As you surely know, PS5 consoles incorporate an M.2 socket in which we can install an SSD in this format to add additional storage to the console. Although, it has not been until recently that Sony has allowed its use since until now if you installed an SSD in that socket, the console directly did not work. And of course, now that this SSD is working, we can tell you what performance you will have when you use it, so let’s see it.
Installing an additional SSD in the PS5 is a very simple process that does not void the warranty because you only need to remove the upper plastic cover to reach the socket and the installation is as simple as inserting the SSD into the slot and screwing it in, and then put the outside case back together.
The difficulty has been that its use has been restricted by firmware, which has now been lifted, and we can now make use of this much-needed extra capacity in the Japanese firm’s console.
What is the performance of the additional SSD of the PS5?
The performance statistics of the PS5’s extra SSD arrives in the form of a video, courtesy of MiDASTECH, who compares the performance of the console’s internal SSD with a 1 TB Samsung 980 PRO put in the M.2 socket we’ve been discussing.
We don’t have empirical performance statistics because the console lacks a standard against which to test it, but we can draw a number of intriguing inferences in this area. The console does, however, include a minor test that allows us to measure solely the reading speed of the additional SSD, and this is the result.
PS5 SSD performance
A priori, loading times and performance appear to be nearly equal in games like Spider-Man: Miles Morales, while it also appears that the time it takes to transfer games from the M.2 disk to the console’s internal SSD is longer. Given the theoretical technological parameters of the device, it takes a very lengthy time. Data transfer from the internal SSD to the M.2 is significantly faster and there is no such issue.
The transfer of the game’s 39GB from the M.2 disk to the internal SSD took about 2 minutes and 51 seconds, indicating that write speeds are rather constrained in this circumstance. However, bear in mind that the firmware that permits the use of this SSD in M.2 format on the PS5 is still in BETA, so there is a chance that this write speed issue may not occur with the final firmware, which should be published soon.
Not just any SSD for this console!
Installing an M.2 drive that satisfies Sony’s suggested criteria should not cause performance issues in PS5 games, but drives that do not meet them will cause problems because many games rely largely on read/write speeds. In developer testing, SSDs that meet the recommended criteria perform virtually identically to the PS5’s inbuilt SSD.
The Gen4 SSDs performed nearly as well as the console’s SSD. The remainder of the I/O path that is still in operation (Kraken hardware decompression, for example) is unquestionably working hard to give the best load times.
When using M.2 PCIe 4.0 devices with lower requirements, it had up to 15% slower load times. It’s not too bad, but if you’re buying an SSD for your console, take an eye on the technical specs because games rely significantly on high-speed storage.
Support for additional storage on the PS5 via the M.2 socket was recently enabled in a BETA phase firmware, but the date of the software that enables it for everybody has not yet been confirmed.