Sony PlayStation 5 DualSense controller teardown shows cause of major issue

A new Sony PlayStation 5 DualSense controller teardown claims that the device has a life of “417 hours” until the stick drift issue kicks in. This has prompted many to revisit the initial teardowns to see what makes this issue crop up. Apart from this, many players have been reporting the stick drift phenomenon on the DualSense controller, affecting the gameplay experience.

According to iFixit, the controller can only be used for 417 hours, after which users will start getting to see the effect on the controller’s joysticks.

What is stick drift?

Stick drift is basically an issue, where the controller’s joysticks, stay stationary, however, the cursor on the calibration screen keeps on drifting towards a side causing your characters to move in a certain direction where you might not have wanted them to drift to.

The video showcases the internals of the controller and provides us with details from ALPS, the manufacturer of the joystick parts. It states that the expected operation life of the sticks is 20,00,000 cycles and clicking the analogue stick will last for around 5,00,000 cycles.

Putting these numbers into digestible bites, iFixit using Call of Duty: Warzone as a test, states that the controller has an operational lifecycle of 417 hours. This means that if you play your PS5 for two hours a day, you will get around seven months of usage before you start noticing the stick drifting issue.

The company states that this is pretty normal as with general use the controller will wear down the potentiometers, which will cause the drift to start taking place.

These numbers have been calculated for Call of Duty: Warzone gameplay, and will differ for everyone depending on the games they play. So if you play a game that requires less movement and clicking, will make your DualSense controller last longer.

To recall, in a previous teardown video from iFixit we got to see that the joysticks used inside of the DualSense were the same as the PS4 DualShock 4 controller. The tech is also used inside of the Xbox One and Nintendo Switch controllers. All of these controllers over the years have experienced some form of joystick drift over the years.

What to do when you experience stick drift on your controller

The video lists a few options for you to fix the issue, one involves you opening up the controller, the other one states, you can send it to them to fix. Lastly, if your controller is under warranty you can also try taking it into an authorised Sony service centre to get fixed. However, if none of these work, then you will have to purchase a brand new DualSense controller.

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