In a rather unexpected turn of events, Valve introduced a revamped version of its Steam Deck console featuring a larger OLED screen, a more efficient system-on-chip, a more capable memory subsystem, a 1TB storage option, faster Wi-Fi. -Fi 6E and larger capacity battery. While the performance goals of the handheld gaming device remain the same, the new unit might just be faster than the original due to faster memory. Meanwhile, the cheapest 256GB version of the console, which retained an LCD screen, now costs $399.
The main difference between the new Steam Deck OLED and the original Steam Deck is the larger 7.4-inch OLED screen. The new display retains a resolution of 1,280 x 720, but it has a typical brightness of 600 nits (a major improvement) and also supports HDR with a maximum zonal brightness of 1,000 nits, according to Tom’s Hardware. The new monitor can also cover 101.8% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, compared to 48.5% in the case of the original Steam Deck, our colleagues discovered. Despite the larger screen, the console retained the dimensions of the original console, but was made 29 grams lighter since OLEDs do not need a backlight module or display driver with all the circuitry appropriate.
Another major change from the original is that Steam Deck OLED uses AMD’s new semi-custom SoC with four Zen 2 x86 cores and an RDNA 2-based GPU with 512 stream processors that are now based on the technology of TSMC N6 processes. Using N6 made the SoC a little cheaper to produce and allowed the original power envelope to be retained from 4W to 15W without the need to vary the GPU frequency by 1. 0 GHz to 1.60 GHz, which may have a slight positive effect on performance in some games.
An interesting detail about the new unit is that it uses a 16 GB LPDDR5-6400 memory subsystem with a maximum bandwidth of 102.4 GB/s, compared to 88 GB/s in the case of the original. We can only wonder if a 16% increase in memory bandwidth will significantly affect gaming performance, but we think it could provide an improvement in some bandwidth-intensive scenarios. Alternatively, faster memory may be just a little more power efficient.
Speaking of power, it’s worth noting that the Steam Deck OLED also comes with a 50Wh battery, compared to 40Wh in the original battery, so expect the new one to have a longer lifespan . Meanwhile, the new console comes with a longer 2.5 meter power cord.
Another notable upgrade to the Steam Deck OLED is the 1TB storage subsystem (and the M.2-2230 drive can always be replaced with something different) on the higher-end model. Meanwhile, to download games faster, Steam Deck OLED comes with a Wi-Fi 6E adapter, instead of Wi-Fi 5 on the original model.
Valve is launching its Steam Deck OLED in time for the holiday shopping system and in addition to making the product more appealing overall, it also makes the platform more accessible. The older 64GB eMMC model with LCD will be available for $349 while supplies last, while the 256GB LCD version will now cost $399 (was $529). The new 512GB Steam Deck OLED is priced at $449, while the 1TB Steam Deck OLED comes with an MSRP of $649.