In the wake of its worldwide release, Sony’s PS5 has come under fire for both its limited 667GB of usable internal storage and its lack of expandable storage for PS5 titles, with USB storage exclusively supporting backwards compatible PS4 titles.
The PS5 does in fact have a dedicated slot for an additional NVMe SSD, as shown in Sony’s official PS5 teardown video, but it is disabled at the time of writing. Now, as third-party manufacturers begin to release their own SSDs that match, or even exceed, the speed of the PS5’s internal storage, concern is growing over their hefty price.
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Sony is yet to specify which particular NVMe SSDs the PS5 will support when its expandable storage slot is enabled via a future software update, with PS5 lead system architect Mark Cerny commenting earlier this year that numerous compatibility factors have to be considered and tested by Sony itself, such as the drive’s speed and physical size, before any drives could be whitelisted.
Recently, third-party manufacturers, such as Western Digital and Samsung, have started to release NVMe SSDs that surpass the 5.5GB/s bandwidth of the PS5’s internal storage, with both manufacturer’s respective drives clocking in at around 7.0GB/s. This should, hopefully, make them compatible with the PS5 but this speed doesn’t come cheap, with Samsung’s 980 Pro 2TB drive being listed, at UK hardware retailer Scan, for a whopping £444 (approx. $600/AU$800.)
The Samsung 980 Pro is already available in smaller sizes at cheaper price points, with the smallest and cheapest variant being 250GB and costing £84.99/$89.99/AU$149.00. However, with the install size of titles like Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War being around 180GB, and the speed of drives decreasing slightly alongside their storage capacity, the practicality of such a small drive, despite its low price, remains questionable. Thankfully, a 1TB variant is also available for a slightly less costly £219.99/$229.99/AU$375.00.
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The price point of the 1TB Samsung 980 Pro is in line with Microsoft’s proprietary storage solution for the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, in the form of an already readily available Seagate Expansion Card which is available for £219.99/$219.99/AU$359.00. However, the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S both allow users to store next-generation titles on USB storage so that they can later be quickly loaded and played from the internal storage or Seagate Expansion Card.
There’s no indication on the progress Sony has made on its compatibility testing but with drives like the Samsung 980 Pro now hitting the market, players are hopefully closer than ever before to expanding their PS5 storage.