Asus ROG Ally or Steam Deck: Which Handheld Should You Choose?

If you’re looking for a portable gaming console that can handle the latest AAA titles, the Asus ROG Ally and the Steam Deck are two of the top contenders available.

Asus ROG Ally Price Revealed, Competes with Steam Deck

Asus has officially unveiled the price of its inaugural handheld gaming console, the ROG Ally. In the United States, the base model of the ROG Ally, equipped with AMD Z1, carries a price tag of $600 (approximately Rs 49,320) and offers 12 GB RAM along with 256 GB storage. Meanwhile, the more powerful variant, featuring the AMD Z1 Extreme chip, 16 GB RAM, and 512 GB internal storage, is priced at $700 (approximately Rs 57,540).

The Steam Deck by Valve, offering a 256 GB variant, comes with a price of $529, slightly lower than the ROG Ally. The base variant of the Steam Deck is priced at $399 and features a slower 64 GB eMMC storage. Both consoles are strong contenders for those seeking a handheld gaming console capable of running modern AAA titles.

ROG Ally Excels with Faster and Higher-Resolution Display

The Asus ROG Ally, despite being slightly more expensive, boasts certain advantages, particularly in the display department. While the Steam Deck features a 7-inch HD (800p) display, the ROG Ally takes it up a notch with a 7-inch screen that offers FHD (1080p) resolution. Furthermore, the ROG Ally outperforms the Steam Deck with its 120Hz refresh rate, doubling the refresh rate offered by Valve’s console. Overall, in terms of display, the ROG Ally has a clear edge over the Steam Deck.

Design and Form Factor Differentiate the Consoles

Both consoles feature a 7-inch form factor; however, the Steam Deck has a slightly larger footprint. The ROG Ally sports a dual-tone finish, while the Steam Deck showcases a matte black body. Battery-wise, both consoles house a 40Wh battery with fast charging support, and battery life varies based on individual usage patterns.

ROG Ally Takes the Lead in Power

The ROG Ally stands out as the more powerful handheld console, thanks to its AMD Z1 chip, which comprises a 6-core CPU based on Zen4 architecture and an RDNA 3 GPU with 12 compute units. On the other hand, the Steam Deck employs a slightly older AMD APU with a quad-core CPU based on Zen 2 architecture and an RDNA 2 GPU with 8 compute units.

Moreover, the ROG Ally’s architectural advancements allow it to be both powerful and energy-efficient, despite carrying a more capable APU. Both consoles have a maximum APU power rating of 15W. Notably, the ROG Ally supports an external GPU (ROG XG Mobile), further enhancing its performance when needed.

ROG Ally Embraces PC, Steam Deck Emphasizes Console

While both consoles are capable of running PC games, they offer distinct user experiences. The Steam Deck is built on Steam OS, a software optimized primarily for gaming, whereas the ROG Ally runs Windows 11, turning it into a full-fledged PC. Thus, the gaming consoles provide different functionalities. In terms of gamepad controls, the Steam Deck gains a slight advantage with its additional assignable grip buttons and two pressure-sensitive trackpads.

Despite these differences, both the Asus ROG Ally and the Steam Deck present compelling options for gamers seeking a handheld console. The final choice ultimately depends on individual preferences, priorities, and gaming needs.

It’s worth noting that the ROG Ally’s emphasis on power and performance, coupled with its high-resolution display and Windows 11 compatibility, makes it an attractive option for those who desire a more versatile gaming experience. With its external GPU support, the ROG Ally has the potential to deliver even greater graphical capabilities.

On the other hand, the Steam Deck, with its focus on the Steam OS and console-like optimization, offers a streamlined gaming experience with the added benefit of assignable grip buttons and trackpads for enhanced control. Its slightly lower price point for the base model and seamless integration with the Steam ecosystem make it an appealing choice for dedicated Steam users.

Ultimately, individuals should consider factors such as budget, desired gaming library, preferred operating system, display quality, and unique features when making their decision between the Asus ROG Ally and the Steam Deck. Both consoles represent significant advancements in the handheld gaming market and are likely to deliver immersive gaming experiences on the go.

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