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How do you change the controller on PS4?

Changing the controller on your PS4 is a straightforward process that can be done in just a few minutes. The PS4 is compatible with a variety of controllers, including the DualShock 4 controller that comes with the system, third party PS4 controllers, and some Bluetooth controllers. Updating your controller can help fix connection issues, add new features like paddles or back buttons, or just give your gameplay a fresh feel with a new color or design.

What you need

Before changing your PS4 controller, make sure you have the following:

  • A new PS4 controller
  • A USB charging cable
  • Your PS4 system

The DualShock 4 controller uses a standard micro USB cable for charging and connecting to your PS4. Any micro USB cable will work, like a phone charging cable. If your new controller didn’t come with a cable, use the one from your old controller.

Turn off your PS4

Start by turning off your PS4 system completely. Don’t just put it into Rest Mode by pressing the PS button. Hold down the power button on the front of the PS4 until you hear a beep and the system fully shuts down.

Turning your PS4 off helps the system recognize and sync to the new controller properly when you turn it back on.

Connect your new controller

Plug your new PS4 controller into your PS4 using a USB cable. Insert the larger end of the cable into an open USB port on the front of your PS4. Connect the smaller end to your controller’s micro USB port at the top.

Use a port directly on your PS4 rather than a USB hub, if possible. Connecting directly helps with reducing potential syncing issues.

Turn on your PS4

Turn your PS4 back on after connecting the new controller. Press the PS button on your new controller to turn on the system. The light bar on your new controller will glow solid blue when connected properly to your PS4.

Press the PS button to sync

Press and hold the PS button on your new controller for several seconds to manually sync with your PS4. The light bar will flash while syncing then turn solid blue when finished.

Let the sync complete before using your controller. Your PS4 will recognize the new controller once finished syncing.

Disconnect the cable

Your new PS4 controller is now synced and ready to use wirelessly. Unplug the USB cable from both your controller and PS4. The controller will now connect using Bluetooth when you press the PS button.

Make sure your controller is charged or keep the USB cable handy while playing in case the battery runs low and needs recharging.

Troubleshooting tips

If your new controller is not syncing properly or having other issues, try these troubleshooting tips:

  • Make sure you are using the right cable and have it securely connected at both ends.
  • Try connecting directly to your PS4 instead of through a USB hub.
  • Press and hold the PS button for at least 5 seconds to ensure sync completes.
  • Fully power down your PS4 and controller before syncing again.
  • Plug your controller in using the cable and check for any available system and controller firmware updates.
  • Reset your controller by pressing and holding the small reset button on the back with a paperclip for a few seconds.

If you still can’t get your new controller to work, you may have a defective model. Contact the manufacturer for a replacement or exchange wherever you purchased it.

Connecting multiple controllers

The PS4 supports up to four controllers connected at once for local multiplayer gaming. Follow these steps to connect multiple controllers:

  1. Sync each controller individually using the steps above.
  2. Press the PS button on each synced controller to connect to your PS4.
  3. The light bars will glow solid blue when each controller is connected properly.
  4. Repeat for up to four controllers.

All connected controllers will work simultaneously for any PS4 game supporting local or shared screen multiplayer.

Switching between controllers

If you have multiple controllers synced to your PS4, you can easily switch between which one you are using.

Simply press and hold the PS button on the controller you want to switch to for a few seconds. This will disconnect any other controller and connect the new one. The light bar will glow solid blue when connected.

To switch back, repeat the process by pressing and holding the PS button on another synced controller. You can quickly switch between controllers as needed during local multiplayer gaming.

Charging your controller

The DualShock 4 controller runs on an internal rechargeable battery. When the battery starts running low, the light bar will turn orange and eventually start flashing red and the controller will turn off.

To charge your PS4 controller battery:

  1. Connect any USB cable to your controller’s micro USB port and into a USB device like your PS4.
  2. The light bar will glow orange while charging and turn blue when fully charged.
  3. Charging takes about 2-3 hours for a full charge.

You can still use your controller while charging by leaving it plugged into your PS4 with the USB cable. Get in the habit of plugging it in when done playing to keep the battery topped off.


Changing your PS4 controller is quick and easy. Simply turn off your system, connect the new controller with a USB cable, press the PS button to sync, and then disconnect the cable to use wirelessly. Make sure to charge your controller when needed. With a new controller, you’ll be ready to game on for hours to come!

Step Instructions
1 Turn off your PS4 completely
2 Connect your new controller with a USB cable
3 Turn on your PS4
4 Press and hold the PS button to sync
5 Disconnect the cable to use wirelessly

Following these steps makes changing controllers quick and hassle-free. With regular charging, your new PS4 controller will provide you with many hours of gaming entertainment.