Framework, the makers of the modular Framework Laptop, is selling 2TB SSDs for the Steam Deck (opens in new tab). The company is all about offering upgradeability for its own products, so when the opportunity came to pick up a batch of small footprint SSDs suitable for the portable PC to sell on its own store, it took it.
Framework is selling the Western Digital 2TB SN740 2230 for $299 (opens in new tab) in its US store, and $399 CAD (opens in new tab) in Canada. The company says it’s looking into availability in Europe and Australia, too.
It’s pretty handy to have a legitimate place to buy this specific drive, as generally drives of this compact form factor and capacity are not altogether easy to come by from elsewhere.
This 2TB drive would make for a tasty upgrade for even the highest capacity 512GB Steam Deck. In my case, it’d offer a lot more space for the heaps of indies I load onto the device, but if you’re looking to play some triple-A games, those real mighty storage hogs (opens in new tab), this is the sort of upgrade you’ll want to make.
“Since we order a huge number of Western Digital drives already, it’s relatively easy for us to add one more line item and stock 2TB SN740 2230 ones,” Framework says (opens in new tab).
That last bit of code, 2230, is crucial for the Steam Deck. Valve’s company handheld doesn’t accept the longer 2280 format SSDs that we’re used to seeing inside full-size gaming PCs.
It’s a fairly simple system for NVMe SSDs: 22 is the width of the M.2 SSD in millimetres and 30 is the length. That means a 2230 NVMe SSD is a stubby little drive that’ll fit the same socket as a 2280 (80mm long) SSD, albeit without taking up so much space.
There aren’t many high capacity drives in the 2230 format, as they’re just less common than 2280 drives and they still require lots of NAND chips. There are a few though, namely this WD drive and a miniature version of Sabrent’s Rocket drive (opens in new tab). It’s so cute!
If you do end up picking up a compact drive, from Framework or otherwise, you can find details on how to correctly install it over at iFixit (opens in new tab). The whole process should only take 20 minutes to an hour, providing you have the right tools (Phillips head screwdrivers and pry tools), but you want to do it right to ensure your OS is operating properly at the end of it. The thing to note is there’s a little foil cover on the existing SSD that you’ll want to swap to your new one.
As for Framework’s main deal, that’s the Framework Laptop (opens in new tab). We had a chance to check out this modular product last year, and our Dave was mightily impressive with it. It’s a laptop that offers easy-to-switch parts, and that includes key components like the CPU. Dave switched out the 11th Gen CPU in the Framework for a 12th Gen chip armed with only a single screwdriver.