What’s the Best External SSD for PS4 Experts Recommend?
External SSDs are all the rage nowadays and there’s no wonder why many PS4 users prefer it over other external storage devices. That’s because now everyone knows that external SSDs are the fastest in terms of file transfer and write/read speed. That means when you get an external SSD for PS4 or for PS4 Pro, you’ll enjoy a much higher level of speed that classical external hard drives cannot offer. Consequently, this will immensely enhance your gaming experience on PS4 if you use the external SSD as an extended storage where you store games/apps and run them from there. For that you’ve to care about getting the best external SSD for PS4 in order to get the most advantages out of it.
Pros and Cons of PS4 External SSD
Just like any electronic device, PS4 external SSD has its own pros and cons, although the pros are dominant. So, let’s quickly find out what the advantages and disadvantages of using an external SSD with PS4.
Let’s lay out the benefits of using an external SSD on PS4 before anything else in this guide.
- External SSDs are much faster than anything else. That means installing games/apps directly to the extended storage will take notably less time. Also, running these games and apps will become noticeably faster compared with other external storage devices.
- Solid reliability is one of the biggest advantages of external SSDs. If you suffer from many failures/errors from PS4 external hard drives, getting a PS4 external SSD is your resort. External SSDs can function and last for many years without any physical error, unlike external hard drives. Plus, they are much more resistant to power surges and vibration than external HDD.
- Lightweight and small physical size. Once you buy an external SSD for PS4 you’ll rejoice how it’s as small as half of your hand palm. Plus, it’s too lightweight that you can put it inside your jacket pocket without feeling of it.
- At least 3-year limited warranty. The standard warranty of a branded external SSD is 3 years, whereas it’s 1-2 years for external hard drives.
Ok, that’s pretty wonderful. So, what are the disadvantages then?
There are several cons of PS4 external SSD that you have to bear in mind before getting one, which are:
- External SSDs are much pricier than external hard drives. Just imagine that a 1tb external SSD costs you around $100 whereas the same capacity of external HDD costs you $45 or even less.
- The low performance of PS4 internal hard drive features a performance bottleneck to the PS4 external SSD. In other words, in order to get the utmost power of the external SSD on PS4, the PS4 internal hard drive be simply as fast. This is only possible when upgrading PS4 hard drive to an SSD. That’s because the PS4 system uses the internal storage device for caching when playing a game on the extended storage. If the caching storage is not as fast as the extended storage, this will lower its performance. But, does that mean you won’t benefit at all? The answer is NO. You’ll still feel the sense of speed with PS4 external SSD, but it will be limited and not as fast as using it with a PS4 SSD.
- You can’t install the PS4 system software on an external storage. This is important to note here. Extended storage is meant to be an extension, not a main storage. Accordingly, you can’t install the PS4 system software on it. That means, consequently, using an external SSD for PS4 won’t improve the overall functionality of PS4. It’ll just improve how games/apps load and install.
- In general, SSDs need a qualified CPU to parallel the processing rate. If you’re using PS4 standard or PS4 slim, this means the PS4 external SSD won’t perform as fast as it should be. Yes, you’ll still get high speed with the PS4 external SSD, but not as that with PS4 Pro. So, in a nutshell, PS4 Pro users are the ones who enjoy more using these blazing fast external storage devices.
But, after all, and despite of all that, the PS4 external SSD is still the best option compared to external HDD.
Best PS4 External SSD
PS4 external SSD is still a great option as long as you can afford it. This section will help you find the best options for this purpose. Just remember that we recommend an external hard drive for PS4 not an external SSD.
These external SSDs have been picked according to their prices. We believe that a gaming console, like PS4, is not worth using a high-end external SSD. That’s due to the fact that it’s not qualified enough to properly make use of the high speed an external SSD offers. Just unlike computer systems that can take the full advantage of these fast external storage devices. Therefore, we have picked the cheapest external SSDs on the market. They come with at least 3 year limited warranty and offer above the maximum speed PS4 can handle.
Additionally, due to the high price of external SSDs, we only recommend here 500gb PS4 external SSD. They come in a price range of $150 which is adequate for a wide variety of users.
Samsung T5 Portable SSD – 500GB
Quick Description [Official]
The Samsung Portable SSD T5 elevates data transfer speeds to the next level and unleashes a new experience in external storage. With a compact and durable design and password protection, the T5 is truly easy to carry and stores data securely.
- Read/Write Speeds of up to 540 MB/s
- Compact Design weighs less than 2 ounces
- USB 3.1 Type-C port to connect to latest devices
- Shock-resistant metal case and internal frame
- Compatible with Windows, Mac OS, and Android devices
WD 512GB My Passport SSD Portable Storage
Quick Description [Official]
The My Passport SSD is portable storage with blazing-fast transfers. Password protection with hardware encryption helps keep your content secure. Easy to use, the My Passport SSD is shock-resistant, compact storage in a cool, durable design.
- Blazing-fast file transfers with speeds up to 515MB/s
- Password protection with hardware encryption
- USB Type-C and USB 3.1 Gen 2 ready
- USB 3.0, USB 2.0 and USB-A compatible
- Trusted drive built with WD reliability
- Automatic backup
- Easy to use
SanDisk 500GB Extreme Portable SSD
Quick Description [Official]
The rugged SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD delivers high-speed transfers with up to 550MB/s read speeds. This makes it perfect for saving and editing hi-res photos and videos. With high-performance transfers with up to 550MB/s read speeds*, the SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD lets you offload and edit files in a snap.
With up to 1TB of high-speed storage for high-res photos, videos and sound files, the SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD is perfect for all your creative pursuits.
SanDisk products are constructed to the highest standards and rigorously tested. You can be confident in the outstanding quality, performance and reliability of every SanDisk product.
- Read speeds of up to 430MB/s for fast transfers
- Password protection and 128-bit AES encryption software
- Compact and durable
- Portable SSD that fits in your pocket
Using PS4 External SSD
There are several remarkable benefits from using an external SSD on PS4 that stem from the fact that SSD is a much powerful storage solution than traditional hard drives, and since the external SSD is made of an SSD crammed inside an external drive enclosure, so it’s logical to get a general idea first about SSDs and their advantages in order to understand how powerful an external SSD is.
As for the benefits you’ll get from using an external SSD, they are:
- High speed that can be up to 2 times faster than traditional external HDD.
- Solid reliability that can protect your data for so long without any potential failure in the coming 3-5 years.
- Lightweight and smaller size. You can get an external SSD in a size as small as a USB flash drive, which saves lots of space on the PS4 table.
If only external SSDs were not expensive, they would be the most popular external storage devices ever. But the steep price they come with holds off lots of users from getting one and direct them to a cheaper solution in the traditional external hard drives. Otherwise, there’s no other drawback we can think about external SSDs.
The situation becomes worse when you’re getting an external SSD for PS4, as it can be even more expensive than the console itself (i.e. 1tb External SSD costs around $370 whereas PS4 costs less than $300).
How to Use
Using an external SSD on PS4 is exactly the same as using an external HDD on it. All what you need to have is to decide for what purpose you’re getting that external SSD. You can use it in two ways:
- Backup storage solution. That purpose has its own requirements before you’re able to successfully use the external SSD for it. Read more details about that here.
- Extended storage solution. Which allows you to use the external SSD as you’re using the internal storage device with some limitations. You can read more details on that here.
Once all is done, connect the external SSD to PS4 directly on its USB port, and wait for the system to recognize it, and you’re done. Read more on PS4 external storage compatibility for more details.
Supporting USB External SSD
The support PS4 offers for external SSDs is just the same as it does for other USB storage devices.
Firstly, on 25th of Mar 2015 Sony released PS4 System Software Update 2.5 that supported the use of USB storage devices for the first time ever as a backup solution.
Then, after almost two years, specifically on the 3rd of Feb 2017, and under the huge pressure of the heaps of complaints of PS4 fanboys, Sony reluctantly released PS4 System Software update 4.5 with a wider range of support for external storage devices that allowed users since then to have a new option to expand PS4 storage other than upgrading the internal hard drive which was the only solution available before the release of that software update.
Before linking an external SSD with your PS4, make sure you have installed the latest version of PS4 system software update in order to avoid any hassle that may occur.
If you’re thinking that by getting PS4 external SSD you’re going to boost the performance of your game console, then you have to reconsider that. You can get a real performance boost for PS4 alongside with a vast capacity up to 2tb. Just make upgrading the internal hard drive of PS4 a priority. For PS4 Pro users, upgrading PS4 Pro internal hard drive will have even better results in terms of performance. As well as the 2tb storage capacity that you’ll get. You can also try PS4 Pro SSD upgrade if you’re so fascinated by SSDs.
If you have already upgraded the internal storage device to 2tb and need more space, you’ll not need then an external SSD in fact. An external HDD is pretty enough as it is a better solution in my opinion than external SSDs. Bearing in mind the performance limitations PS4 system will impose on using them.
Eventually, it is up to you after all. You better listen to experts and follow their guidelines to better facilitate your life. You can go for PS4 external SSD any time you wish as long as you can afford it. This article is mainly intended for limited budget users.