User finds Xbox Series X|S support standard SSDs in expansion slot

Used drives still need to be PCIe 4.0 compliant

Chinese forum user BilliBilli was able to use a standard M.2 SSD in place of the Xbox Series X proprietary connector expansion card making use of an adapter with NVMe protocol.

different from PlayStation 5 which uses a standard NVMe M.2 slot as an expansion port, but limited via firmware, Microsoft chose to create a proprietary port for your expansion cards developed in partnership with Seagate, physically limiting how to increase the storage capacity of Xbox Series X|S consoles, but inspired by a video that dismantled the Series X, blog user BilliBilli noticed that console effectively had two M.2 slots, one for internal storage and one for Seagate’s expansion card.

Credits: BilliBilli

In the discussion on the topic, the user even realized that the expansion card is effectively a CFExpress card (format normally used in some digital camcorders), but with NVMe protocol, and theorized that a PCIe 4.0 compatible SSD combined with an adapter that also uses NVMe would be enough to get around Microsoft’s proprietary option. Since the Xbox Series X itself uses a 1TB Western Digital SN530 m.2 2230 SSD as an internal drive, the model was chosen for the test.


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Credits: BilliBilli

Using a CFExpress to NVMe adapter, the user was able to connect the Western Digital SN530 m.2 2230 1TB SSD to the Xbox Series S expansion port, which recognized the drive as a compatible storage device. Because it is the same format for connecting camcorder CFe cards, forum members even tested these camera cards themselves., which already have models with capacities above 1TB, but as they are not PCIe 4.0 compatible disks, the console did not recognize the cards.

Credits: BilliBilli


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Remember that to make the solution work, in addition to SSD NVMe with PCIe 4 support and compatible speeds, purchase of a CFE to NVMe adapter is still required. So the alternative to Microsoft’s proprietary expansion card is interesting because it’s versatile, but it only pays if the user already has a spare NVMe SSD, or if they want extra storage than Seagate’s 1TB cards, not justifying the purchase of an SSD+adapter kit that would cost almost the same as the US$ 220.00 charged for the official solution.

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Via: Videogames Chronicle Source: Billibilli