The Best PC Gaming Controller



After 15 hours of research and testing—in addition to hundreds of hours of gaming in years past—we’ve found that the Sony DualShock 4 Wireless Controller (the one that comes with the PlayStation 4) is the best controller to use with your computer because it feels comfortable and responsive, connects over USB or Bluetooth, and works great with Steam, where most PC gamers get their games.

Sony DualShock 4 Wireless Controller
The DualShock 4 (model CUH-ZCT2, released in late 2016) also has some nice extra features that few other controllers have, such as an internal rechargeable battery and a touchpad that can simulate a mouse cursor. Making it work with non-Steam Windows or macOS games takes some extra effort, and headsets plugged into its audio jack don’t work properly with computers, but those minor shortcomings will be relatively easy for most people to work around
AmazonBasics Xbox One Wired Controller
If you want to spend less and you don’t mind a wire, the AmazonBasics Xbox One Wired Controller gives you most of the features of Microsoft’s version for around half the price. Its analog sticks and buttons are comfortable enough for hours-long gaming sessions, and since it’s compatible with the Xbox One, it takes advantage of the great Xbox-controller support built into both Windows and Steam. It does feel a little cheaper than the official version, its vibration isn’t as strong, and the headset jack produces tinny sound, but it feels and works better and has more features than anything else you can get for about $25
Microsoft Xbox Wireless Controller
You might like Microsoft’s Xbox Wireless Controller if you have larger hands, if you buy most of your games outside of Steam, if you want more color options, or if you simply prefer Xbox controllers. Microsoft has made significant improvements to the third-generation revision of the controller, most notably the addition of Bluetooth so that you can use the controller wirelessly with PCs and Macs without needing to buy a separate dongle.
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