Ten months after the PlayStation 5 hit retailer cabinets, Sony launched a software program replace that unlocked the console’s storage enlargement slot. Initially, the PS5 supplied solely 667GB of area for storing your video games, with no technique to improve that. Whereas that was fantastic for some players (like me), others (like my son) had been pressured to carry out a near-daily juggling act that concerned ceaselessly deleting and redownloading video games because of the console’s low SSD cupboard space and the obvious must have fixed entry to each Name of Responsibility sport.
Now, you’ll be able to improve your PS5’s obtainable storage by putting in a regular PCIe Gen4 x4 M.2 NVMe SSD. If that mess of acronyms has you recoiling, don’t fear, you’ll see that it’s not all that difficult, and if you wish to know that are the very best SSDs for the PS5, you’ll be able to skip to the tip for our high picks.
Learn extra: These are the very best SSDs in 2023
How a lot storage do I want?
The PS5 will settle for inside drives between 250GB and 4TB in capability. In the event you already personal a PlayStation 5, likelihood is you have got an inexpensive concept of how a lot storage you want in your sport library. In the event you’re shopping for an SSD with a brand new PS5, or shopping for for another person, it’s tougher to inform what you would possibly want for a high-performance expertise.
PS5 video games are just a little smaller on common than their PS4 equivalents, sometimes taking over between 30GB and 100GB, with some notable (and highly regarded) exceptions. In the event you’re a fan of the Name of Responsibility sequence, putting in Trendy Warfare II and Warzone 2.0 would require greater than 200GB. In different phrases, a full Name of Responsibility set up will take up virtually one-third of the PS5’s inside storage. In the event you’re not a CoD fan, although, likelihood is you’ll be good to retailer between six to 10 video games in your PS5 internally earlier than working into issues.
One further factor to think about is your web pace. In the event you stay in an space with sluggish broadband, the “you’ll be able to simply obtain it once more” rationale doesn’t actually work out. At my outdated house, a 100GB obtain took me round eight hours, throughout which period it was troublesome to concurrently watch Twitch or, say, publish articles about upgrading PS5 SSDs. Protecting video games round on the off-chance you’ll wish to play them sooner or later is sensible.
Off the bat, there’s principally no level in going for a 250GB drive. Economically, 250GB drives aren’t that less expensive than 500GB ones, and virtually, that basically isn’t numerous area for contemporary video games to stay on. 500GB drives, coming in at round $80 to $140, are an honest guess, however the candy spot for many is to go for a excessive capability 1TB drive, which ought to run you between $160 and $250. That may greater than double the PS5 storage you have got obtainable for video games with out breaking the financial institution. (Seagate’s official 1TB Xbox Sequence enlargement card, for comparability, sells for $220.)
When you have the cash, 2TB drives generally supply marginal financial savings per gigabyte, and may typically be discovered when different fashions are out of inventory. Until you’re rolling in money and wish to flex, 4TB fashions ought to principally be averted, as you’ll find yourself paying extra per gigabyte than you’d with a 1TB or 2TB drive.
One ultimate notice: Whereas the 825GB PS5 solely supplies 667GB of storage, that’s largely as a result of storage being reserved for the working system and caching. In the event you set up a 1TB SSD, you will have, inside a margin of error, 1TB of storage obtainable for video games.
Are you able to play PS5 video games on exterior SSD?
These exterior exhausting drives come at a a lot lower cost level than the high-end inside SSDs, however there are restrictions on what you are able to do with them. An exterior SSD connects to your PS5 through USB, and is just appropriate for taking part in PS4 video video games, or storing PS5 titles. That is helpful in case you have something however the very best high-speed web — it’s quicker to maneuver a PS5 sport out of “chilly storage” on an exterior drive than it’s to re-download it — or simply need a lot of PS4 video games handy.
As a result of limitations right here, you don’t want the highest-performing mannequin, though it is best to go for SSDs over HDDs for improved switch speeds and cargo occasions. Any fundamental transportable drive from a good model will do, with the Essential X6 and Samsung T5 being choices we’ve tried and may advocate.
PS5 suitable SSD playing cards
The official reply to this query is an “M.2 Socket 3 (Key M) Gen4 x4 NVME SSD.” However even inside that seemingly particular description, there are nonetheless extra issues to think about. The primary necessities Sony has laid out for compatibility come down to hurry, cooling and bodily dimensions.
For pace, Sony says drives ought to be capable to deal with sequential reads at 5,500MB/s. Early testing confirmed that the PS5 would settle for drives as sluggish as 4,800MB/s, and that video games that faucet into the SSD recurrently — akin to Ratchet & Clank: Rift Aside — would trigger no points. Just about the one factor the PS5 will outright reject is one that does not match the Gen4 x4 spec.
In our opinion, although, utilizing a drive slower than the specification is a threat that, should you don’t have already got that drive mendacity round, will not be value taking. Simply because we haven’t discovered points but, that doesn’t imply there received’t be video games that shall be problematic sooner or later. The value distinction between these marginally slower Gen4 drives and those that meet Sony’s spec will not be big, and it’s possible you’ll as properly cowl all of your bases.
Barely extra difficult than pace is cooling and dimension. Most new SSDs are going to be simply fantastic; the PS5 can match 22mm-wide SSDs of nearly any size (30mm, 42mm, 60mm, 80mm or 110mm, to be exact). The overwhelming majority of drives you discover shall be 22mm large and 80mm lengthy, so no downside there.
It needs to be famous that the system can match a 25mm-wide drive, however that width should embody the cooling resolution. Talking of, Sony says SSDs require “efficient warmth dissipation with a cooling construction, akin to a heatsink.” The utmost peak supported by Sony’s slot is 11.25mm, of which solely 2.45mm will be “under” the drive. This beforehand meant a few of the hottest heatsinked Gen4 SSDs, together with Corsair’s MP600 Professional LPX and Sabrent’s Rocket 4 Plus, wouldn’t match inside the PS5’s storage enlargement slot. Since Engadget first printed this information in 2021, most NVMe makers, together with Samsung, have come out with PlayStation-specific fashions that deal with these issues.
That mentioned, if you wish to avoid wasting cash, naked drives are sometimes less expensive, and it’s trivial to discover a cooling resolution that can work for the PS5.
The one element in an NVMe SSD that basically requires cooling is the controller, which with no heatsink will fortunately sear a (very small) steak. Most SSDs have chips on just one aspect, however even on double-sided SSDs, the controller is prone to be on high, as producers realize it must be positioned there to higher dissipate warmth. So, head to your PC element vendor of alternative, and decide up principally something that meets the beneficial dimensions. An excellent search time period is “laptop computer NVME heatsink,” as these shall be designed to slot in the confines of gaming laptops, that are much more restrictive than a PS5. They’re additionally sometimes cheaper than those labeled as “PS5 heatsinks.”
One advice is that this $7 copper heatsink, which attaches to the SSD with sticky thermal interface materials. It really works simply fantastic, and actually, performing stress assessments on a PC, we couldn’t discover something metallic that didn’t hold temperatures underneath management. Whenever you’re looking out, simply make certain the answer you go for measures not more than 25mm large or 8mm tall together with the thermal interface materials and has a easy methodology of set up that’s not going to trigger any complications.
Now, if all of that was very boring, listed below are some ready-to-go suggestions for the very best SSDs for PS5:
Finest SSD for the PS5: Corsair MP600 Professional LPX
The Corsair MP600 Professional LPX makes it to the highest of our record for checking all of the containers. It’s quick, providing wonderful efficiency and browse speeds of as much as 7,100MB/s. It comes with a pre-installed SSD heatsink and in addition ships with a five-year guarantee. Better of all, the MP600 is inexpensive. In latest months, the 1TB variant has offered for lower than $100 (though it sometimes is available in at $185), whereas the 2TB mannequin will set you again about $210.
$70 at Amazon$90 at Finest Purchase
Finest funds SSD for the PS5: Essential P5 Plus
If you wish to save a bit of cash by putting in your personal heatsink, a Essential P5 Plus NVMe is the very best funds possibility. With learn speeds of as much as 6,600MB/s, the P5 Plus is just marginally slower than our high decide, and you’ll ceaselessly discover the 1TB mannequin for as little as $80 when it’s on sale. Count on the 2TB variant to set you again about $180 when on low cost.
$46 at Amazon$81 at B&H Picture
One other good possibility: Samsung 980 Professional
In the event you’re not accustomed to corporations like Essential or Corsair and wish to go together with a extra recognizable model, there’s no larger participant within the NVMe area than Samsung. The corporate just lately started promoting a built-in heatsinked model of its highly-regarded 980 Professional SSD. It’s dearer than a few of the different NVMe drives on this record, however not dramatically so. You possibly can count on to pay about $230 for the 1TB mannequin (or round $110 when it is on sale) and $200 for the 2TB model.
$70 at Amazon$110 at Samsung
One other good possibility: Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus
Of all of the SSDs on this record, the Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus is probably the most fascinating. It comes with a singular heatsink that you just set up rather than the storage enlargement slot’s metallic cowl. Sabrent claims this design improves cooling efficiency. Pricing falls in keeping with Samsung’s providing, with the 1TB variant coming in at round $160 and the 2TB mannequin costing $300.
$140 at Amazon$210 at B&H Picture
One other good possibility: PNY XLR8
If Sabrent’s design is interesting to you however you’ll be able to’t discover the Rocket 4 Plus for an honest worth whenever you go in search of one, PNY affords the same cooling resolution with the PS5 model of its XLR8 NVMe. Yow will discover the 1TB mannequin for about $107. Count on the 2TB mannequin to set you again about $190.
$84 at Amazon
One other good possibility: WD Black SN850
The SN850 is one other plug-and-play possibility for the PS5, providing sequential learn speeds in extra of the console’s compatibility necessities and an built-in heatsink. Western Digital sells a Sony-licensed mannequin of the SN850 that is available in 1TB and 2TB variants. The previous ought to set you again about $180, whereas the latter prices about $300.
$100 at Amazon
Tips on how to set up an SSD into your PS5
Earlier than making an attempt so as to add extra storage to your PS5, guarantee that you’ve Sony’s newest software program put in. When you’re up-to-date, set up of a PS5 SSD is pretty simple. Sony recommends a #1 Phillips or crosshead screwdriver, however this is not rocket science. Any crossed screwdriver of the same dimension will do fantastic.
1. Energy every little thing all the way down to take away the stand
Start by powering down your PS5, unplugging every little thing, eradicating the stand and flipping it over to its underside. When you have the common PS5, that’s the aspect with the disc drive; in case you have the Digital Version, it’s the aspect with out the PlayStation emblem cutout.
Sony has a video information to popping off the skin cowl right here, however the gist is you gently elevate up the opposing corners and slide the panel towards the flat finish of the console. There’s a knack to this, and it requires little or no effort or energy. In the event you’re not getting it, fairly than pressure it simply readjust your grip and take a look at once more. A member of our video staff managed to interrupt one of many tabs on our assessment unit doing this prior to now so… yeah, don’t pressure it.
2. Entry the drive bay
When you’ve acquired every little thing open, you’ll see an oblong piece of metallic with a screw holding it in place. Take away that screw, and also you’ll be capable to entry the drive bay.
You’ll see 5 holes inside, every numbered akin to the usual SSD drive lengths I discussed earlier. The one numbered 110 may have a metallic insert and screw inside. It is advisable unscrew the screw with a screwdriver, after which unscrew the insert along with your fingers and transfer it to the related gap. Your eyes ought to let you know which is the fitting one in your drive, but it surely’s most definitely going to be 80.
3. Slot within the SSD
Then take your SSD — mine is a 980 Professional I purchased on Prime Day with a $2 piece of aluminum hooked up to the highest — and slot it in. The slot is on the edge closest to the quantity “30,” and SSDs are keyed to solely slot in a method, so once more, no pressure is required. If it’s not sliding in, don’t pressure it. You’ll discover the SSD doesn’t sit flat — that’s fantastic, and is as supposed.
4. Screw the drive bay again in
As soon as the SSD is seated, take the screw you faraway from the insert, line it up with the little notch on the finish of your SSD, and push down so it meets the insert. Give the screw a number of turns — it doesn’t should be very tight — and also you’re completed.
Substitute the metallic cowl and screw it down, after which slide the plastic outer shell again on. Whenever you first activate the PS5, it’ll immediate you to format the drive. Try this! You may have now efficiently expanded your console’s storage, and may set about downloading and shifting video games to it. Personally, I moved the entire PS4 video games I needed to the brand new drive, together with all of my clips and screenshots. The PS5’s built-in SSD is all the time going to be probably the most compliant, so I’m maintaining my essential stuff there.
We’ll be updating this information as extra SSDs come to market and onto our check bench, so be happy to bookmark it for whenever you want it.