The gaming industry offers really good devices right now: we have PS4 Pro, Xbox One S, PS VR and the upcoming Project Scorpio and Nintendo Switch. That’s exciting, but there’s something missing: customization. Players, in fact, can’t choose the exact device they need, they have to throw it away within 3/4 years and a huge amount of money gets wasted; that’s why people decide to build a gaming PC.
So, what if we had the architecture of a gaming PC in a console case? That’s the idea behind Project Novatio, a revolutionary console to be made by an Italian team. Project Novatio is a hybrid, between a console and a PC, that offers the power of a High-end machine and the comfort of a console. It’s based on a special distro of Linux that will let users play every title available on Steam without compatibility issues, but that’s not even the best part! Novatio is a fully customizable console, so you can basically change every single part of it thanks to its customization modules, building the device you always dreamed of.
Wanna know more about it? You are lucky, since we had the chance to talk with Samuele Bagalà, Hardware Engineer of the team.
Hi Simone and thank you for being here. How did Project Novatio happen?
Hello Luca, thank you for the interview. It happened randomly. Some time ago, I was building a PC for a friend of mine and I noticed that if you get rid of some stuff and make some components smaller, you can have as result a device similar to a console in terms of size. I was literally making a Steam machine. It was cool, but it wasn’t enough. My friend and I wanted to create something unique, and this is how it all started.
What convinced you to make this console? It won’t be easy to achieve your goal as you’ll have to compete with other companies such as Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo.
It’s the strength of our dream that helps us in this path. If you think about the market, you’ll realize that every console available can’t compete with the power and the technology of a PC. We already know that it’s hard to succeed in the gaming industry, but we don’t care. If your idea is innovative, why don’t even try?
How many versions of Project Novatio will be available at launch?
There will be two versions of this console at launch. The standard version aims to compete with other consoles in terms of price, offering, however, a powerful hardware. The PRO version is designed for those who want more. It will be bigger and it will have a better hardware than the standard one.
Project Novatio is based on Linux. This OS offers great performance, but with less compatibility than Windows. So, why have you chosen Linux? And how are you going to fix compatibility problems?
We know that Linux isn’t perfect. However, thanks to our special distro of Linux and a chip installed on the motherboard, Project Novatio will be able to run every game available on Steam, Origin and Uplay. We have chosen Linux because it’s open source and we are sure that the community will be ready to help in every moment.
What about your customization modules?
Linux is open and can be easily be upgraded. We have simply decided to apply this concept to Project Novatio’s hardware. We do think that changing your devices every 5 years is really bad and it’s not correct, so we have created a way to keep your hardware upgraded. It will also be easy to change parts of the consoles since it’s divided into modules and everything you will have to do to change, for example, the video card is pressing a button.
How many teraFLOPS will this console have? Can you detail its specs?
We don’t have chosen yet the company that will build components for this console, so it’s too early to talk about teraFLOPS. Talking about specs, the base version of Project Novatio will have: AMD fx-8350 eight-core processor, 8GB ram, GTX 1050 ti video card and 1 TB hard disk. The PRO version will have instead: i5-6600K processor, 16gb ddr4 ram, GTX 1060 video card, 1 TB hard disk plus 128 GB SSD.
Have you already found partners for this project? If so, when are we going to see the physical console?
We are working with an Italian company called Hydra. If the crowdfunding is successful, we’ll show the first prototypes in spring 2017, releasing the console within the end of the year.
You are gamers. So, what do you think about PS4 Pro and Project Scorpio?
In my opinion, these consoles are useless. They only are more powerful than the previous models, but they have nothing special to offer. They don’t even have exclusive games. I support consoles like Nintendo Switch instead.
Last question. Here in Italy we have already seen projects like Novatio that couldn’t manage to succeed. What makes your console different?
You can only succeed if you are brave enough to risk everything. We strongly believe in this project and we will risk. Project Novatio could change the industry, and if you can dream it, you can do it.
As already said, the crowdfunding campaign for this project will start soon, so if you’re interested in giving your support, go to project-novatio.com.
What do you think about this project? Does it deserve to succeed?
Tell us below!