PS3 Blog

Tip: Sony allow easy upgrading of PS3 hard disk
Created: 02-01-2008 11:38

Sony Allow Easy Upgrading of the PS3 Internal Hard Disk

Its easy to add an external hard disk to your PS3 using an 'off the shelf' USB hard drive up to 500GB, but Sony actually have no problems with you upgrading the internal hard disk too! This is quite a surprise as most console and electronic manufacturers don't like you opening them up to change parts which aren't officially certified by them. Not to mention not getting a cut of the money from their sales. Sony have turned this around and let you install any brand of hard disk inside without locking the BIOS or protecting it in any other way. See this official blog entry for details.
They even link to a CNET tutorial on how to do it yourself. Basically it boils down to these steps:
  • Pretty much any 2.5inch SATA notebook hard disk will work but the physical size (rather than the capacity) is important so that it fits into the drive bay inside the PS3. Go for one as big as you can afford, so 120GB, 160GB or 250GB is recommended. Online shops do them cheap but sometimes don't show the physical dimensions so a visit to your local computer shop could be good.
  • Before installing it, backup the data you want to keep from your PS3 onto a USB hard disk or memory stick. You can either use the backup function built-in or simply copy your MP3s, videos and saved games off individually. Note that the external USB device must be formatted to FAT32 to be usable by the PS3. Most are by default to maximise their compatibility with PCs and other devices.
  • The PS3 Owners Manual contains info on changing your hard disk or follow the instructions on the CNET pages. One blue screw needs to be removed and the hard drive sits in a slide-out metal tray. Then four screws hold the drive to the tray. Its an easy job to swap the drives.
  • The PS3 will format the new drive and you can restore or copy your backed up data back.
Now we have DivX support I can see a big increase in movies being stored on the machine. When the high resolution dual digital TV tuner comes out I can see storage space running even shorter on the low end PS3 models, so this is very good news.

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