Revolution 5 Pro controller review - an awesome gamepad with a few frustrations

A fantastic controller that falls just short of being essential

Nacon Revolution 5 Pro
(Image: © Future)

TechRadar Verdict

If you’re looking for a premium PlayStation 5 controller with all the trimmings - swappable modules, trigger locks, remappable profiles, and more - then the Revolution 5 Pro will serve you well. Some design issues though, like a lack of vibration for PS5 games, hold it back.


  • +

    Fantastic build quality with superb non-slip grips

  • +

    Smartly designed alternate modules suit a variety of games

  • +

    Convenient on-board controls for headset and mic volume


  • -

    Lacks haptics and vibration for PS5 games

  • -

    Rear buttons are a little too sensitive

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Nacon’s Revolution 5 Pro seriously impresses as a higher-end PlayStation 5 gamepad. A multiplayer-first controller, owing to its on-board audio controls and customizable back buttons, it features high-quality modules (some of which have swappable variants included in-box), Hall effect-ready that rely on magnets and voltage control to reduce the risk of drift, and a sturdy build that’s resistant to scuffs and wear.

It’s one of the most feature-rich controllers available for PS5, but it’s not without some rather unfortunate issues that stop it just short of making our best PS5 controllers list. The mappable rear buttons, for example, are a little too easy to accidentally press, and you won’t be able to enjoy features like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers that the PS5’s DualSense offers. That can’t be avoided, as Sony only allows such tech for its own peripherals, but the Revolution 5 Pro also lacks vibration functionality for PS5 games.

However, those issues aside, Nacon has still built a versatile and high-quality gamepad that should be considered if you value build quality, battery life, and swappable modules.

Price and availability

The Nacon Revolution 5 Pro is available to buy right now for $199.99 / £199.99 (around AU$316), from Nacon’s own website. However, be aware that buying outside of Europe will come with a pretty hefty customs charge right now, so you may wish to wait until December 1 when the controller becomes more widely available at retailers in the US and UK.

The Revolution 5 Pro’s closest competitor in terms of price is Sony’s DualSense Edge, which comes in at $199.99 / £209.99 / AU$339.95. While it’s not any cheaper, the PS5’s premium controller does offer proprietary features like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, which third-party pads like the Revolution 5 Pro sadly lack.

Design and features

Nacon Revolution 5 Pro

(Image credit: Future)

The Revolution 5 Pro immediately reveals itself as a pad that’s incredibly pleasing to hold. It’s an all-plastic build but one that’s of very high quality. It’s sturdy, too, but the choice of material here does mean it’s a bit of a fingerprint magnet, which does mean the aesthetic can be impacted by your hands regardless of whether you opt for the white or black colorway.

The controller comes with three sets of weights that can be inserted into the pad’s grips by removing the back panels, which slide in and out of place with ease. At 10g / 14g / 16g extra each, they don’t add a ton of additional weight, but they’re useful in helping the pad rest in your hands a little more securely should you require it.

As for swappable modules, you’ve got three alternative choices for analog sticks: an extra convex stick, as well as two concaves, one of which has a taller profile. By default, the Revolution 5 Pro is fitted with a circular D-pad which I found well-suited for performing more complex inputs in the best fighting games. There’s a traditional four-way D-pad in the box, too. Both analog sticks are able to be swapped out, as well as the D-pad, by lifting them from the foundation.

One of the best aspects of the Revolution 5 Pro’s design is its textured grips. Slight contours running down the controller’s grips means it rests firmly in the hands, and I never once found myself needing to reposition the pad, even during hectic multiplayer moments in titles like Fall Guys and Fortnite.

There are some lovely extra functional touches here, too, like an on-board battery indicator, signified by a row of five white LEDs situated just under the central touchpad. If you’re playing wirelessly, it’s a convenient way to know when you need to charge at a glance. The central pad itself doesn’t bear any touch-sensitive functionality, but Nacon has cleverly repurposed it for multiplayer usage; by holding down the Function button on top of the controller, you’re able to adjust headset and mic volume by pressing the edges of the touchpad.

Performance and battery life

Nacon Revolution 5 Pro

(Image credit: Future)

The Revolution 5 Pro controller, like other third-party gamepads designed for PS5, is somewhat kneecapped by the absence of haptics, adaptive triggers, and vibration for the best PS5 games. However, it’s worth noting that this isn’t the fault of the manufacturer; Sony simply doesn’t allow the use of such tech beyond its own controllers. Thankfully, vibration is enabled for PS4 and PC titles. If you like having a rumble feature enabled during play, then, the Revolution 5 Pro may serve you better as a desktop gamepad.

One area the controller itself improves on its competitors is in wireless response time. Expect a latency of 6m/s if you’re playing with the included 2.4GHz USB dongle on PS5, and 4m/s on PC. Its closest rival here is likely the Razer Wolverine V2 Pro, which clocks in at an average of 10m/s when used wirelessly. This means the Revolution 5 Pro is ultra-responsive for the best single-player games. But, I would still recommend opting for a wired connection if you’re playing games where frame data is a crucial element, such as Street Fighter 6 or Call of Duty: Warzone where split-second inputs matter.

Generally though, the act of simply playing with the Revolution 5 Pro is excellent. Its analog sticks travel smoothly, and there’s a satisfying level of bounciness to the shoulder and face buttons. There’s very short travel time on the buttons that allows for quick, timely inputs in your favorite multiplayer games, which feels subconsciously fantastic when playing games online with others. That same feeling can be applied to the R2/L2-equivalents via the hair trigger locks on the back. That said, I did find these locks to be a little stiff, as they need to be pressed inwards and upwards in order to activate the effect.

I found the Revolution 5 Pro controller to be an admirable fit for solo play, too. It excels especially with games that require quick reflexes, or have high skill ceilings. The moment-to-moment decision-making of Doom Eternal, for example, felt more surmountable at its higher difficulty levels. Similarly, I’ve never been able to be quite this reactive in Tetris Effect Connected; that low wireless response time eking out some truly clutch block placements at higher speeds.

The rear paddle buttons are a little too sensitive for my liking, though. This often led me to activate inputs I’d assigned there - such as jumping or tossing a grenade - to register when I didn’t want them to. I did find them useful, however, as a means of activating alternate hotbars in Final Fantasy 14 Online; a simple double-tap was used here to highlight hotbars that are normally accessed with the triggers by default.

Battery life, meanwhile, is about what you should expect for a controller of this caliber. You’ll get roughly ten hours on a full charge. Not amazing by any means, but certainly an improvement over the DualSense Edge’s four-to-six hour battery life.


Nacon Revolution 5 Pro

(Image credit: Nacon)

The Nacon Revolution 5 Pro app is available to download for Windows and MacOS devices from the controller's support page. A mobile version of the app can also be downloaded on iOS devices, with an Android version coming soon.

The app itself is thorough, but extremely easy to get to grips with. You're able to set four profiles across PS5, PS4 and PC for a total of 12. Within the app, you're able to fully customize your button layout, assign alternative inputs for those rear buttons, adjust analog stick deadzones and trigger travel length.

A couple of cool extras include the ability to swap the color of the ring light - found around the right analog stick - with options for single, multiple and prism effects. Lastly, there's even an equalizer, allowing you to adjust headset audio balance to suit your liking on a per-profile basis.

The Revolution 5 Pro controller has notable flaws, some of which are admittedly out of Nacon’s control. But, if you can get used to the slightly sensitive rear buttons and don’t mind the loss of the DualSense’s bespoke features, then the Revolution 5 Pro will serve you well as a feature-rich premium controller.

Should I buy the Revolution 5 Pro?

Nacon Revolution 5 Pro

(Image credit: Future)

Buy it if...

You’re after a feature-rich pro controller: The Revolution 5 Pro impresses with swappable modules and thoughtfully-implemented on-board headset settings. 

You want a controller that’ll last you years: Thanks to its sturdy build and Hall effect thumbsticks, the Revolution 5 Pro is designed to last a console generation.

Don't buy it if...

You want to enjoy Sony’s bespoke features: Consider the DualSense Edge if you’d prefer to have features like haptic feedback and PS5-supported vibration.

How we reviewed the Revolution 5 Pro

I tested the Revolution 5 Pro over the course of a week across PS5 and PC with a variety of multiplayer-focused titles including Street Fighter 6, Guilty Gear Strive, Fortnite, Fall Guys, and Final Fantasy 14 Online. I also made sure to try out all additional modules to really get a feel for the controller’s  customization. 

Looking for gamepad alternatives on other consoles? Consider checking out our guide to the best Xbox controllers and best Nintendo Switch controllers to find a device that’s right for you. 

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.