Piston Steam Box pre-orders open at $1,000

Prices for Piston--the first "Steam Box"--begin at $1,000, manufacturer Xi3 revealed today. The new device, which is intended to unite the comfort and ease of use of a console with the scope and upgradeability of a desktop computer, will ship in time for this year's holiday season.

Xi3 is extending a $100 discount to those who pre-order by the end of the SXSW convention (March 17), with a choice of integrated SSDs on its store page.

The console was the first publicly unveiled Steam Box: a loose term meaning a PC which specializes in running Steam games for couch/living room play. Valve is working on its own Steam Box internally, with co-founder Gabe Newell talking up impressive plans for future features.

One thousand dollars could buy a superior desktop computer, but with its own host of hassles and entertainment-center-unfriendly form factor. Now that we know the pricing for the first wave of Steam Boxes, what do you think? 


  • nintendo365 - March 12, 2013 8:35 p.m.

    They want to connect with console gamers and compete with other major consoles, but also sell it at 2-3x the price of an average console... Did they even listen to the pitch?
  • brickman409 - March 12, 2013 7:37 p.m.

    This reminds me a lot of the apple G4 power mac cube. This will most definitely sell terribly. But I like the deign of it alot, it's very ahead of its time, too ahead of its time.
  • winner2 - March 12, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    There will be memes of this by the end of the week
  • mafyooz - March 12, 2013 12:09 p.m.

    given the speed they usually crop up, there were probably memes of this by the end of your sentence....
  • Nines - March 12, 2013 6:37 a.m.

    Relax guys, it's just an experiment from Valve. They will be able to avoid some mistakes with Steam Box in the future.
  • lordgodalming - March 12, 2013 1:41 a.m.

    So, PS4 for console exclusives and custom pc for work and Steam--same as this gen. Glad that's settled.
  • PlainLikeVanilla - March 12, 2013 12:19 a.m.

    How is this a thing?
  • Moondoggie1157 - March 11, 2013 11:14 p.m.

    I read this about 3 hours ago... As of yet I have absolutely nothing to say. I just... I mean.... seriously? For $1000 bucks I want this thing to give me a body massage and toast. Fuck that.
  • CrashmanX - March 11, 2013 9:28 p.m.

    I just... I don't even. $1,000 for a lil box to play PC games.... what's the point?! Why not just build a custom PC rig at that point?! You can get it on a Micro ATX board and it won't be THAT small but it's nit massive either.
  • 7-D - March 11, 2013 8:44 p.m.

    well this is the surprise of the week..
  • 7-D - March 11, 2013 8:52 p.m.

    And more to the point... "pre-order". Why on earth pre-order it? Like it's going to sell out at that price?!
  • CUFCfan616 - March 11, 2013 7:53 p.m.

    looks like a new age guitar amp with a built in radiator. I wouldn't want anything like that sitting under my tv. Given the cheapness of computer components I was expecting the price to be between $3-400. Consoles will remain king though if this will be the case of Steam boxes
  • antiAntag0nist - March 11, 2013 7:35 p.m.

    The price on this thing is ridiculous. I just purchased a PC with these same specs (traditional HDD instead of SSD) for $600 cheaper. Form factor be damned, this box is overpriced.
  • Redeater - March 11, 2013 5:22 p.m.

    You guys failed to report the most ridiculous part of this. How the price almost doubles with the addition of a larger hard drive. (seriously, check it out. SSHDs don't cost near that much) The strange thing was while every other website had comments that ranged from puzzlement to outright contempt, Kotaku had a crazy amount of people defending this!
  • BladedFalcon - March 11, 2013 5:24 p.m.

    ...How exactly can you defend this? ._. In condensed words, what would you say was the crux of those people's defense?
  • ultimatepunchrod - March 11, 2013 6:23 p.m.

    You don't understand man. STEAM BOX IS THE FUTURE!!! For real though, I don't see the point of this especially not in the context of it beating traditional game consoles. People who buy this are worse than console fan boys. Like the article says, you can buy a high end PC that does more than this for the same price. Weird.
  • Redeater - March 11, 2013 7 p.m.

    Pretty much my comment below. For every person mocking this overpriced novelty there were 4-5 people replying to the comments saying "You could build a faster, cheaper computer but you couldn't engineer it into this lovely small package." It may have been naivety on my part but I was expecting a $300-$400 console that would play only steam games and run on some steam operating system. From the looks of it these things are going to be mid range PC's with Apple pricing. I just bought a Cooler Master HAF X case. Needless to say size doesn't concern me so looks like I will take a pass on the steam box.
  • Redeater - March 11, 2013 7:07 p.m.

    “Add $750” to opt for a pre-installed 512GB SSD instead of the standard 128GB version." (for anyone that was interested I copied and pasted this from another site) Now you tell me where in the Christ you can buy a 512GB SSD for $750....... I'm looking at one right now for $409 and it's the same size. Also, keep in mind that this is still a YEAR away from release so the price of this particular SSD is bound to drop. So yeah....this piece of hardware is fucking preposterous.
  • BladedFalcon - March 11, 2013 7:23 p.m.

    ....So their entire defense was based around the fact that it's small? What the- how is that- I don't even- AGHF!/GJ*Error *re-boot* It's a fucking CONSOLE, it's not a portable system, you're not meant to take around everywhere, specially because it NEEDS TO BE FUCKING CONNECTED TO WORK. As long as it's not heavier than say, 10 pounds and larger than an original Xbox, the size of a console or desk computer is entirely irrelevant! *bonks head repeatedly* Well, you know what? let them buy the fucking thing, it'll serve them right to buy an overpriced piece of junk when any smart person won't, and then two years after they'll be gathering dust very elegantly with the little thing >_>
  • FoxdenRacing - March 12, 2013 8:07 a.m.

    Breathe, dude. :) This will be brilliant with one specific market: people that don't already have a gaming PC, and aren't capable or willing to build one from scratch. Against something like an Alienware, it's no contest. For anyone comfortable getting arm-deep in a computer's guts, or those that are used to buying consoles, at that price it's dead in the water.

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