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How to use Nintendo Switch controllers with your NES Classic Edition

If you’re a Nintendo superfan, there’s a chance you have two “new” Nintendo consoles sitting in your living room right now: the Switch and the NES Classic Edition. Both are great systems with notable flaws, but the biggest issue with the NES Classic Edition is the length of the wired controller that comes in the box.

Thankfully, if you bought a Switch as well, you can actually use your Joy-Con controllers or your Pro Controller with your NES Classic. All you need is a cheap wireless dongle and a firmware update.

Not long ago, 8Bitdo released a Retro Receiver for the NES Classic Edition to give owners the option to pair Bluetooth controllers with their wireless game controllers. This week, 8bitdo rolled out a firmware update for the Retro Receiver that would allow it to connect with the Joy-Cons and Switch Pro Controller. CNET’s Scott Stein installed the firmware, plugged in the receiver and found it to work without a hitch.

8Bitdo Retro Receiver for NES Classic Edition (Bluetooth) - NES Price:$19.99 Buy Now Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission

While the lack of a D-pad will certainly make the Joy-Con a less than ideal partner for the NES Classic, it’s petite form factor makes it one of the better travel controllers available. On the other hand, the Pro Controller is one of Nintendo’s best controllers since the WaveBird, so if you have to choose, that’s probably the way to go. Either way, it’s nice to see some interoperability between Nintendo’s latest devices.

Head to this page on 8bitdo’s website to download the latest Retro Receiver firmware.

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.