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Western Digital's Latest WD_Black SSDs Target Consoles, Affordable PCIe 4.0

WD_Black Drives
(Image credit: WD)

While in-person Computex has been canceled, companies still have new product to roll out, and today Western Digital adds a trio of new drives to its gaming-focused WD_Black line. There are a pair of D30 Game Drives targeting next-gen consoles, with one model aiming for the PlayStation 5 market, and a WD_Black D30 Game Drive SSD for Xbox targeting Sony's console competition. But for PC builders and gamers, the internal WD_Black SN750 SE will be of most interest, as it brings PCIe Gen4 support at a starting price of $54.99. But without DRAM, it will probably have a hard time making it to our best SSD list.

But first, let's tackle the console-focused externals. Both models will come in 500GB, 1TB and 2TB capacities, with the Xbox model starting at $99.99 and the more generic WD_Black D30 Game Drive SSD starting at $10 less ($89.99). Both come in typical bulky-looking rugged housings with detachable stands, with the non-Xbox model delivering claimed speeds of up to 900 MBps. This drive will allow you to play and store PS4 games, but only allow for archiving of PS5 games. (The PS5 only plays the latest-gen games from the internal SSD).

The D30 Game Drive SSD for Xbox, meanwhile, will ship with a one-month membership of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to help make up for the slight price difference. Similar to the other drive, you'll be able to play and store Xbox One games on the drive, but only archive Xbox Series X/S titles. WD says the white-accented Xbox-branded drive should arrive in June, while the more generic black model should be available today at "select retailers" and the WD Store.

(Image credit: WD)

Shifting to the new internal M.2 drive, the WD_Black SN750 SE is an NVMe drive that supports PCIe 4.0 (and is also backwards compatible with Gen3). WD says it will deliver read speeds of up to 3,600 MBps. So it's no barn-burner, but WD says it will consume up to 30% less power than the previous SN750, which may help its appeal for laptop gamers. Note, though, that this model will be a DRAM-less drive, which no-doubt helps keep costs (and power consumption) down. 

The WD_Black SN750 SE will start at $54.99 for the 250GB model. Pricing on the 500GB and 1TB capacities has not been revealed, nor is there a mention of a 2TB model. But we're sure to learn more (and hopefully have a full review for you) as we get closer to availability. WD says the WD_Black SN750 SE is available for preorder from WD now, and will land on store shelves this summer.

Matt Safford
Matt began piling up computer experience as a child with his Mattel Aquarius. He built his first PC in the late 1990s and ventured into mild PC modding in the early 2000s. He’s spent the last decade covering emerging technology for Smithsonian, Popular Science, and Consumer Reports, while testing components and PCs for Computer Shopper and Digital Trends. When not writing about tech, he’s often walking—through the streets of New York, over the sheep-dotted hills of Scotland, or just at his treadmill desk at home in front of the 50-inch 4K HDR TV that serves as his PC monitor.
  • salgado18
    3600 Mb/s at PCIe 4.0 should give it the Blue model, not the black. Until now WD's namings have been so clear, a cripled 4.0 Black drive sure messes it up. Maybe it should be a Blue model, or even a Green?
    Reply
  • drtweak
    salgado18 said:
    3600 Mb/s at PCIe 4.0 should give it the Blue model, not the black. Until now WD's namings have been so clear, a cripled 4.0 Black drive sure messes it up. Maybe it should be a Blue model, or even a Green?


    Right? My Thoughts exactly. Like at that point just leave it PCIe 3. Doubt most people will even see a difference. I built a buddy a AMD Ryzen 3700X built like a year- year and a half ago and got then Inland brand of M.2 SSD. It was a 1TB PCIe 4.0. Said it should do like 5900R/5600W and it only 100 MB less than what they said in every test i threw at it and man i could tell a difference. Going SATA to PCIe 3 NVMe, unless on copy large files, i never see much of a difference.
    Reply