While Sony faces problems with the PlayStation 5’s DualSense controller, the iFixit website opened the gadget and found what has been causing the drift problem. Altogether there are four important reasons that can work together, or not, to make the game believe in the supposed direction pointed by the analog.
Shortly after the launch of the PlayStation 5, users of the Sony console began to realize that the DualSense controller had a problem very similar to that of the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons: drift. On both consoles the analog (part that is not the traditional buttons) fails and makes the game believe that a command is still being applied, even after the finger is already far from the control.
DualSense problem is not uncommon even in the competition
Some players are able to solve the problem with the help of technical assistance and free of charge, while others have decided to sue the brand. In the middle of this fight, the iFixit people decided to open control to find the likely culprits and noted four suspects. All are common for this type of control, as in the case of the Nintendo Switch.
The first one is the mechanism used by analogs to understand the position of the player’s finger. It works like this: inside the control, just below each analog, are two potentiometers that use an almost round shape to tell how far up or down the finger is pointing. Put the information of the two together at the same time and you also have data on the diagonals in all directions.
The potentiometer works with a chain crossing a kind of ribbon, connected in two terminals at its ends and with another terminal in the middle. This central component is the moving part and the other two at the limits take note of the identified resistance. As every moving part is a point of weakness in any structure, this is the reason why this first reason is found: with the friction made naturally by use, after a while the “tape” may be damaged – scratching.
Another detail that can help in the problem is part of the second reason and is the spring responsible for the analog to return to its starting point (right in the middle). With use and also over time, it loses the ability to return to exactly the same location, creating a starting position different from the one configured at the factory – more to one side, making the reading wrong at the terminals.
The terminals understand this new starting point as if the finger is still moving the analog. The third reason is the entry of some material from the movement mechanism itself, inside this “tape” of the pot. The insertion may be of parts of the rubber or plastic surrounding it.
The fourth and final reason is similar to the third, but it is aimed only at the user: dirt. You know that piece of snack you’re eating, you saw it falling and can’t find it anymore? So, it can be thin enough to enter the pot and hinder the resistance reading. It takes a lot of carelessness (and bad luck) of the user to point out this reason, but it is not good to leave it aside – there is a player who inserts cards and even tazos in the Blu-ray player of some consoles, you know.
It is possible to find solution for DualSense
If you live in a place far from any technical assistance, it is possible to find solutions to the problem. Changing the potentiometer or cleaning its contacts can solve the failure that does not involve the analog spring. On the Nintendo Switch it is even possible to create a new central point for the analog, temporarily resolving the drift.
In both cases it is best to call the manufacturer, which changes control even in Brazil.
With information: iFixit.