Have trouble justifying Steam Deck’s price tag of $ 400 after losing $ 300 on Nintendo Switch$ 219 on Analog pocketand $ 179 on Play deal? There are many excellent handheld gaming systems on the market today, but the new ones GPD Win Max 2 hope it can justify the price tag of $ 899 with a generous 10-inch screen and a keyboard so users can tell themselves that it is a device they also want to use as a productivity tool.
GPD has been running these netbook / handheld gaming machines for a few years now, and Win Max 2, which was first announced in March, is the newest and best. It’s more or less similar to a super large Nintendo DS, or even the collapsible GBA SP, with physical game controls located just below the screen that includes a pair of analog levers, a directional pad, four action buttons, as well as two sets of shoulder buttons and even an extra pair of user-programmable buttons on the back.
Placed between the game controls is a touchpad, and underneath it is a complete QWERTY keyboard with a dedicated row of function keys and even a Windows button, but with a very compressed layout that may require some practice if you were hoping to tap into it. The small keyboard works just fine for web browsing and maybe firing the occasional email, but printing a complete dissertation on it can be a hand-squeezing effort.
Despite potential keyboard issues, GPD really wants to place Win Max 2 as a productivity tool and even includes a pair of magnetic covers for the game controls that can be hidden inside the device when not in use. But if you do not want your boss to think that you are relaxing, or if you do not trust that you will not be distracted by the game, the joysticks and other buttons can be hidden away.
Where the GPD Win Max 2 differs from the competition – especially Nintendo – is with a 10-inch touch screen with a resolution of 2560×1600. It’s also a solid step up over Steam Deck’s seven-inch 1280×800 screen. Can it really play games with that resolution at a frame rate well over 30 frames per second? It remains to be seen, but GPD Win Max 2 comes in two variants: one with an AMD Ryzen 7 6800U processor and one with an Intel Core i7-1260P under the hood.
Other standard features include two USB-C ports and three older USB 3.2 Type-A ports, an HDMI connection, a headphone jack, speakers, a 2 MP webcam for video calls, a motion sensor for games, a fingerprint reader for biometric security, both microSD and standard SD storage card slots, wifi, Bluetooth, optional 4G connectivity (with an optional module), vibrating power feedback and a 67 Wh battery that GPD claims will last for about three hours when playing processor-intensive AAA games, or up to eight hours with easier tasks.
Pre-orders for GPD Win Max 2 start on July 7, but through the crowdfunding platform Indiegogo. The cheapest option, which will be available to the earliest fans, is an $ 899 AMD model of which only 50 will be available. But with only 16 GB of RAM and a paltry 128 GB of SSD storage, gaming capacity will be severely limited. (There are many PC games whose full installation requires far more than just 128 GB of storage.) A bump to 32 GB of RAM and a 2 TB SSD pushes the price tag to $ 1299 if you pre-order through Indiegogo, or $ 1459 if you’d rather wait for Wind Max 2 will officially go on sale later.
It easily pushes the price of this handheld PC into the territory of a full-fledged laptop that includes an even larger screen, even if you have to settle for a connected gamepad and reduced portability. As with any crowdfunded product, there is a risk involved, and while GPD has been producing this type of device for quite some time, Liliputing points out that the company has also had problems with quality control, shipping of hardware with the wrong components inside, defects and customer support that can be challenging to deal with.