Intel was kind enough to send one of their Optane SSDs to me. Here’s my thoughts on it so far. Note: this review is a work-in-progress! My thoughts are NOT final. The reason why this is a work-in-progress is, well, I’ve had this drive for about a month-and-a-half so far. Normally a hardware review doesn’t take me any longer than two weeks once I receive the product. But I have just been bombarded with other things that came in: Steam Deck accessories, the Thelio, review keys for games, etc.
The Thelio by System76 is an impressive-looking desktop. It comes in a black finish, mostly rectangular in shape, and is very mimimalistic in design. A few months ago, the Thelio went through a redesign. Instead of the accent going around part of the front and the entire right side, it is now just a small sliver at the front. It’s also user-replaceable; users can take it out and replace with a different design if they so choose.
It was nice of Valve to include a carrying case with their Steam Deck. There’s nothing wrong with it; it perfectly does its job. But if you something a little extra, it’s definitely worth having a look at JSAUX’s case. It comes in a nice gray color, made of oxford cloth. Minimal branding; just the “JSAUX” text on the lower-right and nothing else. Just how I like it. There’s a yellow-colored case that’s set in similar vein to a Steam sale.
Funalot is a third-party manufacturer of Steam Deck docks and cases. They asked if I could review their dock. I was happy to oblige, and they even sent their case when I asked them to include it for review. Essentially this review will be divided into two parts: The dock The case The Dock I have to give Funalot kudos for the prompt shipping. The accessories arrived at my doorstep in just two days.
DeadEyeVR, the Etsy seller who sent me his Steam Deck USB-C hub, made another accessory for my review: the DeckTop. This is a Bluetooth keyboard with a built-in trackpad and a clamp for which you can attach your Deck to. So far, I’m pretty impressed with it. They did a far better job putting this product together. With the USB-C hub/stand hybrid, it was little more than two off-the-shelf components slapped together with some adhesive.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to LGC’s first guest article, proudly written by my good friend Matthew Anderson, one of the developers behind the ChimeraOS distribution! Note: this review has received minor edits for spelling/grammar fixes. If you were looking for a Linux laptop that has all AMD hardware, or simply looking for a laptop designed around Linux in general, the HP Dev One tries to meet those needs in many ways.
The Oryx Pro is a laptop from System76 that features an Alder Lake processor and a powerful RTX 30-series GPU. Per my conversation with Adam Balla, media relations manager at System76, all of System76’s laptops are named after African fauna. In this particular case, the Oryx Pro is named after the antelope, which, according to the African Wildlife Foundation, “are a true desert animal, with a thick, horse-like neck; a short mane; and a compact, muscular body.
It’s nice to see third-party manufacturers come up with their own solutions ahead of the first-party release. In this case, since Valve has indefinitely delayed their docking station for the Steam Deck (and there’s still no news of it since), there’s other solutions that we can use in the meantime. I got in touch with Steve from Etsy (DeadEyeVR). Though he mostly specializes in VR products, he happens to have a Steam Deck hub available, and he was willing to send a review unit over.
The Pulse by Tuxedo Computers is a thin, quiet laptop that boasts a great battery life. Improvements over the last-generation model include a larger screen with a higher refresh rate, as well as a USB-C port with DisplayPort 1.4 support. Unfortunately as far as the positive traits go, that’s just about it. It’s probably one of the most broken, frustrating laptops I’ve ever had to deal with. Specs The second-generation Pulse comes in a 15.
So what can I say about the Lifesaver accessory for the Deck? Though it may be a simple, 3D-printed piece of plastic, it works wonders when it comes to keeping the Deck from slipping out from its case. Steam Deck HQ recently did a review on this, and now that I’ve got one, here’s my take on it. Your browser does not support the video tag. Let’s face it: any of you Steam Deck owners out there have probably gotten lazy at one point and put the Deck in the case without zipping it up.