MicroSD Cards for Nintendo Switch. What To Buy and How to Install?
With 47.8% of the global market share, Nintendo Switch is one of the leaders in the gaming industry. It supports different models (Nintendo Switch – OLED Model, Nintendo Switch, and Nintendo Switch Lite) for different use cases. All of these models come with an internal disk (from 32 GB to 64 GB), but depending on your needs you might decide to upgrade the storage space by adding external storage. This article is about it and will guide you to understand and choose the proper external storage.
Title: Different Nintendo Switch models
The only supported external storage is a microSD card. Due to the slot size, Nintendo Switch doesn’t support SD cards and miniSD cards.
What can you store on microSD cards? You can store downloadable software, software update data, downloadable content known as DLC data, and store screenshots and captured videos. Other than that, you can also free up internal storage by moving data to microSD cards. More about that, in the coming part.
What microSD cards to buy?
By default, the microSD card doesn’t come in the initial package, you need to buy it in addition to Nintendo Switch. You are probably wondering what microSD types and sizes are supported. Currently, Nintendo Switch supports three types of microSD cards including microSD (up to 2 GB), microSDHC (4 GB – 32 GB), and microSDXC (64 GB and above). If you are planning to go with microSDXC cards, you need to update the system by following the instructions on this LINK.
There are different types of qualities of microSD cards on the market. In order to improve your gaming experience, we do recommend you use microSD cards with a higher transfer speed that is also recommended by the vendor. The vendor recommends UHS-I (Ultra High-Speed Phase I) and transfer speed 60 MB/sec – 95 MB/sec. Everything below that is not very much recommended and you might experience a not pleasing gaming experience. And that is what no one wants to experience when having fun? Isn’t it?
From year to year, you can find different recommendations slash different models slash different capacities and speeds. For the best overall choice, one of the best microSD cards is Samsung EVO+ 256GB UHS-I microSDXC U3 Memory Card. It comes with 256 GB, class 10 with up to 95MB/sec read speed and 90 MB/s write speed for fast recording and transferring.
For the best value, SanDisk Extreme 128 GB microSDXC would be the way to go. It comes with 128 GB of storage space, class 10 with 160MB/sec read speed and 90 MB/s write speed for fast recording and transferring. The same model supports up to 1 TB of the storage space.
Do you want some gamer microSD gear? We do recommend going with SanDisk 128GB UHS-I-Memory-Card – Mario Theme. It has 128 GB of storage space, class 10, and you can get multiple games with just a single card and a fast transfer speed of up to 100 MB/s. This microSD memory card is Nintendo licensed for Nintendo Switch TV consoles.
Title: SanDisk 128GB UHS-I-Memory-Card – Mario Theme
If you are an intense player, then SanDisk Extreme 1TB microSDXC UHS-I Memory Card would be the best option for you. It has 1 TB of storage space, class 10 with 160MB/sec read speed and 90 MB/s write speed for fast recording and transferring.
If you are a user that doesn’t require a lot of storage, then you can choose Samsung microSDHC EVO Select. It has 32 GB of storage space, class 10 with 95MB/s read speed and 20 MB/s write speed for recording and transferring. It also supports 128 GB and 256 GB of disk space. You decide if you need more.
However, there are also other models you might consider purchasing. Please keep in the mind the vendor’s recommendation and purchase a card that is reliable, fast enough, well-performing, and that it has good reviews. Technavio (leading market research company with global coverage) has published a report on the global memory cards market from 2017 to 2021 and the top 8 vendors are SanDisk, Kingston Technology, Lexar (Micron Consumer Products Group), ADATA Technology, Transcend Information, Samsung Group, Sony and Toshiba. If you follow the metrics we mentioned in the previous parts, you will not make mistakes.
How to install a microSD card?
When you insert a microSD card in the Nintendo Switch, it becomes the default storage location for downloadable software, with no need for additional configuration.
In order to free up space on the internal storage, you can also move data (screenshots, captured gameplay videos, downloadable software) from the internal to the microSD card. Game save data cannot be copied to a microSD card.
If you need a microSD card with more capacity, we recommend you copy data from the old to a new card. The procedure is easy, all you need to do is use the microSD card reader. If you don’t have one, you can buy it on Amazon. Please check this and this link.
Depending on the Nintendo Switch model (Nintendo Switch – OLED Model, Nintendo Switch, and Nintendo Switch Lite), the procedure is a bit different in regards to the microSD card slot position. Regardless of the model, you should first power off the Nintendo Switch console, then remove the cover where the microSD card slot is located. After that, you need to place the microSD card properly (you should hear and feel a click when it is properly inserted). Once you are done, turn your Nintendo Switch on.
Title: Model Nintendo Switch – OLED Model
Title: Model Nintendo Switch Stand
If you want to remove the microSD card from the Nintendo Switch, please turn off the Nintendo Switch and then gently remove the microSD card from it.