With so many controllers suffering from stick drift these days, it’s nice to see that Sony has made it a little easier to repair faulty thumbsticks on the PlayStation Portal. In a teardown video posted by iFixit, the team found that only a little bit of tinkering is required to access and remove the joystick.
The iFixit team first removes the device’s plastic frame and removes its backing. It then removes the panel containing the Portal’s D-pad and button controls, allowing iFixit to detach the thumbsticks in about three steps using only a screwdriver. The only downside is that if you need to replace the Portal’s rumble packs, you’ll have to get out your soldering iron because they’re attached to the motherboard.
But still, it’s already more repairable than other first-party controllers, including Sony’s own DualSense controller. As pointed out by iFixit, the thumbsticks on the DualSense controller are attached to the device’s motherboard, making them more difficult to replace. The thumbstick repair process also seems less involved than the process required for the Nintendo Switch Joy-Con and Steam Deck.
Sony released PlayStation Portal just a few weeks ago, which serves as a $199.99 solution for streaming PS5 games to the handheld. Even though the Portal appears to be an elongated version of the DualSense with the screen stuck in the middle, it’s nice that Sony hasn’t kept some of the controller’s hard-to-repair internal parts with itself.