Connecting a PS5 Controller to a PS4: A Step-by-Step Guide

Connecting a PS5 Controller to a PS4: A Comprehensive Guide

The introduction of the PlayStation 5 (PS5) brought with it the DualSense controller, a significant upgrade over its predecessor in terms of haptic feedback and adaptive triggers. This has led many gamers to wonder whether they can use the cutting-edge DualSense controller with their PlayStation 4 (PS4) systems, to enhance their gaming experience even on older titles. Thankfully, it is possible to connect a PS5 controller to a PS4, though with some limitations. This guide provides a step-by-step process to help you achieve this connection and delve into what features you can expect to work.

Step-by-Step Guide to Connect a PS5 Controller to a PS4

Connecting a PS5 DualSense controller to a PS4 console can be achieved in a couple of ways: via a USB cable or through Bluetooth. Here’s how you can do both:

Using a USB Cable

  1. Ensure your PS5 DualSense controller is charged.
  2. Find a compatible USB-C cable (one comes with your PS5 console).
  3. Plug one end of the USB-C cable into the DualSense controller and the other end into one of the USB ports on your PS4 console.
  4. Turn on your PS4 console.
  5. Press the PS button on your DualSense controller to log in to your PlayStation profile.

Via Bluetooth

  1. From your PS4’s main menu, navigate to the Settings option.
  2. Scroll down and select Devices followed by Bluetooth Devices.
  3. On your PS5 DualSense controller, hold down the PS button and the Share button simultaneously until the light bar starts blinking rapidly, indicating it’s in pairing mode.
  4. Your PS4 will now search for devices. Select the DualSense Wireless Controller when it appears on the screen.
  5. If prompted, confirm the pairing, and you’re all set!

Potential Limitations and Compatibility

It’s important to remember that while you can connect a PS5 controller to a PS4, not all features will be compatible. The PS4 was not designed with the PS5’s advanced features in mind, so expect some functionality to be limited or non-existent. Here are some key points to consider:

  • The adaptive triggers and haptic feedback of the DualSense controller may not function as intended on most PS4 games.
  • The built-in microphone and headphone jack will work, but the quality might vary.
  • Certain PS4 games may not recognize the DualSense controller. Though rare, compatibility issues can occur.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Should you encounter problems while trying to connect your PS5 controller to your PS4, here are a few tips:

  • Ensure that your PS5 controller is sufficiently charged.
  • Try resetting your DualSense controller by using a small tool to press the reset button located on the back of the controller, near the L2 shoulder button.
  • Update your PS4 system software to the latest version.
  • Re-pair your controller by following the Bluetooth or USB cable steps again.

Useful Links

For more information on the PS5 DualSense controller and its compatibility, you might find these resources helpful:

  • Official PlayStation Support for DualSense Wireless Controller – Sony’s official support page for the DualSense controller, providing general information, FAQs, and troubleshooting tips.
  • PS4 Troubleshooting Guide – Although focused on the DualShock 4, this guide offers useful advice for troubleshooting issues that could also apply to the DualSense controller when used on a PS4.
  • Using PS5 DualSense on PC – While not directly linked to PS4 usage, this guide by TechRadar can provide additional insights into the versatility and connectivity options of the DualSense controller.

Conclusion and Recommendations

Connecting a PS5 controller to a PS4 can breathe new life into your older console, enhancing your gaming experience with the improved ergonomics and precision of the DualSense controller. Whether through a USB connection or Bluetooth pairing, the process is straightforward, allowing gamers to utilize their PS5 controllers across both platforms with ease.

However, it is crucial to understand the limitations, such as compatibility issues and reduced functionality of certain features. Gamers who prioritise gameplay experience and are looking for a fresh way to play their favorite PS4 titles can greatly benefit from using the DualSense controller on the PS4, as long as they keep these considerations in mind.

For different use cases:

  • For casual gamers: Connecting the DualSense to the PS4 via Bluetooth is convenient and offers a hassle-free way to enhance your gaming setup without additional costs or cables.
  • For competitive gamers: Opting for a USB connection may provide a more stable and reliable connection, ensuring every command is as instantaneous as possible.
  • For tech enthusiasts: Experimenting with both connection methods and exploring the compatibility of various games can offer insight into the potential and limitations of cross-generation hardware compatibility.


Can I use all the features of the PS5 controller on my PS4?

No, some features like the adaptive triggers and haptic feedback may not function fully on PS4 games.

Do I need any additional equipment to connect my PS5 controller to my PS4?

No additional equipment is needed beyond a USB-C cable for a wired connection or Bluetooth capability for wireless pairing.

Will my PS4 games automatically recognize the PS5 controller?

Most PS4 games should recognize the PS5 controller without issue, though some exceptions may exist.

Can I use the PS5 controller’s microphone on the PS4?

Yes, the built-in microphone and headphone jack will work when connected to a PS4, but the quality might vary.

What should I do if my PS5 controller won’t connect to my PS4?

Ensure the controller is charged, reset it if necessary, update your PS4, and attempt to re-pair the controller through the settings.

Whether you’re exploring new connections for convenience, compatibility, or simply to enhance your gaming experiences, the PS5 DualSense controller and PS4 combination opens up new possibilities. We encourage you to share your experiences, ask questions, and discuss any tips or tricks you’ve discovered in connecting these devices. Your insights can help fellow gamers navigate this exciting cross-generational compatibility more smoothly.