A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:
Proof of Concept
Explorations that test ideas and functionality.
Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.
Looks like the final product, but is not functional.
Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.
Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.
About this project
We love handheld consoles. Now that smartphones and tablets are overtaking handhelds, we need good games to play, real games for gamers, on a dedicated gaming platform more than ever.
We have chosen AMD’s powerful embedded low-powered SoC with its blazing fast performance and power efficiency on portable devices. Thanks to their latest technological advances, the dream of playing your PC games on the go is becoming a reality.
With more than 10,000 games out of the box. And you don't need to purchase them again. Just load and play any game from your Steam™ Library.
More than 5 hours of battery life.
Powerful enough to play almost any game on Steam: Portal 2, DOTA, Left 4 Dead 2, Team Fortress 2, SOMA, Civilization V, Metro: Last Light Redux, Borderlands 2, The Witcher 2, etc.
Haptic touchpad controls: The evolution of the mouse! And if you are a more old-school gamer, you can configure your own control scheme using the Z-Pads!
All your favorite games. AAA, indies, strategy, RTS, action, FPS, adventure, MMO, mods, etc. The Steam™ catalog is bigger and better than ever and new great games are arriving every day.
But you can also play games outside of Steam™, SMACH Z is a handheld PC and you can install any game or program that you want. You can also play web games, MMOs, emulators or anything else that you can do on your PC.
CPU: AMD Merlin Falcon RX-421BD (12-15w) SoC at 2.1 GHz
When pre-ordering SMACH Z you can choose between Windows 10 or Linux.
Windows 10: With Windows you have more compatible games and programs. However we won't be able to adapt the OS to our console, so it may not be as easy to use as the Linux based system.
Linux (SMACH Z OS): We're able to modify and adapt the OS to SMACH Z creating a better interface and experience. We recommend choosing Linux for better performance. More and more games are becoming compatible with Linux with time; now are about 2,500.
The key scheme will make use of two haptic touch pads, a joystick (clickable), 4 action face buttons, 4 trigger buttons and 2 additional action buttons in the rear-back.
Anyone will be able to create their own custom control schemes. The touch pads are also buttons with different areas of detection, so they can be used in many ways.
If you are a "classic" gamer, and you prefer more traditional controls... you can use the Z-Pads add-ons. They are adapters to configure the SMACH Z controls by attaching them to either touchpad.
This simple yet magic solution will permit you to play with a real D-Pad on your SMACH Z, add a second stick or add more buttons. There are plenty of combinations!
* Z-Pads are sold separately.
More powerful, bigger disk, front-camera and 4G connection. Recommended if you are going to play demanding games, for youtubers, or for MMO players that need to always play online.
Versions specs comparison:
SZ PRO: 8GB RAM vs SZ: 4GB RAM.
SZ PRO: 128GB HD vs SZ: 64 GB HD.
SZ PRO: Front-camera vs SZ: No camera.
SZ PRO: 4G connectivity vs SZ: Only WIFI.
The following benchmarks have been run on the final hardware of the SMACH Z PRO: Merlin Falcon RX-421BD (12-15w) SoC at 2.1 GHz with Radeon R7 at 800 MHz and 8 RAM, running on Windows 10.
Metro: Last Light Redux (720p. High settings) ~ 35 FPS
Company of Heroes 2 (720p. Medium settings) ~ 25 FPS
Jotun (1080p) ~ 45 FPS
Skyrim (720p. High setting) ~ 25 FPS
Just Cause 2 (720p. Medium settings) ~ 35 FPS
Spiral Knights (1080p) ~ 50 FPS
Overwatch (720p. Medium) ~ 30 FPS
Torchlight II (1080p. Very high settings) ~ 35 FPS
Xcom: Enemy Unknown (720p. High settings) ~30 FPS
Civilization 5 (1080p. High settings) ~ 28 FPS
Tomb Raider:Survivor (720p. Medium settings) ~ 40 FPS
Alien: Isolation (720p. Ultra settings) ~ 35 FPS
We hope this gives you an idea of the kind of games and power that you can expect on SMACH Z. We will continue testing with more games and publish new videos on updates. Please don't hesitate to ask for your favorite games.
* Remember that these benchmarks are being run on the AMD development board with the final hardware, and not directly on the current cased prototype, which have a weaker hardware. Check the prototypes section for more information.
SMACH Z is a handheld PC with plenty of other possibilities. Some examples:
Streaming. SMACH Z has been designed to be an autonomous handheld, but If you are using SZ in your house, you can also stream games from your PC or Playstation 4 via WIFI. This allows you to play games that aren't supported by Steam OS or use the power of your PC to play more demanding games. Just lay down on your couch or bed, with your PC with Steam open, and load any game you want directly from your SMACH Z.
Play on the TV via HDMI. You can connect SMACH Z to a TV and use it as a home console, that you can bring everywhere. You can even connect another gamepad and play multiplayer!
Emulators. SMACH Z will be the best handheld device for emulation, and Retro Z-Pads will bring your fingers back to the past. NES, SuperNintendo, Megadrive, Playstation 1 and 2, Nintendo64, GameCube or even Wii games will be in your hands.
Multimedia Center. We plan to integrate KODI, an open source software for playing videos, music, podcasts, and other digital media files.
Browse internet and use programs. SMACH Z is a portable PC, so you can install anything on it.
Portable PC. Connect a keyboard and mouse and plug it to a monitor and you will have a PC that you can bring with you easily.
Gamepad: Use SMACH Z as a gamepad controller for your PC too.
Twitch and Skype: With the SMACH Z PRO you can make videos of yourself playing games from the beach or do Skype calls.
Open Platform: We want to keep SMACH Z an open console. If you prefer to install another OS you are free to do whatever you want with it. We will give the community all the info and code needed to support another OS or develop additional features.
Attachable extra battery: Add a second battery in the back of SMACH Z for +5 hours of additional gameplay outdoors.
Accelerometer & Gyroscope: A cool way to control racing or airship games.
4K Video: SMACH Z SoC has hardware-accelerated High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) decode of 4K video playback.
The prototype will not be the final form of the console. We're updating the look and form of SMACH Z to make it more comfortable to handle with the new 6" screen size. The main modifications include:
More prominent grips, to make it more comfortable
Reduced the touchpads from 40mm to 35mm.
Moved the option buttons to the top, to access easier
Adjusted positions of buttons and other aesthetic changes.
The final version will also be much thinner and compact with an estimated weight of approximately 400 grams.
SMACH Z Deep Black is the basic edition. But you can also get it in other different colors: Pearl White, Red Fire, Radioactive Green and Indigo. Plus, another 2 new color editions will be decided by the backers in the development forums.
You can choose any color combination when you pre-order your SMACH Z in Kickstarter, without additional cost. Also, if you change your mind, you can decide the color later.
Clickarm is a modular platform of hardware and firmware for the development and manufacture of devices. It offers scalability and enormous economic savings both in research and in product development and manufacturing.
The Clickarm modular platform is inspired by the spirit of the Compatible PC and by the Wintel platform.
Until today there was no standardized alternative equivalent in the world of mobile devices based on high integration embedded solutions (mobiles, tablets and other mobile devices). Clickarm means the perfect interaction between hardware and software (firmware).
With Clickarm the performance of your SMACH Z can be improved even after its purchase. You will be able to purchase more modules of RAM, HDD or even a new SoC and install it easily yourself or send it to us.
SMACH Z will have passive cooling only, using the latest Copper Foam technology in heat sinks. Testing shows that these heat sinks can outperform their comparable competitors by up to 6ºC/W, making this new range a major breakthrough in thermal management.
The large surface area created by the interconnected pores of the foam coupled with the excellent thermal conductivity of copper allows either for the height of the heat sinks to be reduced or improved thermal performance in the same form factor.
The copper foam is coated with a thin, hard layer
of high temperature copper oxide that improves the
emissivity of the foam to improve its radiant properties
and reduce the temperature of the component.
By participating in this Kickstarter you will help a PC handheld console become real, but it's also a good opportunity to get your SMACH Z earlier than everyone and at much lower price. Check the rewards at the right column.
The goal of 250.000 is the minimum to make SMACH Z real, but to make it more awesome we need all of your support.
Know someone who would be as hyped as you are about SMACH Z? Share our campaign with them. We also have cool rewards for all the backers when we will reach Social goals:
1,000 shares: Exclusive SMACH Z wallpaper
5,000 shares: Digital SMACH Z Christmas card.
10,000 shares: Exclusive SMACH Z sticker for all the backers.
SMACH Z will open a new window for game developers to distribute their games. Even if all PC games will be compatible, we're willing to work with developers to help to adapt the games to SMACH Z.
Additionally, we'd also love to have games designed specifically for our platform too. Every SMACH Z is a dev kit, and you don't need to purchase a license or SDK. But if you are a developer willing to develop for SMACH Z, take a look to the Developer's Perk: It grants access to full development support, in the technical side as well as on the marketing for gaining visibility on our platform.
We really hope SMACH Z will bring more opportunities for Indies, to innovate and experiment with new ideas.
"That thing looks great! I hope it works out!" - Terry Cavanagh - VVVVVV developer
"SMACH Z looks interesting and you seem to have found a space in the gaming world to fill." - Vishnu Vijayakumar - Tale Worlds - Mount&Blade developer
"The concept sounds fantastic!" - Andy Schatz - Pocketwatch Games - Monaco developer.
"Smach Z's portability and power really bring something to the table that other Steam Machines don't. Can't wait to have one of these in my hands". - Enrique Corts - Super Mega Team - Rise&Shine developer.
"This looks awesome!" - Alex Nichiporchik - TinyBuild Games - Party Hard developer.
Case Prototype: The current case prototype is fully functional and has a similar look but it's not the final form factor and it has not the final hardware:
It uses a Bay Trail SoC with 2GB RAM.
It's bulkier and heavier than the final form.
All controls and functionality works.
It runs Windows.
It's using clickARM.
It's capable to run old 3D games such as Left4Dead 2 and Half-Life 2 at 15 FPS natively.
During the Gamescom the case prototype was not 100% complete and had problems in the energy system. Because of that it only run some small games.
Here you can see some images of the "making off":
And here finally working:
AMD Merlin Falcon development board: This is a different prototype that demonstrate the power of the final hardware. It's not encapsulated, it's a board with the final SoC configured with the same settings, and RAM as the final console will have.
Note: When testing framerate and performance we're using the AMD board. If in the videos is shown the case prototype is because we're streaming from the AMD board.
Since the first announcement of the project a year and a half ago, we've been listening to all your suggestion to improve SMACH Z:
6" Screen. We run a poll and the results where very clear. You prefer a larger screen and that's the bigger change from the original design.
1080p screen: 720p is more than enough for a 6" but with a little bit more we can go full HD.
64GB storage capacity: 32GB is a quite short for so many awesome games. This one is a priority for us.
Windows 10: You want all your Windows only games on your SMACH Z and we will work on supporting it too.
Battery Life: 5h are great, but extra batteries are your only salvation on a long travel.
DPad: Classic controller has been one of the most demanded features. We are confident that with the Z-Pads everybody will be happy and we plan to continue listening to your feedback. All the backers will be invited to participate in the development forum to give feedback and vote for SMACH Z features. For example, choosing the colors of certain models.
Lower Kickstarter goal: We've been looking for private investors to reach the goal and be able to go on.
We still need to work on the final version of the console, for 6 months, updating the form factor, integrating the final hardware and implementing the final cooling system.
Prototype production: April-August 2016
Final unit production: September 2016-February 2017
Shipment to backers: April 2017
Launch to market: December 2017-Q1 2018
Any reward has to add 5€ shipping to United States and European Union or 10€ for the rest of the world. However, if we get to the Stretch Goal shipments will be free for everyone! If you have any doubt related to shipment to your country send us a message at email@example.com
SMACH Z will fulfill European standards. We stand firmly behind our product. SMACH Z includes a 2 year limited warranty. For more information, please see:
If you need help, during or after the campaign has closed, you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org
SMACH Z is being developed by a team of experienced video game industry developers, in association with a hardware manufacturer (ImasD), with more than 10 years of experience. ImasD is expert in designing and manufacturing mobile devices, such as tablets and consumer hardware, based in a patented technology: ClickArm. We’re excited to work together building a new console that will revolutionize the way people play Steam games.
The investors backing SMACH Z are Mola Factory and other undisclosed private investors. Mola is a tech venture holding focused on the Internet and technology companies to give them financial support and know-how. For more information: www.mola.com
You are also part of the SMACH Team: Join us in the project to bring PC games out of the house! The more we raise, the more we can do: Help us to make it REAL!
Steam™ name and logo are property of Valve® Corporation. All trademarks are property of their respective owners. Liability disclaimer: SMACH Z project is not being developed by Valve® Corporation. SMACH Z project doesn't have any connection to Valve® or Steam™. SMACH Z is not a official Steam Machine™.
Risks and challenges
Building the cased prototype has been a good exercise to anticipate problems and challenges. One of the main focus of our work on the final version will be keeping temperature low only using passive cooling.
We will Thank You on our website for helping us to make it happen! Also we want to invite you to our forums where you get a place to talk about SMACH Z, send suggestions, and interact with the community.
GOLDEN SMACH (16 GB RAM) WITH NAME ENGRAVED + Carrying case + T-Shirt.
Get the legendary GOLDEN SMACH Z PRO with even more RAM (16GB) and engrave the sentence you want in the back of the console. Note: If you don't like the golden color, you can choose another one.
The Golden Edition is a very limited Edition!
NAME ENGRAVED IN SMACH Z + DINNER WITH SMACH TEAM + Beta SMACH Z + Developer Support for life + Golden SZ with name engraved + Carrying case + T-Shirt
This is the ultimate pack. We really want to thank you for your generous pledge in person, inviting to dinner with our team. Also the entire first production run of consoles will have your name engraved in the back.
This is a special pack for shops and distributors that want to be able to offer SMACH Z exclusively in first. Contact us if you want a specific combination of colors. Shipping and customs to be arranged directly with SMACH Team.