To all of you who have one or more PS3 controllers, i need your help. In fact, we all do.
I bought my PS3 from a Sony Style shop, and expectedly, it's all good and working fine for over six months now. I needed an extra controller for offline multiplayer, so i bought a new one today (not from Sony Style shop, as they were out of stock at the moment). So, i bought it from some local game accessory shop, and to my utter dismay... i find that the quality of the extra controller is just not as good as the original one. So, i go on to investigate a bit further and i find that the model number found at the back of the controller is the definite indication of the quality of manufacturing of the controller itself. I am an avid gamer, and lately, i've been playing Killzone2 online a lot, and i tried the new controller... it's a complete letdown! The quality of the hardware and its performance is very poor. :-(
There is no proper/organised information anywhere i have seen, where there is a sensible compilation of all the PS3 controller model numbers and their country of origin and individual model quality, though i have found through Google, that there are the following models of PS3 dualshock3 controllers (might not be the complete list of controller models, so again, please check the back of your PS3 controllers and provide some feedback for the community):
1. CECHZC2E - i have this one from when i bought my PS3 and it's the best i've used yet. I bought my PS3 from Dubai, so it's sensible to deduce that it's a model number available only in Dubai and probably in the middle east region?
2. CECHZC2U - this is the extra controller that i bought today, and me being totally uninformed - blame the absolute lack of information on PS3 controller purchases, i was totally disappointed the moment i held the controller. It is indeed an original. The packaging and the sticker, as well as the appearance and functionality. But still, relative to my first controller, the quality is so bad. The thumbsticks are very far from giving any accuracy. It's like they're stuck in sticky glue at the base. The buttons don't respond as swiftly and the controller plastic itself and the joined parts as well as the whole contruction is several grades lower than my first controller, model number above). This is quite hard to explain, but i tried to play Killzone2 and the thumbsticks are simply a complete struggle. They won't show any responsiveness, unless i tilt them beyond a certain degree, which makes precision aiming impossible. I tucked that ill-fated controller away and the moment i turned on my old controller, i realised the huge difference in the quality of these two controllers.
3. CECHZC2H - I just used Google to find some other model and this one came up. I have no idea how good or bad this controller is, but it seems to originate from Hong Kong. I could be wrong. If anyone can confirm on this, it would be greatly appreciated.
To conclude on my findings, i have to say that i'm so disappointed with my new controller purchase that i shoved it back inside its box and threw it at the back of my desk drawer. I'm going to buy a new controller (one that actually responds as it should!), but this time, it's going to the same model number as the one i got with my PS3, unless someone can confirm on a better model with better quality.
Though i still have no idea where the CECHZC2U model controller is manufactured, there is one thing to keep in mind on your PS3 controller purchases - do yourself a favor and stay away from this model! I can confirm (along with most of the replies here) that you will not regret getting a CECHZC2E model of the dualshock3 PS3 controller. The CECHZC2E model appears to be made and sold in Europe only. I already knew that the quality of the consoles' hardware vary based on where they are manufactured... but i never had to experience it myself until i bought that cheaply pieced-together CECHZC2U controller model.
At first look, even on close inspection inside its plastic case, it is quite hard to tell the difference between a good or bad quality controller. But the controller model number is indicated clearly on the side of the boxed controller, so no need to open it to inquire about its quality. I wish i knew that before i bought mine yesterday. :-(
Anyways, thanks to the community for the feedback and i hope people keep this thread alive, as i'm quite sure this is going to help others from making disappointing PS3 controller purchases.