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Old 07-02-2010   #1
"The New Guy"
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4
Which controller should I buy?

Hiya,


I could use some advice. I'm needing to buy a PS3 controller (wireless), but am having trouble understanding the differences between the variations.

I like the concept of Sixaxis, at least from what I've read, but have never tried it. As I understand things, it responds to movement on-screen, ie. if you tilt the controller the gun/person/vehicle/whatever does the same movement. My own controller, which came with the PS3, doesn't do that (I bought an older model off of eBay because I wanted actual hardware emu for PS2 games, so I'm guessing my controller, which I've now lost, was made before they came up with that feature. --It was a Sony controller, though).

I have tried out the vibrating/rumble effect, when I played Halo on a friend's X-Box. I suppose it's ok, but honestly this is a feature I really don't care about, and since I'm wanting a wireless controller, I imagine that would eat up a lot of juice, so I can live without it.

I also don't care about brand, so long as the device actually works well. I have, however, run into a problem with an off-brand, when I bought some wired controllers from a website that was having a sale. The controllers had lots of nifty features listed, and although originally created for the PS2, they included adapters for use with a PS3. Unfortunately I could never get the PS3 to recognize them, despite the "guarantee" of full compatibility. On the bright side, off-brand controllers could save me a lot of money (Sony brand controllers, from what I've seen, are really freaking expensive!).

So, I could really use some recommendations. What controllers are worth buying? Motion sensing is a feature I want, and rechargeable wireless. Don't care about vibrating, and off-brand is cool if you know they work (though I definitely want to avoid using PS2-to-PS3 adapters again). :) Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 07-02-2010   #2
PCN Master
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,665
PSN ID: Xtreme8888
SIXAXIS has been implemented in every controller that ever came with a PlayStation 3 from the factory, DualShock 3 support wasn't though until the Metal Gear Solid 4 80GB bundles so obviously either your controller does have SIXAXIS in it if it's a stock controller (and perhaps you don't own a game with SIXAXIS support, not all games take advantage of the technology, in fact most it's completely optional or non-existent) or you have a cheap knockoff (branded to look like a Sony controller, it does happen, a firmware update a couple months back caught people who though they had official white controllers they imported, they were actually knockoffs) that was included as part of your eBay sale (I'll post an image below of the two different controllers and what they look like).

As to what controller to buy, I must side with Sony on the official controllers, I've heard nothing but problems from people who tried third party solutions, all of them ended up buying official controllers sooner or later but if you really need a third party solution I do have one and it's quite useful outside the PlayStation 3, it's just not wireless (I know it's not ideal for what you wanted but it's about the only controller I heard anything decent about/had success with), it's called the Logitech Dual Action Gamepad, it's technically a PC controller laid out exactly like a PlayStation controller and works exactly the same in button layout, it just doesn't have a Home button, so you can't quit games using the controller (mine acts as a spare for when I'm gaming together with more than 3 people since I now own 3 official controllers). You can pick one up from Amazon.com for less than $20 and I've had no complaints from the people who have used the controller plus it doubles as a great PC controller for my NES emulator and PC games.

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Old 07-02-2010   #3
"The New Guy"
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4
I briefly looked at the Logitech controller earlier (the wireless version with the adapter that plugs into the USB slot --I think it said it was Bluetooth), but saw a comment in one of the descriptions (I forget now if it was on Wikipedia or Amazon) that said it didn't have motion sensors. I take it now from your comment that whoever wrote that didn't know what they were talking about? :)

As for my missing controller, it said Sony on it, and came with my PS3 (cecha01), but I could almost swear it doesn't have the "Sixaxis" name printed on it as seen in the pics above. Strange. Wish I could find it and check that. Granted, I didn't have a chance to do a lot with the PS3 before moving, so there's a very good chance I never fired-up anything that supported it (I was mostly using it to watch movies, since I bought a projector at the same time and was using them together --pretty cool to see a movie projected onto a huge wall, but it was too dark to really see much when playing a game).
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Old 07-02-2010   #4
PCN Master
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,665
PSN ID: Xtreme8888
Sorry should have mentioned the controller I listed from Amazon has no motion sensing at all, I've never seen a third party controller that can implement SIXAXIS motion sensing properly. The controller I listed as I mentioned I use it for is best meant as a secondary controller as it includes no vibration, no motion sensing, or a Home button (so to quit games or go back to the XMB (Main menu screen) you would have to restart the system by holding down your finger on the power button until the console turned off, then turn it back on, not an ideal solution). If you've got no controllers at the moment the best bet is to buy one official controller (and any other controllers for people you might have over, could be third party), you can get them cheaper, Amazon has just the official DualShock 3/SIXAXIS silver controller on for $41.77 (with free shipping) or if you can find one you can buy one of the holiday bundles Sony released for Christmas this past year which for $49.99 included a brand new DualShock 3/SIXAXIS controller and a game (Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, Ratchet and Clank: Tools of Destruction and Gran Turismo 5 Prologue were the choices available). The games themselves are worth $29.99 brand new and all of them are great games (even if you don't want the game, you could probably sell it to someone for $15-20 in the plastic yourself or sell it back to your local gamestore for $5-10).
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Last edited by X_Racer1; 07-02-2010 at 05:27 PM..
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Old 07-02-2010   #5
"The New Guy"
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4
Ah, now if only I could find a bundled deal that had a wireless Sixaxis controller and a copy of the GotY version of Fallout 3. Would jump on that faster than an ex-wife on an alimony check. ;)

That bit about off-brands not having motion sensors is surprising, and pretty much puts me back to Sony as my only option. I'm glancing sideways at my checkbook as I type this, and it's whimpering and backing away from me... (Chuckle)

By the way, if I get a DualShock 3, can I turn off the vibrate/rumble (whatever it's called) feature? Would it be cheaper to buy an older Sony controller, one that has Sixaxis, but not the rumble stuff?
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Old 07-02-2010   #6
PCN Master
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,665
PSN ID: Xtreme8888
Vibration in games is an optional feature and can be disabled/enabled from the XMB interface by going to Settings, Accessory Settings, Controller Vibration Function and toggling between On or Off and pressing X to confirm your selection. The selection affects all controllers connected to your system so if you choose to turn it off/keep it off, no controllers will vibrate which can save on battery life although to be honest I find keeping the controller shut-off after 10 minutes option on means I can get over a weeks usage out of a single charge with vibration turned on.

Also the DualShock 3 controller is a better option because although you can find old SIXAXIS controllers used, they aren't known for being the most durable controllers, several forum members have since replaced their original SIXAXIS controllers (including me) with DualShock 3 controllers for regular use because of analog sticks developing a habit of staying in a position that causes movement (they don't completely return to neutral position) even when you're not touching the analog stick at all. I also find with the addition of the vibration motors, the DualShock 3 feels much nicer in the hand and more durable as well.

Overall due to the fact vibration is optional on DualShock 3 controllers, they are definitely more durable than original SIXAXIS controllers and the fact they support vibration for the times when you do want it, I have to recommend getting the DualShock 3 controller over any other controller (especially since I own two of them) but for a secondary controller I must stand by the Logitech controller I posted earlier, I find for games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare where I can have 3-4 sharing one console, they make cheap substitutes to buying that many DualShock controllers especially since every local multi-player game I've ever owned has either had no SIXAXIS support or very poor SIXAXIS support (to me SIXAXIS is usually a poorly implemented feature, very few titles ever use it well, out of the 28 disc titles I own, only 4-5 support SIXAXIS at all)
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Old 08-02-2010   #7
"The New Guy"
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4
Many thanks for all the help and advice. Looks like I've got my answers. :)
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