Steam Deck mod adds dinky external fan to Valve’s handheld PC

External Steam Deck fans are now a thing, thanks to a project that adds USB-C powered cooling to the back of Valve's portable gaming PC

Steam Deck mod with fan on back of shell

A group of Steam Deck enthusiasts have conjured up an external fan for Valve’s handheld gaming PC, in a bid to improve airflow and cooling. Dubbed Project CoolDeck, the unconventional attachment supposedly shifts heat away from the portable’s innards, though some appear sceptical about its usefulness.

Developed by Nupp_Engineers, the Steam Deck mod effectively slaps a wee fan onto the back of Valve’s portable powerhouse. One of the shared photos reveals drilled air holes positioned behind the heatsink, while the fan itself sits atop and fetches power using a USB-C adapter.

In response to airflow concerns, Nupp_Engineers – a team of three from Estonia – claim a thermal camera was used to double-check overheating risks. The fan is also small enough that it won’t interfere with the best Steam Deck dock options, and may even be light enough to avoid contributing to the machine’s overall weight.

Steam Deck mod with vents on back exposing heatsink

There aren’t any details that outline exactly what work has gone into Project CoolDeck. However, from the images alone, it’s quite clear how the Steam Deck has been modded. Nupp_Engineers has also said more information will be coming up in a future post, so that should shed light on things.

Some of you may be wondering whether an extra fan stuck onto the back of the Deck is actually useful. Well, that’s what some in the comments have been questioning. There are those who claim the Steam Deck shouldn’t be overheating at all when used properly, which implies CoolDeck is redundant. That said, the project proves there are nifty ways to externally cool the Valve portable, even if the benefits aren’t that apparent.