Valve’s SteamDeck might be the PC gaming handheld darling of the moment, but Chinese upstart Ayaneo is looking to muscle in with an even more powerful alternative – and one that runs Windows to boot. The Ayaneo2 looks set to be the first handheld with an AMD Ryzen 7 6800U, which has considerably tastier specs than the Half-Life creator’s portable.
With eight cores and 16 threads, this tiddly CPU can boost all the way to 4.7GHz, and comes with Radeon 680M integrated graphics. This is basically on par with a desktop-grade Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti, and more than twice as fast as the SteamDeck’s integrated GPU. It can boost to a higher clock speed, and has double the compute units, which means modern games should play well.
It’s still a work-in-progress, so Ayaneo hasn’t mentioned exact frame rates or detail settings yet, but has showed off a prototype handheld playing demanding titles like Cyberpunk 2077, Metro Exodus and Elden Ring. If it can hack those, it’ll probably demolish the majority of games. And as it’s running Windows, there won’t be any Linux-unfriendly anti-cheat software compatibility to worry about.
The company also teased the design of the hardware, which looks like a sleeker spin on the current Ayaneo Next. It’s more sculpted, with chunkier hand grips. The button layout is largely the same, with twin analogue sticks, a D-Pad, four face buttons, menu and options keys on the front. Expect the familiar trigger/shoulder button combo at the top, along with volume controls, twin USB-C ports and what looks like a new fingerprint module.
That frameless display looks rather premium, besting both the SteamDeck and the Nintendo Switch OLED, which both have visible bezels. Based on Ayaneo’s other handhelds, we’re expecting a 1280×800 resolution. There’s currently no official word on storage or battery life.
One area the SteamDeck holds a big advantage? Cost. Expect prices to be largely in line with the existing Ayaneo Next, which starts from $1415 – about double what you’d need to shell out for the most expensive SteamDeck.
The Ayaneo2 will be going on sale towards the end of 2022.