When the PS4 and Xbox One first launched, having an SSD big enough for game libraries was only a dream for the wealthy. Now that we are starting the PS5 and Series X generation, SSD technology is much more accessible, even in higher configurations. But there is still something to be said about having massive amounts of storage space, even if it can’t be as fast, and this is where the Seagate FireCuda Gaming Hub comes into the picture.
Much like the Seagate Game Drive Hub, the FireCuda Gaming Hub is a desktop styled hard drive with a gaming flare. Offering storage sizes at 8TB and 16TB, this is a drive made to store gaming libraries, for all your backup needs, or just to hold data when you are not on the road. Complete with RGB lighting that is compatible with Razer Chroma, a simple design and USB-A along with USB-C connections on the front, this is a drive that adapts to many styles of use, all with that particular gaming aesthetic we all know and ‘love’.
“We were also a fan of the USB-C port on the front of the drive; it is a great way to give older drives a way to communicate with modern tech.”
Seagate found a look that works here and have managed to make a relatively compact and well-designed external hard drive, especially for the space it provides. The drive is around 8 inches long, and about 2 inches wide, and only weighs around 2.74 pounds (3 for the 16TB model). The weight does not matter so much, as this is a drive designed to stay on your desk, or entertainment console depending on use. You will need to have a space with a standard plug, since as with all drive this size, you will need to plug in the adapter for it to turn on.
We were also a fan of the USB-C port on the front of the drive; it is a great way to give older drives a way to communicate with modern tech. I am sad Seagate opted for the old-school USB 3 connector, when USB-C has become so ubiquitous recently. Though it is nice that the drive is designed to be used both vertically and horizontally, depending on your needs and configuration.
This brings us to what the FireCuda Gaming Hub is designed for, and if it manages to check off the boxes to fit the market. A lot has happened since CGMagazine looked at the Game Drive, including a new console generation, and as such, the needs of gamers have changed. While standard dark drives would suit most purposes back in 2017, in 2021 the need for speed is on everyone’s mind, and a key selling point for the PS5 and Series X.
This sadly is where the FireCuda Gaming Hub struggles. Sadly, due to the non-SSD nature of the drive, it cannot be used for the newest consoles if you want to play any of the optimized games. Those systems need an SSD solution to ensure everything streams in properly. The good news is they will work for legacy games and will still work with the PS4 and Xbox One.
Doing a range of tests, we found the FireCuda Gaming Hub had a read average of 177MB/s and a write of around 178MB/s in our sequential testing, and 127MB/s and 110MB/s respectively. This is not horrible for mechanical hard drives, but it does limit the ability to play modern games or be a drive I would recommend for playing off of if speed is an issue.
That being said, while SSD prices have come down significantly, it would still be a king’s ransom to get 8TB, heaven forbid trying to get 16TB with SSD’s. Major blockbuster titles need 30-40GB minimum to actually install the base game—a number that is only going to expand as more games include 4K textures and features. That is not even touching on downloaded media or family video. So, a drive like this is invaluable, giving a solid place to store everything when not in use.
“With the massive storage capacity, and a modern ‘gaming’ style, if you need lots of storage, the FireCuda Gaming Hub is a great addition to any desk.”
With the space, it is no surprise the Seagate FireCuda Gaming Hub is a little louder than other smaller hard drive options. Now this is not to say that it will drown out a room with noise, but if you were hoping for a completely silent operation, you may be disappointed. Although the slight noise level is present, overheating is never a concern. While the drive will get warm after significant use, I never noticed it ever getting too hot and it was well within what one would expect for a drive of that size.
While we are living in the age of SSD’s and instant loading games, there is still a place for large drives like the Seagate FireCuda Gaming Hub. It is a notable upgrade from past iterations, and the style and lighting Seagate brings to the table make it an exciting offering, even if speed limits the gaming potential. With the massive storage capacity, and a modern ‘gaming’ style, if you need lots of storage, the FireCuda Gaming Hub is a great addition to any desk.