While the Steam Deck has proven to be a huge hit with consumers, there has been a recent popularity in a seemingly simply mod that allows users to replace the included M.2 SSD with a larger capacity storage device. – Now admittedly, the 64GB, 256GB, and 512GB variants you can purchase it with are pretty meagre by today’s gaming standard. As such, upgrading to something more substantial is probably a tempting idea to many.
Following a Twitter post by the Steam Deck’s designer (@lawrenceyang), however, he has strongly advised people to not attempt this mod!
Steam Deck Designer Warns Against SSD Mod
The mod itself does appear to be a relatively simple process. The existing M.2 drive can (seemingly) be quite easily removed and then subsequently replaced by a larger capacity 2242 drive with the only ‘modding’ requirement being the relocation of a few thermal pads and cables. Overall, it seems quite a straightforward thing to do that even a basic user could probably accomplish without any problems (other than, of course, probably completely invalidating your warranty).
According to the Steam Deck designer, however, loss of warranty is possibly one of the least things users attempting (or considering) such a mod should consider. They seem pretty adamant that applying this change is going to be a pretty bad idea if not in the short term, then potentially over the long-term lifespan of the system.
Why? Well, because larger capacity 2242 M.2 storage devices require more power which may, by proxy, produce more heat than the system can handle.
Hi, please don’t do this. The charger IC gets very hot and nearby thermal pads should not be moved. In addition, most 2242 m.2 drives draw more power and get hotter than what Deck is designed for. This mod may appear to work but will significantly shorten the life of your Deck. https://t.co/Kmup7Zov13
— Lawrence Yang (@lawrenceyang) June 25, 2022
What Do We Think?
Overall, while modding the Steam Deck to get a larger amount of storage space might be a tempting (and seemingly easy) process, it seems pretty clear that, direct from the Twitter feed of the person who created the system, this is probably going to be a bad idea in the long run. – Overall, as much as even I might be tempted to give this a whirl, I don’t think I’d like to risk not just losing my warranty, but also potentially eventually having the internal components of my Steam Deck slowly cooked to death.
Admittedly, good quality 2242 M.2 storage devices may not represent as big a problem as less expensive alternatives. Given that most people would probably plump for the latter though, I think this goes beyond the designer attempting to ‘cover’ any perceived shortfalls in their creation. Overall, this just sounds like good advice!
What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!