Valve Says Steam Machines Won’t Be Exclusive to Nvidia

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John Pombrio

A rebadged PC hobbled by running a closed Linux variant just to run games from one company to a HD TV. How is this even news?

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CaptainFabulous

If by "hobbled" you mean "highly optimized for gaming" and by "one company" you mean "multiple AAA publishers" then you'd be correct. And yes, it IS news.

Still off your meds John?

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lordfirefox

And right here you just prove how mis-informed you are. "closed Linux variant" It's not closed at all, in fact Valve invites everyone who can to modify SteamOS as they please. It's open sourced.

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PCLinuxguy

Agreed. Gotta love those FUD peddlers

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lordfirefox

I know they act like Valve is forcing an alternative down their throats, Valve hasn't said that we NEED to use SteamOS to play games on, as far as that's concerned the Windows client will still continue to work and still be developed. All Valve is doing is offering people who want it an alternative to Windows.

I hope I'm one of the 300 to receive a Steam Machine because I would love to do some compatability tests with a Radeon HD 6870 I've got here not being used. The prototypes would be perfect to test on.

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hastyscorpion

The innovation that Valve is making is not a technical (aside from maybe the controller) one but an economic one. The point of the "Steam Box" product is not too wow you with its ability to render polygons. It is to bring PC gaming to people who otherwise would find it too intimidating and confusing to get into, and would instead, go for a console for their gaming.

This is a great thing for the PC games industry. If people who would have otherwise gone with a console are instead getting a Steam Box that means that there is a much larger installed user base for PC games. This means fewer crappy ports, fewer games being held back from PC for several months (hello GTA V).

This is also a boon for Linux gaming. To start with, it is likely that the optimization will not be great. But as the user base grows there will be more incentive for companies to bring their games straight to Linux because they know that they can sell a substantial number. Nvidia and AMD will also pay more attention to creating Linux drivers for games if they know that a large number of people use them.

The core audience for these machines will obviously not be people who read this magazine (I am interested in the controller much more than the actual Steam Box). Valve even said so in their press release. But to ignore the good that this has the potential to do for the PC industry is short-sighted and frankly pretty stupid.

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jbitzer

you're so negative. Judging from all the morons crying no AMD love, yeah, they made this a topic of interest. If you can't see the benefit of a low power, lower cost machine tho play PC games on your TV instead of buying a $500 console to play ugly resolution gimped versions, then I kind of feel sorry for you for your lack of vision.

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lordfirefox

Last I checked the Titans in Steam Machines are anything but low-power.

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PCLinuxguy

Across the web over the past several days, it's seemed like alot of people are getting their breakfast pissed on or something..

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lordfirefox

I'm mainly pissed due to an overdose of caffeine and people who can't read and get the facts straight from the SteamOS site itself. The specs are up there. One of the Machines I recall has Titans in them another the 780 GTX. These are not "gimped" They have the same power as a regular desktop PC they are just "for the living room" as Valve says. Valve isn't trying to catch the console market or anything they're catering to people who want to PC Game in their living room "like consoles" without compromises.

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jbitzer

of course they are going to ship out high powered demo units for their beta machines genius.

But one of the features of the steam box is the streaming. You don't need a high power machine to stream.

Really, I wish some of you people with no vision and little comprehension would take your rage to PCworld.

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PCLinuxguy

Indeed. mostly I was referring to those that were trolling the comments just post negative "you suck" type comments :-)

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AFDozerman

...so mantle support in the source engine?

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AFDozerman

...so mantle support in the source engine?

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Obsidian

It's a good sign that Valve specifically mentioned Intel in this clarification. I was wondering what sort of system would be the minimum needed for streaming games, and if the Intel onboard graphics could keep up. Although this isn't specifically mentioned.

I'd bet many MPC'ers here have rigs that are still up to the task of 1080p gaming for most of the PC titles on the market. Using a Steam Box for streaming from that system might make sense for implementing gaming in the living room or home theater.

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5150Arcticwolf

I do not know why people keep covering the specs of the Steam Machine. Read the site, the Steam Machine is whatever YOU make it.

Don't want to buy the Steam Machine? No worries have fun installing the Steam OS or play as you traditionally do.

Want to build your own Steam Box? Awesome, Valve will be providing CAD drawings with all the specs you need to build your own from scratch.

Crap, you don't like the steam box at all but want to customize your own? No worries, the OS will support just about everything.

Can't build your own but don't want to spend too much money? No worries, the way this is looking big companies will be making thier own steam machine versions which equals to savings for us.

Valve is creating an open source console which limits are only what you make it. Sony and Microsoft protect thier products so it is tough to hack them. Valve wants you to hack thier system and make something personalized.

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John Pombrio

"Open OS"? I highly doubt it. Valve certainly does not have the software support chops to helps thousands of users configure and run a Linux platform. I have built several Linux PCs and it is not a straightforward process to get it to work. Sound drivers, video drivers, SATA port drivers, USB,SSDs, even headphones can stop the computer from running. Now add all the variants, NTFS drives, UEFI Bios, 3TB hard drives, partitions.
Give me MS Windows any day! I had my Haswell computer build booted into Windows8.1 in about 20 minutes and all my peripherals were working. Plus it plays ALL the games of Steam on my HTPC. Why on earth do I need another "Steam machine"? To save the cost of a Windows copy?

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lordfirefox

Yes chucklenut the SteamOS is open source, it's not closed. You seem to be highly mis-informed about SteamOS and keep banging on about it. Why don't you actually try reading and getting some factual information instead of pulling misinfo from your ass. Hell you and the rest of the Steam Machine\SteamOS haters need to do some heavy reading about it and actually learn something before you post your inane un-factual bullshit on any comment sections for SteamOS and Steam Machines.

Now kindly fuck off the edge of this planet.

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Architek9

my last install of linux(crunchbang) took 2 minutes flat and it came with .mp3 support and everything else working out of the box from that 2 minute install its not 1994 anymore buddy

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AFDozerman

I'm not sure what components you were using or the particular configuration, but if it takes someone more than twenty minutes to get an average Mint box running perfectly, they're doing something terribly wrong.

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PCLinuxguy

Agreed. Heck it took 10 minutes to install Linux Mint on baremetal system. This includes updates and importing the user's personal files onto their new install from my USB key (not using Mint's backup software mind you) on a lowly Athlon dual core HP box from 2007.

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Obsidian

This was very well said, Arcticwolf. So much confusion and resistance to this entirely open concept. People have been walled off so long in their deices and software experiences, it seems like there's hesitation for anything that breaks down those norms.

It would be good for, not only gaming, but computing for this Steam Box concept to be successful.

(Conspiracy Hat Time) Wonder how the NSA will try and tie into these devices? ;)

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PCLinuxguy

the Linux community would do quite a bit to keep that from happening (tin foil hat part)

And yes it does seem odd to be resistant to such an open platform. Though i suppose no different than someone that had never been outside their home before (Agoraphobic maybe). Though there is also the fear of change that could be in the mix here as well.. the fear and hate of something different..

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dgrmouse

PCLinuxguy said, "And yes it does seem odd to be resistant to such an open platform."

How many times have you seen games require administrative privileges to install? How many games install services and background tasks that have nothing to do with actually playing the game? How often have you seen users encourage each other to employ workarounds (disabling UAC, running as admin, downloading binary "fixes" from third-parties, etc) that could potentially have terrible security implications? Do you think an "open" operating system that maybe a few dozen people in the entire world actually have a thorough knowledge of is going to make it easier or more difficult for people to maintain best security practices?

If ever a choice has to be made between platform security (with regard to end-users' rights, not publishers') and "do whatever you need to, just make it work", which choice do you think Valve is going to go with? I appreciate that you want to advocate Linux, but c'mon - don't be naive.

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5150Arcticwolf

No matter what route you go there is always a threat of security. The end of 2011 with certain agencies hacking large corperations and the DoD proved that. Each user is responsible for thier security not the programs they use. So yes, steps should be taken for your own security, but no, you cannot damn a whole OS due to risks it may create due to user stupidity.

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PCLinuxguy

Agreed.

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PCLinuxguy

Wow. who pissed in your oatmeal today?
Have you actually used Linux (recently: as it's improved over the years and this way it's not so vague sounding).
I've Never needed to do anything special to install games in Windows in the decades of use since 3.1 all the way to the "hated" Windows 8. I also use all three OS types: WIndows, OSX, and Linux (Running Debian 7 testing/Ubuntu 12.04 LTS currently) and all of them "just work". Also don't cite platform security, as Unix and Linux are far more secure than Windows in many respects for the platform in general, however the Real security comes down to the end user and that's where the problems begin and end with security.

Not to mention most of your "gripes" in the main paragraph seem to relate more to windows based on items (disabling UAC etc etc) yet you're still slamming Linux? Yes I am a Linux advocate but I'm not some moronic fanboy/zealot of a(ny) platform that sees the world with blinders and rose colored glasses either.

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dgrmouse

You said that you couldn't understand the apprehension about moving to an "open" OS, and I tried to explain in simple terms the reasons that opening an OS to one or more third parties is concerning. Your hostility and failure to interpret my clear language indicates that maybe you are indeed "some moronic fanboy/zealot."

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PCLinuxguy

No. you merely gave FUD rhetoric that's been around for decades about why people cling to (insert OS here) despite it's faults rather than an informed notion. I also acknowledged in my original post that people fear change, and that there are no boundaries to that. so in essence I may have answered myself within the statement.
I was not intending to be hostile if that is how it was perceived. Infact I interpreted hostility in your comment which may have caused a perceived one in mine.
Adding name calling does not help your cause.
And No I am not a fanboy/xealot as you fail to understand. If I were my initial comment would have been verbatim this: "(insert OS here) rulz and you're a (insert generic trolling insult here) if you don't use it and praise it because (insert OS here) sucks."

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5150Arcticwolf

HAhaha, very well said.

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PCLinuxguy

Thanks

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Bdiddytampa

It's amazing how many people just don't seem to get it lol.

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PCLinuxguy

I am excited as this 'should' mean that AMD and Nvidia will step up their Linux driver support. AMD's drivers have always been (for me) problematic on Linux, while Nvidia's seemed to "Just Work" with very good results. On Windows however, both sets of cards work amazingly which is why my gaming rigs have always been Windows based with Linux running everything else.

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logicmaster2003

I know from the bottom of my heart I won't be needing this; my 2009 built (i5-2500k, 8GB ram, gtx570, 52" LCD) still rocks because I run all my games @1366x768.

BUT for those who are interested in Steam gamer box, we should all hope it is backward compatible.. meaning will it run old window-based games that we already have ( soldier of fortune2, trackmania series, etc etc ). Cuz I've got over 40 games that are not on steam.

AND.. will steam OS support directx 11+ (or whatever the maximum is). And will graphic-intense games such as farcry3 look as pretty on linux as on Windows ?

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jbitzer

They should look just as good, my opinion is that the games aren't all going to be ported to linux, a lot of them will use the game streaming option. That's where I wan to see what kind of quality is available.

Theoretically, you should't need an overly powerful system to just handle a video stream, but latency is always going to be an issue at some point unless you're using a wired network at home.

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Scatter

What gamer in their right mind would want an Intel graphic adapter?

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jbitzer

If you're streaming,it shouldn't be an issue. Remember when all the magazines were jumping on the "intel new integrated graphics will be awesome!!!" band wagon?

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logicmaster2003

those who plays mario brothers (LOL) and thats way overkill

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Dexter243

it has been a long time sense i have been excited about new computer stuff
and i am super excited about steam OS and the ability it will give me to game on something other then a MS system
as soon as it is released i am building a Steam OS box and it will sit next to my PS4
were there used to be a Xbox and ant no more

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Bdiddytampa

I don't understand how anyone thought this could be Nvidia only... it's a PC... that you can build yourself... nothing restricts you from building an AMD PC today, what would restrict you from building an AMD "Steam Machine" :-/ There is nothing proprietary about this, it is completely open and has been advertised as such since it was announced.

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borkbork

Fanboys like to get excited.

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joeyjr

Yes, this is good news, it just goes to show how commited Steam is committed to give their users what they want. Maybe their will even be an option to check to see if your video card has updated drivers for Nvidia now like they do with AMD's on Steam when it is all said and done.

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sirnotapearing

they have to support all three, they are making their own operating system so you can build your own. it would make no scenes to leave one out. just hope that since it's Linux the manufacturers improve driver support.

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Mikey109105

MPC, you just made my day with this article, lol. The possibility of my buying one was a resounding no when I heard it was nVidia only. now that I know it won't be, I actually just might buy it!

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PlayItOnPC

Why the Nvidia hate? They make some great cards... not trying to spark a GPU war here, just saying that it's always good to keep an open mind and shop intelligently instead of just being a mindless fanboy

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borkbork

Never really understood the "AMD is cheaper than Nvidia" argument, whether it's used to bash AMD for making "cheap" cards or Nvidia for being unnecessarily expensive. Both companies have their cards priced pretty competitively from what I've seen. The only exceptions I can think of right now are when you enter the obscenely expensive 690/Titan range.. but not many people drop that kind of cash on video cards.

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Mikey109105

I do have an open mind. In fact, I used to have an nVidia card and I loved it. If they weren't so expensive, I'd still have an nVidia card. I would actually prefer nVidia, but my budget over the years, since I never made anything better than federal minimum wage, everything went to my bills first and left me with next to nothing, I'm lucky I even have a an OK gaming rig, it took me 2 years to get the parts for it, LOL!

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JosephColt

I agree, both companies make great cards, always keep an open mind between the two.

I usually go with the cards that have always had the better drivers which is usally Nvidia.

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SilverSurferNHS

cue retarded fanboy arguments

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Pixuhl

I hope the "retarded fanboys" dont find this thread. Concerning the gents' above, this is how a civilized debate should go. +1 to you guys.