Gamepad Tester – Test circularity, deadzones and stick drift

The controller tester works best on Firefox. Connect your controller using a cable and click buttons. Move joysticks and check axis – if the value is other than 0.0 then you probably have stick drift.

Gamepad Tester

Gamepad Tester

Controller is not connected properly. Press any button to start.

If you’re experiencing stick drift then make sure to check our guide on Hall Effect Controllers for PC, Xbox and PS5 – these have magnetic sticks which don’t develop stick drift over time.

Controller’s circularity test

Testing the circularity of a gamepad joystick is essential for ensuring its functionality and accuracy. Here’s why you might want to test it:

  1. Accuracy: Circular motion is crucial for certain game mechanics, such as aiming in first-person shooters or controlling character movement in platformers. Testing circularity ensures that the joystick responds accurately to movements, allowing for precise control within the game.
  2. Consistency: A joystick that doesn’t move in a perfect circle might lead to inconsistent or erratic movements in-game. Testing circularity helps identify any deviations from the ideal circular motion, allowing for adjustments to be made to improve consistency.
  3. Comfort: Circular motion tends to be more comfortable for users compared to irregular or jerky movements. Testing ensures that the joystick’s motion feels natural and ergonomic, enhancing the overall gaming experience.
  4. Durability: Continuous use of a gamepad can lead to wear and tear, potentially affecting the circularity of the joystick’s motion over time. Testing allows for early detection of any issues with circularity, helping to maintain the longevity of the gamepad.
  5. Quality Assurance: Game developers and manufacturers need to ensure that their products meet certain quality standards. Testing circularity is part of the quality assurance process to guarantee that the gamepad functions as intended before it is released to consumers.
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Controller deadzones testing

Testing a controller’s deadzones is important for several reasons:

  1. Accuracy: Deadzones refer to areas around the center of the joystick where input is not registered. Testing deadzones ensures that the controller accurately detects and responds to even the smallest movements, allowing for precise control in games.
  2. Gameplay Experience: In games where precision is crucial, such as first-person shooters or racing games, even slight inaccuracies in joystick response can significantly impact the gameplay experience. Testing deadzones helps identify any issues and ensures that players have a smooth and responsive control experience.
  3. Consistency: Deadzones should be consistent across different controllers of the same model. Testing ensures that deadzones meet the desired specifications and remain consistent, regardless of variations between individual controllers.

How to test if I have stick drift?

  1. Observe Joystick Position: Look at the visual representation of the joystick positions displayed in the gamepad tester tool. The tool will typically show the current position of each joystick, indicated by a marker or cursor on the screen.
  2. Release the Joystick: Let go of the joystick and allow it to return to its neutral position. In the absence of any input from the user, the joystick should remain stationary at its center position.
  3. Watch for Movement: Watch closely to see if the joystick moves on its own without any input from you. Stick drift may manifest as the joystick gradually drifting away from its neutral position or moving erratically without any user input.
  4. Repeat the Test: Perform the same test for both the left and right joysticks, as stick drift can occur on either joystick independently.
  5. Assess the Results: If you observe any movement or drifting of the joystick without user input, it may indicate stick drift. Take note of the severity and frequency of the drifting motion, as well as any other relevant observations.
  6. Consider Calibration or Replacement: Depending on the severity of the stick drift, you may need to calibrate your controller or consider replacing it if the issue persists. Some gamepad tester tools may offer calibration options to help address stick drift.
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Marcus Richardson

I love testing and writing about new tech. I'm also a gamer and an engineer. Check out my Twitter for keyboard stuff.

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