Steam Box Prototypes Detailed

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MarioJP

As long as the hardware let me install Windows on it. This would be bad ass PC. Yes i know about SteamOS and such. In fact I have ubuntu installed on my laptop as test run. My conclusion so far. I really hope that gaming goes in all platform and not one replacing the other.

For the most part i got the stuff that i wanted to finally work on ubuntu thanks to virtual box virtualizing Windows 7 lol. And that was not as simple as i thought it would be to get virtual box to detect USB on guest (Finally) all these sudo apt-get install so and so just makes Linux in general feels like a prototype.

I don't dislike Ubuntu but when virtualized windows 7 is more snappier than the host ubuntu OS. Gotta wonder what the hell this does not make any sense what so ever..lol.

When Oct 18 hits. Going to get Windows 8.1 and wipe Ubuntu. Till then i will just keep playing with it a little longer. So anyways my point being is Linux gaming better not replace windows gaming period!. lol. I am all for competition and maybe this will finally give Microsoft a nudge to finally start innnovating and think twice for NEGLECTING PC GAMING!!

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vrmlbasic

I see no love for AMD GPUs from Valve here :( Seems foolish when AMD GPUs power the next gen of consoles.

If this could work as a console and allow my console gaming friends to finally move over to Steam (which is the lesser evil versus the PS4/Xbone) then it might have a point. With it using Nvidia GPUs, pretty darn pricey Nvidia GPUs, it won't accomplish that.

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pheight

Oh and if you remove the Oculus Rift and Logitech G930 (me just wishing for a VR gaming experience to be bundled along with) you get back down to just a few cents over $800...subsidize that a little and maybe we are talking $700 range with some kick@ss Summer Sales and awesome games on Steam for cheap GALORE!

Now THAT could compete in the living room market...

...stupid military computers from last century, unable to run modern websites...can't even reply to or edit my last post...annoying me, endlessly... >.<

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pheight

So yeah, these specs seem like complete overkill to me, unless Valve is not looking to get into the console/HTPC market, but rather they are trying to make inroads into the gaming PC realm. PC gamers, might CONSIDER building a cheap Steam Box or running the OS on their machine alongside Windows, but I don't really see many of us making Dream Machines running the Steam OS.

That said, I was thinking of a price point of <$1000 being what the Steam Box should aim for...Putting together a list of parts based on the cheapest of these specs comes up with something like this: http://pcpartpicker.com/user/sheighton/saved/2wtM

Roughly $1200 before adding in the controller and any bundled games on Steam (the version with the Titan and the i7-4770 is about $2100)...Why exactly would that interest anyone? It is higher priced than people would consider for a console and too low powered for us PC gamers...sure, it's portable, but so is my laptop...

Personally, this is more along the lines of what I envisioned when they announced the Steam Box: http://pcpartpicker.com/user/sheighton/saved/2p82

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jbitzer

Boy I sure hope all you people hating on this will send it my way if you get picked to receive one.

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Carlidan

I don't think people really hate it. It just doesn't really make sense. If steam could get around 80% of games from their library into linux rather depeding on streaming. And get the cost relatively close to the console boxes. They might have a good chance. If steam target audience for the steam box is to get console gamers, and not PC gamers they have to hit the two points mentioned above. If not, what's the point? My feeling is that steam is just trying get into the console business and this is their first steps towards it. And has nothing really to do with Windows at all.

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jbitzer

Well, my interest in it is that sitting at my desk pc is not the most fun to play some of the games I got like burnout paradise, sonic team racing, some others that don't come to mind right now, and my wife and I can play together.

Yeah, I could build my own PC in the living room, but at the price I'm going to pay to make it quiet and tiny, I might as well pick up a preconfig machine, and if it's streaming games, it doesn't even need to be that powerful and can be smaller.

So I'm intrigued at least.

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joeyjr

Hairy Legs 15 hours ago
Ways to Make Steam Better
Lets say someone has 64 GB of RAM have, a SSD or two, large hard drives, loads of games and tools or any combination of the above. Being able to manage all of these can get somewhat difficulte at times for back-ups, Steam set-up, and getting the best performance out of your system to name a few.

1. Up-dates and Back-Ups: There is only so much room on the storage device where Steam is installed, weither, it was your primary or secondary media. Games and tools are automaticly keep up to date as long as they are installed, which is ok if you only have a few of them, but over time one will have to pick an choose what to keep and what not to be installed. Back-ups can be located in more that one location by the user other than the one where Steam is located and this is very useful because of the large amount of data that can be involved.

SUGESTION : Being able to automate the back-up process for both installed and non-installed users programs for their needs. This would be a great time saver leaving more time to do Steam stuff and not become a slave to there system keeping it backed-up or up to date.Keeping up with teribytes of data is time comsuming, hopefully they can add a maintenance tab where it can be set-up to validate, defragment,backup both installed and non-installed programs on with a scedual.

2. Performance for Installed Steam and Programs: Having the most flexiable set-up options for a user to choose the best way for them to install Steam and related programming would make the PC even better as a gaming platform. For example; Steam and the users primary programs are installed on its own SSD, secondary stuff installed on a mechical hard drives. When a program is executed it is temporarily loaded into a lets say a 48 GB RAM Disk to use them but the user data and settings are stored in their normal locations.

SUGESTION : Find a way to give Steam users it the best set-up options one can have.

NOTE: Hope you can see how the two are related in some way.

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smashingpumpin

No mention of AMD gfx cards and streaming latencies from SteamWindows to SteamOS linux got me worried but we will see how it turns out.

Regardless, I'm still excited. This is Valve we're talking about- THE KING OF SALES! Despite Xi3's pricing, I have a strong hunch they would price it competitively as if you've build your own same-specd SteamMachine or even way cheaper than that. This would be the Nexus/Kindle Fire of the PC gaming world- not top end but very capable!

Now that Windows OS is out of the picture, they can bundle SteamBOX with just the Steam controller and selling it cheap. Everyone should have their own usb mouse and keyboard by now anyways.
Heck, the prototype doesn't even have those.

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LesserAnimal

I'd buy this even if I had 0 plans to ever use it over my computer and it sat in a dark room for years if only because it supports gaming on the linux platform in a big way that might finally free PC gaming from the microsoft leash. If m$ doesn't turn things around soon they will start sinking fast and desktop gaming doesn't need to go down with the ship.

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LesserAnimal

to clarify. while the steam machine itself won't do this it will be a huge stepping stone towards desktop gaming on linux.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

I was hoping Valve would do more with a SteamOS than just build another kiddie console.

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John Pombrio

That only plays 10% of their games.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

I was under the impression that over time, more titles would be simultaneously developed for Linux, in addition to the kiddie consoles and Windows. No one is going to bother porting existing titles, but I had hoped future titles would be developed for an open-source operating system that could replace Microsoft Windows on every desktop PC in the world.

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JosephColt

It's not a kiddie console, it's a small PC, you can build one now if you wanted too, the hardware is there to buy! Linux will get some titles ported, and as the OS get's more popular so will more games get developed for it.

A Steam Box IS A PC; I could build you one matching their specifications and just as small so easily; and it could run Windows if you wanted.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

I draw the line at input. If you're using a console controller, it's a console.

The box will probably support mouse & keyboard. But if you're playing Crysis with a console controller, you're playing Crysis on a console, not a PC, as far as I'm concerned. I've played a lot of PC games, and not once have I ever thought how cool it would be to hook up one of those lame controllers and have a go. Seriously, go play Quake Live with a console controller and see what happens. They're good enough for kids who don't know any better, but no PC gamer should ever choose one over a mouse & keyboard.

Finally, it creeps me out to see computer users going back to hooking their machines up to televisions. I thought we stopped doing that shit back in the 80's.

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kixofmyg0t

Sweet, now I now that i'm typing this on a $750 console.

Damn thing sure has sweet graphics, I don't need a "PC" then huh?

EDIT; Just to creep you out a little more, this "console" is hooked up to a 46" Sony TV.

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Carlidan

He just saying if you hook it up on the TV rather than a monitor and use a controller, he considers it a console. I don't know why you are so angered by his comment.

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kixofmyg0t

I'm not "angered" by his comment, I just think it's ridiculous.

So since I use a controller on my PC and have it hooked up to my TV it's a console? With his logic the Playstation 3 was never a console and is a PC after all since I had a keyboard and mouse hooked up to it after launch when I was running linux on it through OtherOS. It boils down to trying to turn the word "console" into a derogatory term.

He's childish and just wants to troll people who don't fit into his narrow minded view of what a PC "should" be. He acts like a console beat him up as a kid and stole his lunch money.

If you want to call my PC a console, fine go ahead. Call it a peruvian weasel for all I care.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

Boo fucking hoo.

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Carlidan

Well the next gen of consoles are basically PC's in a box. But don't tell console players that. :)

Console, PC's, mobile. Doesn't matter to me, as long it has the game I want to play.

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jbitzer

Uh, I play games on the controller on my pc all the time.

Burnout paradise and Sonic team racing and such games are ass with a KB&M

Also, a LOT of games on steam are better with the controller, SMB, Al Zombies must Die, the Showdown effect, Breath of Death, Costume Quest, Darksiders, Deadlight, etc.

Maybe you are just an FPS fanboy, but controllers have been around since the commodore 64, and the kiddie consoles hardly have the claim of ownership on them.

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RUSENSITIVESWEETNESS

Sonic Team Racing. Wow. Testosterone is getting thick up in here.

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jbitzer

Oh, sorry, I don't tie my manhood to which toys I play with. Maybe you'd be better off just sticking to COD on your EX BAWKS BRO!

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balindos

What I like about this is that I can make a game server in my house now. I would how many games you can stream at a time. It is multiple I would throw down a good chunk of cash to get that going. I will upgrade my whole network to gigbit and put a steam machine in every room.

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CaptainFabulous

Just curious: In how many rooms of your house can you be in at the same time, playing games in each? Or do you just want to be able to run from room to room updating your movements in multiple games?

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PCLinuxguy

I wonder if some people are illiterate..
The announcement and post here very very clearly state in extremely plain English:

"Hardcore PC enthusiasts don’t have to worry. The post specifically mentions that “Steam customers who already have perfectly great gaming hardware at home in the form of a powerful PC,” aren't the target audience"

Yet most-/-all of those complaining are those Not in the target audience.

I'm not trying to be an a-hole, but it seems to me that if you're not who this device is targeted to that you'd be spending your time enjoying your rig instead of coming onto an article just to bash something that does not affect you at all.

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John Pombrio

So ordinary folks have a TITAN in their PC? Who knew?

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CaptainFabulous

You ask people to READ?!?!?! You must be new to Internet forums.

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PCLinuxguy

yeah, I suppose that is too much to ask for. I had hoped for those with intelligence on here. :) thanks Cap.

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balindos

I just dont understand why people click on links and read only the first paragraph or skim through. Click on the article and read so you learn something. Why ask in the comments when you the information is already above. hahaha.

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devin3627

THIS MAKES THE WII U LOOK LIKE A F***ING JOKE!!!! 3GB VIDEO RAM VS WII'S 1GB?!?!?! the biggest killer here is compatiblity, WILL WE BE ABLE TO PLAY WITH PC GAMERS?! is this an online device?!?! f***.

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PCLinuxguy

are you dense or just being sarcastic?

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dedgar

Is it going to be orange?

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John Pombrio

What? What a waste of money! this is a PC worthy of a KICK ASS award and it is only used to play Valve games? A TITAN for a glorified console running on a TV at 1920x1080? This is massive overkill with all that memory and what? a hybrid SSD? PLUS the anemic power supply prevents any decent upgrade.
C'mon Valve, this should be on a desktop running Windows, not tied up in the living room wasting away playing 1080P Steam games. If you do put it into the living room, put Windows on it and run your full Steam Library and all the other things a Win PC can do that Valve's OS cannot. Cripes, take that rig and Handbrake your movies onto another bigger hard drive and you have a bad-ass media streamer and music play and internt streamer and...

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JosephColt

1. They need to do a test of a variety of hardware, some people will buy a titan for their Steam Box, especially since SLI won't be an option or good on a consumer level.

2. That power supply is more than enough for almost all graphic cards(AMD OR NVIDIA)and processor(Intel) in a single graphics card system. A non-k chip will use less than 50 watts on load, the overall system will use 80-100watts idle in total, and while gaming 300-400 depending on graphics card.

3. Hybrid HDD/SSD are very good performance wise while offering storage capacity still. You can put a normal hard drive in if you want.

4. You can install Windows if you want or Stream games from the other PC to the Linux machine. Steam OS is to try and help push Linux development for games so we have options, not limited to Windows only; think competition.

5. Valve has to start somewhere, and this is a very good start, why don't you think outside the box?

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John Pombrio

Because the potential of the computer goes way beyond just playing Steam games. The Steam OS is a complete restriction of the box's capabilities. Why settle for a crippled machine when you can do tons more by just using a different operating system?
What is so special about SteamOS? Nothing.

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JosephColt

Lets see:

Complete restriction of the boxes capabilies? Do you not understand SteamOS will be a Linux variant that can be installed on any machine, and work as a normal desktop computer if someone wanted to. There are no restrictions, you can do whatever you want to do on it. The Steam Box is just a small PC...anyone can put together a Steam box, it's just a tiny PC.

The only problem is the support and compatibility of software for Linux is low right now, but given time it will grow larger; Valve is making a push for this.

Most gamers do way more than gaming, they will want to use all kinds of software they use on Windows on Linux, and developers will start to write their software for Linux once the user base grows.

No one is forced to solely use Linux, people can dual boot to Windows or run it virtually.

What's so special about Linux? If it supported all the software and games Windows did I doubt you'd see many people using Windows considering Linux is free and offers more flexibility and control.

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p47riot

Gotta give props to Valve for pouring some time and effort into Linux--I don't think there's any doubt about their commitment to shed the Windows requirement. Everything you just described (Windows desktop running Steam, streaming movies) can already be accomplished right now. Nothing changes for you. For those of us who have only stuck with Windows for game compatibility, (or just like playing with other OSes) this is a step towards being able to shrug off that yoke. Will it be the perfect end-all solution? Maybe/maybe not, but innovation breeds invention breeds competition. Things like this are what give your precious Microsoft the kick in the ass it needs from time to time.

When it comes down to it, I'll probably be rolling my own SteamBox, just because, but they gotta have SOME sort of zero-point reference machine to conduct the beta for their OS, and it's cool they'll be hooking beta testers up with these.

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TheRyGuy

You make a good point about wasting all that power on a 1080p screen. At least with a Titan, it'd be future-proof for a long time? Still, way overkill. 4K HDTVs are out, but when will those be mainstream? I'd say not for another decade. Even with a 4K screen, would one even notice the smallest details sitting at a normal distance? Heck, with the "Next-Gen" consoles, things will almost be indiscernible from that distance if compared to a PC on the same TV, same distance.

On another note, what else does the SteamOS do? I'm not fluent with Linux, so I wouldn't be able to add any features. A Steam Box is a no-go for me, right out of the box (har har). Even if I didn't have a powerful gaming rig, I'd rather have the compatibility of Windows and the readiness to do other tasks other than gaming.

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balindos

This is for gaming in the living room not to do your work but luckily you still have that option to do so if you would like. SteamOS, steam machines and controller is valve way accessing console customers and adding to their business. If you like your setup then nothing will change for you. Not everybody like to play at the desk with a mouse and keyboard. SteamOS is a gaming linux platform with extra features added. YOu can buy a box or build your own. Its up to you.

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lacky32

What I really want to know is what are the client side system requirements for streaming. Can I buy a little 150 dollar mini PC and stream my games in the living room? Cause if I can that's badass.

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CaptainFabulous

My guess is anything that can do hardware 1080p video/audio decoding should do just fine. All the work is done by the host PC, the client merely decodes the A/V stream and relays input device info.

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balindos

I think that is the idea for people who already have dope machines.

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p47riot

It's fun to speculate...I'll say: A 700-series Nvidia card (or equivalent AMD card) and dual-band N. Only because that's what the requirement is for the Shield, and Valve/Nvidia seem to be partnered up quite a bit lately.

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John Pombrio

I'll believe streaming games when I see it running.

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CaptainFabulous

*cough*OnLive*cough*

If they can do it remotely over the Internet I don't see how streaming from one side of your house to the other will be much of a problem.

You seem a bit more crotchety today than usual John. Did you forget to take your meds again?

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legionera

Tons of bandwidth problems, mate.

Get a cough syrup, you are getting sick.

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jason2393

My $200 Chromebook streams games pretty well, and it isn't designed for it at all!

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elven1assasin

I would not buy a steam box ether. I have my Bad ass PC rig. And living room game system is usually only used to play with friends here and there when im feeling it. Id much rather spend less on the ps4 or even XBONE for living room gameplay. For me its just to late having a nice pc allready. But who knows maybe there are a lot of people who have always wanted something with a bit more power and can still use a controller who will buy this.