer to shipping the prototype Steam Machines and controllers we talked about last week, we're going to be posting info here about what we're up to, and give you some insight into the work we’ve done to get to this point.

    As we talked about last week, the Steam Machines available for sale next year will be made by a variety of companies. Some of those companies will be capable of meeting the demands of lots of Steam users very quickly, some will be more specialized and lower volume. The hardware specs of each of those machines will differ, in many cases substantially, from our prototype.

    Valve didn't set out to create our own prototype hardware just for the sake of going it alone - we wanted to accomplish some specific design goals that in the past others weren't yet tackling. One of them was to combine high-end power with a living-room-friendly form factor. Another was to help us test living-room scenarios on a box that's as open as possible.

    So for our own first prototype Steam Machine ( the one we're shipping to 300 Steam users ), we've chosen to build something special. The prototype machine is a high-end, high-performance box, built out of off-the-shelf PC parts. It is also fully upgradable, allowing any user to swap out the GPU, hard drive, CPU, even the motherboard if you really want to. Apart from the custom enclosure, anyone can go and build exactly the same machine by shopping for components and assembling it themselves. And we expect that at least a few people will do just that. (We'll also share the source CAD files for our enclosure, in case people want to replicate it as well.)

    And to be clear, this design is not meant to serve the needs of all of the tens of millions of Steam users. It may, however, be the kind of machine that a significant percentage of Steam users would actually want to purchase - those who want plenty of performance in a high-end living room package. Many others would opt for machines that have been more carefully designed to cost less, or to be tiny, or super quiet, and there will be Steam Machines that fit those descriptions.

    Here are the specifications for Valve's 300 prototypes.

    The 300 prototype units will ship with the following components:
    GPU: some units with NVidia Titan, some GTX780, some GTX760, and some GTX660
    CPU: some boxes with Intel i7-4770, some i5-4570, and some i3
    RAM: 16GB DDR3-1600 (CPU), 3GB GDDR5 (GPU)
    Storage: 1TB/8GB Hybrid SSHD
    Power Supply: Internal 450w 80Plus Gold
    Dimensions: approx. 12 x 12.4 x 2.9 in high


    As a hardware platform, the Steam ecosystem will change over time, so any upgrades will be at each user's discretion. In the future we'll talk about how Steam will help customers understand the differences between machines, hardware strengths and weaknesses, and upgrade decisions.

    We aren't quite ready to post a picture of our prototype - just because they're not finished enough. Before they ship we'll let you know what the prototype looks like. And we expect people to redesign the machine, too. Both from a technical perspective, deciding on different components, and from an industrial design perspective, changing the enclosure in interesting ways.

    So high-powered SteamOS living room machines are nice, and fun to play with, and will make many Steam customers happy. But there are a lot of other Steam customers who already have perfectly great gaming hardware at home in the form of a powerful PC. The prototype we're talking about here is not meant to replace that. Many of those users would like to have a way to bridge the gap into the living room without giving up their existing hardware and without spending lots of money. We think that's a great goal, and we're working on ways to use our in-home streaming technology to accomplish it - we'll talk more about that in the future.

    Stay tuned for some closer looks at the Steam Controller.
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  3. #2
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    Good read. I'm surprised at some of the things valve is doing, but everything they are doing looks very promising. Gonna be an interesting generation. It seems like it's going to come down to exclusives.

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    If you do get picked you have to give them feedback.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keefy View Post
    If you do get picked you have to give them feedback.
    Thats a bit obvious, considering this is a beta

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    i'm VERY interested if they end up getting good support. this would give me the best of both worlds. if this didn't have linux, i wasn't going to be interested. make it happen valve.

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    just give me the steam OS because I'll bet you that steambox is going to be expeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeensive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sufi View Post
    i'm VERY interested if they end up getting good support. this would give me the best of both worlds. if this didn't have linux, i wasn't going to be interested. make it happen valve.
    Ea is not on board with Steambox as they are supporting AMD Mantle. The Specs are nice the ability to swap gpus very interesting.

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    The specs are nice but it's really nothing more than PC parts in a small case right?
    I prefer where AMD is going with mantel, wipe out Direct X.

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  12. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Sith View Post
    Ea is not on board with Steambox as they are supporting AMD Mantle. The Specs are nice the ability to swap gpus very interesting.
    EA doesn't matter in the bigger scheme of things. they will eventually join in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sufi View Post
    EA doesn't matter in the bigger scheme of things. they will eventually join in.
    I'm inclined to agree. Especially since Steam are going their own way in terms of OS.

    Will be really interesting to see what hardware Steam settle on and then how the market responds. Since the OS is free there's bound to be competitor boxes popping up at a variety of price-points.

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    Quote Originally Posted by *goo View Post
    I'm inclined to agree. Especially since Steam are going their own way in terms of OS.

    Will be really interesting to see what hardware Steam settle on and then how the market responds. Since the OS is free there's bound to be competitor boxes popping up at a variety of price-points.
    that's the thing, i doubt there will be a competitor because no one cares about the Linux. they don't wanna bother with it. MS still hasn't put their silverlight service on the linux, so anyone with linux can't play netflix.

    valve has the resources to pull this off, they have the advantage of being the first one there and then they have the advantage of having the best digital distribution (in the world?). they may have single-handedly saved the PC platform or at least given it a huge boost.

    i totally LOVE the idea of linux gaming...it is a $#@!ing gold mine. it just never occurred to me before that this could be awesome.

    the only hurdles valve has that they may have to do some backward integration...like if there is something they need, that isn't on Linux then they'll have to make it themselves or fund it.

    either way, if this works...this is going to revolutionize the PC platform and people like myself that LIKE PC gaming but are fed up with the hassles, will dive back in. me thinks even if you can change the video cards, it will be select ones.

    this is going to be a huge thing, games that can only be played on steam boxes (while they may be emulated on regular PCs), developers can just support the box and not worry about the rest. lower costs in development. support doesn't have to be so wide. they can focus on the strengths of this box. and they can make a deal with these video card makers etc.

    didn't MS originally try to do this with the Xbox?

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    Using your web browser to view netflix sucks, its only 720p.

    If there is something that doesn't work or is needed to get a game to work there will be some tech savy people out there that will do it, that is the beauty of Linux, open source.
    Last edited by keefy; 10-05-2013 at 18:07.

  16. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by keefy View Post
    Using your web browser to view netflix sucks, its only 720p.

    If there is something that doesn't work or is needed to get a game to work there will be some tech savy people out there that will do it, that is the beauty of Linux, open source.
    it's not that simple. linux wouldn't be here if it weren't for distributors like Ubuntu...there has to be some sort of push there (economically) to get bigger projects done.

    valve isn't going to wait for someone to make things that they might need, they're going to take over that part themselves. linux is great for "simple" things that can be free, but it's never going to catch up because there's not much incentive there other than helping each other out. even these distributors find some ways to make money.

    i wonder if this will help linux in general.

  17. #15
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    The main reason Windows is so popular is because that's where the games are. If games suddenly flooded the Linux platform then you'll see a lot of people jumping over to Linux - I'm not saying a majority as I'm sure there's plenty of people that would stick to what they know. Because Microsoft cornered the games market first they had a huge market share, where's the best money for selling applications then? You guessed it.

    Since Steam has been released on Linux there has been a gradual rise for Linux market share wise but still it's not much until the AAA publishers decide to start releasing some big titles on Linux, but once a few start selling on Linux then it'll be like falling of small stones that starts an avalanche *cough*. When the Linux market share eventually rises then and only then will application developers start migrating across too.

    There are lots of people wanting a reason to switch to Linux away from Windows and I'm hoping that Valve starts the ball rolling, it's just a matter of more developers helping to push it. It's going to take a few years before anything remotely significant I reckon but next year is when we'll really see what happens.

    When SteamOS releases though I'm going to install it on my spare PC to test it out.

  18. #16
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    GTX Titan's and 780s and also 660s? Those aren't specs to be laughed at! A 660 runs Crysis 3 1080p on ultra at about 30 FPS, and that's the worst GPU in their spec list. So much better than my old pc from 2003 that lags with Garry's Mod
    I want one of those, but then again I don't have a gamepad, a proper TV etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AverageNinja View Post
    GTX Titan's and 780s and also 660s? Those aren't specs to be laughed at! A 660 runs Crysis 3 1080p on ultra at about 30 FPS, and that's the worst GPU in their spec list. So much better than my old pc from 2003 that lags with Garry's Mod
    I want one of those, but then again I don't have a gamepad, a proper TV etc.
    not to mention, their 660 will perform better than the 660 on Windows.

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    Not will perform better, already do perform better! Those games running on Linux right now have a much higher FPS count than on Windows, I don't know why developers don't already develop for the OS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Varsh View Post
    Not will perform better, already do perform better! Those games running on Linux right now have a much higher FPS count than on Windows, I don't know why developers don't already develop for the OS.
    well yes, that's true. it's because windows is a general OS that focuses on so many things, while linux does too but not nearly as much, it's very light-weight and can be even lighter. so you can use it to focus on one thing if you built it that way. it's very barebones. i like that Sony chose freeBSD as the OS.

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    Yeah but how much do those specs cost if you want to make a custom PC out of them ?!

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  23. #21
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    Well if I was to build it myself out of similar components I would have (using Overclockers UK):
    Code:
    CPU:	Intel i5-4570 (1050)		£150
    GPU:	Gainward GTX660 2GB		£144
    PSU:	Antec VP450P 80+ (450W)		£40
    RAM:	Kingston HyperX (2x8GB)		£100
    SSHD:	Seagate SSHD 1TB/8GB		£72
    Mobo:	Asus H81I-Plus (1150)		£69
    Case:	Silverstone SST-PT13B		£44
    ============================================
    Total					£619
    Of course if you shop around you can easily slash off a good £50 but these components are selected from the minimum speck listed in the OP. If I was to go an Intel i3 (1155) I can get the mobo £20 cheaper, the processor £50 cheaper, and 16GB isn't necessary yet so 8GB for £50 cheaper so for £499 just from getting components only from Overclockers UK is a system that could play a lot of games at max. Again if I shop around I could probably get it under the £470 mark. This is also a setup that's smaller than the SteamBox.

  24. #22
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    Is this software going to be games dedicated?
    Sent from my computer using keyboard.

  25. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacP View Post
    Is this software going to be games dedicated?
    likely going to be just games + VOIP. or i hope so, no other reason to buy it if it's not going to be specialized. eventually it will but i feel that in the beginning it may not.

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  27. #24
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    Thankfully because it's based on Linux you'll be able to install the required software anyway.

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    i suppose they will allow other software, i just would rather they didn't or they should have some sort of a restriction or regulation where you have to free up a certain amount of RAM before gaming.

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