If Valve and Nintendo thought they were the only kids on the handheld gaming block, they’re in for a surprise. Shenzhen GPD has just unveiled the Win Max 2, a portable gaming laptop packed with power.
The key word here is ‘laptop’. The GPD Win Max 2 is unlike any other portable gaming device thanks to its classic clamshell laptop design. Only this laptop easily fits in two hands for gaming.
The mini laptop has a full QWERTY keyboard, as well as two thumbsticks, a directional pad and four command keys, just like an Xbox or PlayStation controller. The mouse pad is located above the keyboard, between the folding rules. While this approach is unconventional, it really works. The Win 2 Max is small enough and, let’s face it, the mouse pad won’t get much use on this machine.
In any case, there’s enough functionality in this small design to put it above your standard steam deck or one player device. You can even take a break from gaming to quickly send an email or post to Twitter on the GPD Win Max 2.
The 10.1-inch screen seems to pop out of the device thanks to its ultra-thin bezels, giving it more than 90% screen real estate. It can achieve resolutions up to 2560 x 1600 at 299 ppi. Corning Gorilla Glass protects it from cracks and drops. Best of all, it’s a touchscreen display and you can use most styluses with it.
But a gaming machine is nothing without power, and the GPD Win Max 2 comes with AMD’s latest eight-core Ryzen 7 6800U processor and Radeon 680M graphics. That will give you 60 frames per second for most games. You can choose between 16 GB and 32 GB RAM and from 1 TB to 2 TB SSD storage.
There is also an Intel version of the Win Max 2, with a 12th generation 12-core i7 processor and Intel Iris XE graphic. While the Iris XE isn’t as energy efficient as the Radeon 680M, it performs well and can handle 4K games slightly better. The choice depends on which chipmaker you prefer.
The GPD Win Max 2 uses a large PC-grade turbo fan for cooling and draws heat away from the processors with a dual=pipe system. GPD claims it has an onboard intelligent heat monitoring system to manage fan noise, but that has yet to be seen under real-world loads.
Add in Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, four super-linear surround-sound speakers, dual vibration motor, a backlit keyboard, and a 2 million-pixel ultra-wide webcam, and you’ve got one great powerful little machine. A 67-watt-hour battery powers the whole thing for up to five hours.
All this is packed in an all-metal housing, which the GPD calls ‘Apple-style’. It is made of aluminum-magnesium alloys and the lower half has comfortable resin grips for your hands. There are also plenty of ports, including SD and micro SD slots for photographers and USB-C slots.
The GPD Win Max 2 is not for sale everywhere yet. GPD is currently crowdfunding the production of the Win Max 2 on Indiegogo† It hopes to reach $20,000.