The Steam Machines are coming (no, not that kind) and they're going to be living room monstrosities. As expected, Valve's prototype Steam Machines — which will be free for 300 lucky Steam members — will be powerful (not that we had any doubts).
Just what kind of power can you expect from the Steam Machines? According to an official posting on Steam Community, all of the machines will vary, with some being better than others. The point of the beta, is obviously, to get better insight on what works and what doesn't, and hopefully find some common middle ground for Valve's various Steam Machine hardware partners.
Steam Machines will come with either Intel i7-4770, i5-4570 or i3 processors. Some lucky folk will get a $1,000 NVIDIA Titan (jackpot!) GPU, while the rest will get NVIDIA GTX780, GTX760 and GTX660 graphics cards. RAM will be split between two camps: 16GB of DDR3-1600 RAM for the CPU and 3GB of GDDR5 RAM for the GPU. All Steam Machines will come standard with a 1TB/8GB Hybrid SSD; enough to store all of those Steam games from the yearly Steam sale.
Prototype boxes will also measure around 12 x 12 x 2.9-inches high, which is only about a little larger than the PlayStation 3 slim (second-generation).
As mentioned during the the unveil, all Steam Machines will be upgradeable and Valve will even provide CAD files for you to build your own enclosure.
So, who exactly is the Steam Machine perfect for and will it replace your gaming tower PC? According to Valve, the prototypes are "not meant to serve the needs of all of the tens of millions of Steam users," but should serve as a good jumping point for users who "want plenty of performance in a high-end living room package."
For those who haven't signed up to win a Steam Machine, you can learn more about how to do so here. And if you missed it, here's the Steam Machine's crazy controller that ditches the dual-analogs for dual trackpads.
Via Steam Community