Can you Connect an Xbox 360 Controller to PC without Receiver?

PC Gaming is the most popular form of gaming. You can use many input devices to play games. You can use a keyboard and mouse, steering wheel setup, a yoke, or even a controller. But what do you do if you have an old working Xbox 360 controller? More specifically, how do you connect Xbox 360 controller to PC if you have lost the receiver for the controller? Well, all of these questions will be answered in today’s guide.

If you use a controller for gaming, then you know how useful it is especially in many racing or driving games. Some people enjoy first-person shooters with a controller as well. Whatever use case is, it’s always enjoyable with a controller. The Xbox 360 Controller comes with a small receiver that is plugged into the USB port for it to function. But, what do you do when you do not have or lost the receiver? Read on to know more.

Connect Xbox 360 Controller to PC without Receiver

So can you use the Xbox 360 controller with your PC if you do not have the controller? The answer is no. There is no way at all to use the controller that way. First, the controller does not use Bluetooth. Rather, it uses proprietary tech to communicate between the receiver and your controller. This tech isn’t available on Windows PC as well.

Second. If you thought that you would use a USB cable to connect your controller to the PC, then you are wrong again. The controller is only able to receive power via the cable. Since it has no data transfer, your controller will simply not be recognized. With a cable connected, you will be able to only charge the controller’s batteries.

Any alternatives?

Well, since you need to have the receiver to be able to use the controller, it would be advisable to purchase a third-party receiver that would work well with your Xbox 360’s controller. In all fairness, it can be difficult to find one that will work perfectly. You can check for such receivers on Amazon itself. Make sure to look for one that will work for your Windows PC.

The second thing you can do is to either get yourself a new Xbox 360 wireless controller or just go ahead with getting yourself a wired Xbox 360 controller. Newer ones should be cheap enough on many online retail stores, provided that they are available for purchase anywhere. Since it’s a controller model that has been out of production for a long time, it can be a bit difficult.

Get an Xbox One Controller

Connect an Xbox 360 Controller to PC

If you love the Xbox controllers, a more sensible option would be to go for an Xbox One controller that is either wired or wireless. The best part about these Xbox One controllers is at least for the wired one, all you need to do is plug and play. In the case of the wireless Xbox One controller, you can simply make use of Bluetooth to connect the controller to your PC. Follow these steps to pair an Xbox One wireless controller to your Windows PC.

  • Power up your Xbox One controller and make sure that it has enough battery charge on it.
  • Now, on your Windows PC open the Settings app and select the Bluetooth and Devices option.
  • Make sure to turn on Bluetooth on your Windows PC.
  • Now press and hold the pair button that is present on the top part of your controller.
  • The X button on the controller will begin to flash rapidly.
  • On your PC, click on the Add Bluetooth or other devices option.
  • Select the Bluetooth option.
  • Now, your Windows PC will begin to search for nearby Bluetooth devices.
  • Once it finds the Controller, simply select it.
  • Both devices will now pair with each other.
  • You can now use the Xbox One Wireless Controller to play games on your Windows PC.


So now you know if the Xbox 360 controller can be used without a receiver or not on your Windows PC. If you do not have the receiver, it turns your functioning controller into a paperweight if you can’t find a third-party receiver. The best alternative is to get yourself the new Xbox One wireless controller. Have any queries? Drop them in the comments below.

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Joshua D'souza

Enjoy games, 90's hip-hop, and tech. Loves exploring the infinite world of laptops and food. Every ready to provide assistance in anything that rocks his boat. Will gladly enjoy capturing memories through various lenses. Worked previously at PiunikaWeb as an author and researcher.

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