Four years in, and there are tens of millions of PlayStation 4s in the wild. Whether you’re using an original model, PS4 Slim, or PS4 Pro, there are likely aspects of your experience that could use some improvement. Want to shorten a particularly long load time? Maybe you’d like to stream gameplay to your bedroom. Heck, you might just be willing to drop a couple hundred bucks on a full-fledged VR setup.
Countless accessories are being marketed toward console gamers, and the truth is that most of them suck. It’s safe to ignore the vast majority of accessories, and focus on the handful of ancillary products that can meaningfully impact your experience. So to help you find the signal within all the noise, we’ve selected eight of our favorite accessories for the PS4.
Elgato Game Capture HD60 S
The built-in video options on the PS4 are incredibly convenient, but they’re limited in scope. You can only stream to a select group of sites, you’re limited to 720p video on the base PS4, and you can only record locally in relatively small chunks. But with this HDMI capture gear from Elgato, you can take your gameplay footage to the next level. Stream to sites like Smashcast or Mixer, record entire 1080p60 Let’s Plays on your computer, and add some real panache to your videos. If you take your video production seriously, this is definitely where you need to start. Buy on Amazon for $167.95
If you want access to your PS4 library in multiple rooms, using Remote Play on the PlayStation TV is a simple and affordable way to achieve that. Provided you have a decent local network, you can stream PS4 gameplay at 720p60 with very little latency. It doesn’t offer the optimal visual experience, but the price tag and simplicity is hard to argue with. And since it plays a decent selection of Vita games as well, it’s a particularly excellent deal for PS Plus subscribers with a healthy Vita backlog. Buy on Amazon for $59.99
It goes without saying that you’ll need to invest in a DualShock 4 if you’re interested in playing local multiplayer games on the PS4, but this controller is pretty handy in other situations as well. Not only can Sony products like the PS3 and PSTV use it, but it’s great on the PC too. With a little work, it can be used to play standard PC releases, but it also lets you use your Windows PC or Mac to stream PS4 gameplay at 1080p with the Remote Play app. Buy on Amazon for $43.89
PlayStation Gold Wireless Headphones (Refurb)
Being able to talk to your teammates completely changes the multiplayer experience, and can easily turn the tide during competitive matches. Of course, you can use just about any wired or Bluetooth headset you want, but the PlayStation Gold headset is definitely worth the price – especially this refurb. Not only does this comfortable headset sport a built-in noise-cancelling mic, but it also offers up impressive virtual 7.1 surround sound. Download the headset companion app on your PS4, and you’ll be able to use presets to optimize the audio on a game-by-game basis. Buy on Amazon for $64.99
Samsung 850 EVO Internal Solid-State Drive
The spinning drive included in the PS4 gets the job done, but it’s far from optimal. If you’re willing to drop some serious dough to improve load times, this SSD from Samsung will make a noticeable difference in any game that’s bottlenecked by the storage device. And since the PS4 Pro has a SATA III interface, you can get even better performance. Take your SSD, grab a Phillips screwdriver, and follow this guide. You won’t get the same improvements you’d see on a PC, but shaving off a few seconds on each load can make a noticeable difference in some games. Buy on Amazon for $329
Samsung T5 Portable Solid-State Drive
Of course, not everyone is willing to spend big on a large SSD simply to turn around and sacrifice the drive that comes with the console. Thankfully, external drive support is finally available on the PS4, so an extra USB 3 drive serves as a nice compromise. Pick up a 250GB Samsung T5, and you can selectively move over your games with the longest load times to the faster drive. Buy on Amazon for $119.99
PlayStation VR Bundle
While the release of VR-enabled PS4 games has been much slower than we had hoped, there’s still a lot of entertainment to be had with the PSVR. Great games like Resident Evil 7, Rez Infinite, and TrackMania Turbo benefit significantly from the helmet, and 360 videos on YouTube and Jaunt VR can be legitimately thrilling. Buy on Amazon for $379.99
PlayStation Move Bundle
While many VR games are designed to work with the DualShock 4, there’s a selection of titles that require the Move controllers. The likes of Job Simulator and Batman: Arkham VR trade on the idea of physically interacting with virtual environments, so two Moves are a must for that experience. And if you’re already buying the helmet and camera, these are easy to justify. Buy on Amazon for $82.99