The best external hard drives for PS5 game storage •

With the release of a new PS5 update that finally allows you to move PS5 games to external USB storage, we thought it would be wise to take a quick look at some of the best external hard drives for PS5 game storage.

Before we get into that, if you have already purchased an external hard drive for PS4, you should have no problem using one of these for your PS5 as well. It may need to be reformatted when you plug it in (which will erase all current data on the drive), but after the quick process, you are well on your way.

If you may have upgraded your PS4 with an internal hard drive, you may also want to consider purchasing a cheap hard drive case and converting it to an external drive. It will be a quick and easy solution, but will obviously take your PS4 out of service for any future use – unless you reinstall the old drive.

The best external hard drives for PS5 game storage •

Remember, most importantly, all PS5 games that are moved to an external hard drive are not playable and can only remain there for storage purposes. When you want to play them again, transfer them back to internal storage and apply any new updates. It’s not a perfect solution, but this process will generally be much faster than installing or downloading the game fresh every time.

Following a firmware update in September 2021, you can now also install your own SSD to expand the internal storage of your PS5. Although Sony has not confirmed an official list of PS5 compatible SSDs, they revealed the requirements. Digital Foundry has compiled their own list of the best SSDs for the PS5.

Okay, back to what we’re all here for:

Best external hard drive for PS5

Samsung T5 Portable SSD in blue

After Digital Foundry tested various external PS5 hard drives, they concluded that a SATA SSD is your best bet. This will give you fast transfer speeds when moving PS5 games between internal and external storage, plus load times that compete with (or sometimes even beat) the PS5’s internal storage when running backward-compatible PS4 games.

The only choice you have to make is between a custom-built external drive or an internal SSD with a SATA to USB adapter. The former is a quick and easy solution that is ready to be connected to your console right after unboxing. The latter, meanwhile, requires a little extra step to modify it for external use with an adapter or cabinet – but you can save a little money this way for the same performance.

Wherever you go, these choices below will solve your PS5 storage problems.

The first recommendation is the Samsung T5: a sleek and smart portable SSD. Transfer speeds are up to an impressive 500 MB / s, and the price of a 1TB drive is reasonably reasonable. Of course, you pay a premium for the leap to faster and more robust flash storage, but it has become much more affordable in recent years.

This is the one you should go for if you want the most straightforward solution.

Samsung T5 laptop

If you want to go the slightly more cumbersome route with an internal SSD and adapter, then the Crucial MX500 or Samsung 870 EVO and a Sabrent SATA to USB adapter is what you need. It’s the same amount of 1TB of storage and the same transfer speeds, but it’s possible to save a few cents by buying these separately. You could go for other SATA SSDs from e.g. SanDisk or Western Digital, but Samsung and Crucial drives are considered the best in the pack.

Samsung 870 EVO / Crucial MX500 + SATA to USB adapter

Best external hard drive for PS5

Two versions of Seagate Portable external hard drive side by side

An old favorite, the Seagate Portable is an easy choice for the best PS5 external hard drive thanks to its reliability and affordability. However, as a mechanical drive, the transfer speeds between internal and external storage will be significantly slower compared to an SSD. In addition, all PS4 games you run from will suffer from longer loading times for the same reason.

That said, you get a lot more storage space for the money. A few drives in different sizes are available to buy, though 2TB will probably be the most sensible and value for money. The 4TB version is probably overkill for most, while 5TB is not a bad option if you really want to get the biggest bang for your buck for less than 2p per second. gigabyte.

Different PlayStation-branded versions of this drive are also available – including one that has a Last of Us 2-inspired design – but it’s basically the same at a higher price. There is no need to spend your money on it unless you really want your hard drive to be some sort of statement.

For another option, you may also want to consider Western Digital Elements or the Passport series. These drives usually float around the same price range as the Seagate Portable and will offer similar performance, but can sometimes be a little more expensive.

Seagate Expansion Portable

Cheapest external hard drive for PS5

Toshiba Canvio Basics external hard drive

For a slightly cheaper solution, you can instead go for a hard drive from the Toshiba Canvio Basics series. The minimum 1TB drive is usually around £ 40, so the difference is not that big compared to the external hard drives from Seagate and Western Digital. Any savings help, even if it is small!

It’s a good choice if you do not think you need significant extra storage space or if you are running a smaller game library. That’s probably a lot of us right now given the lack of full-fledged PS5 games. However, people like Returnal and Deathloop are still ready to be released this year – apart from several unfortunate delays – and more PS5 upgrade patches for many last-gen hits and PlayStation exclusives may still come.

Basics of Toshiba Change

Fastest external hard drive for PS5

The Crucial X8 portable external SSD

If you have a little extra money to squirt and want to set yourself up with the fastest PS5 external hard drive out there, then an option is the Crucial X8. A Digital Foundry favorite in their list of the best SSDs for gaming, this one offers speeds up to twice as fast as the Samsung T5. At a much higher price, this drive is probably a bit exaggerated if you just want something for PS5 game storage.

Keep in mind that the value of an external SSD is somewhat limited on PlayStation 5, as you can not run PS5 games from extended storage. That said, you will get some benefit if you think you are going to make a lot of back and forth transfer. Any PS4 game you decide to play from external storage will benefit from fast load times, though this drive will not really be noticeably faster than the cheaper SSD options listed above.

Crucial X8

Overall, these are the drives you should consider if you are planning to get an external PS5 hard drive. If you want to upgrade your internal SSD storage after the update, check out Digital Foundry’s best SSD for PS5 guide. Or, if you’re still looking for a console, you can keep an eye on our page dedicated to tracking all the latest PS5 stock news.

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