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Best PS5 external hard drives 2022 - easily expand your storage

best ps5 external hard drive
(Image credit: Future)

If you've been vying for extra storage space in your console, then the best PS5 external hard drives can help to give your games and media some extra breathing room. In 2022, we're now seeing models that are pushing respectable figures to provide all-around snappy performance. 

It's important to state early on, however, that the best PS5 external hard drives cannot natively run PS5 games directly, so you'll need to know how to transfer games to PS5 external hard drive and then copy onto the console which is fairly straightforward. If you've got an extensive digital library of PS4 games, though, those titles will boot and play just as they would on native hardware. 

As far as the best PS5 accessories go, PS5 external hard drives go a long way to freeing up your system's storage without being too expensive. For as impressive as the best PS5 SSDs can be, those internal options can get quite pricey in higher capacities. With that said, if you're after one of the best external hard drives for use on your PS5 right now, then these options are certainly worth considering in 2022. 

The best PS5 external hard drive deal right now

WD Black P50 Game Drive SSD | 1TB | $250 $198.61 at Amazon
Save $51 - A good current price on our favorite PS5 external hard drive. The P50 has incredible performance, is robust and solid, and this discount offers great value to get it into your setup just in time for the holidays.
It's available in the UK for just £169.99 at the time of writing, too.

The best PS5 external hard drives for 2022

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WD Black P50

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WD Black P50

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WD Black P50

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WD Black P50

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WD Black P50

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1. WD Black P50 Game Drive

The best external PS5 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Storage type: SSD
Sequential read: 2,000 MB/s
Sequential write: 2,000 MB/s

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent speeds
+
Robust build
+
Purpose-built for gaming

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricier than many other models

The P50 is one of the best external drives for any device right now, particularly in a world that's moving slowly but surely toward SSDs ruling the roost. However, it's probably the best PS5 external hard drive outright now, offering speeds and performances often reserved for those drives within the best gaming PCs and on best SSD for gaming lists. All encased within a unit that has a quality, cool design, and a robust build.

Speaking of that unit, on its outside the P50 is military metal-styled, rectangular in shape, and features slick molded metal in black along with the traditional WD_Black aesthetics and markings. Its USB-C port can be used on your devices as either a USB-A or USB-C connection and in our testing, we got the same speeds through either port so it shouldn't matter which you have free or available, or if you change the device it's used with during its lifetime. There's a small but clear LED indicator on one of the short ends which is always a help, but one small downside is that it does get a little warm when in use so it'll pay to keep that in mind when positioning it.

When it comes to speeds, what you're told you're getting and what happens is pretty much bang on. It's incredible performance for an external SSD and the stated speeds of 'up to 2000MB/s' were on the money in our testing. Real-world performance-wise, the P50 gives you everything a high-quality external SSD should do: games were loaded incredibly quickly, files were retrieved in the snap of a finger, and the performance levels were incredibly consistent. It's a surefire SSD that will rapidly improve your gaming experience by far reducing the time looking at loading screens and increasing the time when you're actually playing. A true winner.

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Toshiba 1TB Canvio Advance

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Toshiba 1TB Canvio Advance

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Toshiba 1TB Canvio Advance

2. Toshiba 1TB Canvio Advance

The best budget PS5 external hard drive

Specifications

Capacity: 1TB
Storage Type: HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Budget price
+
Decent transfer speeds
+
Available in different colors

Reasons to avoid

-
Speeds don't rival an SSD

The Canvio Advance took over from the Cavio Basics last year as our best budget pick for PS4 external drives, and there's no reason to change that for PS5 external hard drives. It is superior to the Basics in every way and performs as well as most other HDDs, but often for a lower price. 

This one's roughly the same cost as the Basics, but comes with a few extra tricks. The read and write speeds are marginally faster, there's a two-year warranty, and if you fancy turning the Canvio Advance into a PC drive it has password protection and automatic back-up, which is lacking from the Basics model. 

Anyway, using it is still as easy as ever. Just plug it into your PS4 and format it as extended storage. As a result of this, the Advance doesn't require an external power source and just functions over USB. 

Overall, it's a great device, and for the $50 mark, it's a steal.

Samsung T7 Shield

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3. Samsung T7 Shield

The best durable SSD for your PS5

Specifications

Capacity: 1TB
Storage type: SSD
Sequential Read: Up to 1,050 MB/s
Sequential Write: Up to 1,000 MB/s

Reasons to buy

+
Fast sequential performance 
+
Small form factor 
+
Tactile, rugged design 

Reasons to avoid

-
Cable isn't the longest around

The Samsung T7 Shield is the latest in a line of high-speed performance-first portable external SSDs with an emphasis on durability. The brand claims that the T7 boasts double the performance of the T5, and our testing proves that's very much the case. While the 1,050 MB/s read and 1,000 MB/s write don't exactly rival NVMe counterparts, as far as external drives go, the Samsung T7 Shield is certainly up there in terms of sequential performance. At $159.99 / £134.79 for a 1TB model or $289.99 / £250.99 for 2TB, it's far from the cheapest PS5 external hard drives around, but those speeds, and tank-like shell, may justify the added cost for you. 

We found that the claimed figures were largely lived up to with game transfers, as Demon's Souls (53.73 GB) made the leap from the PS5's internal storage to the Samsung T7 Shield in 4 minutes 30 seconds. That's roughly in keeping with the maximum sequential performance, and solid figures from an external drive plugged in via USB 3.2 on the back of the console. There's also an included USB C to USB C cable in the box, too. 

Another main selling point of this drive, much like others in the line-up, is the rugged nature of its outer casing. Samsung has stated that the T7 Shield is able to withstand all manner of harsh conditions, with drop tests being done four times from three meters in the air onto solid concrete with no signs of physical damage to the casings or internals. 

We did not test this for ourselves with our loan unit, but we can tell you that the Samsung T7 Shield certainly feels sturdy in the hand. It's wrapped in a thick rubberized coating, so we believe that it could just bounce off thick concrete without having to worry too much about it. This makes the drive ideal for anyone who tends to commute a lot with their PS5.

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best ps5 external hard drives and ssd: Crucial X6

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best ps5 external hard drives and ssd: Crucial X6

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best ps5 external hard drives and ssd: Crucial X6

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4. Crucial X6

The best budget external PS5 SSD

Specifications

Capacity: 1-2TB
Storage type: SSD

Reasons to buy

+
Super compact design
+
Cheaper than the competition
+
Much quicker than a traditional HDD

Reasons to avoid

-
'Only' 540 MB/s (still feels quick though)
-
Cable is very short

External SSD options can get pretty pricey fast, even for smaller drives. But if you're after a cheaper option, with a decent capacity that will still thrash a traditional HDD for speeds then we think the Crucial X6 is a great pick.

You can get a 1TB version here for a similar price of SSDs with less than half of the storage. The Crucial X6 is fantastic for storing and playing PS4 games. So much so, you won't feel you have to transfer them to the PS5 to get fast loading times. Compared to running games on a standard external HDD we managed to decrease loading times on Resident Evil 7 from game selection to gameplay from around 90 seconds to just one minute. Storing PS5 games here is a great idea too as it only took us 3 minutes 48 seconds to move 30GB compared to 7:16 when using an HDD.

A USB-C connection means you'll have to plug it into the front of the PS5 and the Crucial X6 is left hanging and it'll only just reach the table (assuming your PS5 is vertical), but it's super light, so there's no risk of it getting loose. If you like the look of this one, but want an even faster version, you'll want to take a look at the Crucial X8.  

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5. Samsung SSD T5 500GB

Another excellent SSD option for a PS5 external hard drive option

Specifications

Capacity: 500GB
Storage Type: SSD

Reasons to buy

+
Very reliable
+
Speedy
+
Solid, robust, and compact design

Reasons to avoid

-
Needs a case for peace of mind

Even beyond being a top PS5 external hard drive SSD, the Samsung T5 series is just one of the top SSDs for gaming generally (in an external capacity, of course) and remains very popular across the board. It does retain a higher price for its premium nature, pedigree, finish, and performance, but it's certainly worth it. Plus, we are increasingly seeing great deals on them too.

The Samsung T5 is a technical beast, as it offers some of the best performance for a drive hands down - its speeds are top drawer. It's both compact and durable as well, making it ideal if you're carrying games and files between locations. It's chic too.

With all that in mind, it's no wonder that the best internal SSD for PS5 is rumored to be a top-grade Samsung model like this one when the drive and Sony's stamp of approval list come out.

Before we move on, it's worth mentioning that other variants are available in this range from Samsung. The slightly dearer T7 drive or even the T7 Touch drives will offer even better speeds and a few extra features, too.

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WD My Passport 4TB Portable Hard Drive

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WD My Passport 4TB Portable Hard Drive

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WD My Passport 4TB Portable Hard Drive

6. WD My Passport 4TB Portable Hard Drive

The best external PS5 HDD

Specifications

Capacity: 4TB
Storage Type: HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Masses of storage
+
Really great price
+
Great transfer speeds for an HDD

Reasons to avoid

-
Basic speeds

Long having ruled over the external storage market in the PS4 and Xbox One generation, the My Passport drive from Western Digital is still one of the most reliable, convenient, and versatile HDDs you can buy. It's only bumped down to a 'lowly' third on this list due to our take that SSDs shade it over HDDs in the PS5 generation. However, for anyone looking for a standard, reasonably priced PS5 external hard drive that's an HDD this remains a top, top option. 

It's a simple USB connection, it's small and sturdy - about the size of a smart phone - and the My Passport series' aesthetic is pleasing and brings further style to a quality HDD, meaning it'll slot seamlessly into your setup and be unobtrusive even if it's on show.

In terms of specific capacities, we'd probably go for the 4TB version. This is because we've seen the biggest savings on the 4TB, and you do get better value, generally, with the bigger drives. A 4TB HDD will provide easily enough space for 50+ games, and loads of saves, data, and media too. 

An all-around excellent PS5 external hard drive, particularly if you're not fussed about an SSD or want to shave some dollar signs off the price tag of your external drive.

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7. SanDisk Extreme Portable

The best hard-wearing, accident-proof PS5 external SSD

Specifications

Capacity: Up to 4TB
Storage type: SSD

Reasons to buy

+
Very hardy and durable
+
Great speeds
+
Neat and tidy design

Reasons to avoid

-
Durability features may be overkill

While the Samsung offers the best SSD option right now for your PS5 external hard drive needs, if you're looking at getting the best-protected SSD to keep that drive extra safe (and why wouldn't you?), then the SanDisk Extreme Portable is the one for you. If you've got one eye on the future, for when we can travel around more and take our game data with us to our friends and families, then this rugged drive will be able to withstand any sort of accident. It's the perfect contender for those of us who are accident-prone, or who prefer to make extra sure about the protection our devices have.

It's a genuinely rugged SSD too, as it is water and dust-resistant to the IP-55 standard. It's got a shock-resistant core for extra durability and retains a really compact design as well - it'll fit in your pocket with ease. 

That safety and durability comes at a premium, though, and adds a bit more to the price of the drive. But it's definitely worth it when all things are considered. It's no slouch either when it comes to doing the key job; its read speeds can challenge the Samsung T5's. If you want some extra reassurance, you could even go for the Extreme Pro variant - but be prepared to see the cost rise significantly.

WD Black D30

(Image credit: Western Digital)

8. WD Black D30 500GB

An affordable PS5 external SSD from a well-known brand

Specifications

Capacity: 500GB
Storage type: SSD

Reasons to buy

+
Tough, rugged design 
+
Competitively priced 
+
Up to 900 MB/s write speeds

Reasons to avoid

-
Not the fastest external SSD

The WD Black D30 is one of the best PS5 external hard drives as far as its competence and backup storage is concerned - even if you aren't getting the absolute fastest possible speeds. However, with more-than-respectable rates of up to 900MB/s, the WD Black D30 still holds its own when transferring larger files.

As far as overall build quality, connectivity, and sturdiness of construction go, the WD Black D30 certainly lives up to the prestige of WD's other external drives with a similar overall aesthetic and rugged outer shell. The box itself is roughly the size of a pack of playing cards, with a decent amount of weight to it. Wherever you intend on keeping it, you won't have to worry about impacts from accidental damage, drops, or scrapes. 

In our testing, we found that the WD Black D30 was able to transfer 100GB worth of PS4 games, and boot and play at speeds consistent with what has been claimed. Bloodborne (32.96GB) took just 2:13 to transfer from the PS5's native storage and onto the WD Black D30 where it performed as it should. The same can be said for Thief (22.79GB) and Hatsune Miku: Project Diva (13.63GB) which were ready to roll in 1:31 minutes and 48 seconds respectively. 

With all external PS5 SSDs unable to play PS5 games, you'll need to copy over them from the external drive to the PS5's own SSD. We tested that too and Sackboy: A Big Adventure (31.66GB) made the leap from internal storage to the WD Black D30 in 3:42, and then the playable game files were copied in just 55 seconds - a damn sight faster than having to redownload from scratch! 

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WD My Passport SSD

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WD My Passport SSD

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9. WD My Passport SSD

A top external PS5 SSD option from a proven name

Specifications

Capacities: Up to 4TB
Read speed: Up to 1,050 MB/s
Write speed: Up to 1,000 MB/s

Reasons to buy

+
Great read/write speeds
+
Good value for SSD
+
Versatile - great with PCs too

Reasons to avoid

-
Short cable

If you have half an eye on versatility and multi-platform use down the road, then the WD My Passport SSD is a good offering - and of course, it is a great PS5 SSD in its own right, coming from proven manufacturers of quality units. The My Passport SSD will offer write speeds of about 300Mbps, and read speeds of 390Mbps - substantially faster than its HDD brother, the My Passport, which can offer larger capacity for your money but only gives read and write speeds of 120-130 Mbps.

The My Passport SSD's PC-pedigree does offer some flexibility and adds some versatility to this drive. For example, it's compatible with All The USBs, including being USB-C ready, and it has an automatic backup system and a handy password protection and hardware encryption security double whammy. 

Generally, this is a quality SSD for your PS5 from a trusted maker of drives that we have no trouble recommending - and if you like the My Passport HDD range we've mentioned above, but want the SSD performance, then this drive is a no brainer.

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Seagate Expansion 6TB external HDD

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Seagate Expansion 6TB external HDD

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Seagate Expansion 6TB external HDD

10. Seagate Expansion 6TB HDD

The best for big storage

Specifications

Capacity: 6TB
Storage Type: HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Great price
+
Holy hell, that's a lot of storage

Reasons to avoid

-
Again, HDD speed

You'll never have to worry about the sheer capacity of your external storage again (probably) with this ridiculously well-priced 6TB offering from Seagate. It's a unit, but maintains a slick and slim finish and size, and you can get capacities from 2TB upwards. But we think this 6TB monster represents the best value for money.

Setup is easy as you like, with a simple plug and play, but due to its thiccness, you will have a mains power to plug in as well as the USB 3.0. That latter connection offers great HDD speeds for transfers, and if you get a 6TB drive, you're probably looking at about 80-100 PS4 games.

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WD Black P10 external hard drives xbox

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WD Black P10 external hard drives xbox

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WD Black P10 external hard drives xbox

11. WD Black P10 1-5TB Game Drive

Best reliability-meets-durability hard drive

Specifications

Capacity: 1-5TB
Storage type: : HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Great portable size
+
Runs cool and quiet
+
3-year warranty

Reasons to avoid

-
Don't buy it for speed

This is a super PS5 external hard drive from a reputable maker. The WD Black P10 hard drive is a solid semi-rugged portable option for external storage. It might not be totally bombproof but you certainly get sturdiness for your money here - and without paying through the nose for dust-resistant scores or crushproof limit numbers. 

In terms of performance, the hard drive runs quiet and cool even when we set it off on a marathon session copying over and downloading a library's worth of games. The transfer and data speeds you get won't be the most outlandish, but in a world where quality HDDs still have a role to play in external console storage - particularly with everyone's large PS4 libraries, potentially - it's a reliable drive and offers great bang for your buck.

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Seagate The Last of Us Part II 2TB Game Drive

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Seagate The Last of Us Part II 2TB Game Drive

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Seagate The Last of Us Part II 2TB Game Drive

12. Seagate The Last of Us Part II 2TB Game Drive

The best PlayStation branded external hard drive

Specifications

Capacity:: 2TB
Storage Type: HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Looks terrific and is limited edition
+
Runs quietly
+
Compact

Reasons to avoid

-
Design comes at a cost - only HDD speeds

For those of you looking to pick up something a bit more unusual and in line with one of the best PlayStation 4 games of the generation then Seagate’s beautiful The Last of Us Part II limited edition external PS4 hard drive is for you. It comes with a laser-etched fern pattern design mirroring Ellie's tattoo and has a pleasing matte finish. To be clear though, this HDD does not include the game or any form of digital or physical extras; it's just A Very Nice Thing that will happily house your games and data.

Away from the exquisite branding, this is just a great HDD. It runs super quietly and you’ll fit more than 50 games on here (assuming an average size of around 39GB). The Limited Edition nature of the design and branding of this PS5 external hard drive is what drives its price up a little, and arguably you'll find others offer slightly better value, but none of them will look as good or be as attractive to Naughty Dog fans.

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13. ArmorATD 4TB

The best tough and resistant portable PS5 external hard drive

Specifications

Capacity: 4TB
Storage Type: HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Tough as nails & resistant to basically everything
+
Incredibly reliable
+
Great connectivity
+
Excellent for combining with outdoor hobbies

Reasons to avoid

-
HDDs are on the way out...

If you're looking for a really safe pair of hands for your PS4/PS5 games or media, then the ArmorATD from G-Technology is a strong contender. It's seriously tough and feels incredibly solid in your hands, and can withstand much trauma and attempted damage. It's rain-resistant, dust-resistant, and crush-resistant (up to 1000lbs). The latter stat in particular means you can have total confidence in the drive even if it were to fall out of bags or pockets and have to endure a big and bouncy fall. Or even survive being driven over like one of my old HDDs experienced and only just survived (don't ask). 

The shock mounts, solid aluminum enclosure, and protective rubber bumpers all combine to offer this excellent level of protection and - particularly for when we can travel freely once more - if you like to err on the side of caution or want to take a belt and braces approach to the safety of your data and PS5 external hard drive, then there aren't many tougher to go for. (Note: it's sometimes referred to as the 'G-Technology 4TB ArmorATD All-Terrain Drive'.)

Today's latest prices in one place

Is 1TB SSD enough for PS5?

We think that 1TB for an internal SSD is going to be the sweet spot for most players. This would give your PS5 just over 1.5TB of proper usable space, and also ensures you're not paying silly money for the 2TB and up variants of the SSDs - this is where prices can skyrocket (some 2TB models are about the same price as a whole PS5!).

Externally, you do get way more bang for your buck, and we'd say a 1TB model is probably a minimum, a starting point. Particularly in sales season, you'll find high-quality 2TB and up models - of SSDs - coming down to the same prices as their smaller counterparts. HDDs will get you even further and 4TB and 5TB models will get you all the storage you'll ever need, for a low price - if you're happy with slower speeds.

What external hard drives are PS5 compatible?

PS5 external hard drives utilize the USB 3.0 port on the back of the system in order to provide the fastest transfer times available. This means the vast majority of USB-powered drives can work with the system. 

And remember to look at other hardware means to kit out your PS5 setup such as the best TV for PS5, best gaming monitor for PS5, and the best PS5 headsets available too.

I'm the Commissioning Editor for Hardware at GamesRadar+ and have been here since late 2018. I'm also a writer on games and have had work published over the last five years or so at the likes of Eurogamer, RPS, PCGN, and more. Day to day, I take care of a whole host of gaming tech reviews, buying guides, and news and deals content that pops up across GamesRadar+. I'm also a qualified landscape and garden designer, so I do that in my spare time. I'm also an expert on the virtual landscapes and environments of games and love to write about them too, including in an upcoming book on the topic!

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