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Steam Hardware

Polygon has what details PC maker Xi3 is revealing about "Piston," a Steam-optimized mini computer that seems to be the first blow in Valve's much discussed foray into gaming hardware. This is be a powerful little PC in a cool form factor, said to be based on its "performance level" X7A PC, a version of a modular PC that failed to achieve its Kickstarter goals last year. This seems clearly aimed at the living room and Valve's "Big Picture" initiative.

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18. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 13:24 Dev
 
DG wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 12:55:
I wouldn't be surprised though if this were to be one of many Steam boxes. IMHO it makes a lot more sense for Valve to basically licence and certify anyone who makes a box that fits their specified criteria.
Thats a very interesting idea. Especially since the original story was updated with a statement from valve saying:

Update: Valve says that Piston is one of many prototypes they're showing off at CES.

Because yeah, I agree with some of the other posts $1k is a stupid price point. You can get a top of the line gaming machine for that much, with a $500 graphics card.
Valve has the hardware surveys, they can see what the average gamer has and is willing to pay for.

But if valve wants to subsidize it, they will quickly go bankrupt. Because mega tons of gamers (and many other sectors, all the kinds of groups who bought PS3s to do computations) would be lining up to buy a $1000 system at under $500. If indeed it had $1000 worth of standard cpu/gpu in it. Not sure it does currently.
 
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17. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 12:56 Hump
 
1k as a price point is way too high for this idea to impact current console gaming. I love the idea of the system as it stands on its own but unless Valve can somehow subsidize the 7a spec system (the company's gaming top of the line model) to less than half of what Xi3 is asking then I dont see much hope for success here.  
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"Both the “left” and the “right” pretend they have the answer, but they are mere flippers on the same thalidomide baby, and the truth is that neither side has a clue."

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16. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 12:55 DG
 
Xi3's website seems to have been slashdotted or whatever but it seems their "performance" unit uses an AMD APU, so basically laptop CPU + GPU chip.

I wouldn't be surprised though if this were to be one of many Steam boxes. IMHO it makes a lot more sense for Valve to basically licence and certify anyone who makes a box that fits their specified criteria.
 
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15. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 12:20 McSterls
 
$499 for the base or $999 for a more powerful version?? Seems way more expensive then either the XBox 720 or PS4. Valve doesn't play to loose, so there is something else going on here. Gabe isn't stupid, and selling one of these would be stupid. Limited usefulness as a PC (Linux is dystopian), and with a limited selection (at the moment) of Big Screen games, this would be a console looser - so I'm saying there is more here then meets the eye.  
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14. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 12:18 saluk
 
TV sales have also slowed. I don't know what that means.  
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13. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 12:14 RollinThundr
 
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 12:03:
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:43:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:37:
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:34:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

/facepalm yes I so want to game on a shitty small screen tablet with m/kb inputs. Can't wait til they start putting GTX680's in a surface or Ipad. Oh wait that won't happen.

/facepalm who said anything about as small screen?
/facepalm with mobile/small factor GPUs increasing in power exponentially and large scale development slowing down and getting decreased funding you'd think people would realize that they're on a path to converge over the next decade



Some people have absolutely zero imagination or even foresight.

Tablets are meant to be portable no? I doubt we're going to see tablets with 27 inch viewing surfaces any time soon if ever. The whole the PC is dying bullshit is just that, bullshit. I've been hearing it for well over a decade now, PC gaming is still going strong last I checked.

Again, no vision.
Look at the numbers - desktop sales are in a freefall and laptop sales are beginning to sink. Development into components for both are slowing down as development into mobile components are getting billions more each year. AMD, which mostly missed the mobile market, is dying while NVIDIA is thriving and putting its eggs in the Tegra basket.

Stop thinking in black and white. Stop thinking about what these devices are today. It's so painful to hear people always go "I'll never surrender my big screen" as if anyone is asking you to. Half this board says they have their PC hooked up to their big screen TV. Companies have put out technology that does this wirelessly. TVs are increasingly smarter and smarter, with more ways to hook up to more devices and more media.

What kind of idiot can't see that wireless video output being built into mobile devices is only a few years away? Oh, right, RollinThundr

OMG WIRELESS TABLE..oh wait. So I'm going to go through the hassle of using a tablet to install all my games just to project the actual image across the room via wireless to a large display for gaming, when I ALREADY do that with a pc? Yay? What's the fucking point? If I'm out and about, I'm more than likely spending time with friends or family, not whipping out a tablet to game. I'm still not interested in using a tablet for gaming sorry, no matter how many hipster points it's worth.

 
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12. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 12:14 dj LiTh
 
Did someone say 27" "tablet"

Anyways, unless Valve is going to sell every unit at a loss, if i can build one for cheaper, its already a fail.
 
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11. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 12:10 Beamer
 
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 12:01:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

Well if they don't make another console after this gen then a pc will replace it by necessity. The PC form factor will need to be big enough for the foreseeable future. Sure you can put your ipad games on a HD set, but if you want thee top games with power and gfx it still takes size. Can it be the size of a standard cable box, perhaps and no one is complaining about the size of our cable box. Could it be smaller?... hopefully, but I haven't seen it yet.

Potential PC Living Room Box: (They've already been done by enthusiasts) Size of cable box, power cable, hdmi cable to tv. (Total of 2 cables minimum) Your choice of either wired or wireless gaming UI devices. All this stuff already exists, I have it, used it years ago, concluded gaming at the desk is every bit as relaxing and really better for me, a 24" monitor - 12" from my face doing the math is like looking into a very large screen from 10' away. The couch while not evil, is imo overrated. But you can play pc games on the couch, did it as early as 10 years ago, with a 32" CRT when they were still considered large screens. So a PC with a bunch of wires to me is trying to paint an ugly picture with over-exaggeration. 2 Wires, you could even go wireless HDMI if you want to pay, 1 wire. It's up to you on how professional and clean it all looks.

I think a lot of analysts are seeing phones and pads as the only future. PC's are still selling very well, just not a Wall Street winner these days. Probably why analysts are pushing handhelds, they can still make money there, don't be fooled by their need and greed in how they try to influence.

Handhelds fill their role well, but a dedicated gaming unit will still be superior and there are still millions that want superior, that is why we are here. This is imo a point that cannot be argued against and overlooked. If not, then why aren't we all playing on handhelds exclusively right now? I don't see settling for third best gaming any time soon on my end, do you?

How much longer until your cellphone is more powerful than an xbox?

PCs are NOT selling very well. Sales are crumbling. Dell and HP are reeling. It's brutal, and making things worse they're trying to get back to higher priced PCs (laptops mostly) and no one is biting.

It's just denying the inevitable if you think that desktop PCs will still be a thing much longer into the future. Dell sells 2 desktop PCs to home users. 2! They occupy 1 page in Best Buy's circular, compared to 5+ for laptops. Internet traffic is increasingly coming from mobile/tablet devices.

I keep saying it, but I'll repeat: we're moving to a world were we have limited devices and instead of different form factors that device communicates with. Mice, controllers, keyboards and displays all connect to your mobile device. It keeps everything. Hell, we're probably moving to them mostly being dummy with most computation being cloud based.

Does this mean the fringe will abandon dedicated machines? No. People on this board will build their devices as long as that's possible. But this isn't the mainstream. We're not who companies put billions of R&D dollars to pleasing.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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10. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 12:03 Beamer
 
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:43:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:37:
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:34:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

/facepalm yes I so want to game on a shitty small screen tablet with m/kb inputs. Can't wait til they start putting GTX680's in a surface or Ipad. Oh wait that won't happen.

/facepalm who said anything about as small screen?
/facepalm with mobile/small factor GPUs increasing in power exponentially and large scale development slowing down and getting decreased funding you'd think people would realize that they're on a path to converge over the next decade



Some people have absolutely zero imagination or even foresight.

Tablets are meant to be portable no? I doubt we're going to see tablets with 27 inch viewing surfaces any time soon if ever. The whole the PC is dying bullshit is just that, bullshit. I've been hearing it for well over a decade now, PC gaming is still going strong last I checked.

Again, no vision.
Look at the numbers - desktop sales are in a freefall and laptop sales are beginning to sink. Development into components for both are slowing down as development into mobile components are getting billions more each year. AMD, which mostly missed the mobile market, is dying while NVIDIA is thriving and putting its eggs in the Tegra basket.

Stop thinking in black and white. Stop thinking about what these devices are today. It's so painful to hear people always go "I'll never surrender my big screen" as if anyone is asking you to. Half this board says they have their PC hooked up to their big screen TV. Companies have put out technology that does this wirelessly. TVs are increasingly smarter and smarter, with more ways to hook up to more devices and more media.

What kind of idiot can't see that wireless video output being built into mobile devices is only a few years away? Oh, right, RollinThundr
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
9. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 12:01 HorrorScope
 
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

Well if they don't make another console after this gen then a pc will replace it by necessity. The PC form factor will need to be big enough for the foreseeable future. Sure you can put your ipad games on a HD set, but if you want thee top games with power and gfx it still takes size. Can it be the size of a standard cable box, perhaps and no one is complaining about the size of our cable box. Could it be smaller?... hopefully, but I haven't seen it yet.

Potential PC Living Room Box: (They've already been done by enthusiasts) Size of cable box, power cable, hdmi cable to tv. (Total of 2 cables minimum) Your choice of either wired or wireless gaming UI devices. All this stuff already exists, I have it, used it years ago, concluded gaming at the desk is every bit as relaxing and really better for me, a 24" monitor - 12" from my face doing the math is like looking into a very large screen from 10' away. The couch while not evil, is imo overrated. But you can play pc games on the couch, did it as early as 10 years ago, with a 32" CRT when they were still considered large screens. So a PC with a bunch of wires to me is trying to paint an ugly picture with over-exaggeration. 2 Wires, you could even go wireless HDMI if you want to pay, 1 wire. It's up to you on how professional and clean it all looks.

I think a lot of analysts are seeing phones and pads as the only future. PC's are still selling very well, just not a Wall Street winner these days. Probably why analysts are pushing handhelds, they can still make money there, don't be fooled by their need and greed in how they try to influence.

Handhelds fill their role well, but a dedicated gaming unit will still be superior and there are still millions that want superior, that is why we are here. This is imo a point that cannot be argued against and overlooked. If not, then why aren't we all playing on handhelds exclusively right now? I don't see settling for third best gaming any time soon on my end, do you?
 
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8. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 11:43 RollinThundr
 
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:37:
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:34:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

/facepalm yes I so want to game on a shitty small screen tablet with m/kb inputs. Can't wait til they start putting GTX680's in a surface or Ipad. Oh wait that won't happen.

/facepalm who said anything about as small screen?
/facepalm with mobile/small factor GPUs increasing in power exponentially and large scale development slowing down and getting decreased funding you'd think people would realize that they're on a path to converge over the next decade



Some people have absolutely zero imagination or even foresight.

Tablets are meant to be portable no? I doubt we're going to see tablets with 27 inch viewing surfaces any time soon if ever. The whole the PC is dying bullshit is just that, bullshit. I've been hearing it for well over a decade now, PC gaming is still going strong last I checked.
 
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7. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 11:37 Beamer
 
RollinThundr wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:34:
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

/facepalm yes I so want to game on a shitty small screen tablet with m/kb inputs. Can't wait til they start putting GTX680's in a surface or Ipad. Oh wait that won't happen.

/facepalm who said anything about as small screen?
/facepalm with mobile/small factor GPUs increasing in power exponentially and large scale development slowing down and getting decreased funding you'd think people would realize that they're on a path to converge over the next decade



Some people have absolutely zero imagination or even foresight.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
Reply Quote Edit Delete Report
 
6. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 11:34 RollinThundr
 
Beamer wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 11:00:
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.

/facepalm yes I so want to game on a shitty small screen tablet with m/kb inputs. Can't wait til they start putting GTX680's in a surface or Ipad. Oh wait that won't happen.
 
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5. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 11:00 Beamer
 
HorrorScope wrote on Jan 8, 2013, 10:26:
Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.

But no one is saying the PC replaces the console.

Most analysts saying the console is on its way out say it's going out the door behind the PC, not that the PC is the one closing the door on it.

And I agree with them. The PC, as a form factor, is dying off. Again, this doesn't mean that keyboards and mice are dying off. Having a large box full of wires that sits in one place is what's disappearing. Consoles and laptops will be there, too.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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4. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 10:58 Quinn
 
PC taking over the consoles in the living room? Are you guys really that blind?!

The PC is BECOMING a console. Simple as that. I fucking spit on this fucked up idea.

There. I said it.

And like wtf_man said, there has to be a genius invention to put the comfort of the KB/M on my lap. Like him, one of my main reasons I'm not into consoles is because of the hideous controls.

Then again, if this is going to be a "PC in the living room" with a KB/M setting... well, one could just buy the proper cables and do this already. Even before this century.

"PC games now totally consolized -- because grass, too, is green! *wink*"

This comment was edited on Jan 8, 2013, 11:06.
 
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"Moo," she said.
And I trembled.
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3. Re: More Big Picture Details Jan 8, 2013, 10:26 HorrorScope
 
Not that it couldn't be intriguing, who's really been asking for this in large #'s? The Kickstarter system, couldn't run much at all well. What kind of GPU is in the $1000 model, because you can get an approaching high-end desktop for that. Valve go read Sony's and MS's losses in the living room, which I like to now call the morgue.

They think they are seeing the big picture, I think squid face might be right here... It's a trap.

Sort of funny, for years... PC's dying, consoles win. Now it's this could be the last console generation. To possibly even, the PC will take over the console in the living room. I'm not so sure about any of that.
 
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2. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 09:44 wtf_man
 
I'm real iffy on this.

I'd need a real good solution for a keyboard and mouse sitting in my lap, since I can't stand console game controllers... which is mainly why I've never bought a console.
 
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1. Re: Steam Hardware Jan 8, 2013, 09:33 Verno
 
Looks intriguing, a modular console style PC for the living room would be welcome in my household.  
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Playing: Divinity Original Sin, Infamous Second Son, Madden
Watching: Spartan, Possible Worlds, The Changeling
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