Installing an SSD in your PlayStation can be a costly venture, but what are the benefits? Here at Start Replay we’re currently testing out Crucial’s latest 1TB SSD, the MX200.
Before showing you the results however, we managed to send off a few questions to Crucial’s senior worldwide product manager, Jonathan Weech, getting the lowdown on SSDs and their benefits inside PlayStation hardware.
Why should I consider going fully SSD?
An SSD can really supercharge your console, and ween you off slower hard drives. The technology in hard drives is very old and outdated. SSDs use flash memory, just like USB drives, which is much quicker and doesn’t require the use of spinning discs. Hard drives store data on spinning magnetic plates, which is why your PC or console will make a lot of noise when opening files or turning on. That’s the hard drive spinning the discs to find the require data. SSDs on the other hand have no moving parts and can access data almost instantly. In short, SSDs are faster, more energy efficient and less noisy, making them the perfect accessory for any gaming system.
Is it harder to recover data from SSD than a traditional HDD?
No – it’s easy to recover data and restore backups to an SSD. It’s the same process, but the SSD has faster write/read speeds so will take less time than a hard drive.
Do SSDs actually provide a worthy upgrade in terms of speed on PlayStation consoles?
YES! Your game console has to access files every time you load a game, and as a result, you end up waiting. An SSD gets you on the battlefield faster by slashing your load and boot times and allowing you to access everything on the console faster. Crucial SSDs are also over 2x more energy efficient than a hard drive, which keeps your console cool and quiet. SSDs can be as much as 13x faster than a typical hard drive, so will provide a noticeable difference for you when playing, loading and enjoying games, giving you an edge over rivals.
How easy is it to install an SSD into a PlayStation? Is it any different to a standard HDD?
You can upgrade PlayStation consoles from a HDD to SSD, just bear in mind that you will most likely void your warranty, so weigh that choice up before you do anything. SSDs are up to 13 times faster than a hard drive, ensuring that your console boots quicker, accesses data quicker and, most importantly, gets you on the battlefield faster. For any upgrade, a screwdriver is vital for removing any screws that might be holding the drives in place. We’d also recommend watching plenty of tutorial videos before giving it a go yourself.
To upgrade PS4s and PS3s you will first need to back up your data, so that you don’t lose your saved games. Once this is done you can proceed with the upgrade. On both consoles there is a hard disk cover that you will need to remove. Under this is where the hard drive lives and it’s a simple case of removing the hard drive and plugging in a new SSD. However, once this is done you’ll then need to reinstall the system software and restore your back up files. You can download the system software from the PlayStation website and store it in a USB drive. The reinstall MUST be done in safe mode, with the USB drive plugged into the console.
Once completed, turn on your console and slow load speeds will be a thing of the past.
Will I notice a speed increase straight away, or will it take time for my games to adapt to a faster, more efficient SSD?
You will notice the difference immediately. Once the upgrade has been done, the SSD takes over instantly and you’ll be waving goodbye to slow boot times.
I play a lot of online shooters, such as Call of Duty and Battlefield, will an SSD improve my gameplay? Will it improve latency?
SSDs will reduce any hardware related delays and get you on the battlefield quicker. It may improve latency, but that’s sometimes caused by the network rather than being exclusively a hardware problem. We’re sorry to say that an SSD cannot make you aim better or improve your headshot ratio!
I’m tempted to stick to a cheaper traditional HDD, but with a small portion of SSD. Would a hybrid actually be useful in a PlayStation?
Hybrid storage drives haven’t taken off in the way SSDs have. Although the performance of a hybrid drive is better than a HDD, spinning media will ALWAYS be slower than solid state storage. SSD prices are rapidly declining, which is making them much more affordable and larger capacities are becoming more abundant.
There are many manufactures on the market for SSDs; Samsung, SanDisk and, of course, Crucial – is there actually any major difference between them? How is Crucial different?
Crucial is a brand of Micron, one of the largest memory manufacturers in the world. This means that we’re bringing to you the same quality and expertise that it built into new computers. Our SSDs go through over one thousand hours of prerelease assessments and hundreds of qualification tests. All our products are tried, tested and proven before they go anywhere near a shelf. Crucial SSDs have helped to save tens of millions of systems from slow performance, and deliver performance and reliability that you can trust.