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Huh, I own two of those and some friends of mine, too. There are about 7–8 iBuffalo controllers and none of them has any problems with the d-pad.

Are Sony and MS controllers „better“? Maybe built or tested better, but when I think of the awful xbox 360 d-pad or the uncomfortable wings of the PS1–3 controller …

Give it a try and open the controller. Maybe there is a problem with badly cut plastic dampers or so and you can fix this.