I have been wondering what this blue thing in the top is called. I want to make the same kind of buttons for a project but i dont know what they are called and how to make them. Please help. Gutiar hero controller

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    \$\begingroup\$ Membrane overlay? \$\endgroup\$
    – Andy aka
    Oct 1, 2018 at 16:51

3 Answers 3


What you are looking at is a rubber dome switch. These are typically custom parts, and the minimum order quantity (and design costs) are likely to be out of your price range.

Depending on your requirements, you have a couple of options:

  • Some rubber dome switches are available in standard PCB-mountable packages (containing both the rubber dome and the switch contacts). The sizes and shapes will be limited, though.

  • Reuse parts from an existing rubber dome switch. For instance, if you needed one just like the one in the picture, you could cannibalize the switches from the original controller. If you needed to position the switches differently, you could cut apart the rubber between the domes and glue the resulting parts in place.

  • Consider using a tactile dome switch instead. These switches use a buckling metal dome instead of a rubber part. The metal dome is a reasonably standard part, and can be positioned on the board with adhesive tape. One caveat is that these switches are much "clickier" than rubber domes.

  • If you just need to detect a finger touch without pressure, you could use capacitive touch sensing. This will require a conductive surface on the switch.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I'll add that rubber membrane switches have a finite service life; the conductive rubber (and conducting compound on the PCB) disintegrates over time, leading to increased resistance. If longevity is a prime concern, I'd consider capacitive touch, followed by tactile. \$\endgroup\$
    – rdtsc
    Oct 1, 2018 at 17:58
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    \$\begingroup\$ @rdtsc In the case of the one OP pictured, there's also a chance that the membrane will tear/break at the bend location for each switch. I know that's what happened with the membrane switches in my guitar hero controller back in the day (which seems to be what OP took apart for this picture). It may also mean it's a fairly easy fix, since it had nothing to do with the electronic connections AFAIK. \$\endgroup\$
    – JMac
    Oct 1, 2018 at 19:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ It is actually possible to make your own dome switches out of silicone. It is a bit out of bounds for this site but not all that hard, even the price is not going to be extremely high. The rule of picking two out of good, fast, cheap is very relevant though. \$\endgroup\$
    – joojaa
    Oct 2, 2018 at 12:19

I have seen (in fact I bought a bag of 1,000 of them) individual (none-bespoke) rubber switches that include conductive rubber and dome for a single switch.

Like most other electronics bits, they should be easily available in China. Photo from a random Alibaba supplier.

enter image description here


It appears to be a moulded conductive rubber button. The two black strips are conductive rubber that bridge contacts on the PCB it fits over. These are typically custom devices, although Brady or someone might make some simple strip and matrix devices.


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