Above is a video of me fixing my PS4’s DualShock controller. It’s 28 minutes long so here’s a write-up:
So I bought a second hand PS4 Slim last year just in time for Persona 5. Worked great in my first run through, but eventually the circle button of the controller stopped responding.
As with any DIYer out there, I applied the first aid for unresponsive electronics: opening the thing and liberally applying contact cleaner to everything. This would clean out the gunk and hopefully make the connections work again.
This worked, but only for a few days. The circle button stopped working even after multiple applications of contact cleaner. I spent about an hour tracing leads with my multi-tester before I found out that the connection for the button in membrane film was broken, probably corroded from a combination of heat and humidity.
After shelving it for a couple of months, I finally went to Ali Express and bought some spare parts: membrane film, and new ribbon cable to replace the cable I accidentally broke during the multiple teardowns. While I was at it, I also got other cheap doodads for my PS4.
Replacement was straightforward. The only reason it took me about half an hour was my narration and relative inexperience in tinkering with controllers.
End result: I fully repaired the controller for about $30. It’s probably cheaper if I got it repaired in some random repair stall, but the extra spare parts and the experience more than made up for it.
And yes, the controller is still working. So far I’ve played over 60 hours on it while working on a 100% playthrough of Persona 5.