Maingear Announces AMD-Based Steam Machines

As Steam Machine announcements rumble in from all the usual suspects, each seems to have a slightly different take. For Maingear’s part, the company is touting its Maingear Spark Steambox PC with AMD components.

The Spark Steambox PC is unbelievably tiny at just 4.5 x 4.23 x 2.34 inches (WxDxH) with a chassis that weighs less than a pound. The idea with the extremely SFF machine is that you can more easily incorporate it into any multimedia environment or take it with you to a LAN party--which is a nice change of pace for those who have ever schlepped a 20-pound beast of a gaming rig.

Maingear Spark

The Spark Steambox rocks a four-thread AMD A8-5575M (2.1-3.1GHz) processor with a discrete AMD Radeon R9 M275X graphics card. You can configure a Spark machine with up to 16GB of DDR3 (1600MHz) RAM, up to 256GB mSATA SSD with a 2.5-inch HDD tray (supporting SATA 6Gbps), and there are two expansion slots--an mSATA slot and a half-size mini-PCIe. The latter is host to an 802.11a/b/g/n/ac + Bluetooth 4.0/3.0 combo module.

Maingear Spark

The Spark offers a gigabit LAN port, Realtek ALC269 audio, a 135W PSU, and runs both SteamOS and Windows. (You can opt for Windows 7, Professional, Ultimate, or Windows 8.1.) Ports include HDMI-out, mini DisplayPort, four USB 3.0, audio, and a Kensington Lock.

Maingear Spark

Maingear has not shared pricing information yet, but the company stated that among the various configurations, they will be “affordable”. The Maingear Spark Steambox will be available in mid- to late Q1 2014.
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ebog 11 months ago

This will create the true meaning and help support a variety of industries, was really looking forward to the results. Really thank this share.


3vi1 11 months ago

An AMD based Steam Machine is a horrible idea. SteamOS is only officially supporting Nvidia and Intel GPUs at the moment, because AMD has always been lacking when it came to support and performance for their Linux drivers.

realneil 11 months ago

Hi 3vi1, I thought that AMD was mending their ways with Linux support?

Are you running Steam OS on anything yet?

3vi1 11 months ago

>> I thought that AMD was mending their ways with Linux support?

They've opened up a lot of reference material to the guys writing the open driver, but their proprietary fglrx driver for Linux has continually had more issues and poorer performance than their proprietary Windows driver.

HOWEVER... just night before last they added a new AMD 'preview' driver to the SteamOS build, which supposedly fixes some of their performance problems as well as desktop drop issues. So, maybe there is hope that SteamOS has given them the kick in the pants they needed.

As for running SteamOS: I already have Steam on all my Linux systems, so it really wouldn't be much different than my Debian system booting straight into big-picture mode (since I don't have a Steam controller). As such, I really haven't had any motivation to play with it yet.. When I can buy a Steam Machine to dedicate to the living room - I will definitely be all over it.

Someone's got to write tutorials to let everyone know that they can apt-get MAME/MESS and run all their classic games on it. :)

NickModrowski 11 months ago

This looks quite nice, actually.

realneil 11 months ago

Like to see it reviewed sometime soon.

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