Can You Use Vive Controllers With Valve Index?

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By Eric Wilson

Are you a VR enthusiast looking to upgrade your gaming experience with the Valve Index headset? If so, you may be wondering if you can use your Vive controllers with the Valve Index. In this article, we will explore whether or not it is possible and what steps you need to take to make it happen.

What are Vive controllers and Valve Index Controllers?

Before we dive into the compatibility of these two controllers, let’s first understand what they are. Vive controllers were created by HTC for their Vive VR headset. They are wireless hand-held devices that allow for motion tracking and interaction in virtual reality.

Valve Index Controllers, on the other hand, were created specifically for the Valve Index headset. They feature finger tracking technology and a more ergonomic design than previous iterations of VR controllers.

Compatibility of Vive Controllers with Valve Index

Now, let’s get to the question at hand: can you use Vive controllers with the Valve Index? The answer is yes, but it requires some extra steps.

Firstly, it’s important to note that while both controllers use lighthouse tracking technology, they use different versions. The Vive uses version 1.0 while the Valve Index uses version 2.0. This means that simply syncing them up won’t work since they communicate on different frequencies.

To make them compatible, you will need to purchase a SteamVR Tracking 2.0 Dongle. This dongle allows for communication between the Vive controller and the Valve Index headset.

Once you have purchased the dongle, follow these steps:

  • Connect the SteamVR Tracking 2.0 Dongle to your PC using a USB port
  • Put your Vive controller into pairing mode by holding down both buttons below its trackpad
  • Pair your controller with the dongle by holding down both buttons below its trackpad until its LED blinks quickly
  • Open SteamVR on your PC and ensure that the Vive controller is recognized
  • Pair the Vive controller with your Valve Index headset through SteamVR

Limitations of Using Vive Controllers with Valve Index

While it is possible to use Vive controllers with the Valve Index, there are some limitations to keep in mind.

Firstly, the finger tracking technology of the Valve Index controllers will not be available when using Vive controllers. This means that certain VR experiences that rely on finger tracking may not work as intended.

Additionally, the ergonomics of the two controllers are different. The Valve Index controllers have a more natural grip and finger placement, which may result in discomfort or less precision when using the Vive controllers.


In conclusion, it is possible to use Vive controllers with the Valve Index headset through a SteamVR Tracking 2. However, there are limitations to consider such as lack of finger tracking and differences in ergonomics. It’s important to weigh these factors before deciding whether or not to make this controller switch.