Gaming is all about small margins. Whether you are looking to invest in a new gaming mouse, keyboard, or monitor, the objective is the same: improve your overall experience and gain a competitive edge over your opponents. No matter how small the variables, your’e in it to win it.

The same goes for SSDs. They’re little, but these devices can have a significant impact on your gaming system. It’s almost certainly time for an upgrade.

But it you don’t know your SSDs from your RPGs, it’s not always easy to choose the right model for you. That’s where we come in. We’ve picked a selection of the best SSDs and put together some helpful information.

What is an SSD?

Solid-state drives (SSDs) are all-electronic, non-volatile random access storage drives. SSDs are used as the internal storage in smartphones, tablets, and laptops, and are increasingly often found instead of hard drives in desktop computers. This is because they work faster, meaning a device’s operating system will boot up faster, programs will load quicker, and files can be saved almost instantly.

Do you need an SSD for gaming?

The short answer is “no, not necessarily”. If you are already equipped with decent CPU, RAM, GPU, and storage, you should have no issue with your gaming system. However, if you are really looking to squeeze everything you can out of your experience, you could benefit from investing in a gaming-friendly SSD.

Adding an SSD will result in faster game load times, improved game boot times, and smoother general gameplay. And who doesn’t want that?

Do you need an SSD for a PS5?

In this case, we say “yes”. Especially if you’re serious about PS5 gaming. The PS5 comes equipped with just 667GB of usable internal storage. Not only will that fill up in no time, but we’re just really just scratching the surface of PS5 gaming. That means a whole lot of games, campaigns, and data that you’ll ultimately need extra storage to enjoy.

How does an SSD work?

Unlike a hard disc drive, an SSD is made up of two key components — a controller and flash memory chips. The SSD reads and writes data to these flash memory chips. If that all sounds confusing, here’s a quick guide to some of the jargon you’ll find when researching SSDs:

  • Endurance This refers to the maximum data that can be written onto an SSD, generally measured by DWPD (drive writes per day).

  • Flash memory — A type of non-volatile data storage. It essentially means that it retains data even when the power source is switched off.

  • Heatsink A heatsink transfers heat from your SSD. A heatsink may be built into your SSD, or can be bought separately.

  • IOPS AKA input/output operations per second. Essentially the maximum number read/writes that an SSD can perform per second.

  • Read/write speeds This is how fast the SSD takes to open a file on your device (i.e. read) and how fast it saves data on the SSD (writes). This is measured in MB/s (megabits per second).

We know that’s a lot to take in, but we promise it’s not that complicated. Keep these points in mind when considering the options out there.

What is the best SSD for gaming?

You have plenty of options when it comes to SSDs. There are a lot of recognised brands that produce high-quality devices that can significantly improve your gaming experience. To help you find the best option for your system, we have lined up a selection of the best SSDs for gaming.

These are the best gaming SSDs in 2024.