Valve Teases Probability of 4K Steam Deck, Might Be Possible in a Few Years

Image: Steam

Valve’s Steam Deck is already a formidable gaming device thanks to its custom AMD APU and comprehensive library support, but that hasn’t stopped some enthusiasts from daydreaming about whether a future version of the handheld might be powerful enough to handle 4K gaming.

That seems like a tall order for a portable system, but interestingly enough, Valve engineers have shared some comments suggesting that a 4K Steam Deck may not be entirely out of the realm of possibility.

In an interview with Rock Paper Shotgun, Steam Deck designers Greg Coomer and Lawrence Yang were asked whether 4K-capable handhelds like the rumored Nintendo Switch Pro seemed realistic at this point in time. Coomer noted that 4K wasn’t really a design target for the Steam Deck, which Yang agreed with, but not without adding that a 4K handheld was technically possible.

“Technically, it probably is possible to create a device of this size that can output at 4K…,” Yang said, hinting at the potential performance of a Steam Deck successor with more powerful hardware.

Yang goes on to inject some skepticism by highlighting potential concerns such as cooling and battery life, but the Valve engineer seems keen on the idea, noting that the hardware that makes all of this possible might be available sooner than expected.

“You know, technology marches forward,” Yang said. “Maybe in a year or two we actually will have something that becomes more possible.”

That said, Valve is perfectly satisfied with the first-generation Steam Deck that its engineers were able to put together. According to Coomer, the Steam Deck’s specifications should be ideal for the 800p display that was selected for the device.

Coomer: I think we did find what we considered a sweet spot around this screen size and the readability you can achieve on it. I guess for a lot of the games we’re running on this device, it isn’t at the moment for all the things we want this device to do, so it seems like that’s probably something that would come down the road, but we weren’t really very concerned with that for this generation of the device. It was not… achieving 4K and having a display that runs at that resolution wasn’t really a design target for us.

Source: Rock Paper Shotgun

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