Best Arcade Stick – Bring Your Gaming To The Next Level

| Last Updated: June 5, 2021

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Searching for the best arcade stick (or fight stick) is a very personal journey at times.

There are many factors that come in to play beyond the standard durability side of things.

We will be exploring the different avenues for each arcade stick but before we begin with our review – we want to explore the different parts of the arcade stick so you can make an informed decision.

Comparison of the Best Arcade Sticks

  • Genuine HORI original parts
  • Easy to open steel top panel
  • Designed with an anti-slip mat
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  • Designe wth a genuine arcade layout
  • Easy to upgrade
  • Improve mobility for improved play
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  • Beveled edges & slim profile design
  • Imcreased space between sticks and bittons
  • Hayabusa buttons built-in
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  • Supports vibration function
  • Customizable wrist strap
  • Variety of speed settings supported
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  • 6-button arcade layout
  • Improved USB connectivity
  • Streamlined and portable unit
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  • Standard arcade layout
  • Micro switch activated joystick
  • Built-in share button
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The Joystick vs. The Control Pad

There are two types of controllers out there, the joystick and the control pad. A joystick is typically installed on an arcade machine and a control pad is used on a home console.

The main reason home consoles have control pads is about pricing and size. It is not cheap to manufacture good-quality joysticks. Second is the size; even the smallest tournament-grade joystick is bulky. In general, a cheap control pad will work better than a cheap joystick.

Hori Pro 4 Premium VLX KURO Arcade Stick

The argument now is, are you going to be a good player using a control pad? Most pro-gamers say if you are using a control pad, you’re not able to maximize performance.

A lot of people think there isn’t a great difference between playing using a control pad and using a joystick. If you are using a control pad to play games, you are limited in terms of motion. It is not that intuitive.

Pro-gamers will certainly agree that the best weapon of choice is a fight stick. However a player with an IGN of MD|Luffy defied this statement. In all his tournament appearances he uses a PS1 Control Pad. In the Evolution Championship Series of 2014, he was declared champion after winning against Bonchan in the finals.

However, MD|Luffy is the exception to the rule, as joysticks dominate high-level fighting games (to my knowledge, since 2014, all winners have used fight sticks).

Range of Motion & Speed

Your fingers (rather than your thumbs) are so much faster moving that you are able to fire off your moves that much faster rather than through a control pad, which focuses on your thumbs primarily.

Using a joystick is much easier and more natural to navigate, as well. Our bodies are much more aligned for speed with our wrists and forearms than with our thumbs. While we are exercising our thumbs constantly on either our control pads and our phones (a lot of people can type faster on their phone than on a keyboard) – we’re still not at the level of speed.

Combos & Input Drops

Here is another the big advantage of arcade sticks over control pads – trying to master quarter circle turns is so much easier and reliable on an arcade stick. In addition, as it’s more natural to hit those combos than when when on the control pad (we’ve all been there, shouting at the game).

Negatives to Arcade Sticks

It’s not all roses for the arcade stick. The control pad wins out in dash movements and sometimes movements in general, as the distance to roll from left to right on a control pad is minor compared to the larger side movements of an arcade stick.

The other minor negative is the learning curve, you may be so used to the control pad that it will take a lot of hours to retrain yourself for where all the buttons are again.

As mentioned, choosing the best arcade stick is typically up to user preference (the look) – we have broken out the list in the various sections.

Mayflash F500 Arcade Stick

How to Find the Right Arcade Stick (The Components)

Let’s first talk about the components of the arcade stick. We also will be referencing an awesome website that has tons of information on arcade sticks. Not the best web design, but don’t let that stop you.


This is the part of the arcade stick that looks like a shift stick on cars, in a smaller version. This is also called a lever. The joystick allows you to control the character’s movement (up, down, left, right, and diagonals).

There are several factors to consider when picking a joystick: the top, shaft, spring, restrictor gates, and switches. There are some joystick models that use a PCB where the switches are installed, like the Sanwa JLF and the Seimitsu LS-40.

When selecting a top for your arcade stick you have two common choices; the ball top and the bat top.

For fighting games, the ball top is much preferred over the bat top since it has a more natural grip to it. Although, there are still players who prefer the bat top. This is a matter of preference and the type of arcade stick they grew up with.

Springs and shafts determine how fast you can execute your movement and how well you can hold the movement. The weight of the shaft and tension of the spring play a big role when you are doing complex movements, especially on a fighting game, so the lighter the shaft and the less tension on springs, the easier it is for you to move.

Restrictor Gates

Relative to executing movements are the restrictor gates. There are a lot of variations depending on the game you are playing; you have the square, octagonal, and circular.

The gates determine the distance traveled and the engage distance. These factors affect your split-second precision movements.

Square restrictor gates take the most time to master, but once you get used to them, you’ll find that you don’t have to move the lever very far to trigger the action.  The Slagcoin website has a very good explanation of restrictor gates, should you want to read more about it.

Buttons & Switches

Buttons have components as well. It has a plunger, which is either convex or concave, which is the part you push down to execute an action. Convex buttons are common and look like a small bump, while concave ones are less common for arcade sticks and are like hollow dimples.

The cylinder is what holds the plunger, switch, and springs. Cylinders can either screw-in or snap-in. A screw-in type is more stable and easier to swap out should you need to.

Switches activate and execute an action when you push the plunger. There are also several types of button switches; IL and Happ use standard microswitches that look like those used for the joystick,  while Sanwa and Seimitsu use a center switch that allows the buttons to be more compact and easier to actuate.

Mad Catz Arcade Stick

If a button uses a standard microswitch, it feels very tactile and is loud. On the other hand, the center switch does not impede engagement, allowing a player to rapidly press it without a fuss.

Again preferences differ from one player to another. The Sanwa has a better feel to it since it has less tension and resets slightly quicker than Seimitsu and Happ buttons. Still, the overall top choice of gamers will be Sanwa buttons followed by Seimitsu buttons.

And, of course, there are the switches. There are three types of switches depending on the amount of force you need to apply; you have Soft (Cherry), Medium (Sanwa & Seimitsu), and Hard (Omron). There are also levered and non-levered switches depending on the manufacturer.


A lot of gamers agree that Sanwa-Denshi’s buttons and sticks are by far the best they have used. Controllers with these components are much more responsive than ones without. So if you are planning to make your own arcade stick, it would be wise to get only the best parts.

Now, if you are not a tinkerer and don’t want to get your hands dirty (or burnt) with the soldering iron, we have a few arcade sticks in this list that are great as is.

We also created a list of the best arcade sticks for the PS4. Unfortunately, there are a few fighting games exclusive to PS4, and Street Fighter V is one of them. 

We have arcade sticks lined up for review, and may have ranked them differently from other sites. We sorted based on how they perform and which platforms they support, while also taking into consideration the ease of modifying them and the initial cost.

Review of the Best Arcade Sticks

Multi-Platform Arcade Stick (Top 4)

Best Overall:
HORI Real Arcade Pro 4 Premium Arcade Stick


  • Panels are metal
  • Perfect replica of the Taito Vewlix Arcade layout


  • Minor input lag
  • Does not use a break-away cable

This is a fantastic arcade stick from Hori. This fight stick is a great option, while having a little longer input lag than the Mad Catz TE2+.

  • Officially licensed by SCEA and Taito
  • Perfect replica of the Japanese VEWLIX arcade cabinet
  • Featuring HORI original HAYABUSA stick lever and KURO buttons, touch pad, and program functions
  • Easily open top panel for maintenance and internal access. Compatible with PlayStation 4 and...
  • Kindly click the main Image and refer to the other images for User Manual
PlatformXbox One, Xbox 360, PS4, PS3 and PC
Buttons UsedKuro Buttons
Joystick UsedHayabusa Joystick
Restrictor GateSquare

We like the way they made the Hori Real Arcade Pro 4 VLX Kuro, as it looks exactly like the Taito Japanese-made cabinets, so it has that real arcade feel to it. It does not have any fancy artwork on the panel though, so for some it might be boring.

This arcade stick is heavy, weighing 11.9 pounds. So this thing may not be good for a long gaming session if you are putting it on your lap. This arcade stick measures 22.4 x 10 x 5.5 inches, and the panel is made of metal, so this thing is really solid.

As with other Hori arcade sticks, they did not use a break-away cable. They included two extra buttons, though and added an L3 and R3 for your gaming convenience.

The VLX Kuro has the Hayabusa stick for its lever and Kuro buttons (still no Sanwa components), now according to some, the Kuro buttons have more resistance than the Sanwa OBSF 30mm buttons, so it takes time to get used to. But as for the Hayabusa stick, it is more responsive compared to the Sanwa sticks. Perhaps it still depends on what buttons and sticks you are using before.

Mad Catz Street Fighter V TE2+ Arcade Stick


  • Effortless modding
  • Extra L3 and R3 buttons
  • High-quality Sanwa parts


  • Mad Catz Bankrupt
  • PC compatibility limited
  • The position of the select/start button

This is probably the best arcade stick around, with the lowest input lag. The Mad Catz Arcade Stick is a great choice other than price and soon to be lack of availability.

  • Genuine Arcade Layout: This PS4 FightStick uses extremely accurate and durable Sanwa Denshi...
  • Easy to Mod: Chassis hinges open for clear access to inner parts. Removable bezel and top panel...
  • Ideal for ALL Fighting Games: Multiplayer action in Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat
PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC.
Buttons Used
Sanwa Denshi OBSF-30
Joystick Used
Sanwa JLF ball-top stick
Restrictor Gate

Mad Catz is one great brand when it comes to the world of arcade sticks. The TE2+ costs fluctuate a lot (was $500 not long ago).

Right out of the box you can see that the parts are all Sanwa-Denshi. It has the Sanwa JLF ball-top stick and Sanwa Denshi OBSF-30mm buttons, so you are guaranteed to get good quality from this arcade stick.

This arcade stick has an option to switch between PS3 and PS4 by selecting the correct mode using a switch on the top of the panel. It also has a lock mode, so you don’t press the start button by accident. You also have a touchpad you can use for the PS4 when navigating through the options.

It has a big compartment that can fit in spare buttons, tools, the 9.8 ft screw-in cable, and you still have enough space for other stuff you want to put inside. And this is easily accessible with just pushing a button.

Though it has Sanwa parts installed on it, you may still get that itch to modify this arcade stick. You may want to change the square gate that originally comes with it to an octagon gate, or possibly replace the buttons, dust washer, the color of the ball top, etc. It all depends on who uses this stick. But like we said, this works perfectly as it is for most people who already got this stick.

The biggest upside to this stick and most likely the flagship of this arcade stick; is speed. This has very minimal input lag (1.45ms). So combo after combo you are certain that it will execute and ram your opponent.

Unfortunately, we won’t be seeing any more of the Mad Catz arcade sticks as the company declared bankruptcy and ceased all operations back March 31st 2017.

So in a sense, you can call these arcade sticks “limited edition” or “collector’s item” . This would explain why these sticks fluctuate in price and can be so expensive.

3. HORI Pro 4 Kai Arcade Stick


  • Affordable
  • Solid build
  • Sony licensed
  • Storage compartment for the cable


  • Not easy to mod
  • Buttons can be too responsive

Having a good looking arcade stick is always important. This fight stick is sleek and pro-grade.

More than looks, however, the Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai from Hori is one hell of an arcade stick.

  • Officially Licensed by Sony
  • Compatible with PS4, PS3, and PC (XInput).New & Improved HAYABUSA Buttons:Beveled edges
PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC.
Buttons Used
Joystick Used
HAYABUSA Arcade Stick
Restrictor Gate

Tournament grade, looks appealing, solid build, this is the Hori Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai Fight Stick. It measures 17 x 9.5 x 4.5 inches and weighs 4.8 lbs. You can do serious combos with this arcade stick, as these come with very responsive Hori Hayabusa buttons and Hayabusa Stick.

It uses a square gate so your movement with this stick is less fluid compared to the ones using circular or octagonal gates. If you are used to the clicky feel of the Sanwa button, this one is going to give you less satisfaction. Plus these buttons are too responsive for some people.

It has a turbo setting of 5/12/20 hits per second and has a cable length of 3 m/9.8 ft. This works with Playstation 4, just make sure that your console is using the latest firmware. It also will work on the Playstation 3 using the V2.80 or higher firmware. You can also use this on PC, however, this is not going to work on the PS2 and PS1.

It’s easy to switch from PS3 to PS4 by pushing the button on the right-hand side of this arcade sticks. It’s somehow concealed so, you can’t push the button accidentally.

Using it on a PS4 you can easily navigate through the options using the touchpad on the top near the cable compartment. It has the share button on the side, as well if you want to upload your video clip or broadcast your games.

It is not that easy to modify the Hori RAP 4 Kai Arcade Stick. You will really need to dismantle the bottom plate in order access the buttons and lever. Other than that, this arcade stick is fully compatible with Sanwa components. So you can easily stick in a JLF Joystick, Sanwa Denshi OBSF 30 mm, and the restrictor gate of your choice.

4. The Mayflash F500 Arcade Stick


  • Cheap
  • Easy to mod


  • Need compatible controller to connect to arcade stick

Want something easy to modify (and will still be profitable if you are to resell it after modding)? The Mayflash F500 is an affordable fighting stick you can grab on Amazon.

  • High-Quality Arcade Stick for PS4/PS3/XBOX ONE/XBOX 360/PC USB/Android/NEOGEO mini/NEOGEO...
  • Supports the headsets to output the background music and online chat on PS4, Xbox One.

At first glance, you can tell the Mayflash F500 has great potential in it. Although it’s really dull-looking since it does not have the fancy artwork on the panel itself. This arcade stick is multi-platform and can be used on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and PC
Buttons Used
Joystick Used
HAYABUSA Arcade Stick
Restrictor Gate

It’s too good to be true, in order to play on this arcade stick, you have to plug in the different controllers on the USB port of the Mayflash F500 before it can work on your console (What a drag!). Alternatively, you can purchase an adapter called Magic Boots that’s specific for the console you will use this arcade stick with.

This is exactly the same case if you will buy their Mayflash F300 arcade stick a cheaper option. The F500 and the F300 are basically the same board, but here are the reasons the F500 is better than the F300:

1. Supports headsets for the PS4, XBOX ONE, and XBOX 360
2. The F500 is also made of metal over the plastic F300
3. The F500 is also larger, many people have an issue with the lack of space on the F300.

You can also fully modify this arcade stick and use a UFB (Universal Fighting Board) from Brook Designs. You can then throw in a Sanwa JLF and Sanwa OBSF 30mm buttons to make them work really well on any console you’d use it with.

Arcade Sticks for the PS4 (Top 6)

The below list is for strickly PS4 machines. Although people with PS4s have more options available since they can also choose from the multi-platform arcade sticks above.

1. HORI Fighting Stick Mini 4


  • Compact
  • Most affordable


  • Not tournament arcade stick

Beginning our list for the best arcade stick PS4 edition is the Hori Mini. A compact and affordable option for those on the go or starting out.

  • Officially licensed by SCEA
  • Compatible with PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3
  • Compact design with all the features of a typical arcade stick controller
  • 8-button layout and micro switch activated joystick
  • Share button included

If you are a “social gamer” on the go, or someone who wants to play using a joystick without the hassle of using a big bulky arcade stick. The Hori Fighting Stick Mini 4, might just give you that satisfaction.

PS3 and PS4
Buttons Used
Generic button
Joystick Used
Generic stick
Restrictor Gate

Everything is generic for buttons and lever, this arcade stick measures 8.27″ x 5.9″ x 3.43″ and only weighs 1 lb. This arcade stick may be compact in design, but you still get the arcade features from just like the regular/premium arcade stick. It even has a share button if you are using it on a PS4.

There are some downsides to this arcade stick though. You do not have a turbo button, which is a disappointment. In addition, you cannot easily modify this arcade stick. On a side note, the action buttons are just 24 mm, you’ll need to use a Dremel on the holes for you to fit in a 30 mm button (seriously doubting this method). Not to mention, the switches are soldered instead of clamped.

As stated earlier, this arcade stick is for gamers just starting to get the hang of using a fight stick. The price tag for this arcade stick is around $45. It is definitely a good option for short-term usage until you purchase a better one later on.

2. Mad Catz Fight Stick Alpha


  • Portable
  • More mod-friendly than the Hori Mini


  • A bit expensive
  • Not making any more

Another small form arcade stick that you can bring with you for a game night with your friends. Good for entry-level gamers. But is it worth the price?

  • Ultra-Compact Design: Arcade Fight Stick Alpha maintains the tournament-quality look and feel...
  • 6-Button Arcade Layout: Our Mad Catz Fight Stick boasts a Vewlix-style design with 6 action...
  • Versatile Gamer: This PlayStation 4 Fight Stick has a button enabling the joystick to emulate a...
  • Ideal for all Fighting Games: Multiplayer action in Street Fighter, Mortal Combat, Persona,...
  • Reliable USB Connectivity: The world's best fighters prefer the assurance of a low-latency USB
PS3 and PS4
Buttons Used
Generic button
Joystick Used
Generic stick
Restrictor Gate

The Fightstick Alpha from Mad Catz is a small arcade stick that is lightweight and compact. It measures 8.75 x 7 x 2 inches; weighs five pounds. It is slightly bigger than the Hori Fight Stick Mini and a bit heavier. Getting them head to head this arcade stick is a better choice.

Unlike the Hori Fight Stick Mini, these arcade sticks from Mad Catz uses 30 mm buttons, not 24 mm. So this is better if you consider modding this arcade stick. You won’t have to use a Dremel to get the buttons to fit. The buttons and lever installed in this fight stick are not from Sanwa. However, the buttons are almost a perfect clone of the OBSF 30mm and JLF stick.

It has a square gate, so this is another thing you might want to replace down the road. This arcade stick has a six-button layout same as the Hori stick. It has all the buttons on the face of the panel itself, and you have the share and lock buttons on the top, as well as the L1 and L2 buttons. However, if you push the lock buttons, the L1 and L2 do not work.

On the upside, if you get this arcade stick for like a starter stick and get yourself one of the big fight sticks like the TE2+ or the VLX Kuro you won’t have a hard time transitioning since the button size and the spacing is the same even the position of the stick is the same. The only difference is this lacks two more buttons since most of the premium sticks have an eight-button layout.

As mentioned above with the TE2+, Mad Catz as a company has filed for bankruptcy so they will be ceasing production of these fight sticks (if not done so already). This means the pricing of the fight sticks may increase over time.

3. Qanba Drone Arcade Stick


  • Great for an initial arcade stick


  • Expensive given no Sanwa parts

Another Mini arcade stick for our list, so far we covered the Hori Mini, the MC Fightstick Alpha, and now we have the Qanba drone.

  • Compatible with PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 & PC; USB wired connection
  • Officially licensed Sony peripheral; Authentic Qanba buttons & stick
  • Antislip bottom pad; LED indicators for MODE & Turbo
  • Tournament LOCK switch; Honeycomb-inspired design

  • Platform
    PC, PS3 and PS4
    Buttons Used
    Qanba buttons
    Joystick Used
    Qanba stick
    Restrictor Gate

    For pros, most likely they will say this is not a good buy as it’s an entry level stick. However, a lot of pro gamers would still say this is a good initial fight stick.

    With the notion that it should be priced lower than its current price tag. The price puts it in place wherein you’d be better off getting another stick for a higher price since this arcade stick still needs modding to get this up and running.

    Now, we still consider the fact that yes, you need to mod. And yes, it is expensive, but right out of the box, the parts that came with it which are all Qanba-made works fine. It would still boil down to the person using it and the level of experience in gaming. But even for a total beginner, this stick is still going to perform admirably.

    The layout for this stick is really great. This is compact, but it still has 30 mm buttons, eight to be exact. It feels comfortable when placed on your lap, since this is not one of those heavy arcade sticks like the VLX Kuro or the Obsidian, as it only weighs about four pounds.

    Now don’t get me wrong, this stick may be light, but it can still take a beating. This arcade stick is made of solid plastic and would be able to withstand the countless pounding. If you line up the Hori Mini, the Fightstick Alpha and the Qanba Drone, the Drone would stand out from the rest. It is bigger than the other two and it measures 5.4 x 10.4 x 6.6 inches. Not to mention the ball top for its lever is colored yellow.

    If you are lucky, you can get this arcade stick for under seventy bucks, which is a steal.

    4. Qanba Obsidian Arcade Stick


    • Solid build
    • Sanwa parts
    • 3.5mm headset port


    • Fingerprint magnet

    Flashy, sleek, and outright cool. The Qanba Obsidian is just one of the few arcade stick made for the PS4 that you will absolutely approve of.

    • Sanwa buttons and stick with square gate
    • PlayStation 4 compatible
    • PlayStation 3 compatible
    • Wired USB Cord.Sanwa OBSF 1.18 inch butons
    • LED lighting

    The Obsidian by Qanba is a one sexy arcade stick. It has the right curves in the right places. And even with a plain looking design it still looks good.

    PS3 and PS4
    Buttons Used
    Sanwa Denshi OBSF 30mm
    Joystick Used
    Sanwa JLF lever, square-gated
    Restrictor Gate

    This arcade stick has a Sanwa JLF using a square gate for its lever and Sanwa OBSF 30mm buttons for all eight action buttons. Talking about the case you have a solid build and it almost feels like it is a uni-body case. It weighs 6.6 pounds, you won’t see this flying off of your lap or your table even if you are playing intensely.

    The Obsidian is 18 x 10 x 5 inches and is a bit lighter and slightly smaller than the Qanba Dragon. It has a shiny chrome-finished ball top, which may not be that attractive for all.

    You have all the buttons on top, especially the turbo and the mode button (although, there might be just a few people who’d use the mode button). One cool feature is that if you move the lever, the left side of the case lights up blue and if you press a button, the left side will light up. This is barely noticeable, and if it is that annoying, you can turn it off permanently.

    The Obsidian has an 8’10” cable, and it is not a break-away. It sits nicely inside its compartment, and the door compartment has two holes where you can have cables positioned according to your preference The lock for the door is rigid which is good since it only means it won’t just fall off.

    The price tag is just right, considering that you don’t have a lot to modify with this stick.

    The downside is that it is glossy and it will attract dust and fingerprints like a magnet, while this is evident in most arcade sticks. You’ll rarely see a matte finish on a fight stick.

    5. Razer Panthera Arcade Stick


    • Detachable cable
    • Bat top Sanwa parts
    • Spacious compartment


    • The artwork is not easy to replace

    You’ve got to get your hands on the Razer Panthera if you want a wired premium arcade stick. This fight stick is sick!

    • Premium Quality Sanwa Hardware Components: 10 highly responsive buttons and an 8-way joystick
    • Fully MOD-Capable Construction: Built for modding enthusiasts, customize the joystick and...
    • Internal Storage Compartments: Internal compartment opens to reveal dedicated slots to store...
    • Tournament Gaming Mode: Deactivate the Start, Back, and Xbox One Guide buttons
    • Compatibility: Compatible with major fighting games

    The Panthera is not your entry-level arcade stick, this is tournament-grade, evident by the way it is built. This fight stick is 18.6 x 12.5 x 6.7 inches and weighs 7.4 pounds, and the case is made of aluminum, so it is really rigid even on the top panel.

    Buttons Used
    Sanwa Denshi OBSF 30mm
    Joystick Used
    Sanwa Denshi JLF-TP-8YT
    Restrictor Gate

    The Razer Panthera can be considered the PlayStation equivalent to the the Razor Atrox that only works for the Xbox consoles. This is also a good-looking arcade stick, it has a glossy finish with the Blue Razer logo. It is somewhat a dust and fingerprint magnet, but arcade sticks are known to have a glossy finish instead of matte.

    It has a 9.8 ft, five-pin, screw-on, detachable, braided USB cable, which can be stored neatly inside the spacious compartment along with the other stuff you want to put inside like extra buttons or tools.

    This arcade stick has Sanwa stick and Sanwa buttons installed, including the start, select/option, share on the right-hand side of the case.

    This arcade stick is mod-friendly. If you ever have plans to modify this arcade stick or if you will be replacing any parts. All you have to do is to pop the top panel open, and you’ll be able to access the switches inside. The compartment door has a hydraulic arm that supports the opening and closing of the top panel to reduce the tendency of wear and tear on the hinges.

    The artwork of this arcade stick already looks good, however, if you like to get your own artwork on your top panel, then it would be a serious task to do. The transparent cover is glued to the top panel so it won’t be easy to remove it. This probably is the only con for this arcade stick.

    Switching from PS3 to PS4, as well as locking and unlocking the buttons is quite satisfying since it does not use a push button, but a metal slide switch.

    6. Qanba Dragon Arcade Stick


    • Spacious layout
    • 3.5mm jack for your headset


    • Arcade stick doesn’t have a cable compartment

    For premium-quality arcade sticks that you’d kill for, our top pick for the PS4 arcade stick is the Qanba Dragon. What makes this a remarkable fight stick? There are tons of reasons.

    • Sanwa buttons and stick with square gate
    • Compatible with all video game titles for the PS3, PS4, and PC
    • Braided, wired USB
    • LED lighting
    • Stunning aluminum dragon scale interior

    Qanba is our top pick for PS4 arcade sticks for a lot of reasons, and most pro-gamers also appreciate it. This arcade stick is a premium-quality stick has a case made of aluminum.

    PC, PS3 and PS4
    Buttons Used
    Sanwa’s OBSF-30s
    Joystick Used
    Sanwa JLF
    Restrictor Gate

    This fight stick is built to last, you can hammer your hands against it, and it can take all of the pounding head-on. This arcade stick is also one massive piece of equipment. It weighs 11.6 pounds, 22.7 x 15.5 x 7.2 inches for its dimensions. Caution! Be careful playing against an opponent with this stick, you can get serious injuries if they hit you with this.

    Right out the box, the Qanba Dragon needs no modifications for parts, unlike the other Qanba arcade sticks this fight stick has Sanwa parts (JLF lever, OBSF 30mm buttons) and a square gate, the same as the Obsidian. It has a minimalistic look since it does not have large artwork on the top panel.

    The panel on this is black as well as the buttons. However, the stick is chrome finished and has a shiny ball top and dust washer, although some gamers may like to change the button colors as well as the ball top.

    If you open up the compartment, you would see how much space you would get from this arcade stick. Also, the switches and lever are covered by a clear plastic, which protects it from getting damaged by the things you put inside the compartment like a bulky headphone.

    You also have all the buttons and the switches on the top of the panel, you have the option, share, turbo buttons, plus a button to turn the LED light on and off. It’s just like the lighting for the Obsidian. However, the lights are on the top panel. It also has the slide switches for PS3/PS4/PC and the mode. It does not have a lock function though.

    You can plug in a headphone to this arcade stick. It has a 3.5mm jack on the left-hand side, which is another great feature of this arcade stick.

    The 8.5 ft cable is reinforced and braided, the only problem is the way you keep the cable, unlike most arcade sticks that have a compartment, this arcade stick has two metal pegs where you can wrap the cable around it.

    You might ask, is it worth it the high price for this fight stick? Well, there are other sticks that cost more considering the amount of modding you’d need to do to it. This arcade stick is already perfect right out of the box. So, yes. It’s definitely worth it.

    Do You Need Multi-Console Compatibility?

    For some people who have an Xbox 360 and own sticks that do not support cross-platform functions but want their fight sticks to work with a PlayStation console, there are a few alternatives that you can do.

    First off, you have the converters, these plug to your USB connector and you connect it to the console that you are about to use. It is an easier solution for those who don’t want to dismantle their expensive arcade sticks.

    The second option requires a bit of tinkering. You can purchase a UFB from Brook and solder the PCB to your buttons and joystick replacing the old PCB you have in your arcade stick. You can also use the Akishop Customs PS360+, however, there are reports that it times out every eight minutes (such a drag).


    An arcade stick is to a gamer as the Excalibur is for King Arthur. You may have the best of the best equipment, but you won’t be able to do any magic if you don’t put in the work to learn.

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    When the tech company I worked for restructured and I ended up jobless, I decided to put the wealth of knowledge and management skills to use somewhere new. I’d checked out a few buyer’s guides on the site in the past and reached out to the previous owner. A few months later, here we are. Now, I get to be behind the scenes, helping people find the best tech.