Edited 1 year, 7 months ago

Poll: The Xi3 Piston (SteamBox). Flub or no flub? (56 votes)

Flub 68%
No flub 4%
Shut up, jackass 29%

So the unit is going to be 1000 dollars on launch. The unit is expected to have an APU architecture with 4 cores (2.3 GHz and up to 3.2 GHz on turbo), 8GB of RAM, and a very questionable HD 7660. Now if you go to this link you can see the performance of that GPU in games, which is what the entire purpose of this thing is going to be. It, to be frank, looks like shit.

Why would somebody buy this thing when they can build a HTPC or probably even buy a Playstation 4 for less money? Resident Evil 5, a game that came out in 2009, is only playable on High instead of Ultra. DIRT 2, which also came out in 2009, is only playable on medium if you want over 30 FPS. And it just gets worse and worse. Hitman Absolution, unplayable. Far Cry 3, unplayable on anything except for low. For 1000 dollars.

Also I expect the joke option to win. If it doesn't I'll be saddened. Because it really isn't a joke option.

#1 Posted by Pr1mus (3951 posts) -

Are these specs for real? Any source on that? Because that's hot garbage at that price! That's basically my laptop and i paid 550$ for it last year.

#2 Posted by SathingtonWaltz (2053 posts) -

It's like they only cared about the form factor of the thing and nothing else at all. Who in their right mind thought that this thing would appeal to anyone?

#3 Posted by MedalOfMode (294 posts) -

There is no i7m + GTX 780M i won't be buy it.

#4 Edited by AndrewB (7669 posts) -

I feel like this must be why Valve is distancing itself from the hardware. It's exactly as overpriced as any boutique computer you'd buy these days, especially if you want reasonable upgrades. I'll be fine if the barrier of entry for playing PC games remains "has put in the effort to read a guide on buying the individual pieces" if it means avoiding useless stuff like the Piston which just makes PC gaming look like a needlessly expensive and less ideal alternative to console gaming.

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#5 Posted by Azteck (7449 posts) -

If those sources are correct then there is no way it can sell well with that price.

#6 Edited by Branthog (5583 posts) -

The price is awfully iffy. I have no problem spending several grand on a rig, but it needs to really earn it. I just don't see a PC being doable for me in a home theater environment to game on, frankly. I wouldn't be interested in a PC connected to my television for games unless it had significant power (SLI'd 670s or 680s, at a minimum) and that would require a large rig and a beefy stable power supply -- and that means a lot of noise. I don't want a lot of noise in my home theater, unless it's coming out of the audio system.

#7 Edited by AiurFlux (902 posts) -

Quick update.

I found that story on Eurogamer for a source and additional reading. Furthermore it seems we've been bamboozled. This thing is not the Steam Box despite the fact that neither Valve nor the manufacturer ever explicitly denied that it wasn't the Steam Box. Valve is still working on their Steam Box, and knowing Valve it will probably come out sometime around 2029, when Kyle Reese gets sent back in time to protect John Connor.

@pr1mus said:

Are these specs for real? Any source on that? Because that's hot garbage at that price! That's basically my laptop and i paid 550$ for it last year.

Clicky.

There's a graph there that outlines the Trinity APUs. The 7660 is the most powerful GPU that you can get for that die, so that's what I was basing it on. It's either that or something worse.

@branthog said:

The price is awfully iffy. I have no problem spending several grand on a rig, but it needs to really earn it. I just don't see a PC being doable for me in a home theater environment to game on, frankly. I wouldn't be interested in a PC connected to my television for games unless it had significant power (SLI'd 670s or 680s, at a minimum) and that would require a large rig and a beefy stable power supply -- and that means a lot of noise. I don't want a lot of noise in my home theater, unless it's coming out of the audio system.

They do have their uses though. It's nice to sit back and play a better looking version of a game on a 60 inch television instead of sitting 2 feet away from a 24 inch monitor, plus the added bonus of having a proper browser to search the internets. I wouldn't really build anything with a micro ATX board and without a proper PSU (750-800W and a proper brand name), but if you build a full tower and just throw it beside the entertainment system you hardly realize it's there, especially if you get a case that kind of blends into the wall. I'm using a Fractal Design Define R4 (Arctic White) so it's not really that noticeable and barely audible, or you could use a Silverstone PS07 or probably even a Corsair 500R. Then just put a potted plant in front and you hardly realize it. :)

#8 Edited by Canteu (2821 posts) -

$1000 on a powerful gaming rig is one thing.

$1000 on a mid tier laptop, that can only play steam games, is another thing.

It's like how you double the price of components going from PC to laptop, except from laptop to useless box.

#9 Edited by Cold_Wolven (2259 posts) -

I feel like the attraction this piston box has is its size and look but anybody serious about PC gaming should obtain the knowledge to build one themselves. Also what is flub?

#10 Posted by AiurFlux (902 posts) -

I feel like the attraction this piston box has is its size and look but anybody serious about PC gaming should obtain the knowledge to build one themselves. Also what is flub?

Fuck up, pretty much. I just felt like being a little more verbose. And cunty. Mostly cunty though.

#11 Posted by Andorski (5343 posts) -

Valve never claimed that this was the Steambox. The Xi3 corporation were just using the announcement of Valve's Steambox as a way to promote their product. Valve has stated before that they are working with other companies to set a guideline on what the range of living room PCs would be, but that they themselves would make their own box.

#12 Posted by AiurFlux (902 posts) -

@andorski said:

Valve never claimed that this was the Steambox. The Xi3 corporation were just using the announcement of Valve's Steambox as a way to promote their product. Valve has stated before that they are working with other companies to set a guideline on what the range of living room PCs would be, but that they themselves would make their own box.

Yeah, but Valve never explicitly denied it either. When the media was calling it the Steam Box they didn't come out and say, "Whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa. This thing is NOT the Steam Box. We invested money in it to leave our options open, but moved on." Especially after CES when both companies had it in their booths and Xi3 was piggybacking off of the Valve name without implicitly stating that it was the Steam Box while at the same time not denying that it wasn't. So either it was lost in translation, Valve distanced themselves intentionally by staying silent about the thing, or Xi3 lied. Or all of them.

I like to think the worst in people, so it's probably all of them.

#13 Posted by Jams (2962 posts) -

@aiurflux said:

@andorski said:

Valve never claimed that this was the Steambox. The Xi3 corporation were just using the announcement of Valve's Steambox as a way to promote their product. Valve has stated before that they are working with other companies to set a guideline on what the range of living room PCs would be, but that they themselves would make their own box.

Yeah, but Valve never explicitly denied it either. When the media was calling it the Steam Box they didn't come out and say, "Whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa. This thing is NOT the Steam Box. We invested money in it to leave our options open, but moved on." Especially after CES when both companies had it in their booths and Xi3 was piggybacking off of the Valve name without implicitly stating that it was the Steam Box while at the same time not denying that it wasn't. So either it was lost in translation, Valve distanced themselves intentionally by staying silent about the thing, or Xi3 lied. Or all of them.

I like to think the worst in people, so it's probably all of them.

That's because it's technically a box that can run big picture. So they couldn't really deny that. I knew that as soon as that CES showing where they said, "those are your words not ours". Meaning we really wish people would think this is Valve's to get us more attention but we can't really say that so we'll imply it instead.

Honestly I knew Xi3 was going to go tits up soon after the Piston because small form factor isn't worth that much of a markup. I don't care if it's the size of a fucking pill, if it's $1000 then it needs to hold a needle to other $1000 gaming computers. Why would I spend that much money on something just to save a couple feet of space? We don't live in space capsules or anything where space is THAT precious that you can't spare a little section of a room to a PC.

#14 Posted by usgrovers (166 posts) -

The only appeal to this would be that it's Windows based, implying that your entire Steam library would be compatible. But no, looks like a very niche product, no mass market appeal.

#15 Edited by Zekhariah (697 posts) -

I think the neat thing about the iX3 is purely in the industrial design (e.g. how it looks and comes together), and how neat the custom mini-backplane they have is for modern systems. But unless there is a larger ecosystem that develops for that layout the price/performance is going to be terrible (and at risk of having no upgrade path if iX3 goes under). So it seems like a really bad device to actually purchase for games, especially when it would be unable to play new ones at low resolutions pretty soon (next gen, etc).

There are diminishing returns on shrinking the power usage and size of things that are easily fit with a lot of much larger audio/video equipment..... I would be interested in a piston at maybe $250 (would have to be less than what I paid for a wii U, since I see it as useless for gaming even), but it would only be really cool for dumb home automation type projects (with a little streaming video).

#16 Posted by Korwin (2890 posts) -

I love the design and the work that's gone into shrinking down a PC into that little box, but the miserable performance of that machine makes the price tag completely absurd.