The clouds have parted, the heavenly choirs are singing, and the PS4 is finally adding support for external hard drives, meaning you’ll no longer have to perform minor electronic surgery to store more games on your console. But this begs the question: What drive should you buy?
Your easiest option here is going to be a portable, USB-powered external drive, which are available in sizes up to 5TB. That’s going to multiply your storage several times over, without adding an additional power cord.
Most of these drives spin at 5400 RPM, the same as the drive included in the PS4, but a 7200 RPM drive will speed up your loading times. Unfortunately, HGST’s Touro is really the only mass market 7200 RPM external drive you can buy, and it maxes out at 1TB. That said, I’ve been using this drive on my Xbox One for years (as have many of our readers), and it’s a great option if you don’t need more space.
If you value storage space and value over modest speed bumps, you can’t go wrong with Seagate’s Backup Plus or WD’s My Passport line, which are available in sizes ranging up to 4TB (WD) or even 5TB (Seagate).
Your other option is grab an inexpensive enclosure or docking station, like this one from Inateck, and throw in a bare drive, whether it’s one you buy for this purpose or one you happen to have laying around.
This method is really your only option if you want a 7200 RPM drive larger than 1TB. For example, this Seagate (available up to 4TB) has long been one of the most popular internal hard drive replacements for the PS4, and it’ll work just as well over USB with an enclosure.
If you’re desperate for the fastest possible speeds, and money’s no object, then that same hard drive enclosure will work for SSDs as well. Basically any SSD will be dramatically faster than any spinning hard drive, but Samsung’s 850 EVO line is by far the most popular model on the market. I would caution you that this is probably overkill; the loading speed increases likely won’t justify the massive jumps in price, but I’m not going to stop you from trying.
Have another suggestion? Let us know in the comments!