Valve launches Steam Deck OLED this month

Valve has announced Steam Deck OLED, a revamped version of its popular handheld PC which boasts – as you might guess – a shiny new OLED screen as its star feature.

Steam Deck OLED retains the existing size and main technical specs of the current Steam Deck (so all current Steam Deck verified games will run the same on OLED models), but includes an improved display that’s bigger and uses HDR.

The new OLED models go on sale next week, on 16th November at 6pm UK time priced at $549 for a 512GB model or $649 for a 1TB model. (There’s also a lower $399 price right now for the 256GB current LCD model, which is sticking around as an entry-price alternative.)

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Steam Deck OLED features a longer battery life, is lighter, has better cooling, more onboard storage, and a faster Wi-Fi module.

The new model is the first handheld with an OLED display, and will work out of the box with HDR-capable games already available on Steam. The screen now measures 7.4 inches (up from 7) with a 90Hz refresh rate (up from 60Hz) and a 1000 nit peak brightness (up from 400).

For fans of exact measurements, the OLED now averages out at a weight of 640 grams across its various models, down five percent from the 669 grams of its LCD model. Its dimensions are 298mm x 117mm x 50mm – an increase of 1mm in height due to reshaped thumbsticks.

Battery savings – which Valve estimates will see Steam Deck OLED last around 30 to 50 percent longer before needing a new charge versus the current model – come from a larger 50Whr battery (up from 40Whr), a newer more power efficent AMD APU and savings from the more power efficient OLED display.

The Steam Deck OLED switched on and playing brilliant indie game Cocoon.
It even plays the brilliant Cocoon! | Image credit: Valve

Despite the bigger battery, the OLED is lighter overall due to, again, savings from the OLED display which is thinner and lighter. Improved thermals so the device stays cooler, and a Wi-Fi 6E module round out the major additions.

If you’re plumping out for the 1TB model, you’ll get a new case design which has both inner and outer shells – with the former of those a much slimmer affair that makes the device more portable.

“All these things add up to what we consider the definitive version of the Steam Deck,” Coomer told Eurogamer. “Many of these are features we wish we could have shipped the first time around. Some of the other changes are more user driven… they all add up to something we think should be considered the definitive edition.”

While supplies last, the current 64GB and 512GB versions of the LCD Steam Deck have been cut in price today to $349 and $449, available in limited numbers as they are being discontinued.

Ahead of Steam Deck OLED’s reveal today, I spoke with Valve about its future plans, in a discussion that touched on Steam Deck 2.0, new games and the importance of being able to self-repair hardware.

And for more detailed technical analysis, head over to the Digital Foundry Steam Deck OLED review.