PlayStation 5 owners have been scrambling to lock down a premium M.2 SSD following the release of a beta software update that finally unlocked the next-gen console’s expansion slot last week, but recent tests have revealed that even cheaper SSDs that don’t quite match Sony’s 5,500 MB/s sequential read speed recommendation can provide a level of performance that’s consistent with both the internal SSD and higher-priced models.
This is what The Verge discovered after testing one of the cheapest PCIe Gen4 SSDs it could find, ADATA’s XPG Gammix S50 lite, which features a 3,900 MB/s read speed and 3,200 MB/s write speed. Despite these relatively unremarkable specifications, the loading times of the XPG Gammix were not much different than the ones granted by the PS5’s internal SSD and a 5,000 MB/s Sabrent Rocket.
Amusingly, the XPG Gammix even managed to load select titles such as Insomniac Games’ Spider-Man spin-off, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, faster than the competition. Insomniac’s director of core technology Mike Fitzgerald has warned that slower Gen 4 M.2 drives could result in slower loading times by as much as 15 percent in certain portions of one of its other next-gen titles, Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart, however.
PS5 SSD Load Times
|Game||Internal SSD||Sabrent Rocket||XPG Gammix S50 Lite||External HDD|
|Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart||14 sec||14 sec||15 sec||N/A|
|Returnal||30 sec||30 sec||31 sec||N/A|
|Spider-Man: Miles Morales (PS5)||19 sec||18 sec||17 sec||N/A|
|FFVII Remake (PS5)||10 sec||10 sec||10 sec||N/A|
|FFVII Remake (PS4)||43 sec||43 sec||43 sec||58 sec|
|Yakuza Like a Dragon (PS5)||31 sec||32 sec||32 sec||N/A|
|Yakuza Like a Dragon (PS4)||37 sec||37 sec||35 sec||52 sec|
We tried some below-spec Gen4 M.2 drives as well and saw up to 15% slower loading in the most SSD-stressing areas of the game. Not too shabby, but keep a close eye on technical specs if you’re making an SSD purchase, as our game does rely on high-quality storage. 🙏— Mike Fitzgerald (@fitzymj) July 29, 2021
Surprisingly, even the slowest compatible SSD we could find had near-identical load times to the one Sony includes in the box. Sometimes it’s a second slower, sometimes a second or two faster, but basically it’s a total wash. Hopping through dimensions in Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart, I saw no appreciable difference with the slowest SSD in gameplay, either.
Source: The Verge