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You Can Substantially Speed Up Your PS4 by Swapping in a New Hard Drive

Posted by Kell Andersen

Gotta go fast

The PlayStation 4 comes with a suitably large 500GB hard drive. But between those staggeringly huge mandatory installs, the system's memory-guzzling operating system, and the inevitable slew of free PlayStation Plus games, it's likely that you'll find yourself running out of space sooner rather than later. The simple solution to this conundrum is to bust open your next-gen machine and swap in a bigger HDD.

However, this creates a completely separate quandary: do you opt for a pricey SSD, or a more reasonable hybrid drive? Well, the crafty lads over at Tested have been madly tinkering with their PS4 and have created a handy comparison video to get rid of any guess work. By replacing the console's built-in hard drive they saw a six second gain in boot-up speed, as well as a massive 20 second gain in loading a pre-installed game. Unsurprisingly, the SSD was the faster option, but the hybrid drive didn't perform too badly either.

Will you be picking up some extra storage for your PS4, or do you plan on prudently managing your memory? Install your opinions in the comments section below.


User Comments (19)



DannyB said:

I am going to hold off replacing my HDD until Seagate/Samsung release the Spinpoint M9T to the public in January. it will be the world's first 2.5 inch, 9.5 mm tall, 2TB HDD. I really hope they make a hybrid version of it as well.



Scollurio said:

I'm already waiting for my ps4 to arrive to put my 1 tb hybrid in there as I think of it as the best value for money solution!



banacheck said:

I'm going to up my HDD but not at first, i'll probably buy a hybrid 1-1.5TB. This friday cannot wait for my PS4, only 4 more days.



NathanUC said:

Fair warning:
The 1tb version of Seagates Hybrid drive (which uses a 5,400rpm drive and some 'slow' 8gb flash) benchmarks nearly the same as low/medium end 7,200 rpm drive in many areas. On PC, it's very well believed and surmised that a good 7,200rpm drive will out perform Seagates hybrid drive.

I would recommend purchasing a 7,200rpm drive over the 1tb Seagate hybrid. Note that the 750gb version of the Hybrid drive contains a 7,200rpm drive and will greatly out perform the 1tb version in most situations.

I can't believe these reputable sites aren't testing these hybrid drives compared to a cheaper 7,200rpm drive. Maybe I'll have to waste some dollars to put this argument to rest....



Ginkgo said:

My PS3 has 1TB (which is over half full), so there is no question that I will be upgrading the PS4 (which I don't own yet) at some point.

My plan is to wait. Give it 2 years, and 1TB SSDs will hopefully become reasonable. I am sure the 500GB will last that long. There is no rush. Also, by them perhaps the PS4 will support TRIM.



InsertNameHere said:

I always planned on swapping in a 1TB SSD a couple months after I got my PS4, so it's good to know that I'll be speeding up my system by doing so.



DirectAim said:

Didn't realise the PS4 is so slow to load games. 60 seconds seems an eternity for next gen!



Hokage17 said:

I think it's great they opted to make the internal storage upgradable rather than settle for external ports. This way not only do you get extra onboard space but you also improve your overall user experience. It's good to have options. So upgrading your hard drive at some point is recommended though it's also not a mandatory thing. Personally I'm going to upgrade mine to the highest capacity possible with SSD. I know it's the more expensive option and of course I do my research, but in my experience I've learned that most of the time you really do get what you pay for.



Munkyknuts said:

I'd have preferred they offer a PS4 with a higher memory capacity rather than having to switch a new one in myself. More so that the console seems to tear thru the memory it comes with.



PMasterTy9 said:

I would be a little cautious on putting in a SSD until I get more information on how much writing and rewriting the PS4 does over time since that can burn out an SSD.



NathanUC said:

@Kohaku The speed of a drive has very little to do with it's ability to dissipate heat these days. Some 5,400 run hotter than 7,200, some 7,200 run hotter than 5,400. Same goes with noise.

Even so, the hard drive bay is located above the heatsink/shielding so what temperatures it does generate would have little to no effect on the overall temperature of the PS4. Reason Sony shipped PS4 with a 5,400 drive was to cut costs. They are already selling it at near break even value, a 7,200 rpm would have easily made it a loss every console sold and many gamers wouldn't need the speed difference.



Paranoimia said:

I've got a HGST Travelstar here, waiting to go into my PS4 when it arrives. 1.5TB, 5400rpm, 9.5mm thick.

I just want the extra storage at the lowest price, I'm not bothered about shaving a few seconds off here and there with hybrid or SSD drives.



ScreamAimFire99 said:

More memory for cheaper is my concern. I wouldn't spend hundreds of dollars extra just for a slightly faster load time.



Munkyknuts said:

I'd happily have paid more for a higher memory option of console. I'd have to pay for a replacement hard drive and I can't be arsed with switching in the new one. The beefed up PS4 could have shipped with the boast of having more memory than the XBone....I have an old chunky 500gb PS3 and didn't bother with extra memory till recently.



JayMiller1988 said:

Waiting for either Black 2 by WD to come in at least 2TB or an SSHD with 2TB (Seagate has the latter, but it's still a little expensive).



Carl-G said:

I got my basic 1TB HD a few weeks back for the PS4 which i will put in my New PS4 on Friday. But interesting Video & i will wait until those other HD prices fall & then might put in a faster one.



NathanUC said:

I have a neat idea I'm going to test out. I have an old 4tb 7,200rpm 3.5" drive laying around from a failed NAS project. I'm going to try and route the SATA/power cables from the PS4 to the drive (grounded via an old NAS enclosure) and see if I can cheat the system.

The power consumption of a 3.5" compared to a 2.5" shouldn't be much of an issue, but if it is, my NAS enclosure has the ability to supply power. Possibly just routing a SATA cable is enough.



Subie98 said:

@nathanuc1988 I thought I recall reading somewhere that sony said not to install a faster rpm drive. I also thought they said the ps4 wont support larger than a 1tb for the timie being

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