The DualShock 4 is a marvellous piece of engineering. If you’ve never played a PS4 before…well, you’ve got an incredible library of games in store, but more importantly, you’re going to play with one of the best controllers ever created. It’s a sleek, ergonomic menace, perfect for all hand shapes and sizes without ever compromising on functionality. While it took some time for developers to find the right use for the touchpad, games eventually began to emerge that arguably took advantage of this technology to its fullest potential, culminating in the incredible guitar-playing sequences in The Last of Us Part II.
So, if you’re the proud owner of a new DualShock 4, you might be wondering how you can sync your controller with your console. Don’t worry – although this might sound like a simple proposition, many people actually struggle with doing so, to the point that we’ve actually heard people saying they didn’t know how to set up their controller for the first few days of owning the PS4. You may laugh, but if you’re a parent trying to set the console up for your kids – or if you’re making a leap from a few generations ago – then it isn’t necessarily the most intuitive process. Here’s how you can sync your PS4 controller with your PS4 console.
To sync a controller to your PS4 using a cable, simply connect one end of the cable to the DualShock 4 and the other end to one of the PS4’s USB sockets. It doesn’t matter which one you use; they all work exactly the same. Once you do this, the PS4 should recognise that you have plugged a controller in and assign it an appropriate position. It really couldn’t be simpler!
The process for synchronising a PS4 controller with your console wirelessly is a little more tricky, but it’s still easy to do. It’s worth noting here that you will need a PS4 controller connected already in order to do this, so make sure to follow the wired method we’ve outlined above if you don’t have any controllers connected at all yet.
First, grab the controller you want to connect to your console. Once you have it to hand, navigate to the Settings menu on your PS4. It should look like a little toolbox or briefcase depending on what theme you have enabled. From Settings, you’ll need to find the Devices menu, then you should see an option labeled “Bluetooth”. That’s the one you want to select.
Once you’ve done this, your PS4 should prompt you to connect a controller. Press and hold the Share and PS buttons (that’s the left-hand button and the central PlayStation logo key in the middle of the controller) until you see your controller appear on the list. Once you see it, simply select that option with your original controller, and voila – your controller is now connected! That wasn’t so hard, was it?
Tips and tricks
There are a few things to consider when you’re pairing a new PS4 controller to your console. First, although you’ll almost certainly have received a Micro USB cable with your DualShock 4, any Micro USB cable will do for connecting the controller. If you’ve got an old phone charging cable lying around, you can use that to connect your DualShock 4 to your console, so don’t worry if you misplace your PS4 cable or it gets damaged somehow.
If you want to unpair your PS4 controller, it’s as easy as heading to Settings, then Devices, then Bluetooth again, just like you did when you initially paired it. From there, simply select the controller you want to unpair and pick Delete. Don’t worry – it won’t erase the controller from existence. If you want to re-pair the controller, simply follow the steps outlined above!
Did you know that you can use your PS4 controller on your PS5? It’s true – in fact, the DualSense controller for that console doesn’t work with PS4 games, so if you want to play your PS4 library on your PS5 (of which we’re inordinately jealous, by the way), then you’ll need to connect your DualShock 4. To do this, simply connect your PS4 controller to your PS5 by way of a USB cable. That’s it – no fancy wireless pairing system, no fuss, no mess. It really is as simple as that. You’ll be prompted to select a PS5 user to correspond to the controller, and once you’ve done this, you’re ready to play!
This has been our guide on how to sync your PS4 controller to your PS4. If you’re experiencing problems, try swapping the USB cable you’re using to pair the controller. If this doesn’t work, unfortunately, it may be a hardware problem. We don’t recommend opening up either the controller or the console; it’s best to contact the Sony repair department in this instance and let them take it from there. Happy gaming!