With its latest firmware, Sony allows you to add your own M.2 SSD to the PlayStation 5 to supplement the console's internal storage. Once you install an NVMe SSD in your PS5, you can use the additional space for games and media files. But do you need to add a heatsink as Sony recommends? We'll answer this question in detail below, but in short, you may be able to do without it.
Given that the PS5's internal storage space is restricted to 825GB, with a notable amount already taken up by the operating system, you might reach the storage limits with only a few games installed. Adding a fast NVMe drive, preferably one of the best SSDs, solves this problem, and you won't have to worry about more space unless you want to have dozens of titles installed on your console.
You cannot install just any M.2 NVMe SSD in the PS5. There are some restrictions and, above all, you have to make sure that you are on the latest firmware or else the console won't boot! So first, update the firmware and then install the SSD.
The NVMe SSD that you will buy for your PS5 should be compatible with the PCIe 4.0 interface, and its capacity must be in the 250 GB - 4 TB range. The larger capacity drive you get, the better, but we believe that the sweet spot is 1TB. The most critical factor is the sequential read speed. Sony recommends the drive to have 5,500MB/s, or faster is speeds.
|Interface||PCI-Express Gen4x4 supported M.2 NVMe SSD (Key M)|
|Storage||250 GB - 4 TB|
|Supported sizes||2230, 2242, 2260, 2280, 22110|
|Size including heat-dissipation mechanism||Width: up to 25 mm Length: 30/40/60/80/110 mm Thickness: up to 11.25 mm|
|Sequential read speed||5,500MB/s or faster is recommended|
|Socket type||Socket 3 (Key M)|
Sony states that the NVMe drive that you will use in your PS5 requires effective heat dissipation, meaning that it has to have a heat sink attached to it. So you can either get a drive that already has a heat sink or save some money by buying a normal NVMe drive and a third-party heat sink and install it on your own.
But is it really necessary to use a heat sink? And given the restricted dimensions, especially in height, of the M.2 slot compartment in the PS5, should we install the cover, or can we do without it?
Sony puts a limitation on the height of the heat sink that the NVMe drive has and also instructs you to screw on the port cover, which goes over the slot. But is a heat sink really necessary and does the cover help or hurt? We had to find out.