6 Best External Storage for Steam Deck

The Steam Deck is a game-changer for gamers on the go. It offers the power of a gaming PC in a handheld device. However, with limited storage capacity, it’s essential to have external storage options to expand your gaming library. If you’re looking for the best external storage for your Steam Deck, you’ve come to the right place.

Best External Storage for Steam Deck

In this article, we’ll look at some of the best external storage solutions for the Steam Deck. Each of these storage options comes with its unique features and benefits. We’ll highlight their special features, pros and cons, and pricing. At the end of it, we’ll hopefully be able to help you finalize a product and easily expand your Steam Deck’s storage.

But first, you may want to check out the following:

1. Crucial X6 SSD

  • Capacity: Up to 4TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 800MB/s
  • Weight: 42g
Crucial X6

The Crucial X6 is a compact and affordable external SSD with a capacity of up to 4TB. Its key feature is its portability, making it a perfect match for the Steam Deck. One of the most significant unique features of the Crucial X6 is its remarkable portability.

Weighing just 42g and measuring only 2.7 inches in length, it easily slips into your pocket or bag, making it ultra-convenient for gaming on the go. Whether you’re commuting, traveling, or simply want to bring your Steam Deck to a friend’s place, the Crucial X6 won’t weigh you down.

In terms of performance, this SSD offers speedy data transfer rates of up to 800MB/s read speeds. This ensures that your games load quickly and run smoothly. It’s also available in a range of storage capacities, from 500GB to a whopping 4TB, accommodating a vast library of games.

What We Like

  • Affordable
  • Large capacity
  • Compact design
  • Good speeds

What We Don’t Like

  • No hardware encryption
  • Not as durable as some other external storage devices

2. Samsung T7 SSD

  • Capacity: Up to 2TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 1050MB/s
  • Weight: 58g

The Samsung T7 is another great option for external storage for the Steam Deck. It’s also a portable SSD, but it offers even faster speeds than the Crucial X6. It also has its own security encryption.

Thanks to its USB 3.2 Gen 2 connectivity, the T7 can achieve read and write speeds of up to 1050MB/s, which is significantly faster than traditional external hard drives. This means your games will load quickly, and large files can be transferred in no time. Add to that, the SSD comes in a sleek and durable aluminum chassis.

Apart from the stylish design and fast performance, another standout feature of the SSD is the AES 256-bit hardware encryption. It ensures that your data remains secure, which is crucial when you have a collection of valuable games and personal information stored on the drive.

What We Like

  • Compact and stylish aluminum chassis
  • AES 256-bit hardware encryption for data security
  • High speeds

What We Don’t Like

  • Slightly heavier

3. SABRENT Rocket Nano V2

  • Capacity: Up to 4TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 1500MB/s
  • Weight: 49g
SABRENT Rocket Nano V2

External SSDs are fast, but they’re still a handful in size. If you’re looking for an absolute compact external SSD for your Steam Deck, the SABRENT Rocket Nano V2 is a solid option.

The Rocket Nano V2 is incredibly small and lightweight, making it easy to slip into your pocket or gaming bag. The aluminum build ensures it can handle the occasional bump or drop during your gaming adventures. While the performance is not as high as the brand claims it to be, it still manages to outperform most of its competition at half the size.

However, it does lack advanced features such as hardware-level encryption. Add to that, the SSD also lacks any sort of waterproofing solution. That being said, SABRENT does bundle a silicone case which can add some drop resistance. Despite all that, the fact that this SSD is so portable still makes it an excellent choice for the Steam Deck.

What We Like

  • Extremely compact
  • Good performance

What We Don’t Like

  • No hardware-level encryption
  • Not as durable as some other external storage devices

4. SanDisk Extreme microSDXC

  • Capacity: Up to 1TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 190MB/s
  • Weight: 10g
SanDisk 1TB Extreme microSDXC

If you don’t want to deal with the hassles of having a USB cable dangling off of your Steam Deck, why not opt for a microSD card? In that context, the SanDisk Extreme microSDXC is easily the best microSD card for the Steam Deck.

At a max speed of 190MB/s, it’s definitely slower than the external SSDs on this list. However, it slides into the microSD card slot on the Steam Deck and stays there. As such, you don’t have to worry about plugging it each time and mounting it via SteamOS. Just format it once, and you’re good to go.

Add to that, the Extreme microSD card is available with a high capacity of up to 1TB. Again, while that is slower than an external SSD, remember that you’re getting all this storage in an extremely compact format. That being said, it is a bit on the expensive side. So if you want to save some money, you may want to take a look at some other microSD cards for the Steam Deck.

What We Like

  • High storage capacity in a tiny form factor
  • Decent read speeds for a microSD card
  • No hassles of cables

What We Don’t Like

  • Slower write speeds compared to SSDs

5. SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD

  • Capacity: Up to 4TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 1050MB/s
  • Weight: 63g
SanDisk 2TB Extreme Portable SSD

The SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD is a rugged and high-capacity external drive designed to withstand the demands of gaming on the go. Its unique features make it a compelling choice for gamers who prioritize durability and ample storage

One of its standout features is its robust and water-resistant design. The drive comes with IP55 water and dust resistance. Add to that, it features a durable silicon shell with up to two-meter drop protection. While most external drives require you to carry them in a protective pouch, the SanDisk Extreme can survive it all on its own. However, it’s worth noting that this drive is slightly bulkier compared to some other options.

In terms of performance, the SanDisk Extreme touts max speeds of up to 1050MB/s. It’s also available in a trio of color options to choose from, and a handful of size options to match your gaming library. For those concerned about data security, the Extreme Portable SSD features built-in hardware encryption, keeping your data safe from prying eyes.

What We Like

  • Robust and water-resistant design
  • Excellent read/write speeds
  • Built-in hardware encryption for data security

What We Don’t Like

  • Bulkier than some other options

6. WD_BLACK P50 Game Drive

  • Capacity: Up to 4TB
  • Max Speed: Up to 2000MB/s
  • Weight: 115g
WD_BLACK P50 Game Drive SSD

The WD_BLACK P50 Game Drive is a powerhouse external SSD designed to supercharge your gaming experience on devices like the Steam Deck. Its unique features make it a standout choice for gamers who demand lightning-fast performance and ample storage.

One of the most distinctive features of the P50 is its blistering speed. Equipped with a cutting-edge NVMe SSD, this drive takes advantage of USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 connectivity to deliver read speeds of up to 2000MB/s. Games load almost instantly, allowing you to jump into your favorite titles without delay.

The drive’s rugged and stylish design is another standout feature. It’s built to withstand the rigors of gaming on the go, with a shock-resistant aluminum exterior. This durability ensures that your gaming library remains safe, even during travels or gaming sessions in unconventional settings.

One downside of this SSD is that it’s quite heavy, compared to the rest of the options on this list. Add to that, it is relatively expensive too. However, that’s the price you pay for the best-in-class gaming performance. If you are looking for the best storage option for Steam Deck, this is a solid recommendation.

What We Like

  • Superfast read speeds up to 2000MB/s
  • Stylish design
  • Rugged and durable shell

What We Don’t Like

  • Comparatively heavy
  • Expensive

FAQs on Best External Storage for Steam Deck

1. What type of external storage is best for Steam Deck?

The best type of external storage for Steam Deck is a portable SSD. SSDs are faster than HDDs, so they will provide better performance for gaming. They are also more durable and portable than HDDs, making them a good choice for a handheld gaming device like the Steam Deck.

2. Can I install and run games directly from external storage on the Steam Deck?

Yes, you can install and run games from external storage on the Steam Deck. The Steam Deck’s operating system allows you to install games on both internal and external storage. Make sure to format the external drive to the ext4 file system using the Steam Deck for best compatibility.

3. Are microSD cards a good option for expanding storage on the Steam Deck?

MicroSD cards are a cost-effective way to expand storage and don’t bother you with any cables. However, they are generally slower than SSDs. They are suitable for storing less demanding games or media files

Expand Your Steam Deck Storage

Well, that was our list of the best external storage for Steam Deck. Choosing the right external storage for your Steam Deck depends on your needs and budget. Each of these options provides a unique blend of features to enhance your gaming experience on the Steam Deck. If you don’t mind having a cable dangling around, an external SSD is definitely the way to go. However, if you prefer a more practical one-time solution, you should definitely consider getting a microSD card for the Steam Deck.

Last updated on 09 September, 2023

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