PS4 Won't Support External Hard Drives

PS4 Won't Support External Hard Drives

Sony has just posted a massive PS4 FAQ on the PlayStation Blog, and it's full of granular details surrounding the next-gen console. One noteworthy piece of news: the PS4 won't support external hard drives, although the internal hard drive will be swappable.

So no, you can't plug another hard drive into your machine for extra storage, Sony says. But you can upgrade the 500 GB hard drive that comes with the PS4, so long as it meets certain standards:

PS4 is equipped with a 5400 RPM SATA II hard drive. Users can choose to install a new hard drive so long as it complies with these standards, is no thicker than 9.5mm, and is larger than 160GB.

If you want more than 500GB — and you might, considering that just one game, Killzone: Shadow Fall, is close to 40GB — you'll have to upgrade.


    Um, this is a joke right...? So we can't hook up an external drive to even play media off? Damn it Sony.

    Oh well at least 2.5" 1TB (and larger) drives are getting cheaper & thinner..

      From the FAQ:

      Will users be able to connect an external hard drive to expand storage on PS4?

      No, this feature is not supported on PS4.

      The FAQ only mentions storage. There's nothing in the FAQ about playing media from external drives, but I'd say it is no different from the PS3. It has USB ports, and should be able to play music, photos and videos like the PS3. It isn't 1991 anymore and we are not living life inside a Milli Vanilli video.

        We already know it DOESN'T play music like PS3. It doesn't support audio CDs and it doesn't support mp3's, both of which PS3 does.

        It isn't 1991 anymore and we are not living life inside a Milli Vanilli video.

        We're not, but it seems Sony are.

          I just found that little part in the FAQ about not playing MP3s. Is it wrong of me (in a really sick creepy way) to only hope that it is that one format and not other audio formats? :-(

          Edit: I really hope someone at Kotaku knows someone with an early release PS4 who can confirm this for us.

          Last edited 31/10/13 10:14 am

            Now if only played Lossless audio, it wouldn't be a shame in my books :P

            Apparently, and I can't confirm this, you can only play music you've purchased through Sony's Music Unlimited service.

            Last edited 31/10/13 10:37 am

              It's something they're planning to fix after launch.

                I'm not getting a ps4 but MAN I hope they fix that.... atrocious.

                Is that an educated guess, is is there something official? I'd tend to agree with you, because I can't see them cutting features that people really liked just to make money

                  I can't see them cutting features that people really liked just to make money

                  The PS3's backwards compatibility with PS2 games says hi.

                  Last edited 31/10/13 12:16 pm


                  It's not confirmation, but it's a fair bet it'll be patched back in ASAP.

                  First I'll say this. I'm not having a rant but people need to weight up their priorities here,

                  @shadow I think its really a bit of a non issue with the "feature cutting". I for one wont be throwing my PS3 in the bin as soon as I bring the PS4 home and that still does all of the things were used to having it do. I don't think that's going to change anytime soon either. Also feature can only be cut if they were already there on it.

                  @braaains The backwards compatibility on PS3 wasn't dropped purely to make money for Sony, it was more so to make the PS3 more accessible at a lower price range. This in turn makes Sony more money of course, because more sales = more money, but that was a secondary concern I'd say! They were still loosing more on every console shifted, the profit was in games which relied on a large user base, thus the exclusion on backwards to lower the price and move more consoles.

                  Also 1.5TB HGTS HDD's are a 9.5mm option for upgrade at sub $130 which is a good price compared to a proprietary XB drive if storage is an issue. (Link Below)

                  I own both "Current-Gen" consoles and will be keeping both for their games and functions, but i think a lot of people are complaining on issues that are irrelevant. Things that weren't possible in the past gen and aren't on this gen, like external game saves, are a given for the likes or piracy, and as always, features will be added and tweaked in firmware updates. So far the people have spoken out on things they don't like and both MS and Sony have listened. Be Patient!

                  I for 1 first and foremost only care that a "Game" console plays games. All other features are secondary and I have other devices that can fill that space.

          The PS3's backwards compatibility with PS2 games says hi.


          But still, at E3 Sony assured us they're all about the gamer.

            That was just a dig at Microsoft, not a commitment to consumers.

              You sure? Because I honestly believed Jack Trenton went to sleep that night with a picture of all of us on his wall, dreaming up ways to please us.

          and don't read blu-ray. need update.

        That's still kind of a big deal if it's only storage considering all games have to be installed now.

      Seeing as it apparently doesn't even support streaming from a PC like the ps3 does, this isn't surprising.

      Meanwhile, why in he'll does the ps4 not support video streaming, this is greatly disturbing, that was easily my second biggest use of the ps3. It's what made it a must use device.

        Jeez. I'm so out of the loop with what the new consoles can & can't do, I am feeling a little disappointed hearing this sort of stuff about the PS4..

        Woah, I better check if the xbox can stream video because like you, I use that feature on my 360 daily.

          My understanding (although I can't find the link anymore) is that XBone doesn't support DLNA streaming at launch but that will (or might?) be added with a patch later after launch.

            Well, I'll still have my 360 hooked up, but it's a shame =[

    So pretty much its the same as the PS3 support for external drives (hopefully that will change sometime post launch - Xbone does support external storage but it's not available at launch) but at least the internal drive is upgradeable with just a plain 2.5" HDD...unlike the Xbone where you can't upgrade it at all.

    I know I can see myself getting a PS4 and then get a 1TB 2.5" drive to upgrade it

    Last edited 31/10/13 9:59 am

      PS3 supports external drives for media storage, just not game installs.

      I haven't seen a list of what video formats are supported on PS4. But judging by lack of mp3 support for music, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say the video formats support will include "none", "zilch" and "bugger all". I suppose by stripping out all the media functionality there's probably not so much need for external drives anyway. But hey, we'll still be able to pay Sony for movies and TV shows off PSN.

      The Xbox One does support external hard drives:

        I just re-worded my original post - What I meant to say is that Xbone does have external storage support but it's not available at launch....something that Sony can do down the line as well

        Last edited 31/10/13 12:08 pm

    This, the inability to play MP3's, and the lack of DNLA support are silly omissions IMO - Sony seem like they are trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

      I laughed pretty hard when they also admitted in their FAQ that they also don't support audio CD's... not that I buy them often but I did use the ripping function on the 360 here and there to listen to things without having to use the patchy DLNA.

    At least the inability to play mp3's (and the inability to play audio CDs, meaning I won't be able to rip them to the HDD anyway) will save me a bit of hard drive space.

    Seriously, this is a fucking joke. I know MS copped a lot of flak for putting media functionality ahead of gaming, but Sony seem to be going too far the other direction. Although this is clearly more about trying to push people onto their streaming music service. It seems the only way to get people to use Music Unlimited is to make your console Extremely Limited.

    So I can't stream videos and music but can I store and watch videos? They just want us to pay for their shitty Music Unlimited piece of shit. Terrible move on Sony's part. Who pays for music now? and those that do can't even play it on the PS4. Maybe if Music Unlimited was like spotify (free with ads) that would be okay but no its $50 a year.

    Edit: Its $8 a month which is even worse. $96 a year and that is the basic plan which is just stream on PC, PS3

    Last edited 31/10/13 10:16 am

    I'm not going to be downloading any full games at 40GB considering it will wipe out a considerable chunk of my monthly quota.

      Some ISP's like iinet have stuff on servers which don't count towards quota... I THINK some Xbox Live stuff counts as this. Not sure

        Mine makes Steam downloads quota free which has been amazing (as long as I force it to download from my ISP server).

        Just gotta get PSN added to that list!

          After the PS4 release, see if you can petition your official rep on the Whirlpool Forums to see if free traffic can be added.

          Luckily on Amnet all traffic on weekends is unmetered.

    lol...Sony created the CD and they won't even support it on their own system?

    Biggest question... What will the impact of using an SSD be?

    I'm looking at this a different way

    I have a very good blu-ray player that is multi-region and plays AVI/MKV with subtitles

    My PC is hooked up to my TV and surround sound system, so I am kinda happy the PS4 isnt bogged down with other formats/features that need royalties paid for it. This could be part of the way that Sony is keeping the price down (seriously, check out the PS3's section in the settings and you will see dozens of formats listed that royalties are being paid for)

    I will admit, I will miss the MP3 function, but I am in a different boat regarding my set-up

    Also, last night the Tune-In radio app was released on the US PSN store for PS3 and Vita - if this comes across to the PS4, hopefully this can be used in-game

    But yeah, seems like a step backward

    Small thing people may not know is that the PS3 only Supports Sata 1 HDD's where as the PS4 will support Sata 2's - this is fantastic as Sata 2 drives are much cheaper and you can get even 1 TB ones for under the $100 mark.

    I also highly doubt - even if Sony themselves state it you wont be able to just plug in a USB Drive and play everything bar MKV files exactly like a PS3(though also apparently MP3's are being in that mix - for how long I'm not sure) But I can bet MP4 files will play without a hitch.

    Last edited 31/10/13 1:12 pm

      The thing none of us are admitting is that we're pirated movies (myself included).

      You can even play MKVs on the PS3 if you run the PS3 Media Server application from your PC. It's quick and easy to set-up and simple to use.

      The system uses 2.5" drives, not 3.5".

      You cannot get 2TB 2.5" drives that conform with 9.5mm thickness, let alone one for under $100. The only 2TB 2.5" drives are double platter and 16mm thick.

      You can get 1TB 2.5" drives for under $100, though.

        sorry typo - it's supposed to read 1TB not 2.

    I'm genuinely baffled. Out of the two consoles, I was planning on going with the PS4 eventually, followed by a xbone, but it might have to be the other way around, now. What the hell, guy? How did that happen?

    Those are functions I use frequently on the PS3 and have been extolling the virtue of, for their simplicity, flexibility, and ease of use. When I planned on buying a new console, I wasn't planning on having to keep the old one plugged in AS WELL. I was planning on replacing it.

    Guys. Your new product should be able to do MORE things than your old one, not LESS. At this rate I'm inclined to wait and see how those Steam Machines turn out, or just relocate the PC so that it can hook up to both the living room and the study. My PC runs more powerfully, and will never try to dictate to me which media files I am and am not allowed to play, or restrict external drives from being attached.

    ...In fact, it'll let me do anything that's possible within modern computing limits.
    WHY IS THAT SO HARD? It doesn't have to be. We don't need or want this, we didn't ask for it, it doesn't help us.

    In this day and age, both my TV and Blu-ray player support all types of media (music, videos, photos, etc.) via USB with a very clean interface displayed. Therefore the PS4 can support nothing for all I care. However, if Sony are going to cut all these features it just doesnt sit well with me at all!!! Kind of the same way region locking makes me furious! From a business point I can understand pushing Sonys Music Unlimited service, but this is the wrong way to do it. Case and point, iTunes made sure that I will never buy an apple product ever again (I owned an iphone 3GS for 2 years, lost my entire music collection at least 5 times in 2 years through all the updates and syncing, spent hours upon hour re-syncing, etc, etc. Apple tried to control everything I did on the device and in the end I gave up and will never go back... Any type of monopoly control, DRM, or anything that hurts the legitimate end user make me furious!.. /sigh /end rant

    Microsofts next video: "This is how you play a CD on Xbox One" ....inserts CD :)

    I was going to buy a PS4 for Christmas, I currently have a PS3 which I mainly use for watching videos, playing music and viewing photos from a USB stick, my son watches films from a hard drive connected by USB, he also plays the PlayStation games. When I heard that the PS4 was being launched I hoped that it would be able to play MKV video files as I can't play them on PS3. So I did some checking around on forums, PS4 official site and googling but I can't find any mention that it will even play any kind of video files from a USB stick or hard drive (if it could, I'm sure they would mention this feature, so I assume it can't). I also think it is ridiculous that CD's or MP3's can't be played, do we have to pay twice for the music we want to listen to? This is a blatant ploy by Sony to wring more money out of it's customers through music and video subscription services, so blatant that I find it offensive! (by the way when I typed in PS3 and PS4 and left the shift lock on it came out PSĀ£ and PS$, ironic! The only way to beat them is to not be a customer of theirs, I will now be buying either a new smart TV or some other device that will play my media through the TV and it won't be Sony. I had a Sony VAIO, which broke down just outside of warranty and I'm on my second PS3, because the first one broke down, you guessed it, just outside of warranty. F**k you Sony, I thought Apple were dicks, but you just out-dicked them by a full 12 inches!

    I followed this article and convert MKV and AVI files to PS4 supported format, it works perfectly. The tool is free to try, so you can take a try, PS4 supports MP4 format, follow this article you can convert files to PS4 best format, my friends also use this method and it works.

    SONY YOUR GOING BACK INSTEAD OF FORWARD the next console and its pathetic not able to do what you want and the price is expensive for what it does with less features than the ps3 they need to get sorted that sony company

    I've had Ps3 now for a few years and I think It's Awesome! Obviously gaming on it is great. But one of the greatest things about the PS3 is that you can upload pics, music, TV shows, and movies and whatever else pretty much that you wanted to save on it. I have 200gigs of shows, movies and music on m PS3. For years I've downloaded movies and shows online on my computer, put them on a flash drive and played them on my PS3. So, when the release of the PS4 came out I was psyched! That was until I bought one. Yeah you can play games and the Graphics and speed of the new system is really good. But WHAT THE FUCK?! Now you can't do ANY of all those great functions that the PS3 has. Everyone that's voiced their opinions on here about this being a friggen a joke are ALL right on the money. I bought the PS4 and Battlefield 4, I'm going to beat the game and return the system back to Walmart. This a total letdown by Sony! Sony can keep this piece of shit. For $400 bucks I'll stick with my PS3!!

    You invent the CD your newest console wont play them. Maybe the PS5 game console wont be able to play games either

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