The Bottom Line
In the last few months alone, Seagate has been rapidly expanding its lineup of gaming driven solutions that live behind the FireCuda brand. We started the year with the FireCuda Gaming Dock, followed by today's FireCuda Gaming SSD, and the recent announcement of the FireCuda 120 SSD.
The FireCuda Gaming SSD is the second Gen2x2 USB solution to hit the lab. While we are still waiting for this new tech to trickle down to mainstream motherboards and PCs with the introduction of Z490, we hope to see more vendors include it before its completely phased out by USB 4.0.
That said, the FireCuda Gaming SSD sits behind 20Gbps USB 3.2 Gen2x2 technology and the USB-C interface while maintaining backward compatibility with previous 5Gbps and 10Gbps USB 3.2 interfaces. We have several capacity options, including 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB, and one colorway that includes a customizable RGB LED with Performance rated at 2000 MB/s.
The MSRP of the 1TB FireCuda Gaming SSD comes in at $279.99 with a five-year warranty.
Packaging follows the FireCuda orange and black colorway, capacity top right with performance mentioned under.
The back goes into more detail with features in several languages.
Unboxing, the FireCuda is a rather small drive a touch bigger than the NVMe it hides inside. Included with the drive is a USB-C cable.
The FireCuda Gaming SSD mirrors the design and aesthetic of the Gaming Dock from earlier in the year with its colorway and RGB lighting on one end.
As mentioned, we do have a USB-C connection for this drive.
Internally, the FireCuda Gaming SSD does use a 510 NVMe solution and an ASMedia bridge.
Seagate Toolkit offers both a backup solution with sync plus, but also control over the RGB functionality of the drive.
You can choose solid or pattern LED along with nearly any color you want in the LED setting.
A quick note before we dive into performance testing, the FireCuda Gaming SSD exceeds the limits of our test system currently with its USB 3.2 gen 2x2 interface. We are testing it in 10Gbps compatibility mode, so performance is reduced.
That said, the FireCuda brings in 1050 MB/s read and 1031 MB/s write pretty easily.
Moving into ATTO, we see similar results with the FireCuda hitting the limits of the interface at 945 MB/s read and 925 MB/s write.
New to our testing is a 200GB data transfer that aims to weed out drives that lose performance during backup scenarios. Even with its reduced interface, the FireCuda is right at the top with the Sabrent drives.
Price/Performance puts the FireCuda right behind the P50 from WD, mainly due to the MSRP being a touch higher.
If you're going for aesthetics for your next portable SSD, hands down the FireCuda wins that battle with its gunmetal exterior, smooth finish, and RGB lighting. Add to this a weighty enclosure with proven internals, and we check the boxes on build quality as well.
Driven by 20Gbps USB 3.2 technology, the FireCuda delivers in performance as well, reaching the peaks of current mainstream 10Gbps tech with ease and in our tests topped at 1050 MB/s read and 1030 MB/s write. As mentioned above, with future platforms, we hope to see 20Gbps USB 3.2 become mainstream, which will allow devices like the FireCuda reach their potential.
Our 200GB transfer test proved quite solid for the FireCuda, staying right with devices like the Sabrent XTRM, a device that is equipped with Thunderbolt 3. Price/Performance puts it right behind the P50 from WD, our only other Gen2x2 solution to this point.
Pricing of the FireCuda is a bit high if we compare it directly to the P50 that comes in at $249.99, $30 cheaper at the time of writing. That said, we do look for the market price to be closer to that $249.99 price point, especially as stock reaches retailers.
Tyler's Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Crosshair VIII Formula X570 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16GB 2x8GB DDR4 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: Corsair Hydro H60 (buy from Amazon)
- Case: Corsair Carbide 275R (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Corsair MP600 1TB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
Seagate's FireCuda Gaming SSD leads the way offering tremendous sustained performance in a sleek and customizable package.
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