PlayStation DualSense Edge review: Sony's expensive but powerful companion to the PS5

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The original Xbox Elite controller was released in 2015, so it’s a wonder why sony took so long to release its own version of a premium gamepad. But now that the PlayStation 5 is more widely available (sort of), the company is finally ready to show the world what it can do. While the $200 DualSense Edge Costing a bit more than its rival, it offers some nifty features you don’t get on Microsoft’s controller, combined with one potentially major shortcoming.


For Edge, Sony hasn’t strayed far from its default model. From the top, the Edge looks almost exactly the same apart from a black D-pad and face buttons and a black trackpad adorned with a subtle pattern with the company’s signature ▲■● and ✖ icons. Where things get interesting is when you notice the two little nodes protruding below the analog sticks, which are reserved function buttons for changing your controller’s button assignments.

Can you tell which is which?  Hint: the Edge is on the right.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

On the back, there are two switches on either side next to the shoulder triggers to adjust their length of pull, as well as slots to accommodate the controller’s removable back paddles. The controller comes with two sets of rear paddles: longer, more traditional levers and short, chunky half-domes, with the latter ultimately being my favorite. You also get a total of three different joystick nodes (standard, short-stem convex, and long-stem convex) that can be swapped on the fly, and a cable lock that can prevent the included USB-C cord from being pulled out. by accident.

The rear thumbsticks and paddles attach magnetically, making it a lot easier to experiment with different layouts before finding a combo you like. The long-stem domed thumbstick can be useful for snipers in shooting games, especially if you prefer to play at lower sensitivities. But I was less concerned with trying to gain an edge than with making the controller as comfortable as possible.

The rear of the DualSense Edge features switches to adjust the pull length of the triggers and magnetic slots to accommodate the rear controller paddles.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

One of the main features of the Edge are those fully replaceable analog sticks. By sliding the release toggle back, the shroud around the analog sticks lifts off, revealing removable pods that connect via USB-A and can be swapped out in seconds. This means that when you start to feel some controller drift (which you will, given enough wear and tear), you can simply purchase replacement controller mods which cost $20 each. For hardcore gamers who put hundreds or thousands of hours into their consoles, this can add up to huge savings over time. If a joystick starts to get a little wonky, just turn it off or replace both joysticks at the same time and get almost a brand new gamepad.

Finally, to top it all off, the Edge comes with a hard carrying case that looks and feels like an extra-large space egg. It has a lightly padded interior and a small mesh pocket for any extra accessories you might need (like the included charging cable). There’s also a nifty velcro pass-through flap on the back that lets you route a cord inside so you can charge the controller while it’s safely stored inside the case.

Software and Features

In the PS5 settings menu, you can easily do things like remap the Edge's buttons or create a number of quick presets.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

Another big advantage the Edge has over its rivals (especially third-party offerings like Scuf’s reflex) is the ability to define custom button layouts. The PS5 supports four Quick Settings options and has the option to save even more in Settings. Switching layouts takes less than a second and is as easy as pressing one of the function buttons and a face button at the same time. I also appreciate that the PS5 shows a simple walkthrough on how to set everything up the first time you connect the controller. And whenever you want to revisit your button presets, all you have to do is open the console settings menu.

Other handy features include the ability to customize your joystick’s sensitivity, adjust their dead zone, and even set the triggers’ actuation point. So, depending on your preference, you can tell the controller to ignore shallow pulls to avoid inadvertent presses. It also works in conjunction with the slider on the back of the controller which can change the physical travel distance of the triggers to three distances (short, medium and long), which is nice when switching from a racing game, where you want full analog feedback and FPS, when you want a real hair trigger setup.


Unlike the standard version, the DualSense Edge features a few small design changes, including a black D-pad, black buttons, and a black trackpad with a subtle PlayStation icon pattern.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

When you’re actually using Edge, playing with it almost feels like having a Swiss army knife. Sure, it looks like a standard DualSense, but when you run into a sticky situation, the gamepad always seems to have a solution. For example: some of my first console shooters were Turok: Dinosaur Hunter And golden eye on the N64, so I always preferred what gamers often refer to as a Southpaw joystick setup, which means aim with the left stick and move with the right. Unfortunately, not all shooters support this layout. But with the DualSense, I can use it in any game I want.

Also, while the DualSense’s deep triggers are great for racing games, that long pull is a bit annoying in fighters or beating them like Streets of rage 4. But just by moving the toggles back, I can significantly shorten the pull, making things snappier and more responsive.

A standout feature of the DualSense Edge is the replaceable joystick pods that can be swapped out for just $20.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

Now I have to mention that some other high-end controllers like the Xbox Elite Series 2 offer multiple D-pad options, but in my opinion, both are worse than Sony’s arrow-shaped version. And while I’ll probably never use the cable lock, I can see it being useful in tournament settings where you want the confidence of a wired connection but don’t want to worry about your USB cable being ripped off by accident .

My only small complaint is that I wish you could assign custom actions to small function nodes. Right now they’re dedicated to switching button presets and there’s no way to change that, which seems a bit pointless. There are two nodes, at least let me use one as an extra button, especially since I feel like they’re in the perfect place to throw grenades at shooters.

Battery life

While it's not an important feature for everyone, the DualSense Edge comes with a cable lock that can be used to make sure its USB cable isn't accidentally ripped out.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

The DualSense Edge’s biggest weakness is its battery life, which is somehow worse than the standard PS5 controller. On average, I got around five to six hours of use out of a single charge, compared to six or seven for the regular DualSense. And that’s just plain frustrating because not only does the Edge cost more than twice as much, but the type of people who would pay big bucks for a premium controller are also very likely to engage in marathon gaming sessions. . And there are few things more annoying than having to search for a USB cable when your controller dies in the middle of the gunfight. Luckily, the Edge comes with a 10ft long USB cable, so even if it runs out of juice, you’ll probably still be able to plug it in and get the cable to reach your sofa.


At $200, Sony's DualSense Edge is the company's version of a high-end gamepad for the PS5.

Sam Rutherford/Engadget

While the thought of paying $200 for a fancy controller might seem like a bit too much (and it kinda does), after using the DualSense edge I can see the call. It offers a familiar design with a handful of additional features, including easy button remapping, multiple joystick buttons, customizable back paddles and more. And the Edge is actually quite a bit cheaper than some third-party options like those from Scuf, which don’t have replaceable joystick modules. Its short battery life is definitely a downside and I wish Sony had included support for a second pair of paddles on the back like you do with other high end gamepads . But if I had to pick just one controller to use with my PS5 until it dies, the DualSense Edge would be it.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission. All prices correct at time of publication.

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