Videogame consoles have blurred the line between console and computers, coming with features that you would commonly see among computers, browsing the web, playing movies, and, of course, video games, too. One such feature that the PS3 has are USB ports. Their primary function is to provide power to DualShock 3 controllers through the use of a USB cable, however, they have an additional use: transferring files.

Let’s say you want to watch a movie, listen to some music, or perhaps you want to transfer over some save files you have (games can get tough, you know?), well, you can do so through the use of the PS3’s USB port. You can place some files you want to transfer over on the USB flash drive, then plug it into your PS3 and there you go, transfered files!

But how? It can’t be that easy, is it? If you want to know how to transfer files to a PS3 using a USB flash drive, then you’ve visited the right website.

What You Will Need…

Transferring files to your PS3 with a USB isn’t a hard task to perform, nor will you need a lot to make it happen. Only a few choice, but important, pieces and you’ll be on your way.

  • USB flash drive: This is obvious, yes, but it should be pointed out that if your USB flash drive has been formatted to NTFS, then your PS3 cannot read it natively. If you want your PS3 to read an NTFS-formatted flash drive, you’ll have to install a Linux partition.
  • Your PS3: Again, obvious. If you’re using a NTFS formatted USB flash drive, make sure that it’s one of the fatter ones. You can install a Linux partition to it in order to read an NTFS formatted USB flash drive, otherwise you need to stick with FAT32.
  • A computer: Where else are you going to get your files? Depending on the kind of files you’re transferring, if you don’t have said files, you’ll have to scour the Internet to find them–which will require a network connection.

Formats PS3 Supports

On the flip-side of what you need, you should also be aware of the files that PS3 can support. As great as it is, it doesn’t support everything, but much of what it does support is many important extensions.

For Images:

  • JPEG
  • TIFF
  • BMP
  • GIF
  • PNG

For Music:

  • MP3
  • ATRAC (Memory Stick Format)
  • MP4
  • WAV
  • WMA

For Videos:

  • MPEG-1
  • MPEG-2
  • MPEG-4 (H.264)
  • AVI
  • AVCHD
  • WMV
  • DivX Codec

How to Transfer Files to PS3 using USB

Before you can transfer files over to your PS3, you’ll need the files transferred to the USB flash drive itself before they can be moved over. The first few steps are going to involve your computer. Ignore your PS3 for now.

1. Start by inserting your USB flash drive into an open USB port of your computer, preferably the most advanced USB port you have. It’ll offer better transfer speeds.

2. Open File Explorer either by searching for it in Windows Startup Menu or clicking on the folder icon in the bottom left corner of your screen, along the taskbar or by opening any random folder.

3. In the left hand column, scroll down until you see “This PC.” Click on it once. Scroll down until you see “Devices and Drives.” Double click on your connected USB flash drive.

4. If you’re transferring save files, create a folder in your USB flash drive called “SAVEDATA.”

5. Take the files on your computer and drag them into your USB flash drive folder, preferably a COPY of your files just in case you make any mistakes with the original files.

6. Once the files have been successfully transferred into your USB flash drive, you can remove it from your computer, gently, but firm. Take care not to bend the dongle.

7. Now, over on the PS3, power it on by pressing the PlayStation button on the DualShock 3 controller or with the Power button.

8. Select your profile.

9. Now insert your USB flash drive into one of the PS3’s open USB ports. Depending on your model, you’ll have anywhere from 2 to 4 USB ports to choose from. If none are available, remove any unnecessary connected devices.

10. If you’re transferring a video file, navigate the XMB (that’s the PS3’s dashboard) to Video. Above and below “Video” you’ll see additional options. Scroll down to USB Device and select it. Choose Display All. Select a video file and choose Copy.

11. If you’re transferring a music file, navigate the XMB to Music. Above and below “Music” you’ll see additional options. Scroll down to USB Device and select it. Choose Display All. Select a music file and choose Copy.

12. If you’re transferring a save file, navigate the XMB to Game. Above and below “Game” you’ll see additional options. Scroll down to Saved Data Utility (PS3™) and select it. Choose USB Device. Select a save file and choose Copy.