ROG Ally Vs Steam Deck – Game Over for Valve?

In the world of gaming consoles, innovation, and competition continue to drive the industry forward. Recently, a surprising turn of events occurred when what was initially thought to be an April Fool’s joke turned out to be a real console. 

We are talking about the ROG Ally from Asus, a gaming handheld that seems to be going head-on against the popular Steam Deck by Valve. The question arises: Does the ROG Ally have what it takes to one-up the OG Steam Deck? Let’s delve into the details and find out.

ROG Ally VS Steam Deck:

ASUS ROG Ally 7" 120Hz Gaming Handheld
Valve Steam Deck
ASUS ROG Ally 7" 120Hz Gaming Handheld - AMD Z1 Extreme Processor - 512GB - White - PRE ORDER!
Valve Steam Deck 512GB Handheld Console
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Processor
AMD Ryzen™ Z1 Processor
AMD APU
CPU
Zen4” architecture with 4nm process, 6-core /12-threads, 22MB total cache, up to 4.90 GHz boost
Zen 2 4c/8t, 2.4-3.5GHz
GPU
AMD Radeon™ Graphics (AMD RDNA™ 3, 4 CUs, up to 2.5GHz, up to 2.8 Teraflops) TDP: 9-30W
8 RDNA 2 CUs, 1.0-1.6GHz
Display
7-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9 IPS-level glossy display sRGB: 100%
1280 x 800px IPS LCD, 7" size
Memory
16GB LPDDR5 on board (6400MT/s dual channel)
16 GB LPDDR5
Storage
512GB PCIe® 4.0 NVMe™ M.2 SSD (2230)
64 GB eMMC or 256/512 GB NVMe SSD
I/O Ports
1x 3.5mm Combo Audio Jack1x ROG XG Mobile Interface and USB Type-C combo port (with USB 3.2 Gen2, support DisplayPort™ 1.4) 1x card reader (microSD) (UHS-II)
USB-C
Control and Input
Gamepad controls: A B X Y buttons D-pad L & R Hall Effect analog triggers L & R bumpers View button Menu button Command Center button Armoury Crate button 2 x assignable grip buttons Thumbsticks: 2 x full-size analog sticks Haptics: HD haptics Gyro: 6-Axis IMU
Gamepad controls, trackpads, gyro
Network and Communication
Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax) (Triple band) 2*2 + Bluetooth 5.2 (*BT version may change with OS version different.)
Bluetooth, Wi-Fi,
Battery
40WHrs, 4S1P, 4-cell Li-ion
2 Lithium Ion batteries
AURA SYNC
Weight
608g (1.34 lbs)
1.47 pounds
Dimensions (W x D x H)
28.0 x 11.1 x 2.12 ~ 3.24 cm (11.02″ x 4.37″ x 0.83″ ~ 1.27″)
16 x 5 x 3 inches
Operating System
Windows 11 Home
SteamOS 3.0 (Arch-based)
Date First Available
May 12, 2023
September 14, 2022
ASUS ROG Ally 7" 120Hz Gaming Handheld
ASUS ROG Ally 7" 120Hz Gaming Handheld - AMD Z1 Extreme Processor - 512GB - White - PRE ORDER!
-
Processor
AMD Ryzen™ Z1 Processor
CPU
Zen4” architecture with 4nm process, 6-core /12-threads, 22MB total cache, up to 4.90 GHz boost
GPU
AMD Radeon™ Graphics (AMD RDNA™ 3, 4 CUs, up to 2.5GHz, up to 2.8 Teraflops) TDP: 9-30W
Display
7-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) 16:9 IPS-level glossy display sRGB: 100%
Memory
16GB LPDDR5 on board (6400MT/s dual channel)
Storage
512GB PCIe® 4.0 NVMe™ M.2 SSD (2230)
I/O Ports
1x 3.5mm Combo Audio Jack1x ROG XG Mobile Interface and USB Type-C combo port (with USB 3.2 Gen2, support DisplayPort™ 1.4) 1x card reader (microSD) (UHS-II)
Control and Input
Gamepad controls: A B X Y buttons D-pad L & R Hall Effect analog triggers L & R bumpers View button Menu button Command Center button Armoury Crate button 2 x assignable grip buttons Thumbsticks: 2 x full-size analog sticks Haptics: HD haptics Gyro: 6-Axis IMU
Network and Communication
Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax) (Triple band) 2*2 + Bluetooth 5.2 (*BT version may change with OS version different.)
Battery
40WHrs, 4S1P, 4-cell Li-ion
AURA SYNC
Weight
608g (1.34 lbs)
Dimensions (W x D x H)
28.0 x 11.1 x 2.12 ~ 3.24 cm (11.02″ x 4.37″ x 0.83″ ~ 1.27″)
Operating System
Windows 11 Home
Date First Available
May 12, 2023
Valve Steam Deck
Valve Steam Deck 512GB Handheld Console
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Processor
AMD APU
CPU
Zen 2 4c/8t, 2.4-3.5GHz
GPU
8 RDNA 2 CUs, 1.0-1.6GHz
Display
1280 x 800px IPS LCD, 7" size
Memory
16 GB LPDDR5
Storage
64 GB eMMC or 256/512 GB NVMe SSD
I/O Ports
USB-C
Control and Input
Gamepad controls, trackpads, gyro
Network and Communication
Bluetooth, Wi-Fi,
Battery
2 Lithium Ion batteries
AURA SYNC
Weight
1.47 pounds
Dimensions (W x D x H)
16 x 5 x 3 inches
Operating System
SteamOS 3.0 (Arch-based)
Date First Available
September 14, 2022
ROG Ally  handheld
Sale
ASUS ROG Ally 7" 120Hz Gaming Handheld - AMD Z1 Extreme Processor - 512GB - White - PRE ORDER!
  • Amazing graphics: AMD Radeon RDNA3 graphics (4GB VRAM, 12 compute units)
  • Ample storage: A 512GB NVMe PCIe 4 M.2 SSD gives you room to store your favorite games and keep load...
  • Stunningly beautiful visuals: No tearing, no stuttering, and games are crisp and clear on the ROG...
  • Blazing fast memory: Swap through your applications and have multiple tabs running with 16GB LPDDR5...

Size and Display

When it comes to size, the ROG Ally and the Steam Deck share some similarities. Both devices feature a 7-inch screen, but there are slight differences in aspect ratios. 

The Steam Deck boasts a taller 16:10 aspect ratio, while the ROG Ally has a wider 16:9 aspect ratio. In terms of resolution and refresh rate, the ROG Ally takes the lead. With its 1920 x 1080p screen, 120Hz refresh rate, and 5-millisecond response time, it outshines the Steam Deck in terms of visuals and smoothness.

Controls and Buttons

One cannot overlook the importance of controls and buttons when it comes to gaming. The ROG Ally catches the eye with its big RGB-lit buttons, giving it a visually appealing edge. 

On the other hand, the Steam Deck offers a trackpad, providing a more convenient way to navigate the screen. Additionally, the Steam Deck also features an extra set of back buttons, which could prove beneficial for certain games.

ROG Ally Vs Steam Deck

Performance and Graphics

Performance is a crucial factor for gamers seeking an immersive experience. The ROG Ally shines in this department, equipped with AMD’s latest and greatest technology, including the Zen architecture and RDNA3 graphics.

 Although the Steam Deck chip may be slightly less impressive, it still gets the job done. It’s worth noting that the ROG Ally produces a mere 20 decibels of noise under full load, impressively quiet compared to the Steam Deck’s 37 decibels, as reported by Dave 2D on YouTube.

External GPU Support

One notable advantage the ROG Ally holds over the Steam Deck is its external GPU support. With the ROG Ally, you have the option to connect it to a super powerful graphics card, allowing you to play even more demanding games. This feature sets the ROG Ally apart as a viable choice for serious gamers who crave exceptional performance and versatility.

Price and Practicality

In the realm of consumer electronics, price and practicality play vital roles in decision-making. While the ROG Ally demonstrates unparalleled performance, the Steam Deck offers a more practical design and is expected to be reasonably priced. 

The ultimate choice between these two devices ultimately boils down to individual priorities and budget constraints. If you seek top-notch performance, the ROG Ally is undoubtedly the way to go. However, if you desire a more practical device at a lower price point, the Steam Deck may be the better choice.

In conclusion, the ROG Ally and the Steam Deck are formidable contenders in the gaming console market. Each device brings its own set of strengths and caters to different user preferences. The ROG Ally impresses with its performance capabilities, external GPU support, and sleek design. On the other hand, the Steam Deck offers practicality and affordability, without compromising on the overall gaming experience. The choice between these two devices ultimately rests in the hands of the consumer, depending on their specific needs and priorities.