There are several reasons why you might want to know how to connect a PS4 controller to PS5. For starters, you might have been put off buying a second PS5 DualSense pad by the price or reliability scares. And you also might want one if you plan to play certain PSVR games on the PS5.
The good news is that you can use a PS4 controller with a PS5, and in this tutorial we’ll show you how to connect and disconnect your spare DualShock 4 pad.
Before we begin though, you should know of the one big limitation: you can’t use a PS4 pad to play PS5 games. This is especially infuriating as Sony lets you do just that when streaming your PS5 games to another device, but there we are.
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So why would you want to use a PS4 pad with your PS5? Backwards compatibility. While the DualSense pad will work with all PS4 games (barring PSVR ones that use the DualShock 4 lightbar), connecting a second DualShock 4 pad will allow you to play local multiplayer PS4 games on your PS5 without buying additional hardware. In my house, this has proved invaluable for splitscreen Rocket League, and cooperative exploration in Spelunky 2.
So without further ado, here’s how to connect a PS4 controller to PS5.
How to connect PS4 controller to PS5
1. Find a microUSB cable
The last-generation PS4 pad uses a microUSB cable, so you can’t just use your PS5 DualSense wire. Track down a microUSB lead, and plug it in to one of the USB ports on your PS5.
2. Connect your DualShock 4 pad
Plug the microUSB connector into the top of your DualShock 4 pad.
3. Switch on the controller
Press and hold the PlayStation button in the middle of the DualShock 4 pad until the light flashes. If it's worked, the PS5 should ask you who’s using the gamepad.
The PS4 pad has now been paired to the PS5 and you shouldn’t need to follow this step again. You can even turn on the PS5 by holding down the PlayStation button, just as you would with a DualSense pad.
How to unpair a PS4 controller from PS5
While you can reassign the DualShock 4 controller by connecting it to another device, you can also ensure the PS5 forgets the pad.
1. Go to "Settings"
Press the Settings button (the cog icon) in the top right-hand corner of the PS5 homescreen.
2. Select “Accessories”
Scroll down the submenu until you come to “Accessories”. Press X on it.
3. Select “Bluetooth Accessories”
Press X on the option labelled “Bluetooth Accessories.”
4. Select “DualShock 4”
Here you’ll see the devices linked to your PS5, which should include the DualShock 4 — press X on it.
5. Press “Delete”
Select “Delete” and the PS5 will tell you that the device will be forgotten. Press “OK” and your DualShock 4 will no longer be registered to the PS5.
More PS5 tips
We want you to get the most from your PS5, so we've pulled together a bunch of guides to help you use it.
On the DualSense front, we can show you how to update your PS5 controller to ensure it's always compatible with the console, plus how to turn off adaptive triggers on PS5 and how to use a PS5 controller on PC.
For those of you upgrading from a PS4, we also have tutorials for how to transfer data from PS4 to PS5 and how to play PS4 games on PS5.
Finally, we can tell you how to move PS5 screenshots to your PC or phone, how to use Remote Play on PS5, how to transfer games to a PS5 external hard drive and how to delete games on PS5.
The guide for using a PS4 controller on a PS5 does not work if the PS4 controller is currently registered to a PS4 device. I did not see the way to handle that in the instructions, but it is simple:
1. Use a PS5 controller on the PS5 to go into Settings, Accessories, Bluetooth Devices.
2. Hold down Share and the PS button at the same time on the PS4 controller until it blinks white.
3. The Controller will appear on the Bluetooth list on the PS5, you can select it with the PS5 controller and pair it.
If you don't follow these instructions, the PS5 will claim it cannot work with the PS4 controller, but will not explain why.