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The 7 Best USB N64 Controllers: Ultimate Guide

The Nintendo 64 was host to some of the most beloved games of all time, yet one of the most memorable aspects of the system was it’s iconic trident-shaped controller!  The three-pronged peripheral allowed for a variety of play configurations in a pre-dual-analog era that confounds the unacquainted to this very day.  Whether you’re looking to relive childhood memories or get your first taste of this piece of gaming history, the following are the best USB N64 Controllers for the job!

The Top-Rated USB N64 Controllers

Editor's PickControllerRating
Top PickSAFFUN Classic Retro N64 Bit90%
Budget PickMODESLAB Classic N64 Controller84%
Luxury PickRetro Fighters Brawler64 USB Edition94%
Best Double Packmiadore 2 Pack - Classic 6487%
Best MiniRetro-Bit Tribute 6490%

Top Pick: SAFFUN Classic Retro N64 Bit

SAFFUN Classic Retro N64 Bit
  • Generic USB controller, this uses a standard USB port, if your program or application accepts USB controller input, it can be used natively without drivers or patches, JUST PLUG AND PLAY! Cord is approx. 5.9 ft. Long. Super sensitive buttons for precision control. Third party controller, not original controller. But it works phenomenal with the Raspberry Pi game emulation and so on.
  • Supported Operating system: Windows 98, ME, Vista, 2000, 2003, XP, 7, 8, 8.1, 10; Linux UBUNTU, Linux Mint, Android Linux (via an USB OTG cable); Mac OS X and beyond; Retrogaming operating systems: RetroPie, Recalbox, Happi Game Center, Lakka, ChameleonPi, Piplay
  • Supported Device (With USB storage device): PC, Notebook Computer, Laptop Computer; MacBook; Android Smartphone: connect via an USB OTG cable; Raspberry Pi (RPI, Raspberry pie): Raspberry Pi 1 Model B, Model A, Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+, Raspberry Pi Zero, Raspberry Pi 2, Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, Raspberry Pi 3, Retro Pie. --- Note: NOT SUPPORT Android TV BOX.
  • Supported Game Emulators: Current: Project64, 1964, MAME (MESS), Mupen64Plus, Sixtyforce, CEN64; Historical: Project Unreality, Corn, UltraHLE, Nemu64
  • Reliable Warranty: 100% Money Back Guarantee; hassle free 6-month replacement warranty with friendly and professional customer service. If you have any problem, kindly please feel free to contact us, we will do our best to help you!

The SAFFUN Classic Retro N64 Bit takes the top spot due it’s true-to-original functionality and form, solid build quality and surprisingly low price.  This plug and play USB N64 controller is ready right out of the box for use with PC, Mac, Raspberry Pi, Android and even Linux!

This product has tons of reviews from satisfied customers online; the most-cited praise is of the pad’s near-flawless emulation of the N64 experience – which is the most important thing to consider here!

If you’re looking for a great USB N64 controller that checks all of the boxes without breaking the bank, the SAFFUN Classic Retro N64 Bit should be your first choice!

Budget Pick: MODESLAB Classic N64 Controller

MODESLAB Classic N64 Controller
  • 🎮Simple to Use: Just USB plug and play, no drivers or software required. Note: If you have difficulty using this, be sure to insert it before launching the simulator. Similarly, if you need to enter input settings, you may need to map buttons. It is Third Party Controller, not official N64 controller. But it also works well with good gaming feeling.

  • 🎮Sensitive and Accurate:This N64 controller features 14 function buttons (including Left and Right shoulder functions and Z-trigger) and 1 analog joystick.These sensitive and accurate little things will ensure you a perfect control and performance in every game operation.
  • 🎮Ergonomic Design:This USB gamepad controller will bring excellent hand feel when you are gaming,because it allows multiple ways to hold it thanks to its three grips,and the middle grip can be held by one hand for the action game.
  • 🎮Supported Game Emulators: Current: Project64, 1964, MAME (MESS), Mupen64Plus, Sixtyforce, CEN64; Historical: Project Unreality, Corn, UltraHLE, Nemu64.
  • 🎮Supported Device (With USB storage device): PC, Notebook Computer, Laptop Computer; MacBook; Android Smartphone: connect via an USB OTG cable; Raspberry Pi (RPI, Raspberry pie): Raspberry Pi 1 Model B, Model A, Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+, Raspberry Pi Zero, Raspberry Pi 2, Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, Raspberry Pi 3, Retro Pie. --- NOT SUPPORT Android TV BOX.

The MODESLAB Classic N64 Controller is a great controller that just manages to beat out the fierce competition at the low end of the USB N64 controller budget spectrum by a few cents!  Most of the picks on this list are relatively inexpensive to begin with, so it’s actually something of an accomplishment that MODESLAB is able to provide a competent product and the best price point!

Simply being cheap isn’t enough to earn a place on this list though; thankfully, this pad checks all of the requisite boxes – PC/Linux/Mac support as well as Raspberry and Android, authentic N64 controller looks and button layout, and great build quality as well as ergonomics. Not to mention, MODESLAB has plenty of experience with retro controllers: they also make one of the best USB SNES controllers on the market.

All-said, it’s hard to recommend against this controller, especially if you want to save as much money as possible!

Luxury Pick: Retro Fighters Brawler64 USB Edition

Retro Fighters Brawler64 USB Edition
  • Featuring an erongomic and comfortable two handle design
  • Compatible with PC, Mac & Nintendo Switch
  • Extra long 10' Cord
  • Comfortable and responsive analog stick
  • Repositioned Z triggers on both left and right side of the controller

The Retro Fighters Brawler64 USB Edition is, first and foremost, a USB N64 controller.  That may go without saying, considering the nature of this list, but it does not at first glance appear to be an N64 controller due to the button layout and lack of a middle handle.  

Upon further inspection, you’ll realize that this controller does in fact have all of the buttons you’ve come to expect, down to the very last quirk, but they’re laid-out in a more modern format.

In addition to modern ergonomics, the controller has a turbo button and an additional Z button with mirrored functionality.
If you want a USB N64 controller with a more modern look and feel, and don’t mind spending a few extra bucks, the Retro Fighters Brawler64 USB Edition is definitely worth your consideration!

Best Double Pack: miadore 2 Pack – Classic 64

Sale
miadore 2 Pack - Classic 64
  • ☑️Compatible with N64 Console N64 Video Game System-which is a great gift for nostalgic gamers in the 90's.
  • ☑️10 function buttons ( Included Left and Right shoulder buttons and Z-trigger ), an analog stick/thumb joystick. Shaped like an M, the separate grips allow different hand positions for various game types.
  • ☑️ Functional expansion port (for rumble /memory card) on the bottom. The cord is approx. 6 ft length and if you want to sit all the way back on your couch, you need buy a controller extension cord.
  • ☑️Perfect alternative for kids to play with. You can introduce your children to the N64 games you grew up with. Also can be served as a multiplayer controller, you need a backup controller for your friends who come over to play competitive games.
  • ☑️ NOTE: THIS ITEM IT IS A THIRD PARTY MANUFACTURED PRODUCT.

The miadore 2 Pack - Classic 64 is the best overall package in a surprisingly crowded field – double packs of N64 controllers!  It may be surprising at first to see so many manufacturers selling only 2+ controllers per package, but it makes sense when you consider that shipping costs are a significant percentage of overall costs and this approach allows for extra controllers to be bundled for modest additional cost.

Also worth noting – and this is probably more relevant to most consumers – is that the N64 had a huge array of classic multiplayer games for which you’re likely to want extra controllers!

If you’re shopping for two USB N64 controllers, save a few bucks and grab this package deal!

Best Mini: Retro-Bit Tribute 64

Retro-Bit Tribute 64
  • Compatible with Nintendo 64
  • 10-foot cord
  • Sensitive, accurate, and high-quality analog stick made in Japan
  • Reshaped Dual Z shoulder pads for maximum grip
  • Large Start button for easy-reach with Memory card port and rumble pak

The Retro-Bit Tribute 64 is a striking little controller that comes available in a wide range of clear colors that nicely fit the palette of the original, colorful N64 pads that were released over the years.  The biggest difference here is clearly the diminutive stature of the controller – it’s roughly half the size of a standard N64 controller – but it’s also worth noting that the middle handle has been eschewed and the analog stick has swapped places with the directional pad. 

The end result of all of this reconfiguration is a great little controller that’s extremely portable and no less viable for use with N64 games!  If you want something that’s a little different, the Retro-Bit Tribute 64 is a solid buy!

What to Look for in a USB N64 Controller

Not all USB N64 Controllers are created equal; the following are the most important factors to consider when shopping for yours:

Form

The predominant, defining feature of the N64 controller is it’s trident form factor, and every game for the system was designed with this in mind.  That being said, there are those who abhor the feel of the thing in their hands!  Whichever group you find yourself in, make sure that you’re getting a controller that you’re going to be comfortable holding!

Price

As with most peripherals, USB N64 Controllers run the gamut from “super-affordable” to “is it made of pure gold?!”  All of the controllers on this list are highly reviewed and have tons of satisfied customers, so don’t feel like you need to splurge on an expensive option in order to have a great experience!  

Versatility

Although obviously fit for purpose, the N64 controller is among the least versatile controllers in terms of interoperability with games from other consoles/formats.  This is something that you needn’t be concerned about if you just intend to use your USB N64 Controller with N64 games; if you want to do more, consider getting a controller that has a more modern button layout that can be programmed to act as an N64 controller.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is there a way to use an old N64 controller with USB?

There are adapters that make this possible, but they generally cost more than buying a dedicated USB N64 Controller and introduce latency and other problems – so it’s almost always best to buy a USB N64 Controller instead.

Should you use a USB N64 controller or universal pad?

This all comes down to personal preference. The best reason to go with an N64 controller is to experience N64 games as intended by the developers. If that doesn’t matter to you, and you don’t get a sense of nostalgia from the old controllers, there’s not much reason to avoid a universal gamepad!

Other USB N64 Controllers We Reviewed

We looked at two other USB N64 Controllers. Even though they didn’t make our top 5 list, they’re still some of the market’s best.

kiwitatá N64 Bit USB

kiwitatá N64 Bit USB
  • 🎮 Wired N64 USB Game Pad Controller for Windows PC Computer or MAC Laptop with a USB port,specially designed for N64 classic emulated retro games on pc laptop or Raspberry Pi.It works with any emulator you wish to download and use.Such as Project 64,OpenEmu,MegaN64,Mupen64,Mupen 13 Beta,Mupen64Plus FZ,RetroArch,ClassicBoy and SixtyForce etc
  • 🎮 Compatible with all versions Windows and Mac OS X, running Windows 98/2000/ ME/XP/Vista/Win 7/8/8.1/10 or later,or Mac running OS X,Mac OS X and macOS.On Linux you did have to go into the controller configuration for Mupen64Plus and configure the D pad for "hat0(up)" style signals before the D-pad would work.
  • 🎮 Plug and play, you don't need to install any drivers.USB enabled: Use on any PC/Mac with USB port.The cord is approx. 1.7 meters (6ft).It is also very easy to Setup with Retropie system(Raspberry Pi 3 B+,Retro Pi OS,Raspberry PI 2 model B) and OpenEmu emulator on Mac.
  • 🎮 Tight and accurate analog control,the controller features 10 function buttons (including Left and Right shoulder functions and Z-trigger).The analog joystick, let you in the game in the process of the operation of each of the perfect 360 degree control.
  • 🎮Third party N64 usb controller, not original Nintendo 64 controller,there are no connectors to use a "rumble pack".But you can play N64 games on the computer very well with your friends and family,such as Super Smash Bros,Mario Kart, Perfect Dark, Zelda,Racing Games and many other classic N64 games.

The kiwitatá N64 Bit USB is another solid – if not underwhelming – option for your USB N64 controller needs.  Frankly, there’s nothing to praise nor complain about with this one; if the others on this list are sold out, or if this one is on sale, it’s a worthy alternative!

LUXMO PREMIUM Classic N64

LUXMO PREMIUM Classic N64
  • 🎮Simple to Use: Just USB plug and play, no drivers or software required. Note: If you have difficulty using this, be sure to insert it before launching the simulator. Similarly, if you need to enter input settings, you may need to map buttons.
  • 🎮Ergonomic Design:This USB Game Pad controller will bring excellent hand feel when you are gaming,because it allows multiple ways to hold it thanks to its three grips,and the middle grip can be held by one hand for the action game.
  • 🎮Sensitive and Accurate:This N64 controller features 14 function buttons (including Left and Right shoulder functions and Z-trigger) and 1 analog joystick.These sensitive and accurate little things will ensure you a perfect control and performance in every game operation.
  • 🎮Supported Game Emulators: Current: Project64, 1964, MAME (MESS), Mupen64Plus, Sixtyforce, CEN64; Historical: Project Unreality, Corn, UltraHLE, Nemu64.
  • 🎮Supported Device (With USB storage device): PC, Notebook Computer, Laptop Computer; MacBook; Android Smartphone: connect via an USB OTG cable; Raspberry Pi (RPI, Raspberry pie): Raspberry Pi 1 Model B, Model A, Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+, Raspberry Pi Zero, Raspberry Pi 2, Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, Raspberry Pi 3, Retro Pie. --- Note: NOT SUPPORT Android TV BOX.

The LUXMO PREMIUM Classic N64 is yet another USB N64 controller that does everything needed, nothing unneeded and keeps the price reasonable!  Much like the previous entry on this list, this one doesn’t do anything to really separate itself from the pack but is nonetheless worth considering in the event of a sale.

Last Updated on February 15, 2021