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Steam Decks Will Shut Down If They Get Too Hot

In case you hadn't noticed, it's hot outside. Well, it's hot inside too. It's hot pretty much everywhere, and if you're trying to distract yourself from the heat via a little handheld gaming, you might want to be careful. Valve issued a warning this week letting Steam Deck owners know if the console reaches a certain temperature, it will shut down.

“Steam Deck performs at its best in ambient temperatures between 0C and 35C. If the temperature gets higher than this, Steam Deck may start to throttle performance to protect itself,” Valve tweeted from the official Steam Deck account. Something Steam Deck owners in the UK will have needed to see as temperatures exceeded 40C there for the first time ever on Tuesday.

Valve followed up on that tweet with a little clarification on what exactly is going on inside of the Steam Deck when it hits temperatures that might result in it shutting down. “At 100C, it will start to throttle performance, and at 105C it will shut down.” Now, that isn't what it sounds like on the surface. The console doesn't have to reach the same temperature as boiling water before it starts to panic. The follow-up tweet is referring to its APU.

The APU runs well, even at 100C, much like most CPUs. However, should the ambient temperature around the console hit the highs that they have this week, the Steam Deck's AMD temperature will naturally increase too, potentially to beyond 100C. That's when it will begin to throttle performance, and should it hit 105C, the console will shut down. It might cost you precious progress, but it will prevent the console from bursting into flames, potentially quite literally.

Valve isn't the only studio to have issued a warning to people using handheld consoles during this most recent heatwave. Nintendo sent out a similar warning last week regarding the Switch, again highlighting the console works optimally in temperatures below 35C. It also urged Switch owners to check the console's ports are clear from dust and dirt to further prevent them from overheating. That may well be worth doing with your Steam Deck right about now too.

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