WD Black has a new SSD on the way for Steam Deck and Asus ROG Ally

 WD Black SN770M SSD sitting on Asus ROG Ally screen
WD Black SN770M SSD sitting on Asus ROG Ally screen

Looks like Western Digital is about to jump on the Steam Deck SSD bandwagon, as a new WD Black M.2 2230 drive is inbound. Naturally, it’ll also fit nicely within gaming handhelds like the Ayaneo S2 and Asus ROG Ally, and the storage giant seems to be using the latter device to market the new format. However, whether you’ll use it to upgrade your portable powerhouse of choice is a different matter entirely, as it costs a bit more than its rivals.

Dubbed the WD Black SN770M, the new 2230 matches the size of the drive within the Steam Deck and Asus ROG Ally. While Western Digital knows a thing or two about making the best SSD for gaming, this specific option is the first of its kind from the company. That’s not to say there’s a shortage of alternatives out there, as the Sabrent Rocket and Corsair MP600 Mini already cater to the needs of gaming handheld enthusiasts. Nevertheless, it’s nice to see another contender enter the fold, and the new offering packs a punch.

According to Western Digital, you’ll be able to “supercharge compatible handheld devices” using the WD Black SN770M. The company claims the drive boasts speeds up to 5,150MB/s, meaning you’ll potentially be able to speed up load times on your Steam Deck and ROG Ally. Those figures specifically relate to both the 1TB and 2TB variants, and while there’s a cheaper 512GB option available for $74.99, the latter capacities will set you back $109.99 and $219.99 respectively.

The WD Black SN770M isn't ridiculously expensive, but you can more often than not pick up a 1TB Sabrent Rocket drive for under $100. That said, Western Digital’s solution can seemingly hit higher read/write speeds than its competition, which may appeal to prosumers looking to soup up their handheld gaming PC. There are also plenty of other laptops and other devices that use 2230 drives, so portable players aren’t the only group that could make use of this new drive.

Hand holding WD Black SN770M SSD
Hand holding WD Black SN770M SSD

Should you buy the WD Black SN770M?

If you’re looking to take more of your PC library on the go, picking up the WD Black SN770M could help you permanently expand your handheld capacity. That said, it’s important to consider whether you absolutely need more internal storage before splashing out, as microSD cards could help you achieve the same goal for less.

Steam Deck owners might also want to look into the upgrade itself before buying any replacement SSD, including the WD Black SN770M. While upgrading the Asus ROG Ally’s internal storage is relatively straightforward, operating on Valve’s portable powerhouse is a bit more fiddly. Simply put, if you’re not comfortable taking apart your beloved handheld, you may either want to get a professional to install the drive for you or just stick with a new microSD card. That former option could naturally drive up the price of the upgrade overall, and that may mean opting for something cheaper than the WD Black SN770M to keep costs down.

Itching to pick up a new drive right now? We’ve already gone shopping for compatible Asus ROG Ally and Steam Deck SSD options, and we’ve included some of the best deals below.

Not all of the best PS5 SSDs come with a built-in heatsink, make sure to check out the best PS5 heatsinks if you get one without. Need something more Xbox-shaped? Check out the best Xbox Series X hard drives, and the best Xbox One external hard drives for more console storage solutions.