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Sony’s latest DualSense PS5 controller is one of the best gamepads you can purchase nowadays. It comes with a sturdy design and innovative features such as immersive haptic feedback and adaptive triggers for the next level of gaming experience.
However, Sony decided not to include the back paddles with the PS5, which was a significant setback for gamers. To add to the disappointment, the company hasn’t released any official back paddle accessories as they did for the PS4 controller a while ago.
Back paddles provide you additional control, thus a better gaming experience, particularly in complex games where you need quick reactions. But can you add an external back panel to the DualSense controller? And if so, which are the best ones?
In this tech guide, I will answer all of these questions. But first, let’s talk about the advantages of having a back paddle.
What are the Rear Paddles on PS Controller?
The rear paddles on the controller provide additional controls that you can remap as per your preference. Generally, most controls are at the front, requiring input from your thumbs. Whether they are navigation buttons, action controls, or control sticks, 90% of the time, you will use your thumb to perform the required task.
Shifting from one control to another can make you lose precious milliseconds during competitive gameplay. That’s where the rear paddle comes in handy. It utilizes the idle fingers that you can use to perform additional functions in the game. You need a bit of practice before you get hold of real paddles on your controllers.
Hardcore games will understand the importance of having back paddles on a controller since it allows them to have multiple inputs simultaneously. When competing against the best games, you need to utilize every resource. Sometimes, the difference between a winner and a loser is a hundredth of a second. You can gain this advantage by remapping the controls with a rear paddle. So even if your thumb movement is limited or occupied heavily, you will save crucial time using your fingers on the rear paddle.
In reflex-based games such as first-person shooting and car racing, rear paddles may prove very useful where you need to control multiple actions in a blink of an eye. Having better and spread-out inputs increases your competitiveness and boosts your confidence.
Is It Possible to Add Rear Paddles to the PS5 Controller?
The straight answer is yes. You can add back paddles to your DualSense controller and give yourself an extra advantage. However, Sony is yet to show any hint of an upcoming rear paddle for the PS5 controller. It’s understandable since PS5 is still a relatively new product, and it took them a while to release rear paddles for the previous PS4 controller.
The most surprising thing, however, is that Sony didn’t think of adding the rear paddles to the PS5 controller. When the company came up with the same for the PS4 controller, it was well received by gamers, yet the design team didn’t find it necessary to produce a controller with in-built back paddles.
So, that leaves you with only one option- find a third-party rear paddle kit. Thankfully, there are a few manufacturers in the market selling their rear paddle kits. However, the problem is that you will need technical understanding to install and remap them on your controller. Also, these kits aren’t so popular yet, and only a handful are out in the market. So, be assured that you’ll have to pay a hefty price for those unless you can install the attachment all by yourself.
Here are my top picks for third-party rear back paddles for the PS5 DualSense controller:
1. HEXGAMING RIVAL PRO controller
HEXGAMING is a popular custom controller provider for PRO gamers. Mainly designed for eSport lovers, their controllers are made with high-quality material and can be entirely remapped with several additional input buttons.
They come with interchangeable thumbsticks of different heights and designs, so you can choose what fits you the best. You can go to the official website of HEXGAMING and design your custom PS5 controller with the rear paddle.
The price of the HEXGAMING controller is around $222. It’s a considerably high price to pay for a controller, but you won’t have to go through the remapping process yourself.
2. eXtremeRate Remap Kit for PS5
If you are technically sound, you can grab the remap kit for your controllers for less than $50. eXtremeRate provides a couple of programmable read buttons with an ergonomic design that will add new input sources to your controller.
The only downside is that you will need excellent skills and a soldering iron to assemble this kit. It’s available on Amazon for just $41.99.
Is It Worth Getting Rear Paddles?
Any gamer would tell you how comfortable it is to have rear input buttons on the controller. But the question is whether or not you should invest in rear paddles or a custom controller.
As a gamer, I recommend buying this only if you are into competitive gaming, playing in events, or for prize money. When you participate in competitions, you will face elite gamers with thousands of hours of experience, and to be able to compete with them, you need to maximize your equipment.
You may need to spend a good time practicing on additional paddles, using other fingers. Initially, it may feel like a waste of time but be patient. It will slowly come to you, and you will dramatically improve your gaming skills.