Steam Deck has M.2 2230 SSD slot, but Valve does not recommend upgrading it

Published: Jul 17th 2021, 09:38 GMT   Comments

Steam Deck uses M.2 2230 SSD

By far the biggest question from Valve’s Steam Deck announcement was, can the onboard SSD drive be upgraded? Well as it turns out it can, however, it is neither cheap nor recommended.

Gabe Newell responded to a few emails from Reddit Steam community members, who were asking about the Steam Decks SSD. In particular, people were interested whether it makes sense to buy the most expensive variant which comes with 512GB, or rather buy a cheaper model and upgrade the SSD themselves. Valve’s CEO confirmed that the console uses M.2 slot NVMe 2230 drive, which is indeed available on a retail market, but it is not a widespread availability.

Gabe Newell responding to midnight_watch and BernardoOne, Source: Reddit

This email exchange has led to Valve’s updating the official specifications by listing the type of SSD. Valve also made it clear that this drive is not intended for user replacement:

The M.2 2230 form factor is the smallest SSD currently on the market. It is usually not sold separately as most devices are already accommodated for larger SSDs, hence a large number of those drivers being sold on eBay are removed from existing devices. In short, an upgrade to 512GB will easily cost around 200 USD, however, there are instances where used 1TB drives can be found for as little as 150 USD.

In Europe, customers may find KIOXIA M2 2230 drives at reasonably good prices, 512GB upgrade will cost 99.5 EUR while a 1TB model is listed at 185 EUR. This technically allows Steam Deck 64GB to be upgraded to 1TB storage for less than the official 512GB version, however this particular model is offered with an anti-glare screen and a protective case.

Steam Deck is still months away from shipping to customers. At this point, no one has seen the internals of the device. However, there are groups of people already preparing to modify the console. In fact, there is even a Steam Deck Mods page, which is likely to focus on operating system mods and game porting, but one would guess that physical mods are also to be expected.

Handheld Gaming Consoles
VideoCardzSteam DeckOne XPlayerAYA NEO FounderNintendo SwitchNintendo Switch OLED
ArchitectureAMD Zen2 & RDNA2Intel Tiger LakeAMD Zen2 (Renoir)ARM CortexARM Cortex
SoCAMD Van GoghCore i7-1185G7***
Core i7-1165G7**
Core i7-1135G7*
Ryzen 5 4500UNVIDIA Tegra X1NVIDIA Tegra X1
SoC CPU4C/8T @ 3.5 GHz4C/8T * 4.2*, 4.7**, 4.8*** GHz6C/6T @ 4.0 GHz4x A57 + 4x A534x A57 + 4x A53
SoC GPUAMD RDNA2 8 CUs @ 1.6 GHzXe-LP (Iris) 96 EUs @ 1.35 GHzAMD Radeon Vega 6 @ 1.5 GHzNVIDIA Maxwell 256 CUDANVIDIA Maxwell 256 CUDA
Memory16GB LPDDR5-550016GB LPDDR4X-426616GB LPDDR4X-42664GB4GB
Storage64GB eMMC (PCIe Gen2x1)
256GB NVME (PCIe Gen3 x4)
512GB NVMe (PCIe Gen3x4)
512GB*, 1TB **, 2TB *** NVMe SSD512 GB / 1TB * NVMe SSD32GB64GB
Display7″ 1280×800 IPS8.4″ 2560×1600 IPS7″ 1280×800 IPS6.2″ 1280×720
5.5″ 1280×720*
7″ 1280×720 OLED
ConnectivityWi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5, USB 4.0 x2WiFi 6E, Bluetooth 5.2802.11 a/b/g/n/ac,
Bluetooth 4.1
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac,
Bluetooth 4.1
Battery40 Whr15,300 mAh12,300 mAh4310 mAh
Weight669 g820 g650 g400g / 277g*420g
Dimensions29.8 x 11.7 x 4.9 cm28.8 x 13.0 x 2.1 mm25.5 x 10.6 x 2.0 cm23.9 x 10.1 x 1.4 cm
20.8 x 9.1 x 1.4 cm*
24.2 x 10.2 x 1.39 cm
OSSteam OS 3.0 (Arch)Windows  10Windows  10CustomCustom
Release Price399 USD (64GB)
529 USD (256GB)
649 USD (512GB)
1,059 USD*
1,158 USD **
1,599 USD ***
$789 (16G/512GB)
$869 (16G/1TB)
299 USD,
199 USD (Lite)
349 USD
Release DateHoliday 2021June/July 2021March 2021March 2017
Sep 2019*
Holiday 2021
* Standard Edition
** Pro Edition
*** Ultimate Edition
* 1TB model* Lite

Source: Reddit

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