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Unbricking partially updated controllers ¶ 

If your controller gets disconnected during a firmware update, these steps may recover your controller. Notes:

  • This must be done over USB
  • Use a known good USB cable for this procedure. If you are not sure if your cables will work for this procedure, purchase a new cable to avoid problems.
  • ALWAYS use USB for firmware updates. NEVER update your controller over wireless.
  • A Xbox One console or Windows 10 PC is required.
  • Xbox One only. Not required for PC recovery. You will need at least one functional controller for navigation purposes. As long as the primary buttons are working (A/B/Y/X, analog sticks and D-Pad), the controller will suffice.
  • There is no guarantee your controller is recoverable. While the chance of recovery is very good, it is not 100% successful.

Steps for recovery

  • Step 1: In order to ensure there is no residual power left in the controller, let the controller sit without batteries for 24 hours. The controller cannot have any reserve power or this will not work.
  • Step 2: Plug the controller into a Xbox One or Windows 10 PC. Note: If you do not use a Windows 10 PC, the controller will be listed as a "Controller Update" device and fail installation. The controller will not install in this mode in these OSes.

Windows 10

  • Step 1: Log into a Microsoft account and download the "Xbox Accessories" app from the Microsoft Store.
  • Step 2: Plug the controller into your Windows 10 PC.
  • Step 3: Click Update required in the Xbox Accessories app. Let this firmware update run.

Once you do this, the controller should be functional again.

Xbox One

  • Step 1: Navigate to the Devices and Accessories app on your Xbox One console. You will need to use the working controller to get to this menu.
  • Step 2: Once are are in the Devices and Accessories app, find your bricked controller. Tip: Look for "Plugged in" or remove the batteries for identification purposes.
  • Step 3: Re-run the firmware upgrade.Note: Your first recovery attempt may not be successful. If you have trouble the first time, try again until your controller accepts the firmware.

Once you do this, the controller should be functional again.

Troubleshooting ¶ 

If your controller has an issue, refer to the Xbox One Wireless Controller 1537 Troubleshooting guide.

Note: The troubleshooting steps for the 1537 controller apply to the 1708. Bluetooth and headphone jack troubleshooting are not covered.

Background and Identification ¶ 

The Xbox One Wireless Controller Model 1708 can be quickly identified by the presence of a full faceplate, since the X button is no longer covered by a single piece of glossy plastic that is separate from the faceplate. The texture that is used on the plastic shell is also different from previous controllers as well.

If you still want to be sure, the label in the battery compartment will say Model 1708.

Shared features between models 1537, 1697 and 1708 include:

  • The Start and Back buttons found on the 360 controller have been replaced with the Menu and View buttons, respectively.
  • The triggers on the Xbox One controller have been mounted with individual rumble motors to enhance the gaming experience.
  • The Xbox button now glows white when the controller is switched on.
  • The X, Y, B, and A buttons are the only colored parts of the controller.
  • The controller also features a micro-USB cable at the top of the controller to enable charging while plugged into the console and connecting for use with a computer.

Shared features between models 1697 and 1708:

  • The controller now features a 3.5mm headphone jack, which makes the headset adapter optional. With the headphone jack integrated into the controller, you no longer need to use the headset adapter to use 3rd party headsets that use a 3.5mm headphone jack. Note: While the headset adapter is no longer required and can be controlled in software, the headset adapter will continue to work.
  • The thumb sticks feature a thicker texture on the edges of the analog stick, compared to the previous controller. This allows for an even better grip.

Features unique to the 1708:

  • The back plastic on the controller has a texture that is very different from both the 1537 and 1697.
  • The front faceplate eliminates the plastic X button cover that was present on previous controllers. The plastic cover that holds the sync button in the controller no longer covers the front of the controller.
  • Microsoft offers the 1708 controller in White, Black, Green, Orange, Red and Blue as standard colors. If these colors are not to your liking, special edition controllers are released occasionally.
  • This controller was the first controller to offer the Xbox Design lab option though the Microsoft store. The entire controller can be customized to the color scheme you want, which means that Microsoft probably has the option to make the controller look a certain way if none of the default options are to your liking. However, this option adds $20 to the base price of the controller.

PC use (General information) ¶ 

This controller is a very popular choice for PC gaming, since it works with the most games out of the box on Windows PC's. While it is a popular choice, it does not work with DirectInput games.

One "quirk" with this controller is the controller driver is known to have problems loading automatically and requiring manual installation in Windows 7 and 8.x. When you run into this problem, there are two fixes for this issue.

Note: This DOES NOT happen in Windows 10.

  • Option one: Use Device manager

If you want the latest version of the driver out of the gate, you will need to get it from Device Manager. You likely need administrative permissions for this, but you will get the latest version this way

  • Option 2: Download the driver for manual installation

If you wish to keep a local copy that needs to be updated so you do not have to rely on Microsoft having a copy, you can download a copy of the driver from multiple locations.

For a newer local copy, look at these links:

PC connectivity (Windows 7/8.x/10) ¶ 

  • Micro USB cable (15ft is recommended)
  • Bluetooth (Windows 10 only)
  • Xbox One Wireless Adapter (Available at Amazon, Best Buy and GameStop)

Driver for Xbox Wireless adapter

Additional Information ¶ 

Wikipedia: Xbox One Controller

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