It’s the update PS5 players have been waiting for: you can now upgrade the PlayStation 5 SSD internal storage. But you’re going to have to jump through some hoops first.
Outlined on the PlayStation Blog, Sony has outlined the method for increasing the amount of space for games on the console.
And it’s a much-needed upgrade – while PS4 games can still be played from a HDD or regular external SSD on the PS5, games specifically built for the PlayStation 5 can currently only be played on the console’s high-speed internal storage. You can store PS5 games on an external drive, but if you want to play them you'll need to transfer them to the PlayStation 5's internal storage.
With the PS5 only coming with 667.2GB of usable space out of the box, and games like Call of Duty: Warzone requiring 200GB of installation space, that’s quickly proving not enough. As such, getting a compatible M.2 SSD drive in the console has become a priority for many players.
But for a company that pioneered the plug-and-play ease of the PlayStation Memory Card, it’s a relatively complicated upgrade process on the PS5, especially compared to the Xbox Series X / S Storage Expansion Card method.
Getting ready to upgrade PS5 storage? Here’s what you need to know.
How to upgrade PS5 storage
First up, you'll need to ensure you're PS5 is running the latest system update. It's then important that before you purchase your new M.2 SSD, it meets the specifications outlined below. We've also rounded up the best SSD for PS5 to make your purchasing decision easier.
|Interface||PCIe Gen4 x4 M.2 NVMe SSD|
|Capacity||250GB – 4TB|
|Cooling structure||Using an M.2 SSD with your PS5 console requires effective heat dissipation with a cooling structure, such as a heatsink. You can attach one to your M.2 SSD yourself, either in a single-sided format, or double-sided format. There are also M.2 SSDs that have cooling structures (such as heatsinks) built in.|
|Sequential read speed||5,500MB/s or faster is recommended|
|Module width||22mm width (25mm width is not supported)|
|Form Factor||M.2 type 2230, 2242, 2260, 2280 and 22110|
|Socket type||Socket 3 (Key M)|
|Total size including cooling structure||smaller than 110mm (L) x 25mm (W) x 11.25mm (H)|
What you'll need
We recommend installing a PS5 SSD on a flat surface and in a brightly lit room. You'll also need a #1 Phillips or cross-head screwdriver to remove two screws, one that keeps the SSD bay cover in place and another to secure the drive.
Preparing your SSD
If this is the first time you're using the M.2 SSD with your PS5 console, you'll need to format it when prompted. Just remember that formatting the SSD will delete any and all saved data on the drive, and any data deleted in this way can't be recovered. Ever. So make sure to safely export anything that's important to another device first if you're not using a fresh SSD NVMe drive.
Once your SSD is ready to be installed, you'll then have to open up your PS5.
Opening up the PS5
Before we remove the PS5 faceplates, start by going to Settings > System > System Software > Console Information to check you have installed the beta system version on your PS5 and can install an NVMe SSD in the available bay.
If you have updated your PS5, you'll then want to press and hold the console's power button for three seconds to turn it off. Once it's turned off completely, remove every cable and device that was connected to the console. You might also want to wait for it to cool down a bit if you've been using it for a while.
Now you're ready to remove the PS5's stand and open up the PS5. Lay the console flat, with the disc drive on top on your right-hand side.
Carefully place your hands on the cover's top corners and gently pull it up and towards yourself, you may hear a click to let you know it has detached.
Installing the SSD
With the cover removed you'll want to find the expansion slot. It's hidden behind a long rectangular metal cover and sits on the left just below where the console curves from the left edge to the top edge.
Only one screw secures this cover at the top, so remove it and the cover using a #1 Phillips or cross-head screwdriver. Inside the expansion slot, you'll see another screw and a spacer, remove both of those too.
Reposition the spacer to the size of your M.2 SSD and make sure it's in before you install the SSD.
To finally install your M.2 SSD, make sure it's aligned with the notches on the expansion connector and insert it fully. Make sure it is inserted correctly, as any errors could damage your SSD and your PS5. You should hear and feel a click when it's properly inserted.
Using the screw you previously removed, fasten down the M.2 SSD so that it's secured. When it is, reapply the expansion slot cover and fasten it down as well.
To put the cover back onto your PS5, position it slightly away from the top edge and slide it back into place. Listen for a click to know it's secured. Finally, once your PS5 is back in its desired position, reattach the stand and reconnect the AC power cord, cables, and power it back on.
If you've done everything correctly the SSD formatting guide should appear on-screen to guide you through formatting your new M.2 SSD. Make sure you don't turn off your PS5 console at all during this stage. Once the formatting is completed, your M.2 SSD should be fully installed and ready to use.