This $55 SSD actually works very well on the PS5, analysis finds
The folks over at DigitalFoundry have analyzed the performance of the WD_Black SN750 SE, an SSD that is significantly under the required specs for the PS5. They found that the drive actually performs on par with more expensive SSDs in-game.
Cheap underspec SSD confirmed to work well on PS5
Rich Leadbetter over at digital foundry wanted to find the “cheapest possible” SSD drive that would still perform correctly on the PS5. In other words, Sony’s requirements for additional SSD are pretty stringent, but can we take an under-spec drive and still get it to run games correctly? It turns out the answer is yes.
Looking at the 4th Gen SN750 SE, Digital Foundry found the following:
- In-game, the SN750 SE performs as well as much more expensive options such as best-of-class SN850
- When it comes to copying games from the internal drive to the external drive though, the SN750 SE was up to ten times slower than drives meeting the specs. Whether that aspect is something that matters to you or not is a of personal choice.
Digital Foundry tested a handful of games, in particular Ratchet and Clank’s demanding “live loading” of assets. In this game, the SN750 SE was working “to the point that I don’t think anyone could tell the difference [with the internal SSD or the expensive SN850]”, Leadbetter says. Other games performed similarly, with no noticeable difference between the $55 SN750 SE, the $230 SN850, or the internal SSD. This includes tests in games such as Control, Cyberpunk 2077, and Ghost of Tsushima.
Conversely, where a big difference could be felt is in copying games from the PS5 internal SSD to the SN750, where it could take up to ten times the amount compared to copying the same game to the SN850. Assuming you don’t copy games back and forth that often, this might be a compromise you’re willing to make if you want to go with the cheaper option.
People in the video comments where quick to note that current PS5 games do not necessarily optimize for all the performance that the recommended specs could give. In other words, it’s possible that games today perform well on the SN750 SE, but that one or two years down the road, differences in performance start to appear. To that, it’s worth noting that one could keep “optimized” games on their internal SSD, while using the SN750 SE for less demanding games.
Where and how to get the SN750 SE. Is it Worth it for your PS5?
To be fair, the $55 version of the SN750 SE is a 250GB drive. So, yeah, cheap, but not a faire comparison. People who are serious about expanding their PS5’s space will most likely want to go to 1TB. The 1TB version of the SN750 SE costs $129.99, to compare to the $179.99 of the Crucial P5 Plus, an SSD which does meet Sony’s tech requirements. You’ll also need to add a heatsink in the mix, for about $10 more.
With that being said, if you’re looking for a cheap way to expand your PS5’s internal storage, the SN750 SE 1TB doesn’t seem like a completely bad idea for $130, possibly as an intermediate solution until you get yourself a 2TB or 4TB in a few years. It’s also worth mentioning that it is still in stock, unlike most of the other options.
If you’re looking for more options and a comparison of SSD drives for your PS5, we’ve got you covered.