Sixaxis vs DualShock 3 (DualShock 4 vs DualShock 3)

Gaming controllers are a great part of gaming, and many gamers spend a lot of hours looking for the perfect game controller. Gaming console developers usually develop a game controller that they release together with a gaming console. Sixaxis and DualShock 3 are game controllers developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment, and you might be wondering what the difference is between the two.

So, what is the difference between Sixaxis and DualShock 3? Sony developed and released the Sixaxis in 2006 and released the DualShock 3 a year later as its successor. The DualShock 3 has several improvements, such as the vibration features, which the Sixaxis lacks. The DualShock 3 also costs a little more compared to the Sixaxis. Due to the added vibration feature, the DualShock 3 is heavier than the Sixaxis. Also, the Sixaxis lacks a Bluetooth “Discovery mode”; hence you need to set up the controller using a wired USB connection before connecting it with a wireless connection.

Seasoned gamers are very particular on which gaming controllers they would use and do a lot of research before buying one. If you have narrowed down your choice to the Sixaxis and DualShock 4, here are some of the differences between the two controllers that can help you make a sound decision.

The main difference between the Sixaxis and the DualShock 3 is the missing vibration feature in the Sixaxis. Sony Interactive Entertainment developed and released the Sixaxis together with the PlayStation 3 console. After a year, Sony released the DualShock 3 with some improvements, such as the vibration feature.

The DualShock 3 costs more than the Sixaxis because of the improvement Sony added to the controller. The DualShock 3 is also heavier and sturdier compared to the Sixaxis. The Sixaxis has a long wireless connection setup that requires you to either have a USB cable or a DualShock 3 controller.

If you want to understand more about the Sixaxis, DualShock 3, and DualShock 4 controllers, this is the guide for. I will tell you more about the differences between the Sixaxis and the DualShock 3 and the differences between DualShock 3 and DualShock 4. Read on.

In November 2006, Sony released the PlayStation 3 console together with the Sixaxis as its primary controller. Sony originally intended to release the PlayStation 3 together with the DualShock 3, but it could not do so because of the lawsuit filed by Immersion.

Immersion claimed patent infringement over the Haptic technology that Sony was using with the DualShock and DualShock 2 controllers. Sony opted to release the Sixaxis controller for the PS3 console as it appealed the court’s decision on the use of the Haptic technology.

Since Sony could not use the Haptic technology, they included motion sensors in the Sixaxis controller. In 2007, Sony and Immersion announced that both companies would end their patent litigation and agreed to use the Haptic technology.

Since the Sixaxis had motion sensors, Sony released the DualShock 3 as the primary controller for the PS3 console, replacing the Sixaxis and included the “rumble” feature. The DualShock 3 had all the features of the Sixaxis controller, and many retailers dropped the Sixaxis in favor of stocking the DualShock 3.

The DualShock 3 is more expensive than the Sixaxis controller because of the added “Rumble” feature. The DualShock 3 costs 49 US dollars, while the Sixaxis controller costs 31 US dollars. It is worth it to buy the DualShock 3 because of the “Rumble” feature, which can also be used with motion-sensing technology.

If you are not interested in the “Rumble” feature, you can buy the Sixaxis controller at a lower price. However, Sony phased out the production of the Sixaxis controller in 2008; therefore, if you want to buy a Sixaxis controller, you have to buy a used one. The price of the Sixaxis controller will vary depending on how the previous owner used it.

The weight of a gaming controller is also important in determining if it will provide a great gaming experience. The DualShock 3 is heavier than the Sixaxis controller because the motors in the DualShock 3 are used to create the vibration effects.

Most gamers prefer a heavy gaming controller because it is sturdier and feels more natural in the hands. Light gaming controllers are easy to damage, especially if your gaming style is hard on the gaming controller.

The Sixaxis controllers use Bluetooth to support the wireless connection feature; however, unlike the DualShock 3, it does not have a “Discovery Mode.” The “Discovery Mode” allows a gaming controller to be connected directly to a console or gaming PC without additional setup procedures or devices.

If you want to connect a Sixaxis controller to your PS3 console via Bluetooth, you have to use a USB cable to set it up. After setting up the appropriate Bluetooth address, you can connect the Sixaxis controller to your PS3 via a wireless connection. If you use the Sixaxis controller to play games on the PlayStation Portable (PSP), you need a DualShock 3 to set up a wireless Sixaxis controller.

Sony does not include removable batteries in all of its controllers, and they prefer to install an internal rechargeable battery in the controller. The Sixaxis controller and the DualShock 3 uses an internal 3.7 V Li-ion rechargeable battery that can provide up to 30 hours of continuous gaming when fully charged.

Sony does not sell replacement batteries, and if your DualShock 3 battery becomes weak, you cannot open it and replace it because your actions will be voiding the warranty. This was not the case with Sixaxis because it has a removable battery and came with instructions on removing the battery. If you are careful, you can open the Sixaxis controller and replace the battery if it becomes weak.

The Sixaxis controller has four numbered LEDs to distinguish and identify the number of wireless controllers connected to the PS3 console. If there are three wireless controllers connected to the PS3 console, the “1,” “2”, and “3” buttons will light up, and the Sixaxis controller could show up to seven wireless controllers connected to the PS3 console. The DualShock 3 does not have LEDs to show how many controllers are connected to the console.

DualShock 3 vs DualShock 4?

The DualShock 3 is the official gaming controller for the PlayStation 3 console, replacing the Sixaxis controller. The DualShock 4 is the successor to the DualShock 3, and it is the primary controller for PlayStation 4. If you are looking for a gaming controller for your console or gaming PC, here are some of the features included in the DualShock 3 and DualShock 4 controllers.

The DualShock 4 is the successor of the DualShock 3, and Sony made several improvements to make it a better gaming controller. Sony introduced new features to the DualShock 4 that were not present in the DualShock 3, such as the touchpad.

Sony also removed the “Start” and “Select” buttons and replaced them with the “Share” and “Options” buttons. Another feature introduced in the DualShock 4 is the lightbar that replaced the Sixaxis controller’s LEDs light. DualShock 4 has a low Battery life compared to the DualShock 3.

The release of DualShock 3 was delayed because of the ongoing lawsuit between Sony and Immersion. PS3 Gamers had to use the Sixaxis controller released as the primary controller for the console. After the two parties settled and agreed to use the Haptic technology, Sony released DualShock 3 to replace the Sixaxis as the primary gaming controller for the PS3 console.

In 2013, Sony released the PlayStation 4 console, and accompanying it was the DualShock 4 as the primary controller. The DualShock 4, as the successor to the DualShock 3, shares several similarities with its predecessor, but Sony also included new features to entice more gamers to buy the PlayStation 4 console.

The touchpad is the most common feature used by gamers to differentiate a DualShock 3 from a DualShock 4. The touchpad is located on the top side of the DualShock 4 and supports two points of touch, which allows the touchpad to represent several buttons.

To use the touchpad, you need to set a checkmark using the touch pointer. However, not all games support the use of the touchpad; therefore, first, check if the game you want to play has touchpad support before using it.

The DualShock 3 did not have any features to show how many wireless controllers were connected to the PS3 console. The DualShock 4 has a light bar with three LEDs that can illuminate different colors. The colors on the light bar have various meanings, such as low battery and your player number on the console.

Some games have also incorporated the light bar in their gameplay, such as the light bar turning red when your character in Call of Duty has low health. When you connect several DualShock 4 to your PlayStation 4 console, Blue is for Player 1, Red is for Player 2, Green is Player 3, and Pink is Player 4.

In addition to the touchpad and light bar, Sony also introduced new buttons on the DualShock 4 and replaced some present on the DualShock 3. The DualShock 4 has “Share” and “Options” buttons replacing the “Start” and “Select” buttons.

The buttons have also been pushed further left and right on the DualShock 4, making it easier for gamers to press the buttons without removing one hand from the controller. The PS button that was at the center of the DualShock 3 has also been moved further down on the DualShock 4 to make room for the touchpad.

A strong battery for your gaming controller is very important, especially if you do not want to stop gaming and charge your controller. The DualShock 3 has a 3.7 V Li-ion internal rechargeable battery, while the DualShock 4 has a 1000mAh internal rechargeable battery.

The DualShock 3 has a better battery life of up to 30 hours of continuous gaming, while the DualShock 4 has a battery life of between four and eight hours, depending on your gaming style. Therefore, if you choose the DualShock 4, you have to spend a lot of gaming time charging the battery.

You may also have to limit some of the features that make your DualShock 4 a great controller, such as dimming your controller’s light bar, shutting off the controller’s vibration settings, and buying more than one DualShock 4 controller.

You can recharge your DualShock 3 or 4 using the MicroUSB port and a MicroUSB cable. If you want to charge your DualShock 3, you have to keep your PS3 console on to ensure it keeps charging.

If you turn off the PS3 console and the DualShock 3’s battery is not fully charged, your controller will not charge anymore; therefore, you have to keep an eye on the console until the controller is fully charged. The PlayStation 4 can charge your DualShock 4 controller in sleep mode; hence, no need to stick around to ensure its charging.

You can enable the feature in the PS4 console’s settings, and each time you put your console in sleep mode, connect your DualShock 4 with a MicroUSB cable, and it will automatically start to charge.

Sony also included a stereo headset jack into the DualShock 4, a feature that is lacking in the DualShock 3. If you do not have a wireless headset, you head to sit close to your PS3 console and restrict your movement because of the wired headset.

The DualShock 4 allows you to use wired headsets and have freedom of movement by wirelessly connecting the controller to the PS4 console. Using a wired headset also helps reduce connectivity issues that you could face if you connected your DualShock 4 and headset to the PS4 console wirelessly.

Wrap Up

A gaming controller is the most important accessory for a gamer, and gaming developers spend a lot of time designing and developing controllers that offer a great gaming experience. Most of the time, a gaming console developer will correct the mistakes of its previous gaming controller and add more features to improve the gaming experience.

The DualShock 3, as the successor to the Sixaxis controller, has all its features, with the “Rumble” features as the only feature that the Sixaxis does not have.

The DualShock 4 also has features that rectify the mistakes made on the DualShock 3, such as the placement of buttons too close to the controller’s center and the lack of a stereo headset jack. The most recent controller is usually the better because of the new features but choosing the best controller depends on a gamer’s preferences. If you want a great gaming experience, choose a gaming controller that suits your gaming style.

Bal Kang

Bal Kang is a technology expert based in the UK, with experience across a number of technology areas from phones, tablets, computers to gaming.

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