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What is Controller Deadzone? How to Find it and Fix

what is controller deadzone

Gamers in any game are always seeking a slight advantage to stay on top of the meta. One simple approach to get ahead is to upgrade your gaming setup, but not everyone can do that because of the cost involved.

So, before you go out and buy new graphic cards or a fancy pro controller, see if you can improve your present setup. Controllers, for example, are often used and may not always withstand the test of time.

After a few years of use, there appears to be a lot of controller drift and input difficulties, at least with recent models. This becomes a serious issue if you’re playing a competitive game. How can you aim properly when your stick moves on its own or doesn’t record an input? This is known as the controller deadzone.

Here, we will discuss what a controller deadzone is and ways to find it and fix it. Read on to find out!

What is a Controller Deadzone?

When you push your analog stick in a specified direction on your controller, it doesn’t fully register input since it has a deadzone. Regardless of how hard you press the stick, the controller acts as though you aren’t pushing it all the way – if at all.

This causes several annoyances when playing video games. It doesn’t feel like your actions are fully transferring to the game when you try to move your character or the camera around.

Deadzones on controllers are easy to spot, but they’re a little more difficult to correct. Until recently, deadzones on controllers were an issue that you had to live with. Things have, thankfully, changed.

Finding and monitoring your controller deadzones is crucial to resolving the issue. In the next section, we will discuss the ways to find the deadzone and fit it.

How to Find Deadzones on Controllers

With an Xbox or a PS controller, it is not difficult to find out if you have a deadzone. Over time, you will realize that the left or right analog stick on your controller is not responding as effectively as it previously did. Your player in the game would act as though you had only pushed it halfway up every time you pushed it straight up (or in any other direction).

Gamers find it aggravating in competitive games. You can use a controller deadzone test like Gamepad Tester to help you with this. It’s web software that can identify controllers hooked to your PC and show up diagnostics for them automatically.

You’ll notice two crosshairs with white dots in the center once the diagnostics are activated. The white dots shift when you move the sticks on the analog stick testers.

When the dots are static, it’s fine if they “jitter” a little; just move the sticks about and check whether the dots match up with your motions.

How to Fix Deadzones on Controllers

Some games or platforms that enable you to correct for deadzone can quickly solve the problem; all you have to do now is determine how wide the deadzone is. Depending on your platform, there are many ways to achieve this.

Fix Deadzones on Steam

Steam is by far the most user-friendly mechanism for repairing deadzones on controllers. Go to the general controller settings once your controllers have been recognized. Then press the calibrate button.

You can now see how your controller motions are being recorded and, more crucially, adjust the settings to compensate.

controller callibration


It’s a little more difficult to fix deadzones on controllers beyond the software. Things are no longer made to last as they once were. The original analog stick on the Nintendo 64 sliced your palm up before breaking, and now controllers like the one you have on the PS5 will crumble if you just abuse them a little bit. The only viable long-term solution is to purchase a new controller. You may even disassemble it for repairs if you’re extremely technically inclined.

The cost-effective approach for most PC players, however, is to employ software to correct for a deadzone and return to a regular playing experience. After you’ve rectified that, double-check that all of your settings are working properly to compensate for the lack of accuracy.

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