Valve just updated its Steam Deck spec sheet and the upcoming gaming handheld is even more impressive than we originally thought.
Viewed by twitter user lokuza, the original listing featured a Steam Deck with dual-channel LPDDR5 RAM with a 5,500MT/s transfer rate, which reduces the Steam Deck’s memory transfer speed. Updated specs show it with quad-channel memory, not dual-channel, which would make for an even wider memory bandwidth.
A discussion and curiosity is now resolved. Van Gogh, which is used by Valve’s Steam Deck, has 4 UMCs. I expected 4x 16-bit (under LPDDR5 a memory channel is actually 16-bits wide). The official spec claimed 5.5 Gbps (dual channel), which I don’t understand. It’s done right pic.twitter.com/orgzMKJldEJuly 19, 2021
The updated spec sheet may seem like a small change, but in the case of the Steam deck, it’s a very important one. Quad-channel memory is going to make for faster performance, which is going to be a key selling point for handheld consoles like the Steam Deck, which is expected to play some very demanding PC games.
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How Improved Memory Bandwidth Gets Us Even More Excited For Steam Deck
The difference between quad-channel memory and dual-channel memory may not seem like a big deal, but as PC Gamer breaks it down, the difference is going to be pretty significant for the AMD APU at the center of the Steam deck.
The AMD Zen 2 APU in the Steam Deck combines the CPU and GPU into a single chip that shares a single memory pool, so with dual-channel memory, you’ll have effectively two separate processors on those two channels.
This will essentially reduce the memory to a single channel for all the functions of the CPU and GPU, so even with incredibly fast transfer speeds, you will lose the benefit of having an additional channel. Having quad-channel memory does away with this problem, so you will experience better performance than other when gaming.
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