The first version of PS4 came with a hard drive capacity of 500GB that was supposed to be sufficient for most regular users that would store most of game files. While this was the fact at that time, some may still want to upgrade it to a bigger hard drive in order to download more AAA-grade games and save them directly on the internal hard drive. With the PS4, doing so is easy and only requires from users to carry out a few steps in this regard.
There are things to consider first before you upgrade your stock PS4 hard drive to a larger one, these things are listed below:
Things to consider before upgrading PS4 hard drive
Hard Drives are of varying quality and there are several manufacturers in the market who produce hard drives that would fit into PS4. But before you go forward to buying the largest hard drive for PS4 HDD upgrade, you need to see what experiences others have had with specific models. Considering upgrading your PS4 hard drive at some point requires the answers to these questions:
- What hard drive brand to choose?
- Will it work well with PS4?
- Can this hard drive be sufficient for all your games and movies that you often want saved on the internal hard drive?
- Do you need an external hard drive to expand the storage capability of PS4 HDD or the biggest HDD is enough for PS4 files?
- Is SSD good for PS4? Or should we avoid it and focus only on HDD or SSHD?
Finding the right hard drive for PS4
For users who own an older version of PlayStation console, upgrading the internal hard drive of older PlayStation is rapidly becoming an inevitable requirement. The release of games like Gran Turismo 5 and Mass Effect 2 illustrate that lengthy, massive mandatory installs aren’t going to disappear any time soon. Additionally, there are heavyweight contents like UHD movies and AA-grade game files that would take huge space of your PS4 hard drive. They also places demands on the storage you have available for your console.
Demand has also increased for the PS4 Hard drive upgrade solutions since the launch of Sony PlayTV, which offers to turn your PlayStation 3/4 console into a Personal Video Recorder and HD Digital Tuner. With PlayTV users can easily watch, pause and record Digital TV, and a PS4 Hard Drive upgrade is imperative to be able to store UHD video.
Compatible hard drive models
The hard drive upgrade process varies depending on the PS3 model and the replacement hard drive you should be looking to use is the same as in most laptops and notebooks and readily available from most places as well as online and the prices are making it great value for money to upgrade your hard drive rather than paying out for a new PS4 with a bigger drive installed by Sony. For the 500GB PS4, a few more tools are necessary. The biggest hard drive you can install inside PS4 box can be up to 8TB, just if you choose an additional data-bank that’s assembled above PS4 box, but we will only recommend maximum 4TB hard drive capacity for PS4 because it was reported to have no major performance problem like higher capacities. These tools include an official HDD Mounting Kit (easily found in-stores or online), a screwdriver, and the hard disk drive that one wishes to install. For PS4 owners choosing a new drive, there are performance considerations to factor in too. Recently we have seen how GT5 ninjas have upgraded their PS4s with ultra-fast Solid State Storage (SSD) drives in order to halve loading times, to give just one example. It’s important to ensure that the hard drive is a compatible 2.5″ SATA 5400RPM drive.
The Specifications of compatible hard drives for PS4
The PlayStation 4 is designed to run with 9.5mm high, 2.5-inch SATA hard drives – It cannot be larger than that or it will not fit into the drive bay. This is the exact same models found in most modern laptop computers. As SATA is effectively an open standard, you can pair your PS4 with any device that uses the interface. Use a good external hard drive for PS4 to expand the storage for your games and movies. If you want to be particularly insane, you can even hook up desktop drives externally using a special equipment called “data-bank” and get a full 2TB or even 4TB of storage [Check out this article]. The Xbox 360 uses the same standard of drive, but upgrade options are limited as Microsoft has locked down compatibility to very specific HDDs it licenses.
Steps to upgrade PS4 Hard Drive to the Biggest
In order to upgrade the internal hard drive of PS4 to a bigger drive, first you have to choose either 1 terabyte or 2 terabyte of hard drive capacity as the latter is the largest available HDD replacement for PS4. Secondly, place the hard drive into the mounting bracket that came with the HDD Mounting Kit. Don’t go for SSD though if you want to save your money from wasting. They should ensure that the drive is placed correctly so that connectors on the drive can be accessed from the outside of the bracket. That way you can assure the new hard drive is placed correctly without any problem. After placing the drive into the bracket, users should then attach it securely using the included screws.
- PS4 hard drive must be larger than 1 terabyte of space if you need a real remarkable upgrade
- You should make sure it is not more than 9.5mm thickness or it will not fit into the drive bay
- Use a good toolkit to open the cover of PS4 box or you’ll find some hassles in your way
- Never replace your PS4 hard drive while it’s turned on, that may be dangerous for you and your data
- You need to reinstall the PS4 operating system. Download it from the official PS4 website and save it on an external storage device.
Next, you must be careful that it’s important to ensure that the PS4 system is turned off and unplug any cables connected to the system. Never neglect this because it may have a disastrous effects. After doing so, users should remove the hard drive bay cover from the system and insert the drive into the system. Afterwards, install the drive using the blue screw and attach the hard drive bay cover.
Not less than 1 terabyte HDD
The speed of the hard drive. The two types available are the 5400rpm version and the 7400rpm version. The hard drives in the PS4 are 5400rpm versions. A 500 gigabyte PS3 HDD upgrade is 8 times the capacity of the tiny 40 gigabyte unit found in some PlayStation 4 consoles. When you go with an external hard drive for your PS4 instead of upgrading your current hard drive, this might be a wise step to take indeed. By increasing to a 7400rpm version you are going to be making the PS4 run hotter than it is intended. This could potentially cause an issue similar to the launch model 500gb PS4’s where they would heat up and fail. There are a few more things for you to keep in mind. Any time a different hard drive is placed into a PS3, it will get formatted. Here we don’t recommend SSD for PS4 for we believe that the premium performance of SSD will be wasted in PS4 system. We think that using an SSD for laptop or getting a desktop SSD is a better option for that blazing fast drives, but surely not in PS4. This is why you need to plan well beforehand. This is a potential risk to consider so for peace of mind and a degree of safety I opted for the 5400rpm version and i would recommend the same.
What Capacity is your PS4 stock drive?
There have been a large range of different PlayStation 4 SKUs over the years and typically Sony locks in a particular hard drive supplier per model. This data includes save games, games, movies, music, and other media & settings. What capacity to choose? Try a 1TB hard drive capacity if you are a regular user. Otherwise a 2 terabyte HDD capacity is pretty enough for PS4 large games. The chances are that the choice of drive is dictated entirely by the deals the platform holder can arrange with any given supplier, as opposed to any real consideration about how good the drive itself actually is. Not only this but the upgrade can be done on the spot or same-day depending on how much data you have on the hard disk of your PS4.
One particular developer, which uses the HDD extensively to cache game data in its top-rated open-world game, spoke to us off the record about how the 40GB drive’s performance level was significantly worse than the launch model’s 60GB disk, requiring a code rewrite to cope with the lower throughput. Using the Backup Utility built into the PS4 OS takes a really…long…time! That’s because using the top hard drive for gaming is a good idea when it comes to increasing the overall system performance. This is why, before you start, you should consider what you want to back up and what you can always install/download again later.
Finding a good hard drive brand
A quick look at the drives used by Sony reveals a large degree of variance in the drive spec. Once the hard drive is placed within the PS4 system, begin the process of formatting the drive. This process will copy the contents of the system’s 12GB flash memory over onto the newly installed hard drive. Choose a PS4 removable hard drive to store your data externally. An SSD for gaming computers will work much better than PS4 systems. The poor performance of the 40GB drive comes into focus here just from a perusal of the basic stats – not only is data less densely packed onto the platter, but also the onboard cache of the drive is a paltry 2MB, whereas the launch model’s 60GB drive had four times as much. Seek time – a crucial element in hard drive performance – is also poor. Once the hard drive has been installed, turn on the PS4. A message will appear asking to change the location of saved data; select ‘Yes’ to continue.
Based on what we know of the raw specs of the drives, the simple act of moving to a higher density drive should, in theory, give you a performance boost regardless. Once this process is complete, go to ‘System Settings’ from the main menu and go to ‘System Information’ to verify that all changes were made successfully. The question is just how much performance is there to be gained by paying a premium for a more expensive drive? This process time depends on how much data is being restored. Expect it to take in the region of 2-3 hours for 100gb of data. In the three years since the PS4 launched, has hard drive tech moved on to such a degree that even a cheapo drive will outstrip the performance of your original HDD?