Steam Deck, Valve’s first handheld gaming device, comes with three storage options as we mentioned earlier. The cheapest version has 64GB of eMMC storage plugged into the PCIe Gen2 x1 interface. Models running PCIe Gen 3 have 256 and 512 GB NVMe SSD options.
At launch, the company announced that the 256 and 512 GB variants will use PCIe Gen3 x4 wide M.2 2230 modules. It looks like Valve made a change to their website by updating the interface width to “PCIe Gen3 x2”.
HardwareLuxx says this change happened in late May. Recently, we have been hearing about the Steam Deck SSD being upgraded or even modified. It seems that it is possible to make some changes in the storage of the device. However, Valve engineers never approve of such changes due to power consumption and thermal concerns.
As for the updated specifications, it is stated that some 256/512 GB devices use PCIe Gen3 x2 interface instead of x4. In various tests, it is said that there is no difference in gaming performance between x2 and x4. Here’s Valve’s full description:
“ Some 256GB and 512GB models have PCIe Gen 3 x2 SSDs. We didn’t see any impact on gaming performance between x2 and x4 in our testing.”
It’s our understanding that some later consoles ship with slower SSDs and the company had to update its product page. Valve is confident that this will not affect game performance. On the other hand, performance can be adversely affected in different applications that use bandwidth effectively.