Is a PS5 Dualsense Controller Compatible With PS4?

DualSense PS5

PlayStation’s latest controller, the PS5’s Dualsense, is perhaps one of our favourite controllers of all time. If not the favourite.

As such, it’s reasonable that you might want to use it on other consoles too. So: is a PS5 Dualsense controller compatible with PS4?

Can you use a PS5 controller on PS4?

The short answer to this question is no, you cannot use a PS5 Dualsense controller on PS4. The controller simply won’t pair to the console. At the launch of PS5, Sony published an “Ultimate FAQ” about the PS5 and its accessories. Under the question “Can I use the Dualsense wireless controller with my PS4 console”, the answer is simply “The Dualsense wireless controller is not compatible with the PS4 console“.

Why? Well, the reason why is a little more technical. Essentially, the technology inside the Dualsense controller is very different to what was inside the PS4’s Dualshock controller. If Sony had wanted the Dualsense to work on PS4 consoles, it would have had to reverse engineer it specifically to work. And making a new controller work on old hardware – when that old hardware already has a perfectly fine controller of its own – would have been a waste of time.

However… if you really do want to use your Dualsense PS5 controller on PS4, there are a couple of workarounds.

Using Third Party Hardware to Play PS4 with a PS5 Controller

While a PS5 Dualsense controller will never be compatible with PS4, hardware exists that will make it act like it is. Confused? Hear us out.

One such device is the Cronus Zen. It acts as an intermediary, allowing you (with exceptions) to use “any controller on any device”. In theory, then, plugging in the Cronus Zen to your PS4 then connecting the PS5 Dualsense controller to it should let you use it on PS4.

You can read our review of an older model, the CronusMax Plus, here.

There are several downsides to this. Obviously, a device like the Cronus Zen comes with a price tag. And it’s not cheap: It’s $99.99 USD on its own website. It will also limit the functionality of the Dualsense controller. You won’t get the use of haptic feedback and adaptive triggers.

Play PS4 With a PS5 Dualsense Controller via Remote Play

The second way to force a PS5 Dualsense controller to be compatible with PS4 is to use Remote Play. Remote Play is a feature that allows you to stream PS4 games to another device, including your smartphone or a Windows PC. And, providing it has Bluetooth, you can connect your PS5 controller to those devices.

And so, by initiating Remote Play from your PS4 console, you can then use your PS5 Dualsense controller. This way is free, but it will introduce an element of lag. That amount of lag will depend on your home internet connection. But even with the fastest connection in the world, it’s not the most ideal way to play.

And again, this will only allow you to use the basic functions of the PS5 Dualsense controller. Haptics won’t work.

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Kim's been into video games since playing Dizzy on her brother's Commodore 64 as a wee nipper. She'll give just about anything a go, but she's got a soft spot for story-driven adventures and open world escapades. If she's not gaming, she's probably cooing over pictures of baby animals or watching re-runs of Friends for the 137th time.