$999 Xi3 Piston 'Steam Box' arriving November 29

By on October 1, 2013, 7:00 AM
steam, gaming, pc gaming, steam box, xi3, piston, xi3 piston

Xi3's long-awaited Piston 'Steam Box' is finally arriving on November 29 (Black Friday), Xi3 announced today. The small, but modular gaming PC will ship with a range of pre-loaded games, although Xi3 is refraining from referring to the machine as an official Steam Machine.

The Piston measures just four inches square, and comes with a 3.2 GHz quad-core AMD 'Trinity' APU, 8 GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 128 GB solid state drive with room for a second. Connectivity ranges from a microSD card slot, three display connectors (HDMI, miniDP and DisplayPort) and an Ethernet connector, to 12 USB ports and digital audio ports.

As far as the GPU goes, Xi3 has revealed that it will feature 384 cores, which indicates that rather than including a separate graphics card inside the box, the Piston will rely on GPU integrated into the Trinity die. Although the IGP performance from the Trinity APU is reasonably good, a $150 GPU - which is unlikely to squeeze into one of the two modular card slots - will provide a significantly better experience.

On November 29 you'll be able to purchase a Piston starting at $999, with pre-orders shipping out on November 15. The concept of a small gaming PC seems interesting, but for those wanting more performance for a lower price, it might be wise to look into our entry-level gaming rig from the TechSpot PC Buying Guide.




User Comments: 15

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ikesmasher said:

Depends how many "pre-loaded games" ship with it, and what quality games they are.

Guest said:

Is this thing going to have to use custom PCI cards because of it's size? What graphics card will fit in that thing? If the graphics card is not upgradable what's the point of having this? There's no reason to pay a premium over the cost of a console when you can't enjoy the PC's most coveted advantage, the ability to have better graphics...

This device will fail. It's not even a very good alternative to an Xbox or Playstation.

2 people like this | Puiu Puiu said:

Too expensive to be useful and has low performance.

9Nails, TechSpot Paladin, said:

That's got more ports than a harbor! Is it a gamer's box for the cloud or a multi-media center hub?

TheBigFatClown said:

Are they kidding me....$999 to play video games? I thought Valve was smarter than this. The price alone will almost guarantee failure in the marketplace.

Puiu Puiu said:

Are they kidding me....$999 to play video games? I thought Valve was smarter than this. The price alone will almost guarantee failure in the marketplace.

I'm pretty sure that this "thing" has nothing to do with Valve. Valve's beta steam machines will launch latter and will become a reference for the rest. It's just Xi3 getting ahead of themselves and calling this a steam box just because they plan to use SteamOS.

"although Xi3 is refraining from referring to the machine as an official Steam Machine"

1 person liked this | Wagan8r Wagan8r said:

Waaaaaaaay overpriced; as-in, not even remotely close to being a tempting purchase. You're basically paying $700 for the form factor.

If this was $300, then it would be a good buy, but for $999, you could build a PC that is at least 5x more powerful.

Mavrickx888 Mavrickx888 said:

This is just Xi3's shot at the early adopter market. It's completely unsurprising that it's expensive. Look for Steam to be a lot more competitive in the pricing department when they release more information on the official Steam Machine.

Guest said:

I'm ok with the specs, but the price is ridiculous.

IAMTHESTIG said:

Well... at least it looks cool. I love all those ports too. Now if only they could get the price down to a reasonable level.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

As far as I'm (and a lot of people) are concerned, this is just another overpriced pile of crap. $999 indeed.

Guest said:

Built a Trinity APU system with 8gb RAM and 120gb SSD last year, and it cost me no more than $400. Also spent some $90 on various steam games that were on sale.

The $999 price is a joke. The hell is Valve thinking!?

Mavrickx888 Mavrickx888 said:

Built a Trinity APU system with 8gb RAM and 120gb SSD last year, and it cost me no more than $400. Also spent some $90 on various steam games that were on sale.

The $999 price is a joke. The hell is Valve thinking!?

Please, do not be confused. Xi3's "Steam Box" has next to nothing to do with an official Valve product. The only thing the two will have in common is the SteamOS.

Xi3 is refraining from referring to the machine as an official Steam Machine.

Fbarnett Fbarnett said:

@ $99.99 this thing takes off . If you need $999.00 for it then stop wasting time and money making this thing now

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