Easy Steps To Use A PS4 Controller On Nintendo Switch | In 2020

While the Switch Joy-Cons work great with a wide host of games, some gamers may find that its small size may get uncomfortable for long plays. The good thing is, the Nintendo Switch supports other controllers like that PS4 controller and Xbox One controller so if you’re into one of those, all you need is to set it up with the console. If you want to use a PS4 controller with your Switch, follow the steps in this guide.

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PlayStationDualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4Check Price on Amazon
MicrosoftXbox Wireless Controller - BlueCheck Price on Amazon

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Nintendo Switch console supports third party controllers

If you don’t know this yet, it’s a fact that the Nintendo Switch is a very versatile console, specifically in terms of interoperability with other controllers. It supports first party Nintendo controllers (GameCube and Wii U Pro) as well as those of its competitors (PS4 and Xbox). 

If you want to stick with Nintendo platforms, you can use your old GameCube controller with your Switch as long as you have the necessary adapter for Wii U. If you don’t have the default Nintendo adapter, third party adapters can also work fine.

With the popularity of its rivals like the PS4 and Xbox One, it really makes sense for Nintendo to make their console adaptable by supporting third party controllers like the PS4 Dualshock and the Xbox One controllers. If you are into fighting games, you’ll also be pleased to know that you can use specialized arcade fight sticks with the Switch too.


Using a PS4 wireless controller on Nintendo Switch needs Bluetooth adapter

In order to use a PS4 Dualshock controller with your Switch, you will need to get a Bluetooth adapter. 

The Nintendo Switch’s Bluetooth capability is reserved primarily for its Joy-Cons only. This means that you need to have another Bluetooth adapter so your PS4 controller can talk with the console.

There’s no specific Bluetooth adapter that Nintendo recommends but some of the known brands that work seamlessly with the Switch are 8bitdo and Mayflash.

How to use a wireless PS4 controller on your Nintendo Switch

Once you have the compatible Bluetooth adapter taken care of, you simply have to plug it into the dock to connect your PS4 controller to your Nintendo Switch.
IMPORTANT: Make sure that you PS4 controller is not synced with the PS4 console. Turn off your PlayStation console first to avoid interference.
In this demonstration, I am using the 8bitdo wireless adapter. Follow the steps below to connect the controller to your Switch:

  1. Connect the adapter to the console.

    Plug in the USB wireless adapter into a USB port in the dock.

  2. Turn on the Switch.

    Place the Nintendo Switch in the dock and turn it on.

  3. Pair your Joy-Cons with the console.

    Wake the Switch up using a Joy-Con controller and press L+R to pair both Joy-Cons with the console.

  4. Open System Settings.

    Go to the Nintendo Home screen and select System Settings.

  5. Select Controllers and Sensors.

  6. Select Pro Controller Wired Communication.

  7. Select OK.

  8. Push the Pairing button on your wireless adapter.

  9. Pair the PS4 controller.

    Get your PS4 controller and hold down the PS button and Share button at the same time. If the light on the controller starts blinking, it means that it’s in pairing mode.

  10. Once the PS4 controller light stops blinking and turns blue, that’s an indication that it’s paired successfully with the USB wireless adapter.

Pros and Cons in using a PS4 controller on Nintendo Switch

Every gaming console is unique in its own way and some games, especially those that are considered exclusives such as Zelda: Breath of the Wild may only offer partial third party controller support. In my experience, using a PS4 controller with Zelda: Breath of the Wild is awkward and not as intuitive as the default Joy-Con controllers. However, Animal Crossing New Horizons fully supports PS4 functionality. In other words, it all boils down to the game you’re trying to play. 

If you have an unused PS4 controller lying around, one of the obvious advantages of having Nintendo Switch third party controller support is savings. You don’t need to sell, give away, or sell your PS4 controller as it can work as your Switch backup controller, or even the primary one if you want. 

A Joy-Con controller is expensive so if you can’t afford to get a replacement one right away, you can get a special Bluetooth adapter instead so you can use a PS4 controller and continue playing.

There are a number of understandable limitations when using a PS4 controller on your Switch too. For one, button mapping can be different due to the physical arrangement of the buttons on the PS4.

If you are used to waking up your Switch with your Joy-Con controller, you’ll find that impossible with the PS4 controller. You want to use one of your Joy-Cons to fire up your console.

In my case, I also need to restart and undock the Switch from time to time because it forgets and disconnects the PS4 controller. If your Nintendo Switch does not seem to recognize your PS4 controller, just undock the console quickly and check if it reconnects with your dualshock controller.

ProductBrandNamePrice
PlayStationDualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4Check Price on Amazon
MicrosoftXbox Wireless Controller - BlueCheck Price on Amazon

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