Learn All About PlayStation 4’s New Dualshock 4 Controller

By Ishaan . February 20, 2013 . 6:22pm

Sony’s new wireless controller for the PlayStation 4, dubbed “Dualshock 4,” will come with a few features that weren’t present in the Dualshock 3 controller. For starters, it will have a new “highly sensitive” six-axis sensor, as well as a touch pad located on the front of the controller.


Additionally, the Dualshock 4 will come with built-in speakers and stereo headset jack. You’ll be able to use it with regular headphones, as well as a Mono Headset that will come bundled with the PlayStation 4 console for voice chat.


The Start and Select buttons on the controller have been combined into a single “Options” button. Another button, “Share,” allows you to record and share gameplay footage from the PlayStation 4 console using Facebook. You can also use the Share button to stream live video using Ustream.


The Dualshock 4 will also interact with Sony’s new PlayStation 4 Eye peripheral. The controller includes a light bar on the top that changes colour to identify help players, and can also change pattern to “provide useful information”.


Meanwhile, The PlayStation 4 Eye, which includes two “high-sensitive” cameras with wide-angle lenses that can recognize depth of space, will be able to sense the colour of the light bar on Dualshock 4 controllers to judge the positions of players.


It appears as though the PlayStation 4 Eye will also be capable of performing certain functions similar to Microsoft’s Kinect, such as cutting the image of the player out of the background, or to judge players’ positions in front of or behind each other. Video framerate for the PlayStation 4 Eye is listed as:

  • 1280×800 pixel @ 60fps
  • 640×400 pixel @ 120fps
  • 320×192 pixel @ 240fps

You’ll be able to charge the Dualshock 4 controller using the PlayStation 4 while the device is in sleep mode, or through a dedicated charging station. Sony say you’ll also be able to use smartphone chargers via USB for charging.


The Dualshock 4 will have the following buttons or inputs: PS button, SHARE button, OPTIONS button, Directional buttons (Up/Down/Left/Right), Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, Square), R1/L1/R2/L2 button, Left stick / L3 button, Right stick / R3 button, Pad Button Touch Pad 2 Point Touch Pad, Click Mechanism, Capacitive Type Motion Sensor Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer).


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  • MrRobbyM

    Why would they add gloss around the buttons? WHY????

    Besides that, the whole thing sort of looks like an off-brand controller. Mad-Catz if you will. Not that it matters. As long as it’s comfortable and functional.

    • Altumn

      I actually like gloss around the buttons, to me it feels nice. But i can see how some people will hate the finger prints. And i agree it looks like a knock off controller, it doesnt look like it’ll fit in your hands as well.

    • Asura

      Had the exact same thought of “Wow, that looks off-brand.”

  • Amagidyne

    The design looks very…chunky? The built in speakers/headphone jack is actually really cool though – I don’t have a tv and I play on a monitor with no speakers built in, so something like this would actually be perfect

    • MrRobbyM

      I do like the headphone jack. It’d make for quieter gaming when people are asleep much easier.

      • gamerdude

        Me too. This is surprisingly the biggest feature of the pad but a great one at that. Maybe we’ll see more headset support in games too?

      • Kevadu

        Am I the only one that just plugs headphones into my receiver?

      • s07195

        But what sounds would be coming out of the headphones? Voice chat only? I don’t imagine that the game’s music will be coming out of it. You’d probably need a jack on your TV for that.

  • The Start and the Select button are being shared? Not a wise move for backwards compatibility or classics.

    • MrRobbyM

      To be fair, how many games actually use the select button?

      • FetusZero

        In my memory, a lot of the games I used to play had START as pause and SELECT as a menu button. So we can see this coming.. the Share button only works for PS4 games and will become SELECT for oldies.

        • MrRobbyM

          That’s what I was thinking. I mean, I don’t think the sharing feature was confirmed to work for older games. Though I don’t see a reason not either.

          • FetusZero

            Only time will tell. Either way I’m sure they’ll find something around this. I wonder if PS1 discs will still work as they did with PS3? My PS1 is the only Sony system that doesn’t work anymore.

        • katzedan

          In my memory too…

          Like Final Fantasy VII, that select makes the hand-icon/battle bar appears when pressed…
          On the most of Resident Evil games, select goes to options.
          On Hot Shots Golf the select button open the scoreboard
          In Assassins Creed Select open the map (you can enter with start, but select is quickly xD )
          Even some fighting games like Street Fighter use select.

          So it could be really bad if you need this function but could not find it! :S (but I think they’ll turn the share button in the select too)

          • FetusZero

            What Kevin Deiphi said about the touch pad is a good idea too, assuming sharing of “classics” is functional.

    • Kevin Delphi

      Maybe the start and select buttons will appear on the touch pad section of the controller.

      • FetusZero

        That’s a pretty good idea, actually. Especially if they plan to make the sharing functional for these games.

      • Micrll

        Exactly what I was thinking, I think the Vita uses the back touchpad to emulate the L3 / R3 buttons.

      • Sorry, but when you say appear, do you mean literally appear? Because a touch pad is different from a touch screen. For reference, a DS and iPhones have touch-screens; the track pad on the back of the Vita and the track-pad on most laptops are touch pads.

    • Micrll

      My guess is since its not used that much the could just tie a tap to the touchpad to be the equivalent of the select button in a pinch. EDIT: Didn’t see Kevin’s post below mine.

  • Minos

    Sony does what Nintendid.

    • MogCakes

      Sorry, not applicable. Touch pad, not screen. Also not a rectangle.

  • Asclepius

    i feel somewhat uncomfy about where they placed the share & option button..
    but we’ll see how it’ll do

  • chroma816

    Eh, looks a bit too 360 inspired to me. I always liked the normal DualShock look and this…isn’t it.

    Also, not into the “share” button – why should my friends see or care what I’m playing when most are CoDKiddies anyway?

    And no start/select, just one button? Not cool, Sony.

    • I don’t actually see a lot of change from the usual Dualshock design at all, WiiU pro controller though does seem inpired on X-box design.

      Honestly I almost never used the select button lol, the option button might as well provide the same purpose as select.

      • Solomon_Kano

        Really? I mean, it’s still recognizably a Sony controller, but it looks a lot meatier than the Dualshocks of the past. The shoulder buttons and analogs changed too. That said, I do like the new look.

        Same on select. The last game that I had to use it was somewhere on PS1 lol.

        • Well I didn’t said it stayed totes the same lol but comparing to Nintendo controllers they do get radical changes, to the point they need an additional controller .w. (Of which Im not implying WiiU got it wrong, in fact I like what the tablet controller has to offer but Im liking that the Dualshock is trying to get the original design intact while adding new features all the same without going too radical .w.)

          • Solomon_Kano

            True, Nintendo comes up with DRASTICALLY different controllers for each system. How they went from the SNES controller to the N64’s I will never know lol.

            As for the Wii U, I really like the tablet. I think it was kinda counter-intuitive for them to make it central to the system then go “but you don’t have to use it, you can use THIS controller!” I mean, they did it on the Wii too, but still. So, yea, it’s nice that the Dualshock remains familiar.

        • Testsubject909

          I’ve used the Select button frequently enough for me to notice it. And I can tell you the last time I used Select and had all the buttons on the Dualshock set to a function in the game:

          Borderlands 2. Just had a coop session of that game last week with a buddy. It opens the inventory menu because, honestly, the rest of the buttons are going to be needed for something else.

          • Solomon_Kano

            Huh. Yea, I hardly have played games that used it. Thinking harder, I think I used it in Anarchy Reigns. That said, I’m interested in seeing how the game is supposed to tell start from select if the new button is both. Then again, developers are smart enough to relegate select’s function to a different button. The touchscreen might as well be the new select.

  • Suicunesol

    So what do you guys think of the touchpad?

    I’m having trouble envisioning practical uses for it. It’s so small. And in order to reach it, you literally have to let go of one side of the controller to touch it. I can envision sliding your finger across to control a virtual cursor (like laptop touchpad) or to slide a wheel or lever on the TV. But that’s about it.

    It might be nice for little things, but it doesn’t seem wholly capable of much else.

    • Solomon_Kano

      I honestly don’t know what to think. I really can’t think of any use for it.

      Are we going to drag our fingers on it to do something in game? It doesn’t really seem like much space for that. It’s multitouch capable, but how are you getting several fingers on that and still holding the controller? I could see perhaps, a shooter setting button to throw grenades on the touch screen and freeing up one of the shoulders for something else, but that’s about it.

      Maybe I’m thinking too much in a traditional sense, but I just can’t see anything to use it for.

      • SeventhEvening

        I think for something like a shooter, moving your hand to the touch screen would be a huge pain and could kill you. Although I guess I’d have to hold the controller first and see how comfortable my thumbs reach it. I imagine it more passively, like flicking through menus, scrolling and zooming. Basically, the same kind of crap I use my touch screen for on my phone.

        • Solomon_Kano

          Exactly. I can’t really think of a workable way that a game could use it in actual gameplay. Using it to scroll through menus would be fantastic though. It’d make PSN navigation a breeze, especially coupled with the simplified new interface.

    • Micrll

      There was a article on Kotaku interviewing people developing for the Ouya which also has a touchpad on the controller. They were saying that it was a very odd mechanism and seemed to be very tricky to integrate it and make it feel natural when using the rest of the buttons and control sticks. Not sure how much use it will get in normal play.

      • Testsubject909

        Real Time Strategy games are the first thing that pops to my mind.

        • Kevadu

          Yeah, mine too. It could actually work well there. Use a stick to move the camera and the touchpad to select units.

    • SeventhEvening

      I think it won’t see much use. I could imagine a few tiny uses, such as pinch-zoom or flipping through menus, but I imagine it won’t be used too often. The vita’s back touch screen is kind of the same way. Sometimes it has some interesting uses, but most of my games don’t bother using it at all. And that’s fine by me.

  • Christopher Nunes

    I don’t know how I feel about this new controller… it seems… out of place? I’m just not sure what to say exactly but the Start and Select buttons merged together to become an Option button that does both? Good idea or bad idea, I don’t know yet.

    It just feels… not a PS controller to me. I just that’s it, but I’m not exactly sure what to say really.

    I’m not getting the PS4 on launch day (likewise with the PS3 at first) but I’ll eventually get it one day. Still what is the PS4 going to look like?

  • ddh819

    not thrilled about what sounds like a more expensive controller

  • My question how much will it cost to get a second controller and can this thing withstand a fall or 2 cause man it looks expensive

  • $29082171

    Why does it have a touchpad?


  • Solomon_Kano

    The prototype had a straight up Vita d-pad, and this doesn’t. That’s the only thing really throwing me here. The rest is whatever. Kinda thick looking, but familiar. I’ll deal.

    Wonder how much one of these costs though? I mean, a Dualshock 3 is already the price of a game just about.

    • Testsubject909

      If ever I want a third Dualshock 3, I’d buy one of those game combo because there are some games out there that are packaged with Dualshock 3… Actually I found a few of those sets that actually costs less then buying a Dualshock 3 solo.

      • Solomon_Kano

        Yea, those usually are cheaper than getting the controller by itself. I’ve been meaning to pick up the Ratchet & Clank one for ages since I still have just one DS3.

  • fireemblembeast

    ;_; No start or select…? Oooh but I like how it comes with headphones and headphone jack in the controller! That’s brilliant, really it is. …Good, speakers like in Wiimote. Oh, and I like the rings around the joysticks. :3
    And WTF- a “share” button? Really?! They have to incorporate social networks into EVERYTHING now!? Even my games?!
    And renaming two classic buttons that have always been there into one “options” button just pisses me off…(but seriously, what doesn’t?) Oh yeah, let me just start up the game, and to skip the intro to START the actual game, I’m going to press the OPTIONS button! Yeah, that makes a lot of sense! It’s not like I wanted to see any options or anything with the OPTIONS button! >_>;
    Unless the jrpg openings become skippable with like X now or something…
    Anyways, I just hope it has a better D-pad. I know most people don’t mind it, but when playing Blazblue and such, it just doesn’t work for me on PS3 and cramps up my hand.

    • Curan_Altea

      Huh, I actually really liked using the PS3 controller for BlazBlue and other fighters (I have an arcade stick anyway). To each their own I guess.

      I’m a little iffy about the options button myself, but I feel like I’ll adapt rather quickly.

  • Valtiel Ikari

    I think they should have went for a vita like setup, and making home and star and select part of the screen would have been better, in terms of adding more space for the screen, since I can picture it being a bit akward.

  • ndjn3979

    It looks ugly. Just being honest.

    • MogCakes

      It doesn’t look sleek, no. But it does look comfortable.

      • MrRobbyM

        This. It looks like a dream to hold.

        • Testsubject909

          It looks like a pair of pantyhose or two black socks attached to a slab of ink.

          I wish I was kidding but it really is something I’m seeing when I look at it.

          Or a chibi character’s legs. The bottom grey colored spots would be it’s feet and the rest would be it’s legs.

          • MogCakes

            lol it does look like it has chibi legs.

          • Testsubject909

            Can never unsee.

          • MrRobbyM

            Omg chibi legs. I shall name it Chibi and he shall be mine.

  • Skeima

    if you dont want to share your then DONT,..the button is there to those who want to…who know, you might come come across something unexpected,funny,bug etc in the game that need to tell xD
    but the new feature that i like is of course the headset jack :)
    so is the trigger button any different? i cant see it really well…

  • CirnoLakes

    Now that is a much more flattering picture of the controller. It by no means looks perfect, and I prefer the look of the old controller to it.

    The biggest issue I have with this, is that the middle looks much bigger. May take a bit of getting used to. The start button may become cumbersome to reach, which I don’t want.

    • Testsubject909

      But this is where I’m confused.

      It’s supposed to be both Select and Start, right?

      How will that work… Especially if you choose to play older games…

      • Kevadu

        You forget the options button.

        • s07195

          That’s what he meant. One button to rule them all.

  • revenent hell

    The more I read about the social aspects the less I want the thing to be honest.
    I am not a social gamer and even though I know this is the rout Sony is going I realy am seeing no insentive to buy it beyond the fact games I will want to play will be on it eventually…..I just hope for the games they dont “force” the social aspect in them,that would be realy grating.
    Im sure for people who enjoy playing with others this is probably realy great…but for someone like me,even being a Sony fan,theres realy nothing here that I can say is remotely appealing…

    • DawnWolf

      The recording and streaming is what sony did for the hardcore. Most hardcore gamers enjoy showing off their… hardcore-ness. This saves them from having to buy a cap card, instead giving easy access to streaming and recording.

      • MogCakes

        It means more Let’s Plays, which is a great thing for me as I enjoy watching them on occasion.

        • Testsubject909

          You still require a means of recording your personal audio if you intend to have a voice over and commentary, and it requires some sync and editing.

          • MogCakes

            ah. :( oh well, at least it does make things easier for LPers.

          • Testsubject909

            It does for capturing footage at least.

            But I wonder about the quality of the capture and how much size it’s going to take on the hdd.

            I’m using an external capture card that can capture up to 720p right now and, well, the raw footage is… well… huge…

          • MogCakes

            Let’s hope the HDD is more than huge on the PS4. And that the PS4 has conversion options.

          • Testsubject909

            Reminds me, I need to see if I can find a good video conversion program to reduce the file size of these things. I don’t see myself requiring the absolute raw footage of these things so it’d be nice to tone down the size.

          • Kevadu

            It’s not going to be raw, there are hardware encoders onboard to compress all this stuff as it’s recorded.

          • Kevadu

            The voice over commentary is my least-favorite part of LPs…most of it is just terrible.

      • revenent hell

        I loved the way you phrased this…

    • SeventhEvening

      Well, the PS3 was pretty popular with fighting fans because of the d-pad, and the share function will probably get a nice use in that community, but I doubt it will be forced on anyone.

    • Locklear93

      I’m not a social gamer either, but I like this better than the social aspects of the Wii U. If I don’t record or share, then nothing happens. On the Wii U, I’m basically slapped in the face with people’s Miiverse posts anytime I’m on the main menu. I’m fine with social features as long as they stay out of the way.

      I do hope, though, that Facebook doesn’t end up being the only option for uploading recordings. Ustream is there for streaming, but streams are typically not terribly high quality, since they’re compressed to download and play in real time. I don’t have a Facebook account, and actively wish NEVER to have one, but I do periodically enjoy recording video of something in a game to show friends.

      • revenent hell

        Ohhhh I did not know all that about the Wii U……I actually never realy looked to much in to it since I didnt plan to get one anytime soon,well that changed with mention of a few games……I can tell I probably wont be pleased by that stuff either.

  • Go2hell66

    Wow they really did just jam the touch pad in there. it looks so damn awkward

  • Adol Christin

    Yes… The DS LIVES :)

  • Cazar

    I think the controller looks fine, but naturally people will complain about anything different from what they’re used to. The touchpad does seem pointless to me though.

    • Testsubject909

      There’s a touchpad/keyboard attachment for the Dualshock 3. It’s main use has been the equivalent of a laptop mousepad for PS3 browser.

  • Romangelo

    they tried too hard. I just want my game controller to be a controller, that’s it.

    • MrRobbyM

      Yet now you’re controlling things with an added touchpad and more accurate motion controls. Is that not….controlling?

      • Testsubject909

        I’m personally fine with that. What makes me scratch my head is…

        Options instead of Start and Select? That is effectively one less button then the Dual Shock 2 and 3… What will Options do? Just a new name for Pause or will pushing it cause a sudden choice selection between either Pause or Select? Is it a button that’s actually sensitive to whether you press it towards the left and right to have both in one or what?

        I know not every game makes use of both Select and Start, but those that do make use of it does so for a reason, because what button you press is for an immediate use. Say. Borderlands.

        Select opens up your personal inventory screen, you want that immediately, not fiddle around with a small selection between select or start before popping that up. Same for start. You want to pause the game. Now, immediately.

        • MrRobbyM

          Well, I mean, we have the “start” button now. What exactly are we starting? Most games the start button brings up a menu that pauses a game. Most times with actual options. Load, display, audio, etc. So Options button only makes more sense if you ask me.

          But I do agree and wonder how they’re going to get around games that use ALL of the buttons(ALL OF THEM).

        • s07195

          My question exactly.

  • eilegz

    prototype d-pad its better than the real one =/

  • Testsubject909


    *stops to think, tilts his head, looks closer*

    Huh… I got it… It reminds me of a pair of pantyhose.

    • s07195

      ….Don’t even see how you got reminded of that, other than color.

  • gamerdude

    Only a touch-pad without any screen?!

    Well I certainly did NOT see that one coming at all.
    Part of me is happy that they didn’t just give us another Wii U to buy but part of me is just confused by that.

    • Testsubject909

      Eh, since not a lot of people seem to know it exists. There is a keyboard/touchpad attachment for the Dualshock 3 that’s been on sale for a long, long time.

      Think of it as them just incorporating half of that attachment into their next controller, minus the keyboard of course.

      • gamerdude

        You’re right I had no idea that was even a thing.

        • Testsubject909

          Don’t blame you, had pull some obscure memory of mine there. I remember looking at this thing over at a local EBgame and just going “Why would you need the keyboard to also be a touchpad? … eh, I guess for browsing and stuff and have it act like a mouse, but still wouldn’t it be awkward to just slide your finger across this thing?”

  • Is touch the new ‘in’ thing? Seems like everyone getting the touch screen.pad thing on their electronics.

    • s07195

      Everyone’s a bit touched, it seems. :S

      …Had to make that pun.

  • Learii

    can i play ps4 without the paystation 4 Eye?

  • Fir future references (in case anyone gets confused) a touch-screen is what the Wii U tablet has. A touch-pad is what most laptops have to move the cursor with.

  • roxas sora

    the most important thing about ps4:It EXSPENSIVE!!!!!!!!just look at the dualshock4,i think i can kill my brother with just throwing it

  • Looks MUCH better designed than the DS3. More comfortable thumbsticks, d-pad, and don’t even get me started on the new triggers. Can’t wait to hold it :)

  • s07195

    It looks comfortable to hold. Though no ‘Start’ and ‘Select’ will take some getting used to.

  • Youka Youkai

    personal i think the touch pad killed it i can’t think of many games on sony to play with a touchpad even on the vita i rarely use it in all games beside dj max technika

  • vileBrenman

    Yes it had vita analog sticks. I love those sexy concave analog sticks! So comfortable.

  • vileBrenman

    Although i do wish it had the vitas directional buttons those buttons, are the cats pajamas

  • MediaMindControl

    Really an ugly controller IMO. Especially top view. Looks okay in the last photo. Hate the slightly xbox 360 controller ish shape it has too. I agree with the gloss comments and yeah If it is comfortable that is fine, and the buttons should be responsive with a good throw. The analog sticks look pretty nice though and I do like the glow.

  • Yvonne Tsang

    I wonder if you can use old controllers with the PS4, because I prefer the slimmer design of previous Dualshocks. The chunkiness of the 360’s controller turned me off; it was uncomfortable for me to hold the grips. Well, perhaps chunkier controllers were made with guy hands in mind as opposed to girls’.

  • Youka Youkai

    i really don’t want to connect to a social network When im playing on a game system unless the game has its own social area like WKC but i really don’t want to connect to facebook its just so annoying

    • badmoogle

      Um no one is forcing you to use the share button.

  • Bob Stockalockapoulos

    Whew! I’m relieved the left stick is still at that spot (lower right, adjacent to the d-pad). Whenever I use a gampead where the stick is where the d-pad is (upper left i.e. Xbox 360), my thumb gets super sore. It feels like my thumb is constantly overstretched, due to me having small hands.

  • Sergio Briceño

    It’s like the engineer in the family. Not the prettiest, but damn he knows his stuff.

    PD: Don’t get mad at me engineers, I’m one too :p

  • Istillduno

    Seems pretty cool, glad they haven’t changed the d-pad, hope we can still use our old ps3 pads for the (probably many) games which don’t make use of the touch screen.

  • Vash bane

    I just hope this ps4 is the final product don’t wanna waste 400 – 500 just so the system comes out again later down the line better( just look at the past ps3 > slim ps3 ect)

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