Last week, Valve revealed specifications for prototype Steam Machines that will be sent to 300 lucky beta testers, with all systems featuring Nvidia graphics cards. Despite Nvidia dominating prototype Steam Machines, Valve confirmed to Maximum PC that when the SteamOS-powered systems hit the shelves, they will feature hardware from AMD and Intel as well.
Doug Lombardi, spokesperson for Valve, said that in 2014 we'll see Steam Machines "commercially available with graphics hardware made by AMD, Nvidia, and Intel." He also mentioned that the company has "worked closely together with all three of these companies on optimizing their hardware for SteamOS, and will continue to do so into the foreseeable future."
The inclusion of Intel graphics in the mix indicates some Steam Machines should be available at prices comparable to next-generation consoles. The lowest-end protoype machines with dedicated Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 graphics cards feature a total parts bill of at least $800, but by removing the GPU, the cost could be reduced to $600 or less.
Valve has yet to reveal the design of the Machines, which are set to include a case similar in size to (although slightly longer than) an original Xbox 360. While consumer Steam Machines will be available in 2014, alongside the interesting Steam Controller, Valve will hopefully ship off the prototype Machines to the 300 beta testers sometime soon.