The most exemplary PC controller is a valuable piece of equipment for the PC gamer with a wide range of preferences. Even though the gaming mouse and keyboard advocates try to discredit it, some games are better suited to a controller. Instead of sitting bent over the keyboard, the best PC controllers will allow you to lean back from your workstation and relax into a gaming session. While playing your favorite video game can be a great pastime activity, don’t forget to sometimes stand up and stretch. You can also see here to find more entertaining stuff to do to pass the time.
But Ultimately, while the mouse and keyboard arrangement is wonderful for many things, especially shooters, the best PC controller should indeed have a place in your armory. We put today’s best console controllers and PC pads to the test to see which ones are worth your money.
Astro C40 TR
The Astro C40 TR is a high-end, feature-packed PC controller that’s an excellent alternative to Microsoft’s popular Elite Wireless Controller. The C40 TR has fully remappable buttons and trigger/stick sensitivity, as well as hair-triggers for faster fire and swappable components, just like other high-end gamepads. While Astro is most known for its headphones, the C40 TR shows that it can also produce other accessories.
But the C40 doesn’t end there: the stick and d-pad layouts can be rearranged entirely, allowing you to choose between Xbox-style offset sticks and PS4-style parallel sticks. The C40 is a powerful machine and one of the more expensive high-end alternatives available. However, it’s a fantastic choice for those prepared to pay a premium for many customizing options.
Sony DualShock 4
The DualShock 4’s layout and feel are more comfortable than ever, with incredibly well-designed triggers and sticks than their PS3 counterparts. A touchpad on the front also adds new options to the familiar design. Shovel Knight and Final Fantasy XIV benefit from the DualShock 4, and more and more recent games are adding native compatibility for Sony’s gamepad.
The DualShock 4 is now fully supported in Steam, allowing you to customize the touchpad and light bar, as well as use Valve’s Steam Controller’s comprehensive remapping and sensitivity choices. You can also use motion controls to manipulate the DualShock 4’s gyroscope, allowing you to aim your pistol at a shooter. For example, surprisingly, if you want to utilize the DualShock 4 for PS4 Remote Play on a PC, possibly for the finest split-screen PS4 games. You’ll need a USB cable or one of Sony’s old, hard-to-find wireless adapters to connect it.
Microsoft Xbox One Controller
Microsoft’s Xbox One controller improves the Xbox 360 pad’s exceptional build quality and usability, making it the most significant all-around controller for any game.
The D-pad on the controller has changed from the disc style on the 360 to a more classic four-way cross style, which allows for better precision.
The shoulder buttons feel as good to press as they do to rest your fingers on, and the triggers rumble, providing better force feedback. The Xbox Guide button has been moved up and away from the center menu buttons to avoid inadvertent inputs, and the sticks have a smooth center and rasped edge to reduce sliding.
Instead of focusing on being the best-built and most comfortable option for gaming across all genres, the Xbox One Controller foregoes extra striking features in favor of being the best-built and most comfortable option for gaming across all genres. Because it offers the same quick plug-and-play functionality as the 360 pad, it will work with almost any recent PC game that supports controllers.
The Xbox One Wireless Controller has been updated to include textured back grips and Bluetooth connectivity, which promises improved range and wireless support on Windows PCs without the use of a dongle.
8 BitDo SN30 Pro
This gamepad precisely reproduces nearly every element of the original Super Nintendo controllers while adding features like two analog sticks, rumble capabilities, and back triggers to make it compatible with more recent games.
The SN30 Pro is a beautiful partner for games like Sonic Mania, Cuphead, the Mega Man Legacy Collection, and the plethora of indie fighting games available for PC, thanks to its tight d-pad and clicky buttons. Just bear in mind that, while the thumbsticks are fantastic, the controller’s ergonomics aren’t perfect for competitively playing, say, an intensive online shooter.
Despite this, the SN30 Pro (and its Super Famicom-inspired twin, the SF30 Pro) is a terrific throwback pad at a great price. It’ll work with your Switch, Android device, and even the Raspberry Pi you built to emulate the SNES Classic.
Logitech has traditionally provided PC users with a wide choice of high-quality, low-cost, and high-end accessories, and the F310 is no exception.
With symmetrical, bottom-aligned control sticks, the button layout is identical to a PlayStation gamepad. The F310’s D-pad, often overlooked on other controllers, has a responsive design that works well in platformers like Shovel Knight and Final Fantasy XIV’s basic menu surfing and button combos.
Logitech hopes to make the F310 the only PC gamepad you’ll ever need by integrating support for as many titles as possible. The controller works with most recent PC games right out of the box, but it also comes with add-ons that let you use it with other games.
You can toggle a physical switch to turn the device into that mode if you want to play older PC games that didn’t support modern input standards like DirectInput.
Xbox One Elite Wireless Controller Series 2
The Series 2 improves on the Xbox One Elite Wireless Controller, the most fantastic high-end PC gamepad. Improved grips, more trigger lock choices for faster fire, improved swappable components, and even greater software customization is all included in the latest edition of Microsoft’s pro-grade controller.
You can fully remap every button on the controller while modifying the stick and trigger sensitivities to your preference using the Xbox Accessories app, and you can save up to three profiles on the controller, so you’re always ready for your favorite games. The Elite Series 2 also includes a rechargeable battery and a USB-C port and charge while in the supplied carrying case. If you’re serious about Gears, Fortnite, or Forza, this is the controller to have.