Calling all Steam Deck users

This is a bit of an odd one, but I wanted to check how folks are using the storage on their Steam Decks (no, we don’t plan to build a Steam Deck competitor).

If you have a Steam Deck:

  1. What capacity did you order?
  2. Are you finding that you need more space?
  3. Have you used a MicroSD card to expand storage, and if so, how has that experience been?
  4. Have you swapped out a larger M.2 2230 SSD, and how was that experience?
16 Likes

I pre-ordered a 512GB Deck, and then later purchased a 1TB microSD as insurance / storage for less-demanding games. 512GB has been more than enough for me, but I don’t have a lot of super-large games I want to play on the Deck, and if I stop playing something I take it off when I’m through with it.
The microSD performance is acceptable but it’s not tremendous - there’s a definite difference between using the internal SSD and the card. It doesn’t manifest so much during game play, more during launch.
I use a SanDisk 1TB UHS-1 card (C10, A1, U1 whatever other ratings that can be crammed onto a storage device).

1 Like

Hi, I ordered the 512gb version and have not felt that I needed more space. I have a 16gb micro SD in there as well but am not using it.

  1. 512GB
  2. Yes, PC games can be ridiculous (FF VII Remake is almost 100GB by itself), and some games need tens of gigabytes free for patching (Monster Hunter Rise, for example). I also have 1530 games in my Steam library, so I could be a bit of an outlier
  3. Steam Deck does a great job with micro sd cards. I use multiple and it’s quick to recognize which games are on the newly inserted cards. Games don’t perform differently when running from the sd card, but installing games to the card is way slower. I actually use my Framework 1TB expansion card to copy games from my desktop PC to my Steam Deck, and doing this to the SSD in the Deck is crazy fast. Only takes a few minutes, even for the biggest games. But writing to the micro SD tops out at like 10MB/s so it’s not much faster than just downloading the game again.
  4. No, I didn’t do that
1 Like
  1. 512gb
  2. Not right now but maybe in the future
  3. I have not used a microSD on it (yet)
  4. No I have not

I have the 512gb and the internal memory is enough for me right now but I’ll probably get a microSD later on.

512 GB.

No, the internal storage and SD card provides plenty.

Yes, I have a 1 TB SanDisk and it works great! I’ve noticed that loading times are a bit slower compared to running on the internal storage, but overall the Steam Deck’s SD card experience is really seamless like the Nintendo Switch.

No.

I think it would be really cool if we could use Framework expansion cards in a modular hub that works with the Steam Deck.

  1. 512 Gb Model
  2. No
  3. Sandisk Ultra 400 Gb
  4. No

I use the sd-card for games exclusively and it works great. I use the internal storage for stuff like music, documents, etc.

  1. 512GB
  2. Sometimes. I need to fight my “game hoarding” habit of not uninstalling games, especially AAA (which are quickly becoming ridiculously large)
  3. Yes, I added a 512GB Sandisk Extreme. I use it mostly for indy/2D games, although as far as I know, the performance difference compared to the internal NVMe is minimal. I also tend to store my files in Desktop mode on the SD card to save space on the internal drive. As for the experience, effortless so far.
  4. Not yet, but it’s definitely planned once 1+TB 2230 drives are common enough.
  1. 256GB model
  2. I run out of space after downloading a few AAA games.
  3. I bought a 256 GB micro SD card and it’s pretty good for most games, unless it’s a really big game that loads a lot of resources (Witcher, Grand Theft Auto V, Tomb Raider). The loading screen is slower compared to the M.2. Once its loaded it’s not noticeable for me.
  4. I haven’t swapped out the M.2 out yet. I don’t think I will open it or mod it unless I have to.
  1. 256 GB
  2. Nope; I store games on my MicroSD card and the games I play tend to be lower in size anyways.
  3. I have a 1 TB card and it’s been pretty seamless. Loading times have been negligible. (Again, I’ve only been playing indie games + some emulated games.)
  4. No, using/swapping microSD cards seems more convenient if I need the space.

Is this just to get an idea before you order your own steam deck? :stuck_out_tongue:

Would be interesting to have the innards of the Steam Deck in a Framework though :stuck_out_tongue:

2 Likes
  1. 64GB
  2. Yes, as I occasionally need to move shader caches and the stuff off the internal to the SD card with a symlink
  3. Yes, I have 3 SD cards at the moment. Swapping them out isn’t a hassle, though with btrfs (for compression) I have to refresh the modified mount script every system update. Sometimes needs a reboot to scan games properly, dunno if related to non-standard fs.
  4. No, although my friend has, and it went smoothly.

I ordered my Steam Deck and Framework right around the same time, and now have both! I’m really happy with my 2022 tech!

  1. 64GB
  2. I’m generally focused with the games I play, so the internal plus SD card has been enough. I may look at upgrading the internal in a year or so.
  3. I have a single 400GB SD card. I haven’t starting running emulators yet, but probably will use a second one to store all that.
  4. Will eventually swap probably after some time and price drops, but not necessary now.
  1. 256 GB
  2. No, tend to put larger/heavier games on desktop (where no amount of storage seems like enough!)
  3. No, but I’m considering picking one up. I’ve heard that a good SD card is plenty Good Enough for games.
  4. No and probably won’t given 3. Doesn’t mean I won’t crack it open though.

Wild guess, considering whether to support M.2 form-factor eMMC cards like the 64 GB Steam Deck has and which are used in Chromebooks?

We’ve seen feedback that it is extremely difficult to find 1TB and 2TB M.2 2230 SSDs. We actually have a really easy path to get them in volume. We want to gauge whether there is interest from Steam Deck customers around that (since they aren’t the right size for Framework Laptop customers).

20 Likes

Oh, that’s awesome. Double checking, are they single-sided drives? It’s not just the 2230 size that’s hard, it’s also that they ideally only have components on the top and not the bottom.

  1. 512GB
  2. Nope. More space would just mean not having to delete my least-recently-played game(s) when downloading a new one but in any given month I’ll only be interested in 1-3 games so rotating which games are installed isn’t a problem.
  3. Not yet, but I am planning on putting all my emulator games on a MicroSD card while leaving the SSD for PC games.
  4. Nope. Not ruling out doing it in the future (perhaps to put emulator games on the SSD) but so far space hasn’t really been a problem.

256GB

Yes

Not yet

I would like to, but replace 2230 NVMEs are hard to get in high strorage capacities.

What capacity did you order? 512GB
Are you finding that you need more space? Yes
Have you used a MicroSD card to expand storage, and if so, how has that experience been?Yes, good
Have you swapped out a larger M.2 2230 SSD, and how was that experience? Yes swapped for pma1 1tb and cut it to size. Wanted 2tb
  1. 512 GB
  2. Not yet, but soon, yes.
  3. No, but am concerned about potential speed issues (especially when using cheaper MicroSDs)
  4. No