Sony controller pc. How to Connect and Use PS5 controller on PC (DSX, Steam & DS4W)

How to Connect and Use PS5 controller on PC (DSX, Steam DS4W)

Connecting and using your PS5 controller on Windows 10/11 PC is fairly simple, as Sony finally designed a plug and play controller. Although, not all the games support the new DualSense features natively, we can however install a tool called DualSenseX to add adaptive triggers, haptic feedback, remap keys and change RGB lighting to any game. So let’s dive deeper and find out how to connect and use our PS5 controller on PC.

How to Connect and Use PS5 Controller on PC

There are two physical connection methods on how to connect your PS5 controller on PC, either wired or via Bluetooth. Depending on your preference, we recommend using a BT connection for the best experience however using third party apps, wired would be the way to go. Once your PS5 controller is connected to your PC, we then have three software tools we can use to customize the controller to our liking.

PS5 Controller Connections: Wired or Bluetooth

Firstly, connect via an USB cable, specifically a Type-C USB cable. By plugging in the cable into your computer and the controller, your Windows should play the “device has been detected sound” and your controller is ready to be used. To double check your controller is in fact connected and working, use the built-in gamepad tester on DualSenseX or by searching “controller” in Windows control panel.

Secondly, connecting via Bluetooth. If your PC doesn’t have built-in Bluetooth then you will need to buy a USB Bluetooth adapter. (Specifically a good dongle, think of brand names or the official Sony BT adapter, as weak dongles can interfere with input delay.)

To get connected, open the Bluetooth other devices menu in Windows by pressing the Windows key and typing ‘Bluetooth.’ Then click ‘Add Bluetooth or other device’ and the first item on the next menu that says ‘Bluetooth.’ Your PC will start searching for available devices.

On the DualSense, hold down the Playstation logo button and the Share button (the small one to the left of the touchpad) until the LEDs around the touchpad begin flashing rapidly. Within a few seconds, ‘Wireless controller’ should pop up in your Bluetooth devices list to connect to. Just click on it to finish pairing.

Software to Connect and Customize your DualSense Controller

Each program has it’s pro’s and cons and we will go through all the steps on how to use and connect your PS5 Dualsense controller to PC.

Using DualSenseX to connect PS5 Controller on PC

DualSenseX is the ultimate tool for DualSense owners to use your PS5 controller on a Windows 10/11 PC. Bring your DualSense Controller to life! Use 20 different Adaptive Trigger modes, enable Haptic Feedback(USB), Emulate Xbox 360 or DualShock 4 through USB or Bluetooth on PC and more.

  • Emulate Xbox and DualShock 4 controllers.
  • Integrate Adaptive Triggers and Haptic Feedback to games
  • Customize RGB lighting on your PS5 controller
  • Remap Keyboard and Mouse keys
  • Test controller inputs
  • Configure Shortcuts on remote
  • View controller stats and button presses
  • Download workshop profiles and gaming mods


You need to have the following for DualSenseX to work correctly. Install and configure in order.

  • Windows 10 or 11
  • DualSense PS5 Controller (USB or Bluetooth Connected as mentioned above)
  • framework
  • ViGEmBus Driver
  • HidHide (Optional) If not already integrated within the DSX app
  • DualSenseX Install file


Depending on which version you want to install. The free version of DSX is a standalone install file and won’t require Steam to use the app however the app itself won’t have all the latest features and future updates. Support the developer by purchasing the Steam version or if you like, continue using the FREE version.

As mentioned above, install the requirements first before running the DSX install file. Extract the and double click to launch the application.

If the “Windows protected your PC” pops up, click on more info and then, run anyway. You will be presented with DualSenseX loading screen and you are ready to use the application. Plug in your Dualsense controller to your PC for DSX to detect your PS5 controller.

DSX Tabs

DualSenseX comes with a plethora of configurations and options to play around with and each top bar tab makes it simpler to customize and use the application.

The default landing tab will enable you to change and modify the controller LED’s, select the emulation type, configure adaptive triggers responses and importing game developers controller scripts via a text file.

The controller tab acts like a gamepad tester and allows one to test controller keys, adaptive trigger responses and controller specifications.

The games tab is made for users to download game mods and profiles with seamless integration.

Sense2Key is a controller to keyboard input mapper. Select from the dropdown any keyboard key to map to your controller. Different profiles can be created and imported from other players.

The settings menu enables users to configure the DualSenseX app, enable and disable options built for user satisfaction. This is where you can change gyroscope accelerator, audio haptics, touchpad settings, shortcuts, find the correct drivers, controller cloaking, view release notes and much more.

Everything you need to know about DSX and their creators!

Using Steam to connect PS5 Controller on PC

Steam initially supported DualSense in November 2020 and has continued to improve support.

Connect the DualSense to your computer via Bluetooth or wire. Once it is connected, launch Steam and activate Big Picture Mode. The DualSense should now be recognized and listed under the Playstation 5 controller category. Steam will automatically set the keybinds so that they mimic the Xbox controller layout. The Triangle button is Y, and the Square button is Z ,etc.

Calibrate can adjust the joystick’s sensitivity. Preferences allows you to name the controller, enable/disable the rumble and set the color and brightness of an LED strip surrounding the touchpad.

This is a crucial tip: Make sure that Playstation Configuration Support has been checked if you wish to modify the layout or gyro controls of your DualSense controller. Once you have this checked, you can use the Playstation logo button to bring up Steam’s controller configuration screen.

Remember: The controller configurator can only be accessed through Steam Big Picture mode.

You can also swap out button bindings and modify the touchpad’s functionality (it can do separate left and right-clicks), and configure the gyroscope if you wish to use gyro aim. To enable completely different button bindings, you can create Action Sets or Action Layers (opens new tab), and then switch between them in-game. You could, for example, create an Action Set to enable gyro controls in GTA and activate it by pressing a key whenever you get in a plane.

If you just want your DualSense to work like any ol’ gamepad, though, you can leave this screen alone, no tweaking required.

Using DS4Windows to connect PS5 Controller on PC

DS4Windows is an open-source gamepad input mapper and virtual emulator designed to use and connect your Playstation controller (DualShock 3/4 and DualSense 5) to a Windows 10 11 PC.

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Due to Sony’s Playstation controllers like the DualShock4 not supporting Windows natively (by that we mean you can try plugging it in via USB or Bluetooth and it won’t be detected, sucks right?). Well, this is where an awesome tool called DS4windows comes handy and emulates a Xbox controller and tricks the computer into thinking the DS4, is in fact, an Xbox game pad (virtual emulation occurs). With the PS5 Controller working as plug and play, DS4Windows enables dualsense functionalities such as;

  • Most DualSense controller features are supported
  • The headphone jack and microphone can only be used when used via USB (native gamepad function, unrelated to DS4Windows)
  • Adaptative triggers are supported but can only be used in limited forms
  • Advanced rumble effects are not used. Rumble acts as common one
  • Bluetooth 2.1? EDR or higher required for wireless connection (necessary confirmation)

Download, Install Setup DS4Windows

  • Windows 10 or 11. Windows versions from 8.1 and below are NOT supported anymore and support will not be given to users running older builds
  • One or more supported controllers (check the list) PlayStation 4 Controller
  • (Optional) Bluetooth dongle for connecting wirelessly
  • Microsoft.NET 5.0 Runtime or higher FOR DESKTOP APPS. (If for some reason 5.0.17.NET doesn’t work for you try installing the older version here.) The Console or Server version will NOT work, and 99% of the users need the x64 package.

Downloading and starting DS4Windows

  • Download the latest DS4Windows x64 package
  • The.7zip package is smaller but requires the 7zip software in order to open/extract it
  • DO NOT extract it inside a folder the requires elevated privilegies (e.g.: Program Files, Windows)
  • AppData folder (recommended): user data is stored outside of the program folder, inside a special folder reserved to your Windows user
  • Program folder: user data is stored inside the same folder DS4Windows.exe is located

Drivers Setup

When running DS4Windows for the first time it may prompt you to install some drivers, with the first one being essential. Install them accordingly to your needs then hit the Finished button after.

Final steps

  • If your controller is not connected yet, do so now
  • Check here if you are having trouble connecting them via bluetooth
  • Make sure DS4Windows is not stopped
  • Check here if DS4Windows has not detected your controller

Assuming your controller has been detected then Xbox Controller emulation should already be working and you are all set. Good Luck and Have Fun!

How to Use a PlayStation 4 Controller on Steam

This article explains how to connect and configure a PlayStation 4 controller with Steam and navigate Steam with the controller.

This article specifically focuses on using the PlayStation 4 controller with the Steam platform, but you can use a PlayStation 4 controller on your PC or Mac without Steam.

How to Connect a PlayStation 4 Controller to Steam

Before you start using your PlayStation 4 controller with Steam, there are some preliminary actions you should take, including making sure you have the latest version of the Steam client. Follow these steps:

Make sure any nearby Playstation 4 consoles are unplugged. Otherwise, the controller might try to sync with the console instead of your computer.

You should see your controller under Detected Controllers. Select the box beside PlayStation 4 Configuration Support. From this screen, you can give your controller a name, change the light’s color atop the controller, and toggle the rumble feature on or off.

If Steam isn’t detecting your controller, double-check the USB cable connection. Unplugging the controller and plugging it back in sometimes fixes the problem.

Select Submit to save your changes.

How to Use a PlayStation 4 Controller on Steam Using a Steam Link

If you’re using the Steam Link hardware to play games on your TV, the set up is basically the same, except you must plug the PlayStation 4 controller into the Steam Link rather than your PC. The Steam Link will even take care of some configuration steps automatically.

How to Wirelessly Connect a PlayStation 4 Controller to Steam

If you hold down the PS and Share buttons simultaneously on your controller, your PC might automatically detect it via Bluetooth. If it doesn’t, you might need a PlayStation 4 DualShock 4 wireless dongle to play wirelessly. Official ones can be purchased from Sony, or you can find one made by another manufacturer.

sony, controller, connect, steam, ds4w

To wirelessly pair the PlayStation 4 controller with Steam:

How to Configure In-Game Controls

You should now be able to play most Steam games with your PlayStation 4 controller, but you can further customize how your controller works for specific games. Indeed, this step may be necessary for games that primarily rely on keyboard inputs.

To edit in-game controller settings, press the PS button on the center of the controller. From the resulting screen, you can map specific keyboard actions to your controller buttons. Most modern games should display the appropriate Playstation button configuration, but some older games may display an Xbox controller instead. Nonetheless, you should be able to figure out the button mapping and use your PlayStation 4 controller with no issues.

When you’re finished playing, you should manually power down the controller. Simply hold down the PS button for 7-10 seconds.

How to Navigate Steam With a PlayStation 4 Controller

In addition to playing games, you can use your PlayStation 4 controller to navigate the Steam platform. For example, you can use the joysticks as a mouse and even enable the controller’s trackpad.

  • Open Steam in Big Picture Mode. You can select the Big Picture icon in the top right corner of the Steam client, or you can simply press the PS button.

Select the settings icon in the top right corner.

Настройка DualSense на PC. PS5 у вас на ПК! (Актуально)

From here, you can configure the control for navigating Steam in both Desktop and Big Picture mode.

Open Steam and go to Settings In-Game place a check next to Use the Big Picture Overlay when using a Steam Input enabled controller from the desktop OK. In the game, press ShiftTab, then in Controller Configuration go to Browse Configs. Go to Community Like PlayStation 4 and select it.

If you are within 14 days, open a Steam Support ticket to request a refund. Otherwise, in Steam, go to the Support Tab select the title in recent purchases. Select I would like a refund or It’s not what I expected I’d like to request a refund.

PlayStation 4 Controller Not Working on PC: Ways to Troubleshoot Fix

PC gaming has become extremely convenient and enjoyable with the available resources. You can have the best graphics card to support the visuals and the best processors for the smooth running of the game. Furthermore, you can use a gaming console or connect a PlayStation 4 controller to enhance the gaming experience on PC. However, there are certain situations where the controller does not work on a PC. If you are also stuck in a similar situation and are unable to connect the controller to your PC, you are at the right place.

This blog will help fix the PlayStation 4 controller not working on a PC.

Sounds good? Well, then, let’s get started!

Why is the PlayStation 4 Controller Unable to Connect To the PC? How to Fix?

With haptic feedback and precision, the PlayStation 4 Dualshock controller offers a perfect gaming experience. However, if it is not connecting to your PC or your PC cannot detect the PlayStation 4 controller via Bluetooth. In both cases, there are chances that the driver compatibility is causing the issue.

So, before jumping to the ways you can troubleshoot the issue, ensure that your PC has suitable controller drivers installed. How to do that?

Well, if you go for it manually, there is a chance that you get lost in the steps, as updating drivers manually is not for everyone. If you are into gaming and need to learn more about Device Managers and drivers on your PC, do not worry, there is a solution for you too.

Advanced Driver Updater, yes, the driver updating software scans your PC for outdated drivers and fetches quality updates, and installs them automatically.

You need not worry about checking for updates and sifting through drivers to find the perfect file; everything is done by the tool. To give you a better perspective, here’s how the tool works –

  • Download the application setup file from the button below and install it in just a few simple steps.
  • After installing, run the application. You will find a scanning option named “Start Scan Now.” Click on it, and the tool will start looking for outdated drivers.
  • Once the scan is over, you can see the list of drivers that require updates on your PC. Update the PlayStation 4 controller drivers or PlayStation 4 Bluetooth drivers.

Restart your PC after the application has finished working. Try reconnecting the PlayStation 4 controller. It will connect and work smoothly with your PC.

Please note that this is a preliminary step. To ensure that a faulty driver is not causing the error, you must follow the other ways explained below.

Let’s move on to the ways you can use to troubleshoot and fix other errors causing the PlayStation 4 controller to malfunction on your PC.

Ways to Connect Your PlayStation 4 Controller to PC Without Errors

Once you know that the drivers are not an issue or you have fixed the driver issue using Advanced Driver Updater, try the following ways to connect the controller.

PC Does not Support the PlayStation 4 Controller

If you are using Windows 10, your PC will not support the PlayStation 4 DualShock controller. You need a third-party application like DS4Windows on your PC. Using the DS4Windows application, you can not only connect the PlayStation 4 but can also configure the controller to its best potential. Here’s how the tool can help –

  • Download DS4Windows and install the application on your PC.
  • Set up the installed application. It will take a few minutes as all you have to do is follow the instructions on the screen.

Note : If you have never used DS4Windows before, choose the AppData profile when the application asks.

  • After setting up the application, you must install the drivers to support DS4Windows. The application setup has the drivers onboard, which means it is easy to install.
  • Not to mention, Advanced Driver Updater helps in keeping your DS4Windows drivers updated.
  • Once the application is set up, your Windows 10 PC supports a PlayStation 4 DualShock controller.

Try Connecting the Controller Using USB Port

If your PC is using an older version of Bluetooth or you have added the Bluetooth functionality using an external adapter, the PlayStation 4 controller might not be able to connect. Do not worry, as you can use a USB cable to connect.

Make sure you have Steam or DS4Windows to support the controller before connecting the device.

Here’s how you can do that!

  • If you have connected the USB directly to the PC for plug-and-play, remove it, as it will not work.
  • Open Steam and go to settings. In the settings, you can find Controller settings.
  • The Controller Settings have options for input controllers. There, click on the check box for PlayStation 4 configuration support.
  • Save the changes made and connect the USB to your PC. This time, steam will recognize it as a controller.
  • Set it up, choose the desired button configuration, and enjoy your gameplay.

With the help of these two ways, you can make the controller run on your PC. The crucial thing here is to ensure that your PC has updated drivers, as the above techniques will only work if the drivers for your USB controllers are available.

This brings us to the end of the blog. I hope using these methods, you can connect your PlayStation 4 DualShock controller to your PC and fix the not working issue. If you have come across any other way that you want to share with our readers, leave them down in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев section! Good luck!


A creative tech-writer who loves to explore latest tech-trends convey them to his readers in the simplest way possible. He loves to blend the crispness of technology with a pinch of creativity while curating best practices for the readers. In his free time, he likes to scribble poetry, listen to rap travel.

The best controllers for PC gaming

Your time — and money — is precious. Polygon’s What to Buy has rounded up the best in gaming hardware, entertainment, tabletop, merch, and toys, and how to get them for the best value, so you spend less time shopping and more time enjoying.

Finding the best controller for playing PC games is a more personal journey than it sounds. It’s got to be comfortable to use, with every button, stick, and trigger easily in reach. It’s also important that you’re getting the features you want. For example, those might include easy setup on PC, good battery life, multi-platform compatibility, and accessibility options, like the ability to remap buttons and adjust stick or trigger sensitivity.

Microsoft Xbox controller

On the Polygon team, the Xbox controller got the highest number of endorsements of any controller. This speaks to its comfort and value, and that Microsoft has released enough colors to satisfy varying tastes in design. It also helps that it’s usually around 50 (depending on the color), and that it just works with most PC games. Regardless of the Windows PC game client, there are no extra steps for setting it up.

Xbox wireless controller

Compatible with PC, Steam Deck, Xbox, mobile (Android/iOS)

sony, controller, connect, steam, ds4w

This controller is a refined version of Microsoft’s Xbox One wireless model, with added texture around its grips, plus a capture button in the middle. It can, of course, connect to Xbox consoles, and to PCs that have Bluetooth. One universally positive change from the older version is that, if you want to connect via a cable for wired play, its connector port is the more ubiquitous USB-C instead of Micro USB. It also has a 3.5mm headphone jack for private listening, though it can only be used if your controller is wired into your PC, not wirelessly.

“The Xbox wireless controller just works for me — it fits right in my hands, the texture feels just right, and it’s not too heavy” —Nicole Carpenter

Beyond PC compatibility, the Xbox controller boasts native compatibility on Steam Deck, plus recent versions of Android and iOS. So, whether you have a phone or tablet, this controller can easily connect via Bluetooth. A growing number of mobile games support it, too, and it works like a charm with the Xbox Game Pass game streaming app.

It can work on even more platforms if you purchase 8BitDo’s clever 19.99 USB Adapter 2. With it, you can use the Xbox controller on your Nintendo Switch. In addition to Switch support, this USB adapter lets you easily connect your Xbox controller to other devices, like Mac, Raspberry Pi, and more.

Have an Xbox? Here are the best Xbox accessories

The biggest downside to the Xbox controller might not bother you: It requires two AA batteries, though on a positive note, the battery life is around the 40-hour range, depending on usage. If you don’t want to change out batteries, we recommend this 44.99 8BitDo dual controller charging dock, which includes two rechargeable battery packs, enough for two controllers.

Microsoft’s Xbox Elite Series 2 builds on the excellent foundation of Microsoft’s Xbox controller with features that enthusiast gamers may appreciate. It features swappable stick caps and directional pads, adjustable tension for its analog sticks, and customizable back paddles. It also ships in a nice zip-up case. If you want more buttons and tweakable settings in a controller, this might be worth its 178.99 price. This model is compatible with Xbox and PC.

Xbox Elite Series 2 wireless controller

If you don’t need all of the extra accessories that come with the Elite Series 2, Microsoft makes a cheaper Elite Series 2 Core. If you decide later on that you want the paddles, zip-up case, and swappable sticks, you can buy this third-party kit on Amazon for 22.99.

2023: How to Connect PS5 Controller to PC with DS4 Windows. Updated

Sony DualSense controller

There’s another slice of our staff who swear by Sony’s DualSense, a modern controller that retains the symmetrical analog stick arrangement that Playstation controllers are known for. Compared directly to the Xbox controller, the DualSense has similar levels of compatibility (both are compatible with Android and iOS, and feature built-in Bluetooth for support on PC). However, the DualSense does have key differences, as well as a few perks that help to justify its higher 69.99 price.

In terms of using the DualSense on a PC, it’s possible to do, but it’s a little complicated. It can connect via Bluetooth for a wireless connection, but games that don’t support the DirectInput controller API likely won’t recognize it as a controller. Plugging the controller into your PC might solve that issue, but there are other ways to get around this barrier if playing wirelessly is important to you.

Playstation DualSense wireless controller

Compatible with PC, PS5, Steam Deck, mobile (Android/iOS)

One is to rely on Steam, which supports the DualSense controller with its SteamInput API. That makes Sony’s controller a first-class citizen in the eyes of Steam, right next to the Xbox controller, and plenty of games should offer no-fuss DualSense support.

If you have PC games that you want to play on other services, like PC Game Pass, Epic Games Store, and more, you might experience some middling compatibility with the DualSense. However, adding them as a “non-Steam game” within Steam can solve for this. To do this, click the “Add a Game” option in the bottom left corner of the Steam client, then find the executable file (.exe) in your storage.

“I like the PS5 DualSense because it’s incredibly precise — using it, after coming from previous gen controllers, felt like putting on glasses and seeing the world come into FOCUS” —Nicole Clark

To get around using Steam entirely, you can download an app called DS4Windows along with some drivers, which ensures game compatibility on PC by emulating the DualSense as an Xbox controller. The app gives you a host of settings to customize the DualSense’s button mapping, if you wish. And, in case you want to go down the rabbit hole of figuring out which PC games support the DualSense’s haptics and adaptive trigger features (and the steps to getting them to work), the site PCGamingWiki has you covered.

Here are the best PS5 accessories

The DualSense is the official controller for the PS5. In games that support its features, it can have realistic-feeling haptic feedback and gyroscopic motion controls, and its triggers can provide tension to make certain actions feel more realistic. There’s no better controller for the PS5 than this one. It’s a good controller for using PS Remote Play, too. When it’s connected to an Android device for a PS Remote Play session, the DualSense supports adaptive triggers in games that take advantage of the feature.

8BitDo’s 19.99 USB Adapter 2 also works perfectly with the DualSense, letting you play games on your Switch with it once it’s paired. I preferred to play Splatoon 3 with my PS5 controller’s analog stick arrangement. Heck, it even supports gyroscopic camera movement, just like the official Switch controllers.

Just like Microsoft, Sony also has its own pro-grade controller. It’s the 199.99 DualSense Edge, which is compatible with the PS5. It’s tempting to call out its similarities to the Xbox Elite Series 2, of which there are plenty, but it’s more helpful to speak about how it differs. For one, its stick modules can be replaced entirely — a move that makes the DualSense Edge a little more user-repairable. Also, the PS5’s interface for the Edge is intuitive, and it makes remapping controls and setting schemes the breeze that it should be.

While the Edge is compatible on PC, Sony and Steam haven’t developed drivers that let gamers take full advantage of its back paddles and swappable control schemes.

Nintendo Switch Pro controller

The Switch Pro controller is another staff favorite. If it’s a great Nintendo Switch and PC controller you’re after, this is the pinnacle in terms of comfort, durability, battery life, and other Switch-specific extras, but we’ll get to those a little later.

Nintendo Switch Pro controller

Compatible with PC, Switch

The Switch Pro controller can be used to play PC games. But like the DualSense, it’s not a plug-and-play affair unless you literally plug it in via USB. To use it wirelessly, running Steam can help you out, as it officially supports the Switch Pro controller. Adding non-Steam games to your Steam library is a clever way to ensure compatibility for games that support controllers. Again, you can do that by clicking the “Add a Game” option on the bottom left corner in the Steam client.

“This is a very solid, unassuming but beautifully engineered pad, with Nintendo’s typically great ergonomics and switchgear. The D-pad is one of the best out there, and those lovely, fat, responsive face buttons will give you SNES flashbacks in a good way” —Oli Welsh

Alternatively, if you don’t want to use Steam to play your games, relying on DS4Windows and its bevy of drivers is a free yet slightly advanced way to make Windows recognize your Switch Pro wireless controller. Of course, that 19.99 8BitDo USB Adapter 2 that I keep referencing can come in handy here, too. After plugging it into your PC and tethering wirelessly to it, you’re good to go — no fussing with apps required.

The Switch Pro controller is, unsurprisingly, a fantastic Switch controller. Like the Joy-Cons, it supports motion controls, HD rumble for more subtle, accurate jolts of haptic feedback in games, and amiibo connectivity to redeem in-game perks in several games, including the upcoming The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom.

This might seem small, but it stands out as being one of a few wireless Switch controllers in existence that can wake the console remotely by holding down its home button. Many require you to manually turn on the console, which can be a minor annoyance.

BitDo Ultimate 2.4g controller

8BitDo has released a lot of controllers in recent years, but the name for its Ultimate controller is fitting. It has many of the features from its best gamepads, plus some extras that should settle any sticker shock associated with its 49.99 price.

For starters, its asymmetrical analog stick layout, overall shape, and face button labels should feel right at home for people who love the shape of the Xbox controller. All of the buttons, triggers, and sticks feel just as good to use as any modern controller from a console manufacturer.

Like several other 8BitDo controllers, this one can be thoroughly customized with its Ultimate software on mobile devices, or on PC. From there, you can remap controls, assign buttons to its two rear paddle buttons, tweak the actuation sensitivity of its triggers, and adjust stick settings. The controller allows up to three custom control schemes, which you can switch between with its middle “star” button.

8BitDo Ultimate 2.4g controller

Compatible with PC, Android, iOS, iPadOS, Apple TV, and Mac hardware

The best Steam Deck accessories for Valve’s handheld PC

The Ultimate controller ships with a charging dock, and nesting inside of that dock is a 2.4 GHz transmitter that makes it fast and easy to connect to a PC. The dock makes for a convenient way to charge the controller, and you can switch between DirectInput and XInput by using a switch on its back, depending on the requirements of each PC game.

8BitDo makes a pricier version of this controller with Nintendo-style face buttons called the Ultimate Bluetooth. They’re virtually identical, and it can work via 2.4 GHz with PC, too. However, its biggest benefit is its Gulikit Hall effect analog sticks, which are resistant to developing drift over time by design. By comparison, the potentiometer-based sticks used in the Ultimate 2.4g (and all of the other controllers mentioned so far) bear no such guarantee. There’s a possibility you may never experience the issue firsthand, but the anti-drifting sticks alone might be a reason for some to consider buying the Ultimate Bluetooth.

The Ultimate Bluetooth is similar in a lot of ways to Nintendo’s Switch Pro controller, with its motion control support, rechargeable battery, and Nintendo-style face button layout. However, it doesn’t have all of the same features. For instance, it doesn’t support NFC, so you can’t tap an amiibo on it, and its haptics aren’t up to par with Nintendo’s. However, it’s one of a few third-party Switch controllers that can wake your console from sleep. If it’s paired, press the home button, then shake the controller to awaken the Switch.

8BitDo Ultimate Bluetooth controller

Compatible with PC, Steam Deck, Switch

Update (July 13): Removed verbiage and links for Amazon Prime Day 2023