valve-quietly-gimps-ssd-bandwidth-on-some-steam-decks-but-says-don’t-worry-about-it
Depending on if you ordered your Steam Deck console and simply plain previous luck of the draw, you would find yourself with a mannequin configured with a downgraded stable state drive (SSD). Affected items lower the out there bandwidth in half, impacting the theoretical most information switch charge. However, Valve says it is no massive deal for gaming.
Valve up to date the Steam Deck’s specs someday in May to reveal the 2 totally different drive sorts. It went largely unnoticed till the parents at Hardwareluxx found the change, which we have confirmed by taking a fast journey within the Wayback Machine. Here’s the itemizing because it appeared initially of May…
And here is what it says now…
Valve sells three Steam Deck configurations. The least costly one ($399) comes with 64GB of eMMC storage will not be affected by this. The two NVMe SSD fashions—256GB ($529) and 512GB ($649)—each doubtlessly are affected by the change in specs.
The SSD fashions make use of a socketed M.2 2230 drive, however as an alternative of rolling solo with PCIe Gen 3 x4, Valve now says that some Steam Decks might arrive with a PCIe Gen 3 x4 drive. What does that imply? PCIe Gen 3 x4 serves up round 4GB/s of bandwidth (1GB/s per lane), whereas PCIe Gen 3 x2 cuts the theoretical max bandwidth in half to round 2GB/s.
That’s disappointing and it isn’t clear why the change was made, although Valve claims it “did not see any impact to gaming performance between x2 and x4” in its testing. We haven’t any cause to not take Valve at its phrase right here, as a result of there’s nonetheless loads of bandwidth and pace on faucet for gaming both approach.
What issues extra for gaming, because it pertains to storage, is having an SSD as an alternative of an HDD. It issues much less what sort of SSD, as long as it is comparatively fashionable. Even a SATA-based SSD goes to carry out nicely, with the quickest fashions topping out at ‘solely’ round 580MB/s.
We’ll see storage speeds matter a bit extra down the road when builders begin profiting from Microsoft’s DirectStorage API in Windows. But we’re not there but and the Steam Deck runs on a customized model of Linux anyway (although you possibly can set up Windows on it).