Just the day before the Xbox One was planned to launch, iFixit tore down the new gaming console and revealed that the system comes with a replaceable hard drive, complete with standard SATA connections and all. Of course, this meant that gamers could technically swap in their own hard drive, but if you’re thinking about putting a SSD in it, the benefits may not be as great as you’d think.
YouTuber Brian Williams swapped out the stock 500GB hard drive in the Xbox One for a 1TB SSHD hybrid drive, and he also tested a 500GB SSD in the console as well. Obviously, boot-up times and game-loading times were quicker, but only by a few seconds — certainly not the speed gain you’ll get if you swap in an SSD on the PS4.
A cold boot to the Xbox One dashboard took 46.1 seconds with the SSD compared to 50.5 seconds on the regular hard drive. As for loading Call of Duty: Ghosts, the SSD took 27 seconds, the hybrid drive in 27.7 seconds, and the stock hard drive taking 33.5 seconds.
So if you think you’ll want to tear apart your Xbox One just to put an SSD in it, then it’s probably not worth it. However, another big reason why you would want to swap out drives is simply for more storage space. 500GB is a lot of storage space to begin with for the Xbox One (the Xbox 360 maxed out at 320GB officially), but we don’t doubt that some gamers will have a lot of games installed, on top of any music and movies.
So, if you want to stick in a 1TB hard drive, you can technically do that, and Williams even posted another YouTube video demonstrating the process of formatting a hard drive so that it will work in the Xbox One. First, though, you have to make your way to the hard drive in the first place before you can do anything. Fortunately, only a metal shell stands in the way, and you have to take off the WiFi board and the speaker before disassembling everything else. However, the metal shell is really easy to take off, thanks to some standard 64mm T9 Torx screws.