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5 Best Bluetooth Gaming Controllers With Linux Compatibility (Buying Guide)

Are you trying to find the perfect Bluetooth gaming controller for your Linux PC? Overwhelmed and unsure of what to get? We can help! Follow along as we go over 5 Bluetooth gaming controllers that work on Linux!

Bluetooth Controllers on Linux

Bluetooth controllers work on Linux thanks to the Linux kernel, and it’s an excellent support for the Bluetooth protocol. However, you should know that not every Linux operating system enables Bluetooth out of the box. In many cases, it is turned off and must be manually turned on.

If you plan to get a Bluetooth gaming controller to use on your Linux PC, be sure to check out our guide on how to set up Bluetooth on Linux. It’ll walk you through the Bluetooth setup process on Linux so that you can connect your favorite wireless devices!

Best Bluetooth Gaming Controllers on the Market

If you’re a Linux gamer looking for the perfect Bluetooth gaming controller, this list will help you make an informed decision on what to purchase. Here are our picks for 5 Bluetooth gaming controllers that work on Linux!

1. Xbox Core controller

The Xbox Core controller is an updated version of the Microsoft Xbox One S controller. Like the old S controller, it supports both Bluetooth connectivity, USB connectivity, as well as Microsoft’s wireless dongle (which works on Linux with the help of Xow).

This controller is the perfect pick for the best Bluetooth gaming controller for those reasons alone. However, you should also consider picking it up, as it has the best support for games on Steam in Linux.

Pros

  • Can connect to Linux either via Bluetooth or via USB-C connector cable.
  • In addition to working with Linux via Bluetooth connectivity or cable, users can also use the Xbox Core controller on Xbox One or the new next-gen Xbox consoles.
  • Replaceable AA batteries make swapping batteries very easy.
  • Support for Steam games on Linux, as well as any Linux game that supports Xinput.

Cons

  • The controller uses AA batteries, which may not be for everyone.

2. DualShock 4 Wireless Controller

If you’re not a fan of the Xbox controller, the next best Bluetooth controller to get for your Linux system is the Sony PS4 controller.

Why? It supports Bluetooth wireless connectivity to Linux, as well as USB connections. And, it supports games on Steam so long as you enable it in the Steam controller settings!

Sony certainly lags behind Microsoft when it comes to controller support on Linux. That said, the PS4 controller is an excellent pickup and will work great for 99% of the wireless gaming you plan to do on Linux!

Pros

  • Can connect to Linux via Bluetooth or with a Micro USB cable. 
  • In addition to working with Linux via Bluetooth connectivity or cable, users can also use the DualShock 4 on the PS4 gaming console.
  • It has a long-lasting rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery.
  • Instant support for all games on Steam (after enabling PS4 controller support in Steam.)

Cons

  • It does not come with a USB charge cable and requires the user to purchase it separately.

3. Sunwaytek H511 Bluetooth Game Controller

While both the Xbox and PS4 controllers make great Bluetooth gaming controllers, their buttons aren’t very tactile, and if you value precision in gaming, you’ll need to find another controller. The Sunwaytek H511 is that controller.

The Sunwaytek H511 is an amazing mechanical Bluetooth gaming controller. It has an incredibly ergonomic design and tactile, clicky mechanical gaming buttons. Best of all, it supports Linux, as well as Android, Nintendo Switch, and even iOS. If you love clicky, snappy buttons on your controller, Suffice it to say, give the Sunwaytek H511 a look!

Pros

  • The beautiful, ergonomic design and mechanical buttons make gaming very comfortable. 
  • Easily supports both Linux and Raspberry Pi gaming operating systems such as RetroPie, as well as Android, Nintendo Switch, and even iOS.
  • Built-in rechargeable battery.
  • As the buttons on the controller are mechanical, users can easily remove and replace them as desired.

Cons

  • The odd-shaped D-pad might be a turn off for some.

4. 8Bitdo Sn30 Pro+ Bluetooth Gamepad

8Bitdo is known in the gaming community for making incredible after-market controllers for the Nintendo Switch as well as the PC gaming community. In terms of craftsmanship, their 8Bitdo Sn30 Pro+ Bluetooth Gamepad is their best work yet. 

In terms of Linux compatibility, the 8Bitdo Sn30 Pro+ Bluetooth Gamepad is a contender, offering support over Bluetooth as well as USB on Linux, the Raspberry Pi, and other platforms. If you’re looking for an excellent all-around Bluetooth gamepad, this is one to check out!

Pros

  • Super Nintendo-like design makes the controller incredibly comfortable to hold in the hand. 
  • It is compatible with Linux via Bluetooth or over USB with a direct connection and Android, MacOS, the Raspberry Pi, and others.
  • Has a turbo button and support for turbo mode.
  • Built-in rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery. 

Cons

  • The charging cable supplied with the controller is too short.

5. 8Bitdo N30 Pro Wireless Bluetooth

The 8Bitdo N30 doesn’t have the bells and whistles that the Sn30 Pro+ has, but it makes up for it by being incredibly portable and compact. For this reason, it’s a worthy pickup for any Linux gamer looking for a quality Bluetooth gaming controller.

Like all 8Bitdo products, the N30 Pro has excellent Linux support, allowing for gameplay over Bluetooth and USB. It also supports Android, Raspberry Pi, iOS, etc., making it a great all-around gamepad.

Pros

  • Sports a compact, retro Super Nintendo design while also providing modern features like analog sticks.
  • Excellent Linux support over Bluetooth as well as direct USB connectivity. It also supports Android, Raspberry Pi, iOS, etc.
  • Built-in rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery for long gaming sessions.
  • The controller has upgradeable firmware.

Cons

  • Some might find the controller too cramped.

Conclusion

In this list, we went over 5 Bluetooth gaming controllers that work on Linux. However, there are more than just 5 Bluetooth gaming controllers out there.

What is your favorite Bluetooth gaming controller to use on Linux? Tell us in the comments!

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