Valve just issued a warning to Steam Deck owners looking to mod the internal storage. The company has been pretty gracious to users who want to mod the Steam Deck up to this point. The manufacturer allows consumers the right to repair and made it easy to get into the machine and replace components. However, as reported by Destructoid, Twitter user Belly Jelly took it upon themselves to open up the Steam Deck and tinker with the internal storage.
Belly Jelly removed the stock internal storage device, a 2230 M.2 PCIe SSD, and put in a 2242 length model. This created a bend in the SSD when replacing the case, and did not fit entirely. However, it was still able to run fine, even with the bowing created by the tight fit.
Besides this issue, heat build-up concerns are a major worry for Valve. The aftermarket SSD added to the device generates more heat than the stock component. Given that the space is already too tight for it, the additional heat could damage other components over time.
A case of a literal hot swap
Valve states that this internal storage device modification will reduce the life of your Steam Deck. Developer Lawrence Yang advises against it, saying: “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.”
This modification creates some issues, as many could probably tell. Given that the SSD modification creates bending in both the storage device itself, but also the casing for the Steam Deck, it creates a much shorter lifespan for the Valve-made machine. This could create malfunctions with other components, as well jeopardize the integrity of the case itself.
Might as well respond to this, I absolutely agree with this guy.
Mod at your own risk!
I am taking risks by opening the device and working on it, and it is mostly just as a proof of concept.
Thread continues below. https://t.co/upg15Vxmhz
— Belly Jelly (@TheSmcelrea) June 26, 2022
While storage is a massive part of consumer concern for the Steam Deck, it appears the internal storage is not on the list of things Valve thinks you should mod. This may change in the future, as we could see certain manufactures make SSD’s for the Steam Deck.
If you’re looking for higher storage, Valve has three tiers of storage capabilities based on your needs. If 64GB doesn’t suit what you need, then the 256GB or 512GB options sound like worthwhile upgrades to pay for. Of course, we don’t frown upon modifying it, as these modifications could bring stock innovations down the line. Mod at your own risk!