We have already reported on the cost to build an Xbox One and a PlayStation 4. Now it’s time to delve into a third next-gen option: the Steam Machine. Both the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 cost about as much as their retail price-tag to build, meaning that Sony and Microsoft aren’t making a whole lot of money off them. The Steam Machine, on the other hand, hasn’t had a price tag put on it. According to a recent tear down by iFixit, it may be more expensive than you think.
A standard Steam Machine will cost a whopping $1300 to make! That’s insane! The most expensive component is the Zota GeForce GTX 780 3GB graphics card, which costs more than $500 alone! The next most expensive building block is the processor, which is almost $200, and the motherboard which is almost $150.
The iFixIt teardown says that the Steam Machine was designed to be opened up and worked on, but that RAM removal and cable routing is actually quite difficult. With a price tag of $1300, it’s possible that the retail price of the Steam Machine will be even larger. Even if it was sold at $1000 retail, they would still be selling at a loss, and without software incentives on the scale of Microsoft and Sony, selling at a loss would be far less appealing to valve.