Controller Deadzone

A quick reference to setup and configure your controller deadzone, anti-deadzone, maxzone and other axis mapping options with DS4Windows.

What is Controller Deadzone?

Controller deadzone is the distance on your control stick that needs to be moved before it interacts with the game.

A low deadzone allows for accurate, responsive gameplay – requiring only a slight movement of the control stick to initiate an input. However, an excessively worn controller or loose sticks may cause ‘drift,’ resulting in your controller not behaving correctly.

As such, larger deadzones are typically suggested as they create more lag but prevent accidental movements from occurring.

Configuring Controller Deadzone on DS4Windows

Users needing to configure their dead-zone settings can utilize DS4Windows to resolve any analog stick drift and/or get a much faster stick drift for game advantages. Here you can find detailed information on all axis mapping sections and preferred options. 

To edit and configure dead zone settings on DS4windows – load your current default profile or create a new profile – Then hit the controller Readings tab on your left and Axis Config on your right.

ds4windows deadzone
ds4windows deadzone

While there’s quite a lot of options one can configure – which can be a bit daunting – you can find detailed information about each section below. 


A deadzone represents the region of an axis that should be considered as having zero output. Having a deadzone in place will better ensure that there is no accidental output value generated by having your finger at rest on an analog stick or trigger and no accidental output value is generated from an axis that does not return to the absolute resting position. This is especially important if you re-map an analog LS or RS axis to digital buttons (for example D-pad buttons). A digital button is either on or off, so having a deadzone in LS/RS analog axis makes sure that an analog axis drifting is not constantly converted as digital button event. Some controllers may require bigger deadzone than others because of hardware differences.

LS: 0.09
RS: 0.09
L2: 0.30
R2: 0.30

Check out how the Dead Zones and Anti Dead Zones work for the given Input and the Output. When the input is inside the Dead Zone (Red Area), the output is properly centered.


An anti-deadzone acts as an offset for use with an axis to denote the minimum output value generated after an axis has left its assigned deadzone. This is mainly meant to help with mapping an axis to the assigned deadzone value used for an axis in a video game. For example, the typical assigned deadzone for XInput LS in a video game is around 8000 (25%). With no anti-deadzone assigned, an axis would have to move past the assigned deadzone in DS4Windows along with the game’s assigned axis deadzone.

LS: 0.25
RS: 0.25
L2: 0.00
R2: 0.00


A maxzone denotes how far an axis will have to travel before the maximum output value will be generated. This setting mainly helps with older controllers as an axis might not be able to reach its maximum output value as an axis gets worn out with use. This setting can also help if you would like to reduce the amount of travel required to reach the maximum axis value.

LS: 1.00
RS: 1.00
L2: 1.00
R2: 1.00

Max Output

In some situations, it might be useful to limit the maximum value that is output by the output analog stick. Max Output allows throttling the final output value of the analog stick. The default is 1.00.

LS: 1.00
RS: 1.00

Vertical Scale

Allows scaling the vertical output (Y axis) of the analog stick compared to the value of the X axis. It an be useful depending on POV settings in a game. It can also be useful when mapping an analog stick to Mouse Controls and you want to have a different vertical mouse speed. The default is 1.00.

LS: 1.00
RS: 1.00


The rotation setting is meant to help correct the orientation of an analog stick if your thumb is slightly shifted when moving an analog stick. For example, your thumb might be slightly shifted from center when the analog stick is moved fully north. My thumbs shift slightly to the right when moving an analog stick fully north due to the way my hands grip the DS4. The value used denotes the number of degrees used to adjust the final axis output value.

LS: -4
RS: 4

Output Curve

You can assign an output curve to LS/RS/L2/R2/SA axies when the normal linear curve doesn’t work well in some use cases. This is especially useful if LS/RS stick is used to emulate a mouse because the normal linear output curve doesn’t give a “mouse like feeling” or precision. Predefined enhanced precision output curve works well when a stick is used as a mouse.

Custom output curve is useful when you need, for example, more accurate aiming precision in a game and the default linear curve is too fast in the beginning of the curve. The custom output curve option lets you to tweak the curve to feel better.

DS4Windows supports following output curve options:

Linear: The normal default output curve.
Enhanced Precision: Slower output curve in the beginning, but gets faster towards the end of the curve.
Quadratic: Slow easein curve (easein quadratic).
Cubic: Very slow easein curve (easein cubic).
Easeout quad: Fast in, but the curve gets slower towards the end of the curve.
Easeout cubic: Very fast in, but slow easeout.
Custom: User customized output curve (a graphical web app to draw the curve)

The custom option uses bezier curve to tweak the output curve. In practice bezier curve supports both easein and easeout curves (or both at the same time). Custom output curve web app

To some degree it is possible to achieve similar results just using the custom output curve setting than using dead-zone, sensitivity and max zone settings together to tweak the output curve of an analog axis.

Square Stick

Normally when LS/RS stick is fully extended to one direction (N/S/E/W compass directions) and you start to move move the stick along the vertical or horizontal axis side ways (NW/NE/SW/NE compass directions) the output value of LS/RS stick follows an arc curve. This means that the 1.0 output value of the axis starts to move slightly towards 0.0 value. This might be an issue especially in games where LS/RS stick is re-mapped as digital d-pad keys. You can tweak how DS4Windows smooths out the output value of LS/RS stick corners by tweaking Square Stick setting and 0..5 roundness value. 

The following post has pictures explaining this better than words can do. Square Stick – Roundness option value


Fuzz specifies the minimum number of units the analog stick moves before the output is registered as changed in the mapper. This setting can be useful for worn sticks that cannot maintain a constant position. The value is expressed in raw stick units. The default value is 0 units.

LS: 0
RS: 0


LS: 1.00
RS: 1.00
L2: 1.00
R2: 1.00
Sixaxis X: 1.00
Sixaxis Z: 1.00

Two Stage Triggers

Utilizing Two Stage Triggers allows two actions to be bound to the L2 or R2 trigger. When using Two Stage Triggers, one Soft Pull action will be bound for most of the trigger and a Full Pull action can be bound when the trigger hits its maximum value. There are several different modes of operation for how the two zones behave.

Two Stage Modes


Disables use of Two Stage Triggers. Only bind one action to L2 or R2


Normal (simple) Two Stage Trigger activation. Activates Soft Pull action when under maximum output. Activates Full Pull action as well when trigger reaches maximum value.


Activates Soft Pull action when under maximum output. When trigger reaches maximum output, deactivate Soft Pull action and then activate Full Pull action

Hair Trigger

Similar to Normal Two Stage Trigger mode with one difference. Activates Soft Pull action when under maximum output. Activates Full Pull action as well when trigger reaches maximum value. When the trigger is partially released from Full Pull, both Full Pull and Soft Pull actions deactivate. Activating Full Pull action will activate the Soft Pull again as well.

Hip Fire

Takes the Hip Fire Delay time into account. The trigger will not activate an action until the time has expired. Once the time has expired, the current action for the trigger output will be determined. This mode allows skipping the activation of Soft Pull and only firing a Full Pull action.

Hip Fire Exclusive

Similar to Hip Fire mode. The main difference is only one action will ever be activated.