Aya Neo Air: Specs, Price, and Everything You Need to Know

Following on from the success of the Aya Neo Pro and the Aya Neo Next, the Aya Neo Air is set to be the company’s smallest and most affordable console to date, and judging from the response thus far, it’s one of the best handheld emulator consoles going.

Now, Aya Neo has now lifted the lid on what potential owners can expect from the console. If you’re looking to find out everything you need to know, read on to learn more. Alternatively, if it’s high-end power you’re after, the AYA Neo Geek may be what you’re after.

Aya Neo Air Specifications

As is always the case with high-end handheld consoles, there will be several different models of the Air to choose from. And yes, it’s quite confusing.

The easiest way to look at this is there are two different CPUs – the 5560U and the 5826U. The 5560U models will still be great for gaming, but the surrounding tech will be less powerful than what’s seen in the 5826U models.

The 5560U versions make use of Radeon Vega 7 for the graphics, while the 5826U utilizes Radeon Vega 8. Again, think of it as the 5560U models are more affordable but offer less powerful tech. It’ll make selecting your device all that much easier.

There’s also a host of changes in the form of different SSD storage space, RAM, and each model ups the battery capacity the further up the scale you get.

Aya Neo Air Base Model

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5560U Zen 2
  • GPU: Radeon Vega 7 Graphics
  • Storage: 128GB SSD
  • Screen: 5.5-inch – 1920 x 1080 OLED
  • RAM: 8GB DDR4 @3200MHz
  • Fingerprint Reader: No

Aya Neo Air Mid Model

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5560U Zen 2
  • GPU: Radeon Vega 7 Graphics
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Screen: 5.5-inch – 1920 x 1080 OLED
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 @4266MHz
  • Fingerprint Reader: Yes

Aya Neo Air Pro Model

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5560U Zen 2
  • GPU: Radeon Vega 7 Graphics
  • Storage: 512GB/1TB SSD
  • Screen: 5.5-inch – 1920 x 1080 OLED
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 @4266Mhz
  • Fingerprint Reader: Yes

Aya Neo Air Elite Model

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5826U Zen 3
  • GPU: Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
  • Storage: 512GB/1TB/2TB SSD
  • Screen: 5.5-inch – 1920 x 1080 OLED
  • RAM: 16GB/32GB DDR4 @4266Mhz
  • Fingerprint Reader: Yes

Aya NEO Air Price

It’s safe to say Aya Neo is gearing to launch something that sits well into the premium category alongside its previous Windows handheld offerings. An RG280v this thing is not, but then the term “affordable” can be applied to the lower models.

  • Aya Neo Air Base Model: $549
  • Aya Neo Air Mid Model: $629
  • Aya Neo Air Pro Model: $649-$799
  • Aya Neo Air Elite Model: $899-$1400

Now, “affordable” means a lot of things to different people. I’d consider the RG351, at under a hundred dollars, to be affordable but the RG552, which costs over $200, is expensive. That’s because we have to factor in what the console is capable of and what else is on the market.

With the Steam Deck, Valve can sell it at a low cost and subsidise lost revenue through game sales. The same option isn’t as viable for smaller companies like Aya Neo, hence why the Aya Neo Next console costs upwards of $1000.

That said, we’ve seen a lower price is possible. The Ayn Odin (no relation) is the most sought-after retro console on the market, costs between $200 and $300, and can do more than any console in that price bracket.

With the lowest Air console coming in at $549, that’s an awkward space to be in. For the tech, yeah, that’s an affordable price, but it’s still a lot of money. It’s also worth considering the lowest-priced Steam Deck sits at an attractive $399.

Aya Neo Air Release Date

Close up shot of the Aya Neo Air

Image Credit: ETA Prime

No official release date has been hinted at as of yet, but it’d be a safe bet to assume a 2022 launch is possible. While video game hardware companies normally announce products years in advance, the retro handheld scene works a little differently and tends to promote the latest gizmo just a few months prior to release.

As an estimated guess, I’d expect to see the Aya Neo Air launch within the next six months, give or take. Hopefully, we’ll hear something more concrete in mid-May when the product gets revealed properly.

What Games Can the Aya Neo Air Run?

Thankfully, we have a little more to go on in this department. The Aya Neo Air isn’t going to rival high-end gaming PCs, but neither does it need to. From the gameplay reel, Aya Neo released recently, we can see several of the latest releases running smoothly at 720p.

While the gaming reel doesn’t appear to be rendered on actual hardware, it does offer a glimpse of what is and isn’t possible. You can find some highlights from the video listed below.

  • God of War: 720p at 30 frames per second
  • Elden Ring: 720p at around 40 frames per second
  • Dirt: 720p at around 40 frames per second
  • Cyberpunk 2077: 720p at 30 Frames per second

Aya Neo Air vs Steam Deck

It goes without saying nowadays, any handheld consoles, especially Windows-based consoles, are going to be compared with the Steam Deck. Valve’s hardware is the current talk of the town in the retro gaming scene thanks to its powerful tech capable of running a wide range of different emulators.

Below you’ll find the Steam Deck specs for comparison, and now it’s possible to judge the Aya Neo Air just yet, we can get a rough idea of the ballpark Aya Neo is aiming for. It’ll also be interesting to see how the higher resolution of the Air plays a part when the product is announced later this month.

Steam Deck Specifications

  • CPU: Zen 2 4c/8t, 2.4-3.5GHz (up to 448 gigaFLOPS FP32)
  • GPU: 8 RDNA 2 CUs, 1.0-1.6GHz (up to 1.6 teraFLOPS FP32)
  • RAM: 16 GB LPDDR5 onboard RAM (5500 MT/s quad 32-bit channels)
  • Storage: 64 GB eMMC / 256 GB NVMe SSD / 512 GB high-speed NVMe SSD
  • Display Resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels (16:10)

In Conclusion

Aya Neo is one of the most exciting companies in the retro space. Its products are usually expensive, sure, there’s no way around that. But in terms of pure tech, Aya Neo is always at the forefront.

Whether gamers share Aya Neo’s definition of “affordable,” however, remains to be seen.

Wesley Copeland
Wesley Copeland

Wesley Copeland is a gaming, tech, and toys journalist with over 10 years of experience writing online. Originally starting in video games before specializing in tech and toys, you can find his bylines at IGN, VG24/7, Kotaku, Tech Radar, Games Radar, PC Gamer, Heavy, and many more. He's also highly passionate about how tech can be used to better our day-to-day lives.