Xbox SSD speed. Even SATA SSDs can compete with next-gen consoles on basic load times
How to Run Xbox One SSD Performance Test [Step-by-Step Guide]
Do you want to test your Xbox One SSD performance? Should you upgrade the Xbox One with an SSD? Don’t worry; this article gives teaches you to run Xbox One SSD performance efficiently.
After you finally perform Xbox One SSD upgrade or you add an external SSD to your Xbox, do you want to know how fast it runs? Don’t worry; you can use reliable tools to know exactly how fast the SSD is running on the Xbox One. This article provides a full tutorial on this issue and guides on how to test SSD read/write speed for Xbox step by step. First, let’s learn if the SSD can help with the Xbox One speed.
Should You Upgrade Your Xbox One with an SSD
Should you upgrade your Xbox One with an SSD, or will an (external) SSD improve the performance of the Xbox One? The answer is definitely yes. An SSD is a premium but a little expensive solution that gets the job done better than any alternative, especially for a data-intensive game like The Witcher 3. The advantages of upgrading your Xbox One with an SSD are as follows:
- The console startup time will be improved, saving you an average of 10 to 30 seconds (depending on your OS version and the number of applications installed).
- Most games will run faster, but not all.
- The non-moving elements of the SDD are much more reliable.
- SSD will be much quieter. Without the hum of old-fashioned mechanical hard drives, your gaming palace will be more serene.
Overall, the choice to upgrade or not will depend on financial considerations. If you’re a passionate player and can spend a few extra pennies, there’s no doubt the rewards are there. However, how do you know if your SSD works well and improves the performance of your Xbox One? Continue to read.
Run Xbox One SSD Performance Test via EaseUS Partition Master
EaseUS Partition Master is a reliable choice, and it helps a lot if you are a newbie in computing. This tool can test the random read/write, sequential read/write, I/O, and delay of your SSD. With just one click, any Windows user can scan and test their SSD speed with the DiskMark tool in EaseUS Partition Master. It also works with SATA SSDs, M.2 drives, and NVMe drives. So no matter what brand your SSD is, it can help you test the performance of this SSD on Xbox One.
Complex Level: Simple, Beginners
Duration: 2-3 minutes
This tutorial guide also applies to: Test SSD performance for Xbox Series X, Xbox 360, and Xbox One X.
- Download EaseUS Partition Master
- Take out the internal SSD from the Xbox One
- Connect the internal SSD or external SSD to a Windows PC
Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master. And click the download button to activate the DiskMark feature under the Discovery section.
Step 2. Click on the drop-down box to choose the target drive, test data, and block size.
Step 3. Once everything is configured, click Start to begin the disk test. Then, you can see the Sequential or Random read/write speed, I/O, and Delay data.
Besides running Xbox One SSD performance test, EaseUS Partition Master still gets many other features, such as:
- Run SD card speed test
- Change SSD cluster size
- Format SSD for Xbox One
- Test SSD write/read speed
- Run Steam Deck SD card speed test
- 4K alignment SSD to get better performance
- And more
This tool helps manage your SSD, format SSD, and clone all your gaming data to another SSD or another PC. Download it to try.
For overall improvement across all games, an SSD is the fast track to the best results, but if space on the Xbox One’s stock drive is a more pressing concern, a hybrid upgrade might kill two birds with one stone. At the same time, more and more users choose to use external hard drives to alleviate the built-in storage pressure and improve the performance of Xbox One.
In this article, we learned how to test the internal or external SSD performance for Xbox One. EaseUS Partition Master is an efficient way to get the target Xbox One SSD performance. With only two clicks, you can get detailed data. If you get an SSD slow write speed issue, download this tool to monitor and help.
You may also like the following:
Xbox One SSD Performance FAQs
If you get any other questions related to Xbox One SSD Performance, this part may help. Check the answers below to help:
Should you upgrade your Xbox One with SSD?
Installing an SSD for your console won’t speed up your gaming; it won’t match the speed of the Xbox Series X. But if you just want a slight upgrade to your console to run, turn on, and be quiet, it’s a cheaper option, so we recommend it.
What are the best internal SSDs for Xbox One?
A solid-state drive provides faster access to documents, faster game launches, and faster startup times for your laptop/PC. Using SSDs to read and write files also protects your data from loss and corruption. Here are our recommendations:
- WD Black SN850
- Samsung 990 Pro SSD
- Seagate Game Drive
- Seagate FireCuda 530
- Samsung 870 QVO
Will an external SSD make my Xbox One faster?
Will an SSD make games run better on the Xbox? It does depend a bit on the game, but generally, yes. All games load something at the start, so it’s a lot faster. Many games also load levels etc., at some point.
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Even SATA SSDs can compete with next-gen consoles on basic load times
Don’t worry about your PC being left in the dust by the new consoles—your games already load pretty damn fast.
The Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X are built on the promise of crazy fast SSDs—so fast, they can impact how developers design their games. Sony showed this off with Ratchet Clank: Rift Apart, seamlessly jumping from one detailed environment to the next without a loading screen.
It’s too early to say how those SSD speeds will affect games over the next few years, but I had a simpler question for right now: are these new console SSDs way, way faster at loading into games than the cheap SATA SSD in my PC? And how do the consoles’ custom architectures compare to the speed you get from a brand new, top-of-the-line PCIe 4.0 SSD?
Is there really a huge difference?
Based on some simple testing with Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, one of the few cross platform next-gen launch games, it looks like there’s actually not much of a gap at all. In fact, even without a fancy expensive SSD, your PC might be able to load into games just as quickly as a next-gen console.
I installed Assassin’s Creed Valhalla on the Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X, then recorded loading from the dashboard to the title screen. I also recorded how quickly they could load into game after pressing Continue, loading into the same save file just after the introduction. Shout out to Ubisoft here—initially I grumbled about having to sign into Ubi’s account system, but it automatically syncs cross-platform Cloud saves, which is pretty rad if you game across PC and consoles.
Senior hardware editor Alan Dexter loaded Valhalla onto two SSDs: a SATA Samsung 840 Pro and a new M.2 PCIe 4.0 Samsung 980 Pro, the first off-the-shelf SSD with comparable performance to the new consoles.
Here are the basic specs from each SSD, compared to the new consoles:
The SATA drive is obviously significantly limited in read/write speeds compared to the newer M.2 drive, but in just loading to the main menu, that didn’t prove to make a huge difference.
First, here’s how quickly the new consoles got to the title screen. I timed the loading process from when I launched the game from the dashboard to when Press A to Start appeared on the screen. (I didn’t include the time it takes to load all the way to the main menu, because Valhalla spends a few seconds Checking for add-ons, and the time that takes seems inconsistent.)
Xbox Series X: 35 seconds to title, 13.5 seconds to game
There’s something interesting about this result, which makes the Xbox look way slower to start up the game than the Playstation 5, even though it’s not. Despite booting the game multiple times, on startup the Series X version of Valhalla always flashes a warning screen, the Ubisoft logo, the Anvil engine logo, an inspired by historical events disclaimer, and then the autosave notification. That’s not the case on the PS5, as you’ll see below.
After pressing Continue, the Series X got into the game in 13 and a half seconds.
Playstation 5: 13.5 seconds to title, 12.5 seconds to game
After I booted Assassin’s Creed on PS5 the first time, it skipped all but one of those pre-roll videos to jump straight to the title screen. And that makes a huge difference! It really doesn’t take long to load to the title screen, here. Those videos were just getting in the way.
Loading into game, however, was much closer to the Xbox results. I measured about 12.5 seconds from pressing Continue.
PC SSDs: 16 seconds to title, 13-13.5 seconds to game
On PC, those same videos slow down the loading process. But what if they didn’t? Thanks to the PC Gaming Wiki, we were able to remove the intro videos—something you can do on most PC games, by the way—to dramatically speed up the load.
Each of these numbers reflects how quickly the game booted with those videos deleted.
980 Pro (PCIe M.2): 16 seconds to title, 13 seconds to game
840 Pro (SATA): 16 seconds to title, 13.5 seconds to game
Remarkably, the brand new PCIe 4.0 SSD and the older SATA drive performed basically the same here, showing there was no real bottleneck on the SATA drive. Maybe we’ll see future updates to Windows or game architecture that make an impact here and show bigger gains for the 980 Pro, but either way, the results are very close to the Playstation 5. Two and a half more seconds to hit the title screen, and another second to load into the game. Not bad.
One important point: Your CPU will matter here, too, not just your SSD. Alan tested on a Ryzen 5 5600X, RTX 3080, and 16GB of RAM, a new, high-end PC. The 5600X would be the big factor here—I’d expect loads on an older processor to be a few seconds slower. But this was without overclocking on what we’d recommend as the best gaming CPU for someone building a new computer today.
Without deleting the videos, the 980 Pro took 43 seconds to get to the title screen—slower than the Xbox Series X, but mostly because Ubisoft snuck in an AMD Ryzen video that added a few extra seconds.
PC SSDs are still plenty fast
I’m excited to see what game developers can do with the architecture of the new console SSDs—I hope we see games flex on their ability to load straight from the SSD rather than from memory, and Ratchet Clank certainly seems like a promising sign of what’s to come. But it’s also encouraging that PCs don’t have any catching up to do when it comes to the basics of simply getting into games right now—and we’ve long had the advantage of Alt-Tab, which is still faster than the (very) quick resume on the Series X or PS5.
If you still game on a SATA SSD, updating to a newer drive will ensure your PC is speedy for years to come—but at least when it comes to simply getting into a game, that old reliable drive is still getting the job done just fine.
First published November 20, 2020.
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A year after the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S hit the market, and both consoles have made an incredible impression with their distinctive usage of SSD technology.
When the Xbox Series X|S and Playstation 5 consoles were first announced, one of the killer features on the then next-gen devices was the solid-state NVMe drive that each one would feature. Both companies had their own ideas for how to use SSDs to benefit their audiences, but the shared goal was a plan to get people playing games quicker and more efficiently. A year later, and the respective vision for each console feels more distinct than ever before.
Solid state of the nation
Xbox Series X
The simplest SSD comparison to make between the two consoles is still one of raw size. On this level, the Xbox Series X still trumps the PS5, as its 1 TB SSD has around 802 GB of usable space. Meanwhile, the PS5 makes do with an 825 GB configuration that leaves 667 GB free. After a year, those numbers remain the same and give the Xbox Series X a storage advantage over its rival. Just looking at the numbers, though, does a disservice to how those SSDs are used.
The PS5 is a prime example here, as many of its first-party games feature almost nonexistent loading screens. Even a year after playing it, seeing a game like Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales hop from its main menu and straight into a buzzing hive of metropolitan activity almost instantaneously is a phenomenal feat of engineering on developer Insomniac Games’ part. While it only has a handful of exclusive first-party games that drop players into the thick of the action at a breakneck speed, these few titles paint an exciting picture for the future of the console and upcoming tentpole games such as God of War: Ragnarok, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, Gran Turismo 7, and Horizon Forbidden West.
While the Xbox Series X settles for a second-place finish with its own list of exclusive titles, it’s a position that is still incredibly impressive given its past game lineup optimized for the hardware. It’s like watching Superman race the Flash, because Sony’s gold medal victory in a first-party race around the world is won by the thinnest of margins.
Take Psychonauts 2 for example, which needs more than a minute to load on older Xbox One consoles. On Xbox Series X|S? That time is cut down to a mind-boggling seven seconds. Gears Tactics? An entire 18 seconds before you can start strategically chainsawing Locust troops in half. Other games take between 6-18 seconds to load up from the main menu as detailed in our Xbox Series X review, drastically cutting down on thumb-twiddling time.
Third-party games are a different story on both consoles though, and with both of them being backwards compatible with the previous generation of gamesand more in the case of the Xbox Series X|Sthe advantage of an SSD has still been tremendous. Loading screens haven’t been eliminated on either platform, but the raw power of those SSDs have made smartphone doomscrolling an endangered social media species.
Red Dead Redemption 2 and Final Fantasy XV are great examples of games with infamously long loading times drastically reduced on the hardware, while a collection of PlayStation 4 and Xbox One games were upgraded to take advantage of the new console hardware. Titles like Control, Destiny 2, and Marvel’s Avengers don’t just do a main menu shuffle into active gameplay quicker than ever; they also arrive with enhanced visuals that make a last-gen game feel more modern.
No matter which game you choose to sit down with, you’ll be playing it quicker than ever on either platform. Going back a generation and having enough time to brew a cup of coffee, is easily one of the biggest and most impactful demonstrations of the real strength of the current crop of consoles.
The PS5 console
As mentioned above, there’s not a whole lot of space on these SSDs. Top-shelf games equipped with a range of audio and visual extras will quickly devour through whatever space you have available, but both platforms do have their own unique solutions for handling this problem. Previous Xbox generations and PlayStation 4 games can easily be loaded onto an external USB 3.0 drive or an external SSD and played from there, but Xbox Series X|S and PS5 games need to be loaded onto specific types of SSDs before they can be playedthough they can be temporarily held on external drives.
Space will run out quickly though, and here’s where the expansion options take drastically different approaches between the two console manufacturers. With the Xbox Series X|S, memory cards are once again fashionable thanks to the Seagate expansion card. Soon to be available in 512 GB, 1 TB, and 2 TB flavors, these expansion cards are built specifically for the Xbox Series X|S consoles and plug directly into a dedicated port at the back of the console so that they can take full advantage of the console’s architecture.
Seagate’s expansion card
And that’s it: That’s all you really need to know about them, as these are plug-and-play devices for the current console generation. They’re also pricy add-ons, with the 512 GB expansion card costing 140 at retail, while the 2 TB model will set you back around 400. With that hefty price tag comes comfort and ease of use, however, a premium that many people are willing to pay.
For the PS5, a physical add-on for digital peace of mind requires a more intrusive approach. Months after launch, Sony finally enabled internal SSD expansion in August, allowing for consumer-grade NVMe M.2 SSDs to be inserted into the console. There are some caveats to this though, as Sony’s demanding requirements mean that only a handful of these SSDs can be utilized. As detailed in our how to install an SSD into a PS5 guide, minimum capacity is 250 GB, the sequential read speed has to be at least 5,500 MB/s, and you’ll need to add a heatsink as well if your SSD isn’t already equipped with one.
Installing the device isn’t daunting, but ask anyone who just spent 500 on a new console and another 200 on a decent PS5 SSD at the very least, and it’s understandable to be somewhat apprehensive about taking a screwdriver to your latest Sony acquisition. Whichever console or method you go for, capacity expansion is a pricey hidden cost to keep in mind with this generation of Xbox and Playstation platforms.
Quick resume versus Switcher
Possibly the biggest appeal of the Xbox Series X|S, Quick Resume has been a literal game-changer of a feature since it was introduced with the consoles last year. The idea of being able to just switch between games at a snappy pace and pick up where you left off sounds like sci-fi technology, but Quick Resume is a very real and very handy addition to the familiar perks of the Xbox ecosystem. Five to six games can be suspended, and switching between them is quick and breezy thanks to the user interface.
It’s not entirely perfect, as the online nature of some gamesthank you very much for reminding me about this, Hitman 3 and Destiny 2means that you’ll be instantly transported back to the main menu instead of a paused run through Berlin or Trostland. Occasional hiccups aside, Quick Resume’s ability to host a number of games in a suspended state is convenience taken to another level. Even switching the console off fully won’t interrupt these sessions, and combined with the Smart Delivery functions of the newer Xbox consoles, having the best version of a game instantly accessible at any given time feels like a landmark moment in video game console evolution.
The PS5 though? Users on that system have to settle for second-best in this department. Bouncing between games simply doesn’t exist on this console, as the Switcher function located in the Home bar means that you’ll need to exit a game before starting another. While the PlayStation 4 feature of instantly resuming a single game from Rest Mode on the console has been carried over to the PS5, neither function is as elegant as Quick Resume, and even the PS5’s raw SSD power can’t close that gap.
One year later
With 12 months under their respective hoods, Microsoft and Sony have each established a unique design philosophy when it comes to SSD technology. Sony’s brute strength that makes games almost instantly playable from the moment you arrive on the main menu never fails to impress, while Microsoft’s Quick Resume feature is a major selling point of the Xbox Series X|S consoles. Both options feel like major upgrades when compared to the previous generation of gaming, and they’re a huge leap forward that is establishing an exciting new foundation for the future.
Xbox Series X external storage tests: USB HDD vs. SSD vs. NVME
By now, you probably know that to play next-gen Xbox Series X games, you need to store them either on the internal SSD or the official 220 Seagate 1TB expansion card. When it comes to backward compatible games, however, you can load them from an external USB drive. And if you don’t want to redownload an Xbox Series X game later, you can even store them on external media. But how fast is that process? And what about load times?
Well, I put those questions to the test using Assassin’s Creed: Origins. That game is 49GB, so it’s a fairly large install. I tested moving it between the internal drive to different external USB storage solutions. I also loaded it from the internal storage to compare that to an external USB hard drive, SSD, and even an NVME drive in an enclosure.
The results should help you decide whether you really need to double the internal storage for 220.
I used the following external drives:
I had this NVME drive lying around after replacing it in a laptop, so I don’t know how much it costs. But SATA and NVME SSD are continuing to fall.
Xbox Series X external storage: Moving data between drives
If you ran out of room on your consoles last generation, you’re probably going to have the same problem with Xbox Series X and Playstation 5. And while it is frustrating that you cannot play next-gen games from external storage, this should give developers the confidence to develop games built for superfast NVME SSDs. That’s exciting. You probably won’t feel too excited when you need to remove a game from that drive, though.
But the good news is that storing games on an external USB drive is a totally viable solution.
Moving content off of an external drive was always pretty fast. Even the USB HDD shifted around 6.3GB per minute. Even the biggest game will take only around 20 minutes to move, which is probably faster than you could download it. And that’s assuming you don’t have a data cap to worry about.
But you do get a significant improvement if you go with a faster storage medium. The Seagate USB SSD and the USB NVME cut down times by more than half. If this was the only benefit, I don’t know if I’d pay the premium to go this route. But if you play a lot of backward compatible games, some sort of SSD option will provide a huge quality-of-life improvement.
Xbox Series X external storage: Load-time test
Assassin’s Creed: Origins loads in 30 seconds from a USB hard drive. The internal SSD, the USB SSD, and the USB NVME SSD all take around a third of that time.
The nice thing here is that you don’t lose much by putting a backward-compatible game on an external SSD. Sure, the Seagate USB SSD is 7% slower than the Xbox’s internal SSD. But when we’re talking about a matter of seconds, that’s not something you’ll notice much in real-world use. That 7% faster is without any optimizations, though. And every percent faster is going to matter to developers when they start building their games for this hardware.
So what should you do to expand Xbox Series X storage?
The price of NAND flash memory (this is what’s inside SSDs) continues to fall. Let’s see how much space you really need. By the time you’re ready to buy, you could get a 1TB SATA SSD for a relatively low price that you can connect with a USB adapter.
And maybe game sizes will start to shrink as developers learn new techniques for compressing textures and other data. No point in jumping in now when you don’t even have the console yet — let alone a full storage drive.
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