AYA NEO Next Handheld PC Review: A Steam Deck Alternative

By Duane Beckett
AYA NEO Next
Credit: Amazon

If you’re aware of the Steam Deck, a high-performance handheld gaming computer, then the AYA NEO Next might be an alternative for you:

The AYA NEO Next handheld is a high-end Windows gaming device that has all the components to make it an interesting gadget to own, but is it worth its price tag?

Find out more about the AYA NEO Next handheld PC below:

Aya Neo Next

AYA NEO Next Handheld PC

$2,999+ Amazon

High-performance Ryzen 5800U processor
Up to 2 TB SSD
Many AAA playable Games
Hall effect joysticks and trigger buttons
Up to 16 GB LPDDR4X RAM at 4266MHz
IPS 800p touch display

AYA NEO Next Performance

  • The display on the AYA NEO Next features a touchscreen H-IPS 800p resolution (1280×800). You might be thinking that it’s too low for a 2022 device, but as a 7-inch display, it is crisp and detailed.
  • The integrated Vega 8 graphics GPU and screen resolution are a perfect combination, keeping game performances high.
  • The device includes a Ryzen 7 5800U mobile CPU with a Dual-Core 8 Thread Processor. It is worth noting that this handheld device consists of AMD Zen 3 Cezzane Cores. 
  • Two models are available, the base 16GB RAM and 1TB SSD, or a 32 GB and 2 TB SSD option. The price difference is around $300.
  • Like any game system, handheld gaming devices such as PSPs and Nintendo DSs offer a variable battery life. This all depends on what games you’re playing and the brightness settings. The more graphic intensive the game, the quicker the battery will drain.
  • AYA NEO claims that its 47 WHr battery will last 4-6 hours. But, in max settings, you would only be able to get 3 hours of continuous play. 
  • Surprisingly, the sound quality is fairly impressive. The AYA NEO Next is thicker than previous devices, and this extra space must be packing extra, or more powerful speakers, along with its other upgrades.

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Controls

  • The placement of the AYA NEO Next buttons and analog sticks has improved on this latest model. As such, you can find your way over to the right controls much more easily when navigating your way through games.
  • More importantly, they also respond better and perform noticeably faster since they have a larger motion range and enhanced sensitivity overall.

Build Quality

  • Overall, AYA NEO has significantly improved the design. Compared to previous models like the AyYA NEO Pro, it’s now more rounded and comfortable, with added ease of use and superior quality.
  • The new AYA NEO Next isn’t boxy like older versions and features a similar soft-grip coating on its side panels as used in Steam Decks by Valve.
  • It also doesn’t incorporate trackpads or inconveniently placed buttons. However, you will get horizontal directional keys integrated onto the left panel, with media control keys laid out across a front edge for easy access.

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Is It Worth Checking Out?

While reviewing, we found the price jump around, from the RRP of $1,400 to an insane $2,999:

At $1,400 it is still massively expensive, but if you have the cash to spare, a handheld Windows 11 PC is intriguing. However, we don’t recommend buying the device for $2,999.

There is no denying that the AYA NEO Next offers gamers an alternative to the Steam Deck, with its compact design and bright display. Overall it performs well and is more comfortable than many similar devices:

However, we can’t figure out who or why someone would pick the AYA NEO Next over a cheaper Steam Deck. For this reason alone, the AYA NEO is not Nerdable Recommended.

Pros:

  • Fingerprint Scanner
  • High-performance RAM
  • Smaller than Steam Deck
  • Bright and crisp display

Cons:

  • Pricey device
  • Windows is clunky on a controller

Find out more about the AYA NEO Next on Amazon.com.