Valve has released the specifications for its prototype Steam Machines, and they range from very impressive to not-bad-at-all-for-a-free-gaming-computer. The lucky 300 Steam users selected to participate in the beta will receive a 12x12x3 inch box (that's a bit bigger than an original Xbox 360) with these bits stuffed inside, according to a post on the official Steam Universe community page:
GPU: some units with NVidia Titan, some GTX780, some GTX760, and some GTX660
CPU: some boxes with Intel : i7-4770, some i5-4570, and some i3
RAM: 16GB DDR3-1600 (CPU), 3GB DDR5 (GPU)
Storage: 1TB/8GB Hybrid SSHD
Power Supply: Internal 450w 80Plus Gold
Dimensions: approx. 12 x 12.4 x 2.9 in high
The machine is fully customizable and upgradeable, and since it's built with off-the-counter parts you can make your own. Valve even plans to release the CAD files for its custom enclosure if you want the complete experience--the prototype's the only way to get that wacky controller, though, which Valve said it will offer a closer look at soon.
What if you're already a PC gaming acolyte and you'd rather find a convenient way to beam your high-powered gaming rig into your living room?
"The prototype we're talking about here is not meant to replace that. Many of those users would like to have a way to bridge the gap into the living room without giving up their existing hardware and without spending lots of money," the post states. "We think that's a great goal, and we're working on ways to use our in-home streaming technology to accomplish it--we'll talk more about that in the future."