It was only a matter of time until this happened.
YouTuber ETA Prime has plugged an AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT, one of the highest-end graphics cards on the market, into Valve’s Steam Deck handheld — and it works and plays games at 4K with max settings.
According to ETA Prime’s video, though some games run great on the Frankenstein-like setup, the Steam Deck’s slow CPU and PCI-Express bandwidth restrictions result in a bottleneck. The unwieldy setup is possible because the Steam Decks’ M.2 PCI-Express x4 socket works with eGPUs, according to ETA Prime.
Of course, this isn’t something the average Steam Deck owner should attempt because it defeats the purpose of the handheld in the first place. Not only is there a massive desktop-level graphics card attached to Valve’s handheld, but the RX 6900 XT also requires a bulky external power source. There’s also a chance that you mess up the Steam Deck’s internals, rendering the device useless.
That said, it’s cool someone was able to make this happen, and perhaps in the future, we’ll see an official version of the Steam Deck that works with an eGPU.
For more on the Steam Deck, check out my in-depth look at the handheld.
Image credit: ETA Prime (YouTube)
Source: ETA Prime (YouTube)