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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

October 4, 2013 at 1:21 PM

Valve releases Steam Machine specs

Valve finally provided concrete details of the Steam Machine entertainment systems that it’s developing.

The specifications for the first Steam Machines come a week after the Bellevue game giant announced that it’s working with PC makers to develop set-top-box-like living room PCs based on a new Steam operating system and compatible with an advanced game controller that Valve will produce.

Multiple configurations will be available when the systems go on sale next year. To start, though, Valve is building 300 prototype machines in what sounds like a Mini ITX PC case, small enough to be mounted on the back of a TV set like this M350 from Mini-box.com:

M350-Universal-Mini-ITX-enclosure-b6

Valve said its prototypes will have the following specs:

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 DDR5 (GPU)
Storage: 1TB/8GB Hybrid SSHD
Power Supply: Internal 450w 80Plus Gold
Dimensions: approx. 12 x 12.4 x 2.9 in high

Valve said these boxes might not appeal to all of the people using its Steam gaming service.

 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.

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