Best Internal Hard Drive Upgrades for PS4 Pro?
Talking about upgrading PS4 Pro internal Hard Drive (HDD), is actually all about performance gains and additional storage space. A new powerful PS4 Pro hard drive replacement is a must-have for every serious gamer.
It’s not only speed and space that urges for this step, but also reliability. That’s because the stock PS4 hard drive is not made for gaming. It’s just a cheap classical laptop hard drive Sony used to reduce the overall price of its flagship game console. For that reason, getting the best hard drive for PS4 Pro will really make a big difference. Now you understand why every savvy prioritizes changing PS4 Pro hard drive over just adding an external storage solution.
PS4 Pro Hard Drive is a Real Performance Bottleneck
PlayStation 4 PRO, as its name indicates, is the professional version of PS4—the most popular game console in history. Sony has done almost everything to make its flagship game console the best on the market in terms of all aspects, especially performance. For this sake, both CPU and GPU were upgraded to high standards. Also, the data bus transfer was promoted to the third generation of Serial-ATA (i.e. SATA 3.0).
Everything so far sounds great until you get to know more about the stock internal hard drive of PS4 Pro. It’s not worth to be a part of a professional system at all. In fact, it’s a shame for a mighty game console to have that type of storage device as one of its components. Yes! PS4 PRO performs nicely and impressively overall with its stock hard drive, but that’s not everything. Considering the purpose of being a “PRO”, this drive has been used in the wrong place. Just read more about the specifications of PS4 Pro hard drive to fully comprehend what we’re saying here.
So, as an enthusiast who looks for the highest possible performance out of a gaming system, the stock hard drive must change. Using a better drive that offers the performance will suit the prestige of PS4 PRO.
Not only that, being an old classical device, the stock PS4 hard drive will start generating errors after months of heavy gaming. PS4 Pro may freeze or it gets slow and lagging. All of that because of a degrading hard drive that requires maintenance.
A Brief on this Guide
In this comprehensive guide you’ll learn why you have to upgrade the stock hard drive of PS4 PRO. Also, what options you have in this concern, and how to maximize the performance of PS4 Pro with the best hard drive upgrade.
All in all, this guide contains valuable information that will clarify the whole picture in your mind. Afterwards you’ll be able to make the right decision for your game console concerning upgrading/replacing its stock HDD.
But first, let’s present our PS4 PRO HDD upgrade recommendations below before we start this guide. That will help everyone who doesn’t want to go through the long text:
Best PS4 Pro Internal Hard Drive Upgrades
Worth it to say here that the maximum capacity you can upgrade PS4 Pro HDD to is 2tb only. That’s because larger capacity hard drives don’t fit into the drive cage of PS4 Pro. Unless you decide to pay almost $500 to get a 4tb SSD, the upgrade is limited to 2tb only. In addition, there’s no data bank solution available for neither PS4 Pro nor PS4 Slim.
For that primary reason, this article focuses only on two hard drive capacities—2tb (most popular) and 1tb. The 2tb HDD offers, beside the performance boost, double storage space. While the 1tb HDD won’t add any extra space to PS4 Pro, it does offers appealing performance scores to consider. As for other capacities, like 4tb and 6tb, we offer additional solutions that help you reach that amount of storage.
Samsung 860 QVO SSD
There’s no doubt that Solid State Drive (SSD) is the best performing storage devices out there. It’s up to 5x faster than the fastest traditional hard drive available. Moreover, an SSD is way too reliable more than mechanical hard drives. Thereby, it can last years without any failure/error. But, the main problem with SSDs is their high price. Samsung 860 QVO SSD, although being a budget SSD, it’s still costly compared to the other options. The 2tb model costs around $230 as of the time of writing, whereas our second drive in this list costs $80. Both share the same capacity.
My advice is that if you can afford buying an SSD for your PS4 Pro and money is not an issue, go for it. You will enjoy unparalleled speed and very solid reliability that lasts too long. (Read more on the benefits of SSDs for PS4).
So, because an SSD is the best in terms of performance, I have placed one on the top of this list. And according to several IT professionals, Samsung 860 QVO SSD is the best budget SSD as of today. It will maximize the performance of PS4 Pro to the highest possible level that will surely enhance your gaming experience on PS4 Pro like never before. For that reason I have selected it as the best PS4 Pro HDD upgrade in all terms, regardless the price.
So, if you want the utmost out of your game console, go for an SSD, but be ready to pay a premium.
- Interface: SATA 6 Gbps.
- Form Factor: 2.5-inch.
- Capacity: 4TB, 2TB, 1TB.
- Sequential Read/Write Speed: Up to 550/520 MB/s.
- Random Read/Write Speed: Up to 97K/89K IOPS.
- Warranty: Three (3) Year Limited Warranty.
Seagate Firecuda 2tb Gaming SSHD
Actually, it’s not only the performance boost that impelled me to nominate this drive as the best mechanical HDD upgrade for PS4 Pro. Rather, there are different factors that worked all together to influence this decision. The other factors that led me to opting for this drive are the adequate price and large storage capacity.
This drive belongs to the SSHD (Solid State Hybrid Drive) category. It’s a combination of 2tb classical hard disk drive (HDD) and 8gb SSD (Solid State Drive). That’s in order to provide users with a vast storage space (up to 2tb) with an SSD-like performance.
In terms of performance alone, an SSD is undoubtedly the best storage device for all systems. But bear in mind that Seagate Firecuda 2tb Gaming SSHD can offer up to 70% of SSD performance on PS4 Pro systems.
I am not going to review this drive here, as it has been already reviewed with elaboration here. I’m just trying to justify my decision by picking up this drive as the best storage upgrade option for PS4.
- Fastest 2.5-Inch PC compute and gaming Hard Drive on the market, all within a thin 7mm z-height
- The 2TB capacity can store up to 80x 25GB games
- Flash-accelerated technology delivers up to 5x faster load times for nonstop performance, play and productivity compared to standard HDDs
- Adaptive Memory technology efficiently identifies frequently accessed data to allow for quicker operations
- Multi-tier caching technology (mtc) boosts performance, helping applications and files load faster (i.e. 128mb cache buffer in the 1st tier and 8gb NAND SSD memory in the 2nd tier).
- SATA III interface
- 5400rpm spindle speed
- 5-year limited warranty
Seagate Firecuda 2.5-inch Gaming SSHD comes in 3 different sizes: 500gb, 1tb and 2tb.
Full Upgrade Kit
Alternatively, you can get a complete upgrade kit like “Fantom Drives PS4 Hard Drive Upgrade Kit” that includes, in addition to the above drive, everything you need for a seamless upgrade process.
We don’t have any other drive to recommend for PS4 Pro unless it’s an SSD. The PS4 Pro is worth to have a powerful storage device that offers high performance. For this reason, we don’t recommend any classical hard drive for PS4 Pro storage replacement.
Reasons for Upgrade
There are several reasons that justify, or better say promote, replacing PS4 Pro hard drive with a newer hard drive, which are:
- The stock hard drive is old and slow. It was manufactured in 2011 with obsolete storage technologies and comes with only 8mb cache buffer size (Read more about that here). And with a modern hard drive, like Seagate Firecuda 2tb SSHD, you get the advantages of new technologies, larger cache buffer, and even more reliability alongside 3 year warranty.
- Your games and movies will load faster, especially with an SSD (Read more on PS4 Pro SSD upgrade). I know an SSD is quite expensive, so go to its alternative: an SSHD, that features a compromise between the speed of SSD and capacity of HDD.
- You have the chance to double PS4 system storage. With a 2tb internal hard drive upgrade, you’ll have more rooms for your new games and movies, so you’ll not need to free up your hard drive by deleting old files that you love. The benefits appears mostly in shared consoles
- Modern hard drives, especially SSDs, boast of great reliability and durability. You might not be aware, though, that many users complained of PS4 hard drive failure, and this is expected anyway in old hard drives like the one crammed inside PS4 Pro. So, by getting a new modern hard drive, you lessen this possibility to the lowest level.
In fact, there’s a big trend to upgrade PS4 Pro hard drive, mainly for one of the above reasons or even all. So, if you have the sufficient budget, one of the best PS4 Pro hacks you can do is to replace its HDD with a more powerful one.
Note that we have published an article on the 5 best methods to expand PS4 storage. It’s recommended that you have a look on it before you make your final decision.
Types of Storage Device Upgrade
There are three types of storage devices that fit for PS4 Pro hard drive replacement, each comes with its own pros and cons.
- Classical Hard Disk Drive (HDD). It’s just the same type as the stock PS4 Pro hard drive. The primary advantage of this type of storage device is that you will get a vast storage capacity for a cheap price. As for the disadvantage, you won’t notice any real improvement in system performance compared to the stock hard drive, as the performance boost will be marginal.
- Solid State Drive (SSD). In terms of performance, this is the best hard drive replacement for PS4 Pro in specific. Because PS4 Pro is made to be a professional console, and it’s equipped with SATA III interface to take the most of super fast storage devices like SSDs (Read more about that on our PS4 Pro SSD Upgrade Guide).As for the main disadvantage, it’s the high price compared to other storage devices that most users cannot afford. That is why we prefer upgrading PS4 Pro hard drive with the cheaper SSHD.
- Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD). It features a good compromise between performance, capacity and price. It’s the most popular PS4 Pro HDD upgrade option, because it offers a good performance boost alongside a capacious storage space (up to 2tb), all of that in a reasonable price that is affordable by a wide variety of users (Usually the difference in price between SSHD and HDD is $10-$15 only). The main disadvantage of this drive is that unless the game is cached in the drive’s caching system, it operates just like a classical hard drive. (Note that the game needs to launch at least 5 times in order for the caching system to learn that it’s worth for caching. Read more about that on our Seagate Firecuda 2tb SSHD review).
That’s it. The major factor that determines your choice is YOUR BUDGET. Just don’t overstress yourself to buy an SSD if your budget is limited. Just get an SSHD and save the money for getting new accessories for your PS4 Pro game console.
Internal or External Storage
You might not be aware that it’s possible now to add an external storage device to your PS4 Pro that works as an extension to the main system storage, that it can be used for installing and running games on it. This news has impressed lots of users who were intensely waiting for it a long time. And although it features the easiest storage expansion method for PS4 system storage, it has its own drawbacks that are worth your attention (You can read more on that in the PS4 Pro External Hard Drive Guide).
Just briefly speaking, if you are looking ONLY for storage expansion, and the performance optimization is a minor issue to you, then go for this method. Although you won’t lose any performance points, you’ll surely not get any remarkable boost. But also remember that the best way to get storage with performance scores is to upgrade PS4 Pro hard drive.
How to Upgrade PS4 PRO HDD
PS4 PRO, just like all other version of PS4, allows a very easy upgrade process for the internal hard drive, as long as the new internal hard drive conforms to the HDD upgrade compatibility standards and you have the right equipment.
What You Need Foremost
It’s worth to start with knowing the specifications of the stock hard drive of PS4 PRO, so as to realize what benefits you’ll gain once you upgrade to a better drive.
Now, before going through the upgrade process, you’ll need to prepare the following things:
- Compatible Internal Hard drive. Whether it’s a classical HDD, an SSHD or even an SSD, as long as it goes with the PS4 PRO storage upgrade standards.
- External Storage Device. That’s to use for reinstalling the operating system on the new drive first, and secondly for backing up the stock hard drive’s contents (if there’s something you don’t wish to lose during this process). If the stock hard drive is empty or you don’t have files you care for, it’s enough to get a USB Flash Drive, just for the sake of reinstalling the operating system. Otherwise, a large external hard drive is mandatory here.
- Compatible Screwdriver for PS4 PRO. That helps to open the security screws of the hard drive. We recommend E.Durable T8 T6 T10 Screwdriver Set.
To download the full-sized System Software click here.
Any internal storage device cannot take the place of PS4 PRO stock hard drive unless it follows the compatibility standards that are:
- Interface: Serial-ATA (rev. 2 and above). Other interfaces are not accepted.
- Form factor: 2.5-inch. Smaller (1.8″) and larger (3.5″) form factors are not accepted into the drive bay, although there’s a workaround already for that.
- Z-Height (mm): Maximum 9.5 (Thicker drives are too big for the drive bay to accept. You’ll need an additional equipment to resolve this issue).
That’s all. Other non-physical specifications are not considered.
Step-by-Step Upgrade Guide
Once everything is ready with you, watch the following videos that takes you step-by-step through the whole process of upgrade:
That’s it and you’re done. Now you can enjoy a larger capacity and a better speed from the new hard drive of PS4 PRO.
But, there’s a question we feel compelled to answer, which is:
Since PS4 PRO system allows the addition of an external hard drive on which we can install and play our games, so what’s the need for the internal hard drive replacement in the first place?
Well, the answer is simple. It’s to increase the overall performance of PS4 PRO. That’s because the operating system cannot install externally, and you have to deal with the internal storage device in all cases. So speeding up the functionality of the operating system does noticeably enhance the gaming experience.
In our article PS4 PRO Storage Upgrade—The Most Complete Guide we have compared an internal hard drive upgrade with an external hard drive addition, and we concluded that, for the most performance gain, it’s better to make a combination between the internal and external storage devices you pick for your PS4 PRO, just exactly the same as we’ve recommended for a 4tb and 6tb storage solutions in the previous sections above.
Upgrading the internal stock hard drive of PS4 PRO can benefit two categories of users. The first category includes those who seek performance boost for their game console beside the storage expansion. The second category includes users who want to keep the games and their saves in-house within the same drive, or they want the minimal use of wires and devices with their game console.
Going to the best PS4 Pro internal hard drive upgrade will really enhance your gaming experience. The console will go faster and, if you pick an SSD, it will be much more reliable.
Whatever your reasons are for replacing the stock hard drive of PS4 PRO, it’s certainly a good option to go with in terms of performance, capacity and price.