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How to connect the PS5 Dualsense controller to a Steam Deck


How to connect the PS5 Dualsense controller to a Steam Deck

Do you want to use your PS5 controller on Steam Deck? You will be happy to know that it is possible to connect it, and it also provides a very satisfactory experience (although with its weaknesses). We explain how to link the DualSense with the Valve machine.

We are approaching the first year and a half of life for Steam Deck, a console that, against all odds, became one of the bombs of 2022. A powerful competitor has emerged ( ROG Ally ), but many prefer Valve's hybrid system.

Beyond its reasonable price, Steam Deck offers an experience halfway between a PC and a portable console, and that's not to mention its functionalities and possibilities at the software level.

Although the Steam Deck has been designed with its own controls (similar to those of the Nintendo Switch in some aspects), there will be those who prefer to play with a keyboard and mouse, as on a gaming computer.

Or, some players will even miss their PlayStation and Xbox controllers. Or to play doubles with a friend in the titles that allow it. The good news is that the Steam Deck is compatible with a good number of Bluetooth controllers.

If you're wondering, the Steam Deck is also compatible with DualSense, the brand-new PS5 controller that has been causing a lot of talk since its launch.

In this report, we explain how to connect the PlayStation 5 controller to the Steam Deck, as well as certain aspects that you should know about the subject.

The controls that we can use on Steam Deck

The Steam Deck is a near-perfect machine for any PC user, as well as for those regular Steam players who don't want to be in front of a monitor while playing their favorite games.

The console incorporates its own controls, for which many Steam titles are adapted (all verified by Valve).

However, some players may not feel completely comfortable with the layout of the controls or simply play with the Deck connected to a dock and need a wireless controller, to play cooperatively. To solve these problems, there are several alternatives.

The first of them is to connect the keyboard and mouse to the Steam Deck. Whether we play in desktop mode (like a computer) using the dock, or if we play on a laptop, it is possible to use these PC accessories.

But is it possible to use PC and console controllers on the Steam Deck? Of course yes, including analog models (connected by cable to the dock or station) and also wireless controls.

Almost any controller that works via Bluetooth can be used on the Steam Deck directly. This includes the prized Xbox Elite Series 2, as well as any officially licensed Xbox controller.

Sony PlayStation controllers can also be used, such as the DualShock 4 (PS4) or the brand new DualSense for PS5.

Some players even opt for the Nintendo Switch Pro controller, or perhaps it's time to experience the Joy-Con functions on the Steam Deck (more interesting than it seems).

This time, we will focus on connecting a PlayStation 5 controller, such as the DualSense or the enhanced DualSense Edge model (such as the Xbox Elite controller) to the Steam Deck.

Now, we remember that some DualSense functions are not compatible with Steam Deck, and can only be fully enjoyed on the Sony console. This is the case of haptic vibration, the use of the microphone in games, or adaptive triggers.

How to connect the PS5 controller

In case you have a PS5 at home, and we want to take advantage of its DualSense controller on a Steam Deck, you should know a few things.

As we've already mentioned before, DualSense (and DualSense Edge) are fully compatible with Valve's machine. However, you'll miss out on some of its haptic features along the way, so it's not the same as playing natively on a PlayStation 5.

But, yes, it is possible to connect a DualSense controller to the Steam Deck. In addition, it is very simple, since the PS5 controller incorporates Bluetooth technology and a pairing function.

The first thing we have to do is press the Steam button on our Steam Deck. It is located at the bottom left, and this will open a drop-down menu on the screen.

Select the Parameters option (the penultimate one). Once in this menu, click on the Bluetooth tab, and enable this connectivity on your Steam Deck.

With Bluetooth enabled, the Steam Deck's battery will drain faster, so keep that in mind. Your console will start searching for Bluetooth devices, such as controllers, headphones, or other accessories.

Next, grab your PS5 controller. What we need to do is activate the Dualsense pairing mode, which is activated as follows: press and hold the PS buttons (the PlayStation logo) and the Create button (located in the upper left) at the same time.

The PS5 controller will start flashing blue, indicating that it is in pairing mode. Automatically, ''Wireless Controller'' should appear in the device list of your Steam Deck. Click on accept.

And ready. You can now navigate the Steam Deck interface with your DualSense controller and also play all compatible Valve console titles.

In the same way, Steam Deck also allows you to access the Epic Games Store launcher, which opens up a wide catalog of games (including the free titles that Epic gives away).