What are the best external hard drives et SSD for PS5? As always, you have to think about storage when you get a PS5. The console's internal storage can only hold a limited number of games, and if you're buying a lot of titles, you'll definitely need a little extra space. Luckily, using external USB drives couldn't be easier. Any external hard drive or SSD that connects via USB 3.0 will work with PS5 (and PS4 too) and give you plenty of room for all your games.
So what are the best external hard drives? As part of our Guide PS5, we'll explain why you should use external USB drives, the benefits and limitations, and of course, make recommendations for all budgets. We will also explain how to transfer PS5 games from console storage to USB device.
How to move PS5 games between console storage and USB storage
If you want to transfer some of your PS5 games to an external USB drive (or the other way around), it's a fairly simple process.
To get started, you need to go to Games and apps in console storage in Parameters. You can do this either by pressing Options on a PS5 game and selecting Switch to USB storage, or go to Parameters > Warehousing.
Once you find the menu, you'll be able to select the PS5 games you want to move from a list. Simply check the box next to the software you wish to transfer, then press Move. You can transfer multiple games at once.
The PS5 will then take a few minutes to move your games from the internal SSD to your connected USB drive (or vice versa). This may take a while, depending on how much data you're moving.
Notes: PS5 games stored on external hard drives or SSDs cannot be played. To play these games again, they will need to be installed on the console's internal SSD. You can follow the steps above to bring them back whenever you want.
Why use an external hard drive or SSD on PS5?
If you own a PS5 and need some extra storage for your games, the best and easiest option is to buy an external USB drive. Whether you have an external hard drive or an SSD (Solid State Drive), the device will allow you to install many more PS5 and PS4 games by providing you with additional storage space.
Once you've plugged a USB drive into your PS5, you'll be able to transfer games installed on your PS5's internal storage to the external drive, and vice versa.
If you have a large library of PS4 games, plugging in an external drive will allow you to play them on your PS5 via backwards compatibility without taking up space on the PS5's precious internal SSD. You can also store native PS5 games on an external hard drive, though they can't be played until they're on your PS5's internal memory. However, it is much faster to transfer PS5 games to and from an external device than to download them again.
To learn how to use an external drive on PS5, check out our guide: How to Use an External Hard Drive on PS5. To learn more about backwards compatibility on PS5, check out this link: PS5 Backward Compatibility: Can you play PS4 games on PlayStation 5?
Can you use external hard drives or external solid state drives for PS5 games?
External hard drives and external solid-state drives are compatible with PS5, but you can only play PS4 games from them. PS5 software is designed to run from the console's super-fast custom SSD, so PS5 games cannot be played while stored on external devices. While you cannot play PS5 titles using an external hard drive or external SDD, you can transfer games for storage. This can save bandwidth, so you don't have to redownload entire games when you run out of space.
Hard Drive vs SSD: What's the Difference?
The main difference between a hard disk drive (HDD) and a solid state drive (better known as an SSD) is simple and comes down to how they store data. Hard drives are mechanical devices and SSDs store data digitally. Although HDDs are generally much cheaper than SSDs, they are also slower to read data. Solid-state drives are much more efficient, but cost more.
What's the difference between the PS5's built-in SSD and an external SSD?
The PS5 sports a state-of-the-art SSD built into the console. This SSD is unlike any other SSD you can buy off the shelf – it's blazingly fast and specifically designed to run PS5 games. External SSDs are fast but not as advanced as the PS5's built-in drive. They are compatible with PS5, but there are some limitations. For more information on using external SSDs with PS5, check out this guide: Which SSDs will be compatible with the PS5?
Best PS5 External Hard Drives
Here are some options if you're looking for an external hard drive for your PS5 console. There are different sizes included below, with varying prices depending on storage space:
Best PS5 External SSDs
If you're looking to buy an external SSD for your PS5, we've included some options for you below. SSDs tend to be more expensive, but are generally much faster at loading data than regular HDDs:
Are you using an external hard drive on your PS5? Let us know in the comments section below, and refer to our Guide PS5 .