Skip to main content

The best SSD for PS5

Included in this guide:

Best SSD for PS5
(Image credit: Sony)

Finding the best SSD for PS5 is a must if you want to expand your console's storage capacity, and the options have improved dramatically in the last couple of months. Until recently the only way to add extra storage was by plugging in an external drive, but now Sony has released a system patch that means you can open up your console to fit an internal drive in its SSD expansion bay.

That prospect of fitting the best PS5 SSD may seem a little daunting to some, but it's a straightforward job and the only way to get fully-functioning additional storage. And that's something you need: the PS5's built-in SSD is fast but limited in size at 825GB, and once you've taken the PS5's system files into account you're left with just 667GB that you'll quickly burn through if you're installing the latest heavyweight games.

While it's easy to plug in an external drive, it's slower and it won't allow you to play PS5 games directly from it (although it'll let you run PS4 games just fine). So if you don't want to be endlessly shunting files from drive to drive, you'll have to bite the bullet and install the best SSD for PS5, and we're here to help you make the right choice.

Of course if you're not comfortable with opening up your console then check out our guide to the best external hard drive for PS5. If you're still struggling to find a console, our best PS5 deals page can help you out, and while big PS5 discounts seem very unlikely this year, our Black Friday 2021 roundup can help you find plenty of other tech bargains.

The best SSD for PS5: what you need to know

If you're set on installing the best PS5 SSD, you're going to need to do a bit of homework first. Sadly you can't just rush out and buy any old SSD; Sony has set some very specific rules that define the best SSD for PS5, and if you don't observe them to the letter you're in for some expensive disappointment.

So before you buy, here's what you need to know: your SSD has to be a PCIe 4.0 M.2 NVMe SSD between 250GB and 4TB with a read speed of 5,500MB/s or faster, it needs to be 22mm in width, and it has to have a heatsink. The heatsink bit's really important because many SSDs don't have them, and we've recently noticed inflated prices on SSDs with heatsinks, probably thanks to sudden increased demand from PS5 owners.

Basically your choice is to pay a little over the odds for an SSD with an integrated heatsink, or instead buy one without, get a heatsink to go with it and fit it yourself. Heatsinks are inexpensive and fairly easy to install, and you should definitely save some money by going down this route. Here are some good options at great prices:

Whichever route you go down to get the best SSD for PS5, the next step is to open up your console and install it. Thankfully Sony has provided a helpful and thorough guide covering everything you need to know. You'll need a well-lit room with a table to work from, a #1 Phillips or cross-head screwdriver and, optionally, a small flashlight so that you can see what you're doing a little better. Get all the information you need here, or simply check the video below:

Got all that? Great, let's find out what the best PS5 SSD is right now!

The best SSD for PS5 in 2021

Best SSD for PS5: Seagate FireCuda 530

(Image credit: Seagate)

01. Seagate FireCuda 530

The best PS5 SSD expansion right now.

Specifications
Capacity: 500GB - 4TB
Speed: Up to 7,300MB/s
Heatsink: Optional
Reasons to buy
+Really fast+Excellent quality
Reasons to avoid
-Overpriced heatsink option

Seagate has a long history with Sony, having produced the officially licensed external drive for PS4, and it was first out of the gate with an SSD confirmed to work with the PS5. The Seagate FireCuda 530 is our top choice for the best SSD for PS5 based on quality and speed; it packs the latest 3D TLC NAND, and it'll go up to 7,300MB/s, making it almost the fastest drive here and quicker than the PS5's own internal SSD. And if you're feeling flush, this one comes in sizes up to 4TB.

Note that this version doesn't come with a heatsink; there's an option available with a heatsink, but we're not impressed with the price. Take our advice: go for the naked version and buy a heatsink to fit yourself.

Best SSD for PS5: WD Black SN850

(Image credit: Western Digital)

02. WD Black SN850

The cheapest SSD for PS5.

Specifications
Capacity: 500GB - 2TB
Speed: Up to 7,000MB/s
Heatsink: Optional
Reasons to buy
+Incredible value+Impressive speed
Reasons to avoid
-No heatsink

If price is your main decider when you're looking for the best SSD for PS5, look no further than this model from Western Digital. The 1TB model of the WD Black SN850 comes in significantly cheaper than the rest of the SDDs listed here, and you don't pay the price in reduced performance; this will happily reach speeds of up to 7,000MB/s.

Sadly that pricing doesn't scale, so if you're after a 2TB drive you'll save by instead opting for the Seagate above or scrolling down to the Crucial P5 Plus. And as you'll have guessed from the photo, this one comes without a heatsink so you'll have to buy and fit your own.

Best SSD for PS5: Samsung 980 Pro

(Image credit: Samsung)

03. Samsung 980 Pro

Very nearly the best PS5 internal SSD

Specifications
Capacity: 250GB - 2TB
Speed: Up to 7,000MB/s
Heatsink?: No
Reasons to buy
+Great speed+Top quality
Reasons to avoid
-No heatsink

This Samsung's not the fastest, but it's a quality product at a decent price and definitely worth your consideration if you're after the best PS5 SSD. With a top speed of 7,000MB/s it'll still outperform the PS5's own SSD, although you will of course have to get and fit a heatsink when you buy.

However, there is a version of the Samsung 980 Pro with a heatsink on the way, which should be worth checking out when it arrives. As soon as we have the details – not to mention the price – we'll let you know about it.

Best SSD for PS5: Gigabyte Aorus Gen4 7000S

(Image credit: Gigabyte)

04. Gigabyte Aorus Gen4 7000S

The best PS5 SSD option if you need a heatsink

Specifications
Capacity: 1TB
Speed: Up to 7,000MB/s
Heatsink?: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Heatsink included+Excellent value
Reasons to avoid
-Only one size option

Fitting a heatsink isn't difficult, but if you're generally unsure about tinkering with expensive tech and you've already arranged for a steady-handed grown-up to help you fit the best SSD for PS5, the Gigabyte Aorus Gen4 7000S is an excellent option.

It's one of the few PS5-compatible SSDs that isn't going to scalp you on having a heatsink pre-fitted, and it's a solid performer with speeds up to 7,000MB/s. The only small issue if you're buying from Amazon in the UK is that it'll be imported from the US and you'll have to wait a bit longer to get it; an import fees deposit is included in the price, though, so you shouldn't be stung by a nasty surprise when it arrives.

Best SSD for PS5: Crucial P5 Plus

(Image credit: Crucial)

05. Crucial P5 Plus

A quality PS5 SDD from Crucial

Specifications
Capacity: 500GB - 2TB
Speed: Up to 6,600MB/s
Heatsink?: No
Reasons to buy
+Best value 2TB option+Quality brand
Reasons to avoid
-The slowest option-No heatsink

Crucial's a strong name in memory products, and while you might be a little put off by the speed of Crucial P5 Plus (up to 6,600MB/s while the rest of the SSDs in this roundup can manage 7,000MB/s and faster), realistically you're unlikely to notice much of a difference in everyday use.

And where this SSD stands out is in its larger configuration; the 2TB model is the cheapest one we can find right now. So if you want decent hunk of storage and don't mind fitting your own heatsink, this could well be the best PS5 SSD for you.

Best SSD for PS5: Patriot Viper VP4300

(Image credit: Patriot Memory)

06. Patriot Viper VP4300

The best PS5 SSD for pure speed

Specifications
Capacity: 1TB - 2TB
Speed: Up to 7,400MB/s
Heatsink?: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Two heatsinks included+The fastest option+Top value
Reasons to avoid
-Lesser-known brand

If you absolutely have to have the fastest SSD then allow us to introduce you to the Patriot Viper VP4300, which can clock up a staggering 7,400MB/s. In terms of pure speed it's the best SSD for PS5 at the moment. We've seen suggestions that it doesn't actually reach those speeds in the PS5, but it's still an impressive piece of kit.

Even better, it comes with not one but two heatsinks; amusingly if you're planning to install the VP4300 in your PS5 you're advised to fit them on top of one another. And the price is a lot more sensible than other heatsink-equipped SSDs, so be sure to check this one out.

Related articles:

Jim McCauley

Jim McCauley is a writer, cat-wrangler and occasional street performer who's written for a multitude of publications over the past quarter of a century, including Creative Bloq, T3, PC Gamer and a whole load of long-dead print magazines.