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Is it better to use a PlayStation or Xbox controller with your PC?

Some of it comes down to personal preference, but there is a difference.

xbox one and playstation 4 controllers
Image: KnowTechie

If you’re a PC gamer, in theory, you could use any input devices that you choose, as long as they’ll plug into USB or have a dongle adapter. That opens the door for choosing which control device suits your needs instead of being stuck with whichever controller comes with your console.

That even means you could use console controllers with your PC, because we realize that not everyone can (or wants to) use keyboard and mouse. That could be personal preference, or some injury or disability that reduces your movement, or you’ve realized that struggling with racing games with keyboard controls is a waste, but for whatever reason, you might want to use a controller.

The thing is, how do you know which controller to use?

So, which controller is best to use with your computer?

Short answer: Any Xbox controller

If you’re buying a controller to use with your PC, the Xbox range is still your best bet. That doesn’t mean you have to buy the latest, most expensive Xbox Elite Series 2, although that’s certainly a good option. You could pick up an older, wired Xbox 360 controller (or clone), and still be happy playing.

That’s mainly because pretty much every PC game has its UI mapped to show the Xbox button controls if you have a controller plugged in. You also have the benefit of Windows having native drivers, since the software running on the Xbox is a modified version of Windows.

Sure, you could use a DS4 PlayStation controller, since Steam has full support for them now, or use DS4Windows to translate the DS4 inputs to XInput, but that doesn’t guarantee that the games you want to play will show the correct icons as on-screen hints, leading to possible confusion as you try to remember what the heck X translates to on a DS4 controller without Googling.

What do you think? Do you prefer a certain controller when playing on PC? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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