Best SSD for PS5 2021 •

Best SSD for PS5 2021 •

Months after the launch of the PS5, Sony has finally confirmed the requirements for PS5 SSDs. This means that once a future software update is released, you will be able to install your own drive in the internal PS5 expansion slot and significantly increase the amount of space available for PS5 games. Previously, only external drives were supported on the console, so this is a big step forward – and a long-awaited feature for owners with a large collection of PS5 titles.

Unlike Microsoft, Sony does not manufacture its own official discs in a single form factor; instead, standard NVMe PC SSDs from a wide variety of manufacturers will work – as long as the drive is fast enough and physically fits inside the PS5. This should make upgrading your storage cheaper in the long run, and you may even have a compatible drive on your PC already. Unfortunately, the requirements are a bit complicated, so we’ve put together this blog to explain those requirements and recommend the best SSDs that work in your PS5.

Update (30/7): Added more compatible SSDs, including the cheapest compatible drive we’ve found so far.

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Before we get into the PS5 SSD recommendations, let’s take a look at the requirements. First of all, only the fastest SSDs are officially recommended: NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSDs with a sequential read speed of 5500MB / s or more. (Drives this fast have only been available since last fall.) These drives use a compact M.2 form factor and are 22mm in diameter, and can range from 30mm to 110mm in length (most drives general public are 80mm long, a form factor also known as 2280). So far everything is pretty straightforward – but the tricky part is yet to come.

The most onerous requirement is that your PS5 SSD must have a heat sink or other cooling device, which must fit into the shallow slot that Sony has provided for the internal expansion. The combined drive and heat sink should be 11.25mm (0.442 “) or less, which excludes some drives that come with non-removable heat sinks taller than that. There are even specific requirements as to where this height can be – there is 2.45mm of space under the SSD for the heatsink and 8mm above, so thick-bottomed (!) heat sinks may not work even if their overall height is in accordance with specifications.

This means that you will either need to purchase a drive with a short heatsink already installed – like the WD SN850 ($ 250/£ 218) or Seagate FireCuda 530 ($ 255/£ 220) – or buy a drive without a heat sink, then add one yourself, before installing the newly upgraded drive in the PS5.

These drives are expensive, normally selling for north of $ 200 / £ 200 for a 1TB model, but unfortunately that’s not unusual for a drive of this caliber – and demand may well see these prices rise for a while. short while everyone is rushing to upgrade their PS5. We have an full list of recommended drives and heat sinks below, but let’s take a look at Sony’s requirements in their entirety first.

PS5 SSD System Requirements

Interface PCIe Gen 4.0 (x4) M.2 NVMe SSD Capacity 250 GB, 500 GB, 1 TB, 2 TB or 4 TB Heatsink required – integrated or added yourself Sequential reads 5500 MB / s recommended Format 2230, 2242, 2260, 2280 or 22110 Total size with heat sink 110 x 25 x 11.25 millimeters
4.33 x 0.984 x 0.442 inches Maximum heatsink height (below SSD) 2.45 millimeters
0.096 inches Maximum heatsink height (above SSD) 8 millimeters
0.314 inch


That’s about all that is important, but you can have a see full Sony requirements here, which also include advice on the installation procedure. For what it’s worth, I installed a few drives to verify that they would physically fit, and the process is very straightforward – remove the shell from the PS5, unscrew the drive cover, remove the drive screw and the spacer, put the spacer in position marked 2280, insert the drive, screw it through the spacer, then replace the drive cover and shell. All in all, it will probably only take a few minutes for most newcomers, so don’t worry too much about it!

Best PS5 SSDs

As you can see from the table above, there are a lot of requirements, especially when it comes to the size of the heatsink, but a good selection of compatible drives should be available very soon. We are still contacting the disc manufacturers to confirm which discs will be 100% compatible and we look forward to testing the new features ourselves, but for now, here are discs that meet the requirements listed by Sony:

Seagate FireCuda 530 (heatsink version available) – $ 255/£ 220 for 1 TB Western Digital Black SN850 (heatsink version available) – $ 250/£ 218 for 1 TB Gigabyte Aorus NVMe Gen 4 7000S – $ 199/£ 188 for 1 TB Patriot Viper VP4300 – $ 225/£ 210 for 1TB Samsung 980 Pro (requires additional heat sink) – $ 199/£ 178 for 1TB Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus (requires additional heat sink) – $ 199/£ 199 for 1TB Corsair MP600 Pro (requires shorter heat sink) – $ 199/£ 185 for 1TB Inland Performance Plus (requires shorter heat sink) – $ 189 for 1TB Adata S70 Gammix (requires shorter heat sink) – £ 151/$ 159 for 1TB MSI Spatium M480 – no list of retailers at this time.

Note that the Aorus NVMe drive is listed as 11.4mm high, just above the maximum height of 11.25mm, but I have tested the same heatsink with a drive inserted and it seems to fit correctly, not preventing installation of the drive cover. It is possible that Sony’s threshold is a bit conservative, or that a small air buffer is needed for the drive to cool sufficiently. We’re leaving it on our list of recommendations for now, and aim to test it as soon as possible.

Likewise, the Corsair MP600 Pro is fast enough to run, but comes with a 15mm heat sink – luckily it’s easily removable and can be swapped out for a shorter alternative for minimal expense (under £ 10/10). $), see below.

We’ll be adding more readers to this list as we find them, so stay tuned! If we missed one let me know on Twitter – @wsjudd.

Compatible heatsinks for PS5 SSDs

Here are some standalone NVMe SSD heatsinks that should meet height requirements if the information provided by the manufacturers is correct – we’ve ordered a number of them for final confirmation!

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What is the best external SSD for playing PS4 games on PS5?

If you’re in the mood for an external SSD for playing PS4 games, be it on PS5 or PS4, we’ve got a few thoughts on that.

See our full best portable SSD recommendations here for our selection of the fastest drives – or our best external drives for PS4 article here, if you also want recommendations for slower but cheaper external hard drives.

We’ve also included quick “where to buy” links below for the US and UK if your ad blocker is disabled (thanks!). Keep in mind that these drives work great on PS5, but you can only run PS4 games from external drives, even external SSDs like these.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do [some SSD] work with the PS5?

If it meets specifications and physically fits into the SSD slot, there is no reason not to. Keep in mind that most drives do not ship with the thin heatsinks required here, so you may need to ignore drives with large heatsinks preinstalled or add a heat sink to drives that do not come with one. . If you find a drive that seems to meet spec, let me know in the comments or on Twitter (@wsjudd) and I will update the article accordingly.

Does the console come with the spacer and screw?

Yes, the spacer and screw are preinstalled to fit the larger drive size supported by the PS5 (22110). You will probably need to move this to the area marked “2280”, as this fits the vast majority of consumer NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSDs. The screw loosens (surprise, surprise) and the spacer can just be picked up and put into place once the screw is out.

Can I leave the cover open to install larger drives and heat sinks?

Technically, yes, but the metal cover wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t useful. Whether it’s aiding the thermal transfer of heat away from the drive, preventing the ingress of dust or moisture, or a combination of these, it’s best to keep this cover in place if possible. It’s also a pretty thin cover, so removing it wouldn’t significantly increase the number of discs that could fit.

We hope you found this article useful!

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