How to Connect Joy-Cons to the Nintendo Switch Lite

The Nintendo Switch Lite operates differently from the standard Nintendo Switch. Unlike its counterpart, you can’t switch between handheld mode and docked mode. This is because the controls on the Switch Lite are not detachable from the system itself. However, this design choice doesn’t mean that Joy-Con controllers are completely incompatible with the Switch Lite. With the right accessories and a few tips, you can still play with the Switch Lite in tabletop mode and control it using Joy-Con controllers. Here’s a guide on how to connect Joy-Con controllers to the Nintendo Switch Lite.

Before Connecting Joy-Cons to the Nintendo Switch Lite

Before you can use Joy-Con controllers with the Nintendo Switch Lite, you’ll need a few accessories. Firstly, you’ll need the Joy-Con controllers themselves. You can get them in packs of one or two, along with Joy-Con straps for horizontal play. We recommend getting the two-pack, as it allows you to play all Switch games with the Joy-Cons, as some games don’t support single Joy-Con play. If you plan on playing multiplayer games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, you should consider getting a second two-pack of Joy-Con controllers.

To charge the controllers, you’ll need to purchase a charging station since the Joy-Cons can’t be charged using the Switch Lite. There are four-controller charging stations available online or in most major retailers. These charging stations are powered using a USB connection and even provide battery-level indicators for the controllers. Make sure to store the Joy-Con controllers in the charging station when not in use, so they’re always ready to go.

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If you’re going to play your Nintendo Switch Lite using Joy-Cons, you’ll need something to hold it upright since it doesn’t come with a mini kickstand like its predecessor. We recommend the HORI Dual USB Playstand because of its charging and connecting features. However, any stand that positions the Switch Lite upright will do.

Additionally, you may want to consider getting a Joy-Con grip for a more traditional controller feel. This allows you to slide the Joy-Con into a mold that resembles a gamepad. However, Joy-Con grips are currently in high demand and may be difficult to find.

Pairing the Joy-Cons to Your Switch Lite

Once you have the controllers and accessories ready, follow these steps to connect the Joy-Con controllers to your Nintendo Switch Lite:

  1. Turn on your Switch Lite and navigate to the Controllers tab at the bottom of the home menu.
  2. Select the Change Grip and Order option. This will put your Switch Lite in pairing mode.
  3. On the Joy-Con controller you want to pair, press and hold down the syncing button located along the railing. If the controller has a Joy-Con strap attached, remove it first.
  4. After a few seconds, the controller should pair with the Switch Lite.
  5. Choose the control configuration you want to use by holding down the L and R buttons on the controllers. For two controllers, press L on the left one and R on the right one. If you’re using only one controller, hold it sideways and press the small L and R buttons located on the railing.
  6. Once paired, you can put the Joy-Con straps back on the controllers.
  7. When you put the Switch Lite to sleep, the Joy-Con controllers should automatically disconnect. However, they will remain synced, so simply press the home button or any face button when you’re ready to connect them to the Switch Lite again.
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Can You Use the Pro Controller with the Nintendo Switch Lite?

Yes, you can use the Pro Controller with the Nintendo Switch Lite. To do so, follow the same process as pairing the Joy-Con controllers. The gameplay functions will be similar to using a Pro Controller in tabletop mode on the original Switch.

For a more convenient setup, consider pairing the Pro Controller to a USB (if supported by your setup). It’s also recommended to use a Nintendo-approved and supported hub device. The HORI Dual USB Playstand is a great option as it allows you to charge your system and provides a useful kickstand. Simply place your Switch Lite on the stand and connect your Pro Controller using a USB cable. Once connected, you’re ready to start playing.

For more information, tips, and recommendations, check out the official OnSpec Electronic, Inc. website here.

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