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Troubleshoot DUALSHOCK 3/SIXAXIS Controllers

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[PS3™ system] Updated 05/06/2013

Try these common troubleshooting solutions for the SIXAXIS wireless controller or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller on the PS3.

Reset the wireless controller

If you are experiencing difficulties with the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller for the PS3, you may want to reset the controller to default settings:

  1. Locate the small reset button on the bottom of the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller near the L2 shoulder button.

    Controller reset button image


  2. Use a small, unfolded paper-clip or something similar to click the button (the button is inside a tiny hole).
  3. After resetting the controller, re-pair the controller with the PS3 by connecting the USB cable to the controller and the system and pressing the PS button. See Setting up the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller for more details.

Vibration feature does not work (for DUALSHOCK 3 only)

If you experience issues where the DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller does not vibrate, you need to note that the vibration feature needs to be enabled before it will vibrate (default vibration is turned off).

Also the software title must support the vibration feature.  To determine if the software title is compatible with the vibration feature, look for the "DUALSHOCK®3 COMPATIBLE" logo on the software title's packaging.

DUALSHOCK 3 logo

Troubleshooting Tips

  • Verify if the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller works with the USB cable.
  • Verify that the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller's battery is charged.
  • Try resetting the PS3 by turning it off and then back on.
  • Attempt to pair the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller to another PS3 system.  This helps determine whether the problem is with the system or the controller.
  • Attempt to connect another SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller to the PS3.
  • Move closer to the PS3 system. The maximum range for Bluetooth is 30 feet.
  • Make sure you have less than seven Bluetooth peripherals paired with the PS3.
  • Unplug any other USB device plugged into the system when pairing the SIXAXIS or DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller.

Tried these steps and still need help?

Verify if you own a Sony controller by looking at the model number on the back of the controller to see if it is either a SIXAXIS wireless controller (model# CECHZC1U) or a DUALSHOCK 3 wireless controller (model# CECHZC2U).

If you have tried the troubleshooting information above and own a Sony controller, but continue to experience problems, click here for service information.

If you own a controller that is not made by Sony, please contact the controller manufacturer for help.