What to Look for in Fingertip Hall Effect Joysticks

If you have done your research on the hall effect technology, then you know it is one of the most reliable and long-lasting sensors around. As a result, most people don’t think too much about the reliability of fingertip hall effect joysticks. They simply assume the joystick will serve them perfectly. The truth, however, is there is more to joysticks than just the sensor. While a joystick with a hall effect sensor is a great choice, how reliable the joystick ends up being will depend on three additional things.

Fault tolerance

The first thing you need to understand about the hall effect sensors is that they can be affected by external magnetic fields. As a result of this, if you plan on using fingertip hall effect joysticks in an environment with high magnetic fields, you have to make sure the device can work in that environment.

For safety, your joystick should have fault tolerance. If the sensors fail, two things should happen to ensure the joystick goes back to a safe operational state. The first is for the joystick to know there is a fault. This requires the joystick to generate an internal redundant mirror signal which is compared with the main signal. If a difference is detected, the unit will send a signal to the controlled device to force it to take appropriate action such as returning to center.

If the joystick will be used for mobile applications, it should have a radio frequency immunity. If the signal is ever interrupted when the device moves near a radio signal, the joystick should know there is a fault and take appropriate action. There are joysticks that offer many levels of RFI immunity.


The most effective joystick models are the ones that accommodate your application requirements. If a joystick is not customizable, you will find yourself needing other input devices to supplement your joystick. When shopping for a hall effect joystick, you need to find a vendor that is able to support your design and branding requirements. The ideal joystick should be able to support multiple output signal configurations, handle options as well as free or guided motion.

Compatibility with your system

Last but not least, you will need a joystick that is compatible with your system. For example, if your system uses a Linux operating system, you have to make sure the joystick is compatible with that platform. The ideal joystick is the one that fits seamlessly into your front panel whether you are using sub-panel or drop-in mounting.

Fingertip Hall Effect Joysticks