Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD review: "Lightning-quick in almost every test."

Nextorage NEM-PA Series SSD on a white tabletop with its small logo showing on its side
(Image: © Future / Fraser Porter)

GamesRadar+ Verdict

The NEM-PA Series is an impressive foray into the SSD market from Nextorage, one that succeeds exactly where it wants to and takes a good swing at some of the more familiar brands in the PS5 SSD space.


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    Very reasonably priced

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    Impressive speeds overall

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    Designed with the PS5 in mind which makes for an easy install

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    Integrated Heatsink


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    Could be easier to install in a PC

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    Simple design with not much flair

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    8TB Drive could be cheaper

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Despite being a relatively unknown and new brand on the scene, the Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD is perhaps one of the best budget options you can buy at the moment. The SSD market space is dominated by your juggernauts in WD and Seagate at, usually, a steeper entry point. Nextorage aims to compete with those big names and does so with a very impressive foray. 

Now, you might not be familiar with the name "Nextorage" but you will certainly be familiar with the team that has worked on its storage devices. The company was formed in October 2019 by former Sony staff members who had over 20 years of experience working within the brand's memory and storage divisions. Not only that, but Sony is a minority owner of the company. But why does it matter? Because it inspires a lot of confidence in the NEM-PA Series that not only has it been designed by experts who know the PS5, but that it will excel against the best SSDs for gaming

I was personally a bit apprehensive about testing a relatively unknown brand of SSD. I wasn’t quite sure what I was in for or if it would meet the expectations that I have about expanded storage. However, a new brand showing up to the table boasting impressive read (7,300 MB/s) and write (6,900 MB/s) speeds does make you sit up and take notice. Not only that, but Nextorage brings these speeds to the table at reasonable price points, with 1TB remaining pretty reasonable at $89.99/£74.99. Will its impressive specs stand up against the best SSDs for PS5?

Design & Features

Nextorage NEM-PA Series SSD sitting on its side next to a DualSense controller

(Image credit: Future / Fraser Porter)

With its focus firmly placed on being an expansion of your PlayStation 5’s storage, the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD comes with a built-in, integrated heatsink. This isn’t anything revolutionary, but it does make it much easier for the consumer to just unbox and install. The heatsink attached to the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD has a good weight and look to it, one that I personally believe fits in quite nicely with the internals of the PS5. Like competing brands such as Western Digital and Seagate, Nextorage does not recommend that you remove the heatsink from the drive, doing so could seriously impact performance so it’s best to keep it attached - this goes for PC use too.

The NEM-PA Series can be found in a few different sizes.  As well as the 1TB model, 2TB will cost you $159.99/£137.99, 4TB will set you back $319.99/£288.99, and 8TB is priced at a comical $869.99/£805.99. Regardless, you won’t be stuck for choice for either size and price. I'm testing the 4TB model for this review.

Nextorage describes its heatsink as an “optimized cooling structure” which is made up of an “aluminum heatsink coated with a highly thermally radioactive black aluminate, which suppresses thermal throttling”. Essentially, it keeps the device very cool, even under strain. Upon removing the device from my PS5 after use, it remained fairly cool to the touch and any remaining heat quickly dissipated. Unfortunately, I was unable to test temperatures to an exact degree.

Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD sitting on a white tabletop

(Image credit: Future / Fraser Porter)

Aside from that there isn’t much more to discuss about this SSD's visuals - after all, it’s going to be boxed up and hidden from sight inside of your PS5 anyway. Admittedly, when trying to install it into my PC I did have some issues with the size of the heatsink. I had to really play around with the internals to get it to fit amongst all my other components - although this may be specific to my personal machine and not reflective of the drive. The heatsink certainly isn't as large as the Crucial T700 Pro, so while it could be smaller, it will likely still fit in one of the best gaming PCs.

Speaking of size, the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD’s dimensions are 80.4mm x 11.2mm x 23mm, which means it bolts down in the “80” rung in your PS5's M.2 slot without any issues. Strictly speaking, this is despite an advertised 0.4mm difference in size to what Sony recommends throwing in your console.


Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD close up

(Image credit: Future / Fraser Porter)

The advertised read speeds of 7,300MB/s would put the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD ahead of the WB Black SN850X and the Samsung 980 Pro and put it alongside the Seagate Firecuda 530. Unfortunately, when installing into the PS5 this drive didn’t quite hit those advertised marks, but that's the case for all of these high-end drives.

Regardless, these speeds mean that Nextorage's drive competes with some of the best Gen 4 SSDs on the market, and it actually surpasses some of the biggest players. Keep in mind, it does so at a cheaper price as it beats the Samsung 980 Pro in the 2TB race by ~$10/£18 and it comes in ~$129/£123 cheaper than the Seagate Firecuda 530 2TB. Considering the brand is new on the scene compared to the more recognizable names, it doesn’t hurt that the price of entry is lower for a similar quality in performance.

When I inserted the drive into the PS5, the internal benchmark gave me a read speed of 6,539MB/s for the 4TB drive. This falls 341MB/s short of the advertised 6,900MB/s, which, in fairness, is a small difference. More expensive drives with official licensing like the WD Black SN850P have fallen far shorter. On the bright side, you are still getting a read speed that is higher than the PS5's internal SSD. In all likelihood, you won’t notice those 341MB/s when loading games up anyway.

Moving over to my PC and testing the drive through CrystalDiskMark, it showed me numbers that actually surpassed the advertised write speeds, clocking in an average of 6,924MB/s across three tests. I was actually very impressed that despite advertising lower speeds, the drive marginally overtook what was expected. Overall, CrystalDiskMark measured the drive as having an average read/write speed of 6,971MB/s and 6,924MB/s respectively.

Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD in the reviewer's hand

(Image credit: Future / Fraser Porter)

These numbers make for a drive that is very usable within your PS5. Now, it is worth noting that advertised speeds are usually more of a ceiling or guide as to what speeds to expect rather than a limit or guarantee.

For context, I was able to transfer Alan Wake 2 from the internal stock SSD in the PS5 to the NEM-PA Series in only 30 seconds from an average of 3 tests. That’s 77.87GB in less than half a minute. In return transfers, Alan Wake 2 moved back to the internal SSD of the PS5 in 5 minutes and 20 seconds. 

Load times for games, as you would expect, were lightning-quick in almost every test. Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 booted from the main menu into gameplay in a mere 5 seconds, Grand Theft Auto V’s story mode loaded in a slightly slower 13 seconds, Ubisoft’s Far Cry 6 had me from menu to game in a speedy 9 seconds, and finally, Ratchet and Clank went from the main menu to gameplay in just over 1 second (1.72 seconds to be exact). The bottom line is that you’ll be in your games within no time at all thanks to this drive - no more quick coffee or tea breaks while your games load. It was honestly quite overwhelming having the instant speeds that Nextorage's PS5 SSD provides. Similarly, the massive amount of storage that was suddenly at my fingertips was unreal. With 4TB at my disposal, I struggled to fill even 1.5TB of the huge amount of space during my period of testing - that’s like 10 and a half Call of Duty Warzones worth of space left.

Should you buy the Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD?

Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD's packaging stood next to other PlayStation gear

(Image credit: Future / Fraser Porter)

As I have mentioned before, Nextorage’s NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD comes to the market to challenge the big names in the SSD space while also hitting a respectable and budget-friendly price, and it does just that. While there are certainly drives in the Gen 4 space that run a little faster or look more visually appealing, it competes with some of the best PS5 SSDs on the market and at a reasonable price that remains closer to some of the best PS5 external hard drives.

With an entry-level price of $89.99/£74.99 for the 1TB model and the larger capacities similarly undercutting the biggest names, it is without a doubt one of the better value-for-money SSDs that you can currently buy. Although, having said that, if the Samsung 990 Pro or the Seagate Firecuda is on sale and lower than the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD then it may be worthwhile looking into those drives and choosing them over it - it should be considered though that the integrated heatsink models of those rivals tend to be a lot more expensive.

This drive does what it set out to do, provide a cheaper alternative in the SSD space while not compromising on read and write speeds. If you are in the market for a new SSD for your PS5 then choosing the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD is a solid choice (pun fully intended).

How we tested the Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD

I used the Nextorage NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD inside my PS5 for about a week before this review and filled up almost 2TB worth of the 4TB storage provided by the drive. 

Using the PS5’s own internal installation benchmark I tested the drive's read speed in the console. Once installed inside the PlayStation, I transferred games to the device and then back to the PS5 to get an idea of the read and write speeds that the drive provides. Following this I then began testing the load times of games and timed how long it takes for each game (Spider-Man 2, GTA V, Ratchet and Clank, Far Cry 6) to load into the game from the main menu. I then played each game for a little bit to get a feel of load times while playing. I chose Spider-Man 2 and Ratchet and Clank as they are two PS5 exclusive titles that take advantage of the internal SSD, I wanted to test if the speeds of the NEM-PA Series PS5 SSD were comparable to the speeds of the stock drive. I tested GTA V and Far Cry 6 as they typically take longer to load.

As for PC benchmarks, I used CrystalDiskMark to test the drive while inside the PC to test the drive's read and write speeds. Each test was conducted three times each and an average was taken for the final figures in the review.

For more on the ways we test the latest PS5 accessories, take a look at our hardware policy.

More info

Available platformsHardware, PS5, PC
Fraser Porter

For as long as I can remember, I've had a fascination with video games and technology. From a young age, I was always reading up on the latest tech and begging my parents to buy it for me - now I have my own job and make my own money, I realize why they often had to say no to my requests. For that reason, I love trying to find the best value gear so I can recommend it when asked. I studied Journalism at Edinburgh Napier University and throughout my time there gaming was one of my main focuses. Alongside Duncan Robertson, I was the co-host of NerdCulture, a weekly gaming and nerdy news radio show. My time as Studio Manager for the uni radio station meant tinkering with a lot of technology to ensure each broadcast worked smoothly. Elsewhere, you can find me discussing professional wrestling as Cultaholic's Community and Social Media Manager, and you'll also see me on the occasional Twitch stream.