Best Sony DualShock 4 Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals & Sales 2020:
Each generation of PlayStation has its DualShock controller. Supplied with the PS4, the DualShock 4 must now face many competitors. However, these rarely target the same price range, and this is no coincidence.
What a long way since the release of the very first DualShock of the PlayStation in 1997. Evolution of the Dual Analog Controller which added 2 analog sticks to the standard controller. It offered for the first time vibrations to the users of the console of Sony. A function which joysticks can no longer do without (except a few dedicated to e-sport); if the first controller of the PlayStation 3 did without it to make way for Sixaxis technology and a wireless link, Sony quickly reintroduced the vibrations after having settled its difference with Immersion, the holder of the appropriate patents, in order to propose a DualShock 3.
The DualShock 4 is therefore the fourth iteration of the famous Sony controller. This time evolves more clearly in terms of design. It accompanies each PlayStation 4 console, but it is of course also sold separately, if you want to acquire additional controllers or simply enjoy a new look, since Sony likes to decline it in different colors. Its official sale price varies between € 59.99 and € 69.99 depending on the color. But it is regularly found on promotion, its lowest price can go down to € 40 ( during Black Friday, for example ).
Best Sony DualShock 4 Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals & Sales 2020
Construction and ergonomics
A revised and corrected form for more comfort
While the general shape of the DualShock controllers had hardly changed between the first and the third version, it finally changes with the DualShock 4 (DS4). The joystick becomes more round, its handles lengthen and become thinner, without however completely changing the grip. If those accustomed to the historic form of DualShock – which has seen 3 generations of consoles pass – of which we are a part, necessarily shivered at the start, it is clear that this Sony DualShock 4 is much more comfortable to use over time, its handles going down well in the hollows of the palms and the fingers which can surround them well.
Sony has also widened its controller and moved all the controls away from each other. The few millimeters more between the analog sticks are welcome so that the thumbs do not collide more, while the more eccentric position of the buttons and the directional cross allows to keep the thumbs well in the extension of the handles. Small hands don’t really lose out, while big hands gain significantly.
Wireless, but still light
If this fourth iteration takes a little weight (218 g), it remains among the lightest wireless controllers. A definite asset for long gaming sessions, even if the small 800 mAh battery does not work miracles and does not allow you to exceed 30 hours of operation – which is still correct. Charging takes place via the micro-USB port on the upper edge of the controller. The lower section accommodates a proprietary extension port as well as a mini-jack port for headset.
Despite a fairly thin plastic, the manufacturing quality is quite good. Nothing bends or cracks with the V2 (serial number CUH-ZCT2E) of the Sony DualShock 4. The same could not be said of the V1 (CUH-ZCT1E) supplied with the very first version of the PS4 which, it , squeaked under the pressure of the hands, even more than the DualShock 3 (DS3). A defect corrected by Sony, therefore.
New functions not really convincing
The V2 has also gained a change in its light area (which is used to identify the controllers of different players and changes color in some games depending on the situation) integrated on the upper edge.
This now lights up a small translucent strip made in the touchpad of the controller, for easier visual control. We regret, however, not being able to turn off this light which can prove to be annoying since it fairly clearly illuminates the space in front of the player and can even be reflected in the TV screen.
The touchpad, for its part, does not show much use. If the first games of the console sometimes made the effort to find functionality, it is clear that a few years later they are now rare to still use the tactile aspect to simply prefer the role of additional button.
Significant progress for analog triggers and sticks
If the iconic triangle, round, square and cross buttons change very little, they are a little closer to each other than those of the DualShock 3 (16 mm against 17 mm center distance). On the other side of the joystick, the directional cross now forms a small hollow in its center which does not fundamentally change the situation, but brings a touch of comfort.
But it is especially the analog sticks that are reviewed in depth. Always the same diameter (18.5 mm), they are much lower than those of the DS3 (7.5 mm against 11.5 mm) and mainly change shape. Previously domed, this time they are hollowed out, with well-marked edges and a slightly convex central part. There is a clear gain in grip, especially since the coating used sticks even more than before.
Change, there is also a lot on the side of the triggers: the buttons L1 and R1 are more stable, while L2 and R2 offer much better precision in addition to better accommodating the fingers thanks to their curved profile.
A word to finish on the other buttons: Start and Select disappear, replaced by Options and Share. The first serves as its name suggests to open submenus of options, while the second allows you to take screenshots and videos of our games to then distribute them to our friends and on the networks.
Precision and responsiveness
As we have seen, the DualShock 4 may be supplied with the console. It has nothing to envy to the joysticks of third-party manufacturers in terms of construction quality and ergonomics. Entry-level controllers even tend to be a notch below. You have to turn to controllers 2 to 3 times more expensive to observe a real gain at this level. But then what about the precision and responsiveness of the controls?
In terms of buttons, Sony has chosen to stay on classic membrane switches. Nothing fantastic in terms of responsiveness, but it works well and only the most high-end controllers, like those sold by Razer ( Raiju ) and Thrustmaster ( eSwap Pro Controller ) do better with their mechanical switches.
Analog triggers like sticks show good precision, with the right mix of flexibility and firmness. On the other hand, it is necessary to put an end to any possibility of personalizing the sensitivity, a function reserved there again for high-end controllers.
Regarding the wireless link, Sony is the master with a very low latency despite the use of Bluetooth technology. The connection here is specially optimized and reserved only for the operation of DualShock 4. There is almost no difference with a wired connection. The most demanding can nevertheless use the controller with a direct USB link to the console, reducing the delay in taking orders into account almost to nil; a function reserved for V2 controllers, now sold with all PS4 consoles (in principle there is no longer any V1 on the market).
Unbeatable in terms of quality / price ratio, the DualShock. 4 has virtually no competition in its price range from 50 to 60 € approximately. Well finished, pleasant to use, precise and enjoying a powerful wireless connection. It is ultimately surpassed only by high-end controllers sold 2 to 3 times more expensive. A safe bet, which is also available in many colors to vary the pleasures.
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