How to Expand Your Storage Space on the PlayStation 5 Console

Key Takeaways

  • The PlayStation 5 comes with a limited 825GB of internal SSD storage, which can quickly fill up with modern game installations.
  • You can expand the PS5’s storage by installing an M.2 NVMe SSD in the console’s expansion slot or by connecting an external USB drive.
  • Installing an internal M.2 SSD provides the best performance, while external drives are more affordable but offer slower transfer speeds.

The PlayStation 5 is an impressive gaming console, offering lightning-fast load times and stunning graphics thanks to its powerful hardware and ultra-fast internal SSD storage. However, with modern games often requiring tens of gigabytes of storage space, the console’s 825GB of internal storage can fill up quickly, leaving you with the tough choice of either deleting games or finding a way to expand your storage capacity.

Internal M.2 SSD Expansion

The best way to expand your PS5’s storage is by installing a compatible M.2 NVMe SSD (Solid State Drive) in the console’s expansion slot. This method provides the fastest possible performance, as the M.2 SSD operates at the same blistering speeds as the console’s internal storage.

To install an M.2 SSD in your PS5, you’ll need to purchase a compatible drive that meets Sony’s requirements:

  • Interface: PCIe Gen4 x4 M.2 NVMe SSD
  • Capacity: Between 250GB and 4TB
  • Dimensions: 22mm wide x 80mm long (2280 form factor)
  • Read Speed: 5,500MB/s or higher

Some popular options that meet these requirements include the Western Digital SN850, Samsung 980 Pro, and Seagate FireCuda 530.

Installing the M.2 SSD

Once you’ve acquired a compatible M.2 SSD, installing it in your PS5 is a relatively straightforward process:

  1. Power off the console and unplug all cables.
  2. Remove the side panel by sliding it off the console.
  3. Locate the M.2 expansion slot near the console’s internal fan.
  4. Remove the expansion slot cover by unscrewing the single screw holding it in place.
  5. Insert the M.2 SSD into the slot at an angle, then gently push it down until it clicks into place.
  6. Secure the SSD by replacing the expansion slot cover and tightening the screw.
  7. Format the new SSD by navigating to “Settings > Storage > M.2 SSD Storage Expansion” on your PS5.

With the M.2 SSD installed and formatted, you can now store and run both PS5 and PS4 games directly from the new drive, effectively expanding your console’s storage capacity.

External USB Drive Expansion

If you don’t want to open up your PS5 or spend the money on a high-speed M.2 SSD, you can also expand your storage by connecting an external USB drive. This method is more affordable but comes with some limitations.

While you can store and play PS4 games directly from an external USB drive, PS5 games can only be stored on external drives – you’ll need to transfer them back to the console’s internal SSD before you can play them.

To use an external USB drive with your PS5, you’ll need a drive that meets the following requirements:

  • Interface: USB 3.1 Gen1 (5Gbps) or faster
  • Capacity: Between 250GB and 8TB

Most modern external USB HDDs (Hard Disk Drives) and SSDs should meet these requirements. Some popular options include the Western Digital My Passport, Seagate Backup Plus, and Samsung T7.

Setting Up an External USB Drive

Setting up an external USB drive with your PS5 is a simple plug-and-play process:

  1. Connect the USB drive to one of the USB ports on the rear of the PS5.
  2. Navigate to “Settings > Storage > USB Extended Storage” on your PS5.
  3. Select “Format as USB Extended Storage” to prepare the drive for use with your console.

Once formatted, you can choose to have PS4 games install directly to the external drive by going to “Settings > Storage > Installation Location” and selecting the external drive.

To move PS5 games to the external drive for storage, simply highlight the game in your Game Library, press the “Options” button, and select “Move Game or App.” Choose the external drive as the destination, and the game will be transferred.

Striking a Balance

Both internal M.2 SSD and external USB drive expansion have their pros and cons. Internal M.2 SSDs offer the best performance but are more expensive and require opening up your console. External USB drives are more affordable and easier to set up but come with slower transfer speeds and the inability to run PS5 games directly from the drive.

Ultimately, the best solution may be to use a combination of both methods. Install a high-speed M.2 SSD for your most demanding PS5 games, and use an external USB drive for storing and playing PS4 games or archiving PS5 games you’re not currently playing.

By taking advantage of the PS5’s storage expansion options, you can ensure that you never have to worry about running out of space for your ever-growing game library.