Western Digital has started sales of its WD_Black P50 SSDs that were announced earlier this year. The drives are aimed at the high-performance market and are among the first peripherals to support USB 3.2 Gen 2x2, which offers a full 20Gbps over a USB-C cable.

The WD_Black P50 Game Drive is an external storage device containing an internal NVMe SSD, with capacities of 500 GB, 1 TB, or 2 TB. The device offers a USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 Type-C interface via ASMedia’s ASM2364 USB-to-PCIe bridge, driving peak interface transfer rates of up to 20 Gbps (2.5 GB/s).

As one of the fastest consumer-grade external SSDs available today and among the first 2x2 devices, the WD_Black P50 SSD is on the cutting edge for USB devices. However, as with the launch of any new USB standard, the market starts at 0 for both hosts and peripherals; so the number of hosts that can actually use the drive at its full interface speed is still very limited. The number of hosts will grow over time – we're already seeing 2x2 controllers show up in new Threadripper motherboards – but for those who do not want to pay extra for the USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 technology, Western Digital does also offer the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD, which uses a more common USB 3.2 Gen 2 interface at 10 Gbps.

Western Digital’s WD_Black P50 external SSDs are currently offered by the company’s own online store with ETA between one and two weeks in the US. The 500 GB version is priced at $149.99, the 1 TB SKU costs $239.99, and the 2 TB model carries a $399.99 MSRP. It remains to be seen whether the drives will make it to retailers like Amazon or Newegg this holiday season, but it makes a great deal of sense for the company to start sales of its high-end product as soon as possible.

Related Reading:

Sources: Western Digital, PC Watch

Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • Supercell99 - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    Me thinks getting this through the TSA could raise some eyebrows
  • mckirkus - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    Would be great if we could see USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 support on prosumer video equipment. You can now get a PCIe card with a 2x2 port so you could make workflows much smoother when editing 4k.
  • Ej24 - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    Is that dumb text really printed on the drive... *facepalm*
    Why is it called "game drive" if no consoles and very few pc's support the standard yet? Who's putting games on it? Personally I'd use it for work, as a scientist I need lots of fast storage. But pulling this out in a meeting with my boss, no thanks. At least it doesn't have red gamer accents?

    Also is this new usb standard compatible with Thunderbolt? Or rather why is this just not a Thunderbolt interface?
  • GreenReaper - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    You could always argue that you work hard, and you play hard...
  • crimsonson - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    Because of TB3 devices will work with computers with TB but not work with devices strictly USB.
    USB3 via USBC port will work with both TB and USB-only hosts.
  • eek2121 - Thursday, December 5, 2019 - link

    Hey, Hey, don't blame us for Intel being a generation behind (at least) on everything technology related. PCIE4, USB 3.2 gen ANYTHING, 7nm, etc...

    On a more serious note, I agree that putting 'gamer' on the device is cheesy. However outside of that I see no other issue with this product. It works on basically any system with USB (including Thunderbolt).
  • Thunder 57 - Saturday, December 7, 2019 - link

    Gaming mobo, gaming RAM, AMD has "GameCache". It's so damn annoying.
  • TheSkullCaveIsADarkPlace - Friday, December 6, 2019 - link

    What could be seen as dumb is printing "game drive" on it and then not doing the obvious thing associated with "game" (or "gaming" for that matter): Drenching the drive in an excess of infantile RGB blinken lights. On the other hand, perhaps some people with a shred of dignity managed to discourage WD's marketing dept. from doing precisely that, and calling it "game drive" was the compromise. A better world in small steps, or so me thinks...
  • chrnochime - Friday, December 6, 2019 - link

    I certainly would not expect ANY scientist to use the term dumb text, at least no self-respecting scientist I know(and I know quite a few) would use such basic vocabulary.

    And would it be that hard, as a scientist to use a sharpie and write over the word gamer? LOL
  • Ej24 - Tuesday, December 10, 2019 - link

    Sharpies are like currency in the lab, highly protected. I wouldn't waste my sharpies on something like this, I'd just wipe it down with some acetone to remove the "juvenile text". There, better?

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now