7 Greatest PC Controllers for 2022

Once you consider gaming on a PC, you in all probability consider a mouse and keyboard. Controllers have lengthy taken the again seat in PC gaming historical past however, imagine it or not, there’s a handful of video games on the market that play higher with a controller than mouse and keyboard. Yeah, I stated it, and I’m not taking it again.

There’s plenty of controllers out within the wild, however which of them are the most effective? Out of the hundreds of controllers, how are you going to presumably select? The place do you even start!?

Effectively, proper here’s a fairly good place to begin, as a result of this text is all concerning the 7 finest choices for PC gamepads you will get in 2022. Let’s start!

Half 1: The A-list


This primary of our two sections of suggestions is for the most effective PC gaming controllers—those who present worth and performance past the competitors. For those who can, it’s really helpful you go for one in all these controllers first. There’s a motive they’re on the high!

Xbox One 4th-gen / Collection X Controller ($60-70)

“Jack of All Trades”

Xbox Accessories & Controllers | Xbox

The Good

  • Nice worth
  • Wi-fi, and comes with USB-C cable for wired play
  • Glorious really feel and construct high quality
  • Nice compatibility with Home windows 10

The Dangerous

  • Requires AA batteries for wi-fi play – Rechargeable battery pack is $25!
  • ‘Imperfect’ d-pad (although a lot better than Xbox 360 d-pad)

Extra Information

For those who ask any of your pals, coworkers, neighbors, or pets which controller they use when enjoying PC video games, odds are they’d say the Xbox One or virtually equivalent Xbox Collection X controller. A wonderful successor to the Xbox 360 controller, the 4th technology Xbox controller does nearly the whole lot you possibly can ask for at its $60 MSRP. It has each wired (With the included USB-C cable) and wi-fi (Bluetooth) compatibility, multi-zone rumble options, and analogue triggers. For those who watch a retail web page for it over a couple of weeks, you’ll probably discover one on sale even cheaper (presumably for $45 or $50), and at that type of value for this type of high quality it’s laborious to suggest the rest. The Xbox Play and Cost Package, which features a rechargeable battery in your Xbox One Controller for $24.99, has an outstanding battery lifetime of as much as 30 hours of play time. For those who’re on the lookout for a extra private controller, you need to use their Design Lab instrument to create and order your individual controller design for $70. It doesn’t add any options, nevertheless it’s a pleasant contact of personalization for somewhat additional money.

PS4 DualShock Controller ($60)

“Virtually Totally Wonderful”

Amazon.com: DualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4 - Jet Black : Video Games

The Good

  • Contact pad can work as a mouse
  • Works out-of-the-box, both wired or wi-fi with Bluetooth
  • Strong construct with a rubberized backing
  • No additional price for rechargeable battery

The Dangerous

  • Might have additional configuration for some video games
  • Brief battery life

Extra Information

One other glorious selection of controller proper behind the Xbox One or Xbox Collection X, the PS4 controller has many comparable options. It has wi-fi play out-of-the-box and, not like the Xbox One controller, comes commonplace with a chargeable battery pack (as any wi-fi controller ought to!). Whereas the Xbox One battery pack lasts as much as 30 hours, the PS4 controller lasts a a lot shorter time, wherever from 4 to eight hours. Compensating for the poor battery life, nonetheless, is the presence of the distinctive contact pad. When configured, the contact pad can work as a mouse in your PC, permitting you to seamlessly navigate your pc’s interface or in-game menus with out the necessity for a wi-fi mouse or utilizing a irritating thumb stick cursor. Some might also desire the extra symmetrical format of Sony’s controller in comparison with Microsoft’s asymmetrical design, however that’s largely as much as style.

The Whole 8BitDo Collection ($25-90)

“Retro Gaming Heaven”

The Good

  • Wired controller choices are low-cost
  • Nice PC compatibility
  • SNES-style, best-in-class d-pads
  • Good for reliving the times the place microtransactions have been only a daydream within the thoughts of an evil govt

The Dangerous

  • Although high quality management has improved since they first appeared, sturdiness should still be a priority for some
  • Wi-fi controller choices are much less low-cost (however rechargeable batteries do come commonplace)

Extra Information

8BitDo makes an attempt to tickle your nostalgia gland with their old-school designs, whereas additionally bringing them into the 21st century by including fashionable options like wi-fi capabilities, improved ergonomics, devoted software program for personalization, and 4-6 shoulder and again buttons. 8BitDo’s merchandise are a good way to increase the emulation expertise past the display screen and proper into your arms, with controllers that feel and look identical to you bear in mind. And even for these bored with emulation, the choices that resemble early Sony and Nintendo controllers are sometimes the most effective controller decisions total for taking part in 2D titles like platformers and top-down shooters—because of their glorious classic-style directional pads. 8bitdo has choices which might be made to duplicate controllers from the NES, SNES, Genesis or Grasp System, PlayStation, arcade, and even the TurboGrafx 16. Additionally they make a handful of different controllers, together with teeny tiny moveable controllers and even a NES-inspired wi-fi mouse! Which you select is as much as which design you like, or else which retro system(s) you’re most keen on.

Wired PowerA Controllers ($25-70)

“Funds-friendly Modernity”

The Good

  • Low-cost(er)
  • Many have a clean matte end, which has a pleasant really feel
  • Sometimes wired in operation (no batteries or recharging)
  • Big collection of fashions and colours

The Dangerous

  • Comparatively cheaper really feel in comparison with full-priced controllers, however not far off
  • Rumble tends to be weak or absent

Extra Information

PowerA controllers are an important selection for these on a funds wanting a brand new controller over a used one. PowerA makes official peripherals for a variety of console producers, they usually’ve confirmed their dedication to offering controllers of comparable high quality to big-name firms at a less expensive value. One of the best ways to discover a PowerA controller you want is to navigate their web site and browse the completely different console controllers they make. There’s many alternative controllers for every console, so your particular person needs and wishes will affect which controller you select. Swap controllers are usually most cost-effective at $28, however the triggers aren’t analogue. Xbox One controllers have analogue triggers however are $10 extra at $38. Additionally they make wi-fi controllers and extra area of interest ones, like battle pads. The selection is yours!

Half 2: The B-list


If that first set of controllers is the A-list, then that is the B-list. Whereas the gamepads on this part are additionally good or possibly even nice decisions, they match extra particular niches and will have extra potential drawbacks than the A-list. But when they suit your needs and wishes higher, then get one! You’ll probably nonetheless be pleased with any of the next.

PS5 DualSense Controller ($70)

“Unsupported Masterpiece”

DualSense wireless controller | The innovative new controller for PS5 | PlayStation

The Good

  • Unbelievable construct high quality and superior options
  • Wi-fi Bluetooth help
  • Rechargeable battery

The Dangerous

  • No official drivers (works by way of Steam, and plenty of superior options aren’t supported)

Extra Information

Although the DualSense Ps 5 controller sports activities extra options the Xbox One and PS4 controllers, the shortage of help for stated options in most PC video games makes this controller more durable to suggest. Some PC video games help the DualSense’s superior options—comparable to Metro Exodus: Enhanced, Name of Responsibility: Vanguard, and F1 2021—however most don’t. The DualSense controller works most simply by way of Steam, which has official help for the controller and permits for configuration of the controls to swimsuit sure video games. You too can use DS4Windows, a program that expands help for the DualSense controller, permitting you to customise mild bar shade, customise button mapping, and monitor the battery stage. Alternatively, you possibly can sit again and hope that official help for this nice controller improves some day. I hope it’s quickly!

Xbox Elite Collection 2 Controller ($180)

“The ‘Cursed Monkey’s Paw’ of Controllers”

Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2

The Good

  • USB-C and wi-fi Bluetooth Connectivity
  • Additional parts are interchangeable
  • Glorious, strong really feel

The Dangerous

  • Hyper costly
  • Questionable high quality management

Extra Information

For those who can justify the outrageous asking value of $179.99, the Xbox Elite Collection 2 is full of options and customizability that stands with out comparability. It sports activities interchangeable elements, (together with thumb sticks, directional pads, and again paddles), a completely textured and rubberized grip, and each USB-C and wi-fi Bluetooth connectivity. It’s arguably the most effective mainstream controller you will get your arms on. The one main downside (past costing as a lot as 3 new online game titles mixed) is that they’re vulnerable to creating points over time, together with thumb stick drift, button failure, and lifeless zone formation. After all, not each controller is sure for this destiny; there’s in all probability a silent majority of Elite Collection 2’s on the market which might be nonetheless operating completely effective 3 years later. Nonetheless, it’s laborious making an attempt to justify probably getting a lemon for this type of value. For those who purchase one, be sure to get a brand new one with a guaranty!

Wired Xbox 360 Controller (Unknown Worth of Prehistoric Foreign money)

“Ol’ Dependable”

Amazon.com: Microsoft Xbox 360 Wired Controller for Windows & Xbox 360 Console

The Good

  • Good construct high quality and really feel, might in all probability stand up to an atomic blast
  • Supported by each program and OS ever dreamt up by people
  • Statistically you may have at the very least one in your closet someplace

The Dangerous

  • Now nearly completely out there second-hand, making costs extremely variable
  • Mushy, worst-in-class d-pad
  • Wi-fi use requires an adapter bought individually
  • Might include weevils

Extra Information

After the poorly-received ‘Duke’ controller for the unique Xbox, Microsoft determined it was time to provide a controller that match within the arms of an precise human being; thus, the Xbox 360 controller was born. These controllers are sometimes an unimaginable funds choice for individuals on the lookout for one thing that doesn’t really feel like a funds controller. Regardless of their age, they’re a wonderful selection because of their indestructibility, ergonomic design, and broad compatibility. Although in all probability a foul selection for retro gaming because of its unfathomably horrible directional pad, it in any other case stays well-suited to almost all fashionable video games. The wired USB choice might be your finest wager, contemplating the wi-fi Xbox 360 controller requires a individually bought wi-fi adapter. If yow will discover one in fine condition for $20 or $30, this controller will in all probability last more than a brand new Xbox Elite Collection 2.

Conclusion and a Closing Message


All these controllers, like something in life, have their advantages and disadvantages. None of them are inherently unhealthy decisions, and any will probably carry out completely effectively for the complete length you utilize them for. However when contemplating a peripheral like this, it’s vital to know the downsides that accompany them since for some they are often the only bodily level of contact with a PC whereas gaming. Nonetheless, for many who are nonetheless enjoying FromSoft video games (or any video games that began their lives as console exclusives) with keyboard and mouse, I’d very strongly suggest giving a controller a strive.

The Xbox One/Collection X and PS4 controllers are more likely to final you the longest and have essentially the most dependable wi-fi efficiency, however every make sacrifices concerning batteries to maintain the bottom controller costs from ballooning up. The PowerA controllers are the least costly dependable choices within the A-list, however they do include worse construct high quality and restricted options consequently. 8bitdo’s choices are in between these extremes, with a variety of construct qualities and options throughout their gadgets.

Any controller can endure from any related challenge, and your selection ought to in the end take these traits under consideration. The purpose is, at all times choose a gamepad (or any PC half, actually) that components in not simply the options you need, however the negatives you’re most okay with as effectively!

Any ideas, questions, or different feedback? Any unmentioned PC controllers you’re feeling needs to be added to our A- or B-list? Tell us!

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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