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Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD Review

by Adam Armstrong
Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD

At CES this year, Seagate released a handful of gaming drives to go along with their FireCuda Gaming Dock. Of the other drives announced was the Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD. This is a portable drive that leverages flash NAND as well as the NVMe interface. The drive is aimed at gamers that want to bring extra storage to their games as well as faster performance for booting, level loading, and auto saving.

At CES this year, Seagate released a handful of gaming drives to go along with their FireCuda Gaming Dock. Of the other drives announced was the Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD. This is a portable drive that leverages flash NAND as well as the NVMe interface. The drive is aimed at gamers that want to bring extra storage to their games as well as faster performance for booting, level loading, and auto saving.

Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD

Delving a bit into the hardware, the drive leverages the USB 3.2 2×2 giving it speeds upwards of 2000MB/s. The drive uses the USB-C connectivity, so it will work with most modern PCs, next gen consoles (that should be out soon, though Seagate doesn’t specify the drive for use with consoles), and can work with older model devices through a USB-C to USB-A cord. It can also be connected to the FireCuda Gaming Dock.

Our video overview is here:

The drive ranges in capacity form 500GB to 2TB and MSRP of $200 to $500. For our review we will be looking at the 1TB model.

Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD Specifications

Capacity500GB, 1TB, 2TB
InterfaceUSB 3.2 2×2
ConnectivityUSB-C
Dimensions
LxWxD0.394in/10mm x 2.067in/52.5mm x 4.11in/104.4mm
Weight0.22lb/0.1kg
Warranty5-year limited

Design and Build

The Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD is a nice-looking little drive. It has a charcoal grey coating and is made out of metal, making it feel like it can take a bump or two. It comes with a customizable RGB lights for those that like a fancy feel to their gaming experience. The top of the device has Seagate branding. On one side is the USB-C port along with an activity LED.

Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD port

Flipping the device over, one can see a sticker on the bottom with information such capacity, model number, regulations, and so on.

Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD Performance

To test the Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD we used BlackMagic on a 2019 MacBook Air and IOMeter on a Lenovo M90n-1 Nano IoT. Both of these systems only support USB 3.2 Gen2, not Gen2 2×2. For comparison, we will put the FireCuda up against the Crucial X8 portable drive.

For BlackMagic, the drive was able to hit 857.5MB/s read and 847.9MB/s write. It performed better than the X8 on write (802MB/s) but under the Crucial on read (904.7MB/s).

Moving on to IOMeter, we ran 1 thread and 4 thread testing. We’ll start with 1 thread performance. When looking at 2MB sequential the FireCuda was able to hit 782.9MB/s read and 747.9MB/s write roughly on par with the X8’s 784.24 MB/s read and 760.02 MB/s write. For 2MB random the Seagate drive hit 759.5MB/s read and 748.6MB/s write compared to the Crucial’s 727.33 MB/s read and 752.36 MB/s write. In random 4K we saw 9,770 IOPS read and 18,237 IOPS write much higher than the X8’s throughput of 5,978 IOPS read and 8,435 IOPS write.

Next up we will look at 4 thread performance of the FireCuda alone. When looking at 2MB sequential the drive was able to hit 989.6MB/s read and 932.5MB/s write. For 2MB random the Seagate hit 803.7MB/s read and 924.2MB/s write. In random 4K the portable drive had 25,777 IOPS read and 32,666 IOPS write.

Conclusion

The Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD is a portable SSD drive aimed at the gaming market. The drive comes in capacities up to 2TB and is designed to help gamers see faster boot times, level loading, and auto saves. The drive has a very nice build to it and even customizable RBG lights for those that want to add some pizzazz to the gaming experience.

For performance, we tested BlackMagic  and IOMeter on current-generation systems supporting USB 3.2 Gen2, not USB 3.2 2×2, as we don’t have a model that supports the newest interface in the lab yet. In BlackMagic the SSD hit 857.5MB/s read and 847.9MB/s write. For IOMeter we tested both 1 Thread and 4 Thread. In 1 Thread we saw 2MB score of 782.9MB/s read and 747.9MB/s write sequential and 759.5MB/s read and 748.6MB/s write random. With 1 Thread 4K the drive had 9,770 IOPS read and 18,237 IOPS. For 4 Thread the 2MB scores were 989.6MB/s read and 932.5MB/s write sequential and 803.7MB/s read and 924.2MB/s write random. For 4 Thread 4K random the drive saw throughput of 25,777 IOPS read and 32,666 IOPS write.

The Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD is a nice little portable drive with strong performance, good pricing, and a rugged build.

Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSD on Amazon

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