Chinese manufacturer GPD has carved out a niche for itself making some impressive portable PCs, and the firm – which produced the GPD Pocket that we recently reviewed and liked – is coming out with a sequel to its popular handheld Windows gaming PC.
The GPD Win 2 is being fired up as a campaign on Indiegogo, and the new model features some considerable upgrades over the original. However, the price has also been jacked up to $649 – an increase of $250 over the first edition, and that itself is down 27% from what the general non-crowdfunding pre-order price of $899 would be. It's taking orders now.
So, what upgrades are we talking about? The Win 2 goes with a half-inch larger 6-inch display – although it keeps the 1,280 x 720 resolution – and bumps up the processor to an Intel Core m3-7Y30 capable of Intel Turbo Boost up to 2.6GHz (with integrated Intel HD Graphics 615). That’s a solid jump from the previous Atom CPU.
The machine doubles up system RAM to 8GB, too, and also doubles storage to 128GB, making use of an M.2 SSD this time around instead of slower eMMC flash. That will definitely mean much nippier general performance all-around.
Pricing and performance
While this spin on a handheld gaming PC is certainly a smart concept that will doubtless appeal to some, there are flies in the ointment here – pricing being the biggest.
The original GPD Win can be picked up for as cheap as $300 (or £230, AU$405) these days, at least if you import from a Chinese online retailer. It wasn’t all that much more expensive when it came out, and the Win 2 looks to be a considerable jump in price, which could be a definite stumbling block.
The other bone of contention is managing expectations around such a portable gaming device, and the sort of performance oomph it’s capable of mustering.
You obviously can’t expect the world, but the Win 2 looks interesting from some early benchmarks and clips, which include video of the device running the likes of Grand Theft Auto V. Detail levels need to be dialed right back, of course, to get anything like a smooth-ish frame rate.
That said, even that running these games is possible is pretty neat, even if they have to be cut back considerably in terms of the visuals. And, there are already lists of some quite nifty games which run well enough on the original GPD Win over on the Steam forums.
And, speaking of Steam, at least while you’re at home with the device near your gaming PC, you’ll be able to stream titles across to it, which is another definite boon.
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