• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

Steam Deck - "battery life is between 2-5 hours depending on APU load."

Kupfer

Member
According to BoilingSteam , who had a brief Q&A with an anonymous developer for the deck, battery life will be between 2 and 5 hours, depending on the game you play. Also, the loading time from an SD card would not differ from that of the internal (256gb) SSD.

Have you tried any demanding games?​

Yes – battery life is between 2-5 hours depending on APU load.

How fast are load times from the microSD card?​

Indistinguishable from loading off the SSD; I’ve not timed anything.

The full Q&A on BoilingSteam

Personally, I was expecting something like this. and I think the statements read realistically.

The deck has 4 times the performance of a Switch, a 2.5 times larger battery and has to conjure up 10% more pixels on the screen, so I think the specifications are okay.
 

reksveks

Member

How are devs reacting to it? Planning to test their games with Proton from now on?​

Of the devs I’ve spoken to who have a dev kit (around 30), half are seriously considering making a GNU+Linux native version. The rest either have a native version or their games already work well under Proton.

Are they typically people who know Linux? (the ones who will make a native version especially.)​

They have experience or have used tools that make porting to native easier. It’s mainly publishers who are less supportive of native versions. Steam Deck, and ultimately SteamOS, cannot be wholly reliant on proprietary middleware that’s reliant on Windows APIs. Valve needs to push not only for native ports, but also GNU+Linux exclusives.

If the install base grows sufficiently then native versions will come… but even on the Switch… are those console and PC ports really “native” or just run through a Switch translation layer?​

It’s pretty much 50/50. My biggest concern with Valve is they’re shipping a half-assed attempt at replacing GNU+Linux native ports & telling everyone it works perfectly. They’re selling it as a “one size fits all” solution and it isn’t. But, Steam Deck could be the very best device on which to play games, not just PC games.

GNU+Linux exclusives? Not going to happen. Valve has said many times they don’t like the concept.​

They’ve said they don’t want Deck exclusives, they’re fine with GNU+Linux only games.

Personally, good luck with that imo.
 

ethomaz

Banned
'Developer for the Steam Deck'. It's literally just a PC.

And how lazy a dev do you have to be to not do some simply timings of load times?
Being PC is just half of the story.

It is a PC with a different OS where most of PC developers don't port their games.
Plus if you want good performance and IQ results you will need to specifically optimize for the Steam Deck hardware... after all even being a PC it is a fixed hardware config that can have better optimization than an actual PC with dynamic hardware.
 
Last edited:

Fbh

Member
If 2 hours is playing the most demanding games at full brightness I guess this isn't too bad. Though between the massive size and low battery life the portability won't be great.
 

FStubbs

Member
According to BoilingSteam , who had a brief Q&A with an anonymous developer for the deck, battery life will be between 2 and 5 hours, depending on the game you play. Also, the loading time from an SD card would not differ from that of the internal (256gb) SSD.



The full Q&A on BoilingSteam

Personally, I was expecting something like this. and I think the statements read realistically.

The deck has 4 times the performance of a Switch, a 2.5 times larger battery and has to conjure up 10% more pixels on the screen, so I think the specifications are okay.
Isn't it a lot more than 4x as powerful?
 

STARSBarry

Gold Member
So essentially it's like the launch Switch before the more battery efficient processor model got silently released.

Honestly I dont think I know of a product like this that wouldent require you to sit near an outlet to effectively use outside of a couple of hours.
 

Kupfer

Member
Isn't it a lot more than 4x as powerful?
Switch - 0.4TFlops - 16WH battery - 1280x720
Deck - 1.6TFlops - 40WH battery - 1280x800

What many don't seem to realize, however, is the fact that the deck allows for much more individuality and thus the results can be different for each player. A Switch game is optimized and fixed with the settings. With the Deck, the user can adjust the settings as he or she likes, which of course also changes the power consumption.

Which means 1.5- 4 hours…. Yikes. Ill need battery packs
First of all, they are only rumors and secondly, they come from an alleged developer and are not an advertising promise. I wouldn't put too much emphasis on it for now and wait and see.

In this interview, Pierre-Loup Griffais from Valve states out, that it can vary between 2-8 hours, which matches the interviewed devs' statement.

IGN: Battery life? That's a big one in any handheld device. What are we looking at there?

Pierre-Loup Griffais: Well, there's a wide variety of experiences there. It's about 2-8 hours, depending on what you're doing. You can play Portal 2 for four hours on this thing. If you limit it to 30 FPS, you're going to be playing for 5-6 hours.

8 hours will be most likely only be possible when you are streaming the games according to this statement

Valve's Greg Coomer tells us that you can "play for something like 8 hours of Death Stranding, or a high-performance game, on this unit if you're streaming it rather than playing it locally."
 

FireFly

Member
Being PC is just half of the story.

It is a PC with a different OS where most of PC developers don't port their games.
Plus if you want good performance and IQ results you will need to specifically optimize for the Steam Deck hardware... after all even being a PC it is a fixed hardware config that can have better optimization than an actual PC with dynamic hardware.
Nothing is stopping you installing Windows on it.
 

Kupfer

Member
Right, but the Deck has a more modern architecture, modern shaders, etc to increase that gap - IIRC that made it much more than 4x the Switch.
Yes, whether TF is the right thing to determine performance in this case, I don't know either. After all, it is a measurable unit that at least allows conclusions to be drawn.

And your statement only underlines the performance advantage of the deck in a positive way.
 
So you guys are saying a device with a 15W SoC and a 40W.h battery will have a minimum battery life of 40/15 = 2.67 hours?

Wow I'm shocked I tell you. Shocked.


Isn't it a lot more than 4x as powerful?
Yes. Peak GPU numbers are 0.246 TFLOPs for the Switch and 1.6 TFLOPs for the Deck.
It's over 6.5x more powerful without even considering the fact that performance-per-FLOP is a lot higher on the Steam Deck's RDNA2 versus the Switch's Maxwell.
 

Elysion

Member
Switch - 0.4TFlops - 16WH battery - 1280x720
Deck - 1.6TFlops - 40WH battery - 1280x800

Isn’t the Switch only around 0.2 TF in handheld mode? 0.4–0.5 TF is for docked only, I believe. Though that makes me wonder, does the Deck have a ‘docked’ mode too? Or is it always operating at full power?

Anyway, battery life for handhelds has been atrocious ever since the launch of the original 3DS. The PSP early in its life was pretty bad too, but that could be excused back then by its incredible power for a mobile device, which was simply unparalleled. The same couldn’t be said for the 3DS, which wasn’t exactly a powerhouse even when it launched, nor was the Switch tbh.

A dedicated handheld gaming device should have at least 10 hours of battery life, especially considering handhelds seem to be getting bigger and bigger each generation, otherwise what’s the point? Seriously, the Switch is absolutely monstrous compared to something like the GBA (even the Switch Lite is huge, nevermind the Deck lol), so you’d think there’s enough space in these devices for big juicy batteries, but apparently not.
 
Last edited:

ethomaz

Banned
Isn’t the Switch only around 0.2 TF in handheld mode? 0.4–0.5 TF is for docked only, I believe. Though that makes me wonder, does the Deck have a ‘docked’ mode too? Or is it always operating at full power?
Yeap I'm pretty sure Deck has some power usage profiles modes as portable.
It probably can only reach these 1.6TFs docked.
 
Last edited:

ReBurn

Gold Member
Yeap I'm pretty sure Deck has some power usage profiles modes as portable.
It probably can only reach these 1.6TFs docked.
They said in an interview last year that there won't be different power profiles for docked vs undocked.


When asked whether Valve considered a higher power mode when docked, Steam Deck designer, Greg Coomer, told PC Gamer's own Wes Fenlon:

"Yes, but we didn't choose to make it a really high priority design target... we felt that it was actually better all things considered to not modify based on docked status or mobile status."
 

ethomaz

Banned
They said in an interview last year that there won't be different power profiles for docked vs undocked.

Weird... it is a feature already at hardware level (CPUs have power state modes) and that all PC OSs do it automatically.
Unless you really force it both Windows or Linux will run at different power profile (lower frequencies) without being plugged to energy.
 
Last edited:

Kupfer

Member
Though that makes me wonder, does the Deck have a ‘docked’ mode too?

Yeap I'm pretty sure Deck has some power usage profiles modes as portable.
It probably can only reach these 1.6TFs docked.
No
Does docking the Deck improve perfperformance?
No, docking is more akin to plugging a USB-C hub into a PC. Steam Deck runs at full performance in portable mode.

The PSP early in its life was pretty bad too, but that could be excused back then by its incredible power for a mobile device, which was simply unparalleled. The same couldn’t be said for the 3DS, which wasn’t exactly a powerhouse even when it launched, nor was the Switch tbh.
I find the deck to be on par, if not better, performance-wise with the PSP at the time, considering the technology at release.
 

Flutta

My tears. Exclusive to gamepass. Forever.
Say what now? So basically 1-2h after one year of use? If that Lmao 🤣

Gabe being cheap with those batts
john huston dude GIF by Warner Archive
 
Last edited:
Though that makes me wonder, does the Deck have a ‘docked’ mode too? Or is it always operating at full power?

Valve already said the "full power" is always available, but enabling VSync or some other framerate limiter will probably lower the CPU+GPU consumption if said framerate is being hit at lower clock values.
 
Playing that at that level, everyone knows it?

If you want longer battery life then obviously you wouldnt.
Nah i was quoted 8-9 hours last time I mentioned the steam deck battery life. Everyone who has a gaming laptop knows even at 720p, the amount of on the go gaming time you get is pitiful.
 

BigBooper

Gold Member
I expect something like this will exist for the deck. I don't mind the battery life, because I expected it. I hope the batteries are excellent quality though. GPD has put out multiple systems now with varying levels of battery malfunction. I trust Valve to put more thought into it than that, but it still makes me a little uneasy.


 

Dr.Morris79

Member
Nah i was quoted 8-9 hours last time I mentioned the steam deck battery life. Everyone who has a gaming laptop knows even at 720p, the amount of on the go gaming time you get is pitiful.
Lets just be glad it's going to exist at all. A future with just the Switch as a main handheld with todays current Nintendo at the helm would have been a bleak landscape :messenger_tears_of_joy:
 

Kupfer

Member
Say what now? So basically 1-2h after one year of use? If that Lmao 🤣

Gabe being cheap with those batts
Oh wat, batteries wear out after hundreds of loading cycles? Then why don't they just take the batteries from the cell phones and notebooks, powerbanks and other handhelds that last forever for the deck? Oh yes, every battery-powered device simply has to deal with this problem.
I expect something like this will exist for the deck. I don't mind the battery life, because I expected it. I hope the batteries are excellent quality though. GPD has put out multiple systems now with varying levels of battery malfunction. I trust Valve to put more thought into it than that, but it still makes me a little uneasy.
At least it looks like you can easily replace the battery if it goes bad.

I've done this with mobile phones, controllers, other handhelds. It's not a big deal and it's the least of my worries. If you have to replace the battery every 3 or 4 years for 15€, I can live with it.
 
Last edited:
Top Bottom