Main Page     Dancing Stage: Party Edition table
EuroMix Arcade FAQ     EuroMix 2 Arcade FAQ     EuroMix PSX FAQ

Dance Mat FAQ
version 1.02 - last updated 30/5/5
latest version always available from

1) Introduction
2) Just tell me which mat I should get!
3) Mat Problems
4) Soft Mats
     -Soft Mat Maintenance
5) Hard Pads
6) Modded Mats
7) Home-Made Mats
8) FAQ History and Credits

1) Introduction
   So, you've got hold of your dance game - great. Now you just need a dance mat to play it with. Only trouble is, the more you look at what is available, the more you find. There are maybe 25 different mats available in the UK one way or another, varying in price from 'free' to several hundred pounds - and no way of telling which one is right for you. Until now!

   This FAQ will attempt to give you some info on every mat you can get hold of, so you can make the right decision. New mats are coming out all the time, so the chances are that most of the time this FAQ will be out of date. Fortunately you can at least use it to get an idea of which companies make the best mats, and then if they have a new model that I haven't covered here, you can be pretty sure that it's a good bet.

   There are three basic kinds of mats; soft, hard, and home-made. (Okay so home-made ones can be soft or hard, but you know what I mean). Soft mats are widely available, cheap, and often have lots of problems... but can be Modded, which makes them much better while also taking a bit of time and effort to do. Hard mats are harder to get hold of, more expensive, better than soft mats... but can still go wrong. Home-made mats are as good as you make them, and should work out cheaper than a hard-mat.

   One other note is that soft mats are generally bigger than the arcade pads - the arrow-pads are bigger, and they are spaced further apart. Add this to the fact that you'll generally want to play on soft mats without shoes, and you find that you actually have an appreciably different experience from the arcade. So, if you're the master of the mat at home, don't expect your skills to carry over to the arcade perfectly!

   There is a section devoted to each kind of mat, as well as a section describing the full range of mat ailments. If you want to make sure you get exactly the right mat, then maybe you'd better look over this entire guide. If you know what type you want but want to know more about the choices within that type, check out the relevant section. If you just want to know the answer - which mat should you get - and can't be bothered reading and thinking, no problem - see the next section!

2) Just tell me which mat I should get!
   If you're reasonably competent at making things, have enough time, and have access to suitable hardware stores, you should almost certainly build your own mat. Go straight to section 7.

   If you can't be doing with all that hassle, you probably want a nice soft mat. Right now, the new Logic 3 (available from Amazon and Woolworths) seems to be the best. Competition Pro and Ravestation mats are both excellent and widely available, but they don't have the X and O buttons in the right place for Solo mode. If you're prepared to spend a little more and do some online ordering, go get one of the legendary Red Octane Ignition mats.
    On the other hand, ANY soft mat with a 12 month warranty on it should be safe - if it goes wrong in that year, you have every right to get a refund or replacement.

   If you're actually quite rich, and have the odd hundred quid lying around, then some kind of hard mat is probably the best thing for you. Either you go for the new Logic 3 metal mats (v2.0) stocked by Spectravideo (£100), or again you're going to have to do some overseas ordering - and try eBay first. There are a few different ones available, but the ones that seems to have least problems are the metal ones (as opposed to the plastic ones), which look just like the arcade pads and feel like them too.

   If you're insanely rich, why not just buy the whole arcade machine? I'm no expert on this, but it will set you back a few thousand quid however you do it. There's a nice guide to this kind of thing at called "Choosing a DDR Machine - and how to care for it" under their 'tips and guides' section.

3) Mat Problems
   Every mat has problems. Some are inevitable, some can be fixed, some crop up and mean you should take the mat back to the shop and get a new one. In the later sections I'll also be referring to some of these problems by my own names for them, so if you don't know what I'm talking about, read what I mean here.

   If you're lucky, your dance mat will have the X top left and the O top right. This means if you play Solo mode (in Dancing Stage: Party Edition), to hit the diagonal arrows, you just press exactly where they would be. Great. Unfortunately, most decent mats seem to have gone for having X bottom left and O bottom right (with the new Logic 3 being a notable exception). This leads to the XO problem (which co-incidentally looks like a frustrated smiley) - in Solo mode, for 'Up-Left' you have to hit 'Down-Left', and similarly for 'Up-Right'. This is possible, but very annoying! The only thing you can do about this is make sure the mat you buy has these buttons in the right place. If it doesn't and you haven't totally worn it out, I think this is valid grounds for returning it to the shop and getting a refund. If you can't do that, then don't worry - just make sure your next mat has them in the right place, and then you can still use your old mat for playing Double mode!

-Floor Slipping
   The most common problem with soft dance mats is floor slipping. You do a step, and you and the entire mat slide across the floor a short way. Over the course of a song you might find you have moved entirely across the room, and in the worst cases this will pull your vertically mounted PS2 off the table onto the hard floor and destroy it. Beware!
   Unfortunately, this is quite hard to fix, and isn't something you can really take the mat back to the shop for. You can modify your dancing style to minimise the problem (not fun), or you can do something to fix your mat to the floor. Sticky pads (which come with some mats) are fine if you don't mind having a dance mat permanently stuck in that room. Other than that, there isn't much you can do - generally, the more expensive the soft mat is, the less it will tend to floor-slip. If this drives you bananas, you'll probably need to look into modding.
   If you have two soft dance mats and want to play Double mode, then floor slip will slowly spread those two mats apart, making it very hard indeed! In this case you really need to do something to stick the mats together. Again, this is only really good if it is relatively permanent, but is still worth doing. A good compromise is Velcro - get long strips, separate them into their fuzzy and hooky parts, and cut the fuzzy side in half. Glue these fuzzy bits to the underside of your dance mats. You then join them together at will with the long hooky strip you have left. Can't vouch for how well this works though - it's just an idea at the moment!

-Mat Slipping
   If you have a really bad soft mat, then you will encounter Mat Slipping. This is where the top part of the mat is not attached to the bottom part, so when you dance - even if the bottom of the mat is glued to the floor - the top part tends to move around, sometimes rucking up the mat entirely. Imagine dancing on a sleeping bag - that's what it feels like. This is a terrible, terrible problem, and generally afflicts any soft mat that costs less than £15. It would require some serious (warranty destroying) mat surgery to fix, and is just not worth the effort. Take it back to the shop and buy a better one!

-Sticky Response
   This can happen to any mat of any kind anywhere ever, including the arcade ones themselves. What you want is to hit the arrow at the right time, and for it to transmit that right-time signal so you get your Perfect rating for that step. When you have a Sticky Response problem, a tap on the beat can become a tap off the beat, seven taps all over the place, or (if you didn't hit it hard enough), your effort can be totally ignored and you get a Full-Combo destroying Boo. This problem is just a sad fact of reality - if you hit things a lot, they tend to break, even if they were designed to be hit in that way.
   Once this has happened, your only choice is to take the mat back to the shop (if you're within the 12 month warranty... you did get a mat with a 12 month warranty, didn't you?), or to fix it yourself - which is generally not easy. Inside most soft mats is a kind of printed circuit board, and you can get a sticky response when this gets worn off. I think that you could fix this by covering the dodgy sections with conducting paint... but I'm yet to prove this, as after 9 months the modelling shop still hasn't got the stuff in.
   To avoid this happening, you can get an expensive mat (generally the more expensive, the less likely it is to go Sticky), and you can also avoid mistreating your mat - don't let the dog walk on it, don't let anyone play on it in vicious shoes - basically, all the things it tells you not to do on that little insert that you threw away. I would even recommend not folding your mat - if you can store it flat then you have a much better chance of it lasting longer.

-Button Override
   On some mats, pressing one of the symbol buttons and an arrow at the same time results in the arrow signal being ignored. So, if you hit the arrow perfectly, but your big toe happens to also hit the edge of the X pad, your step doesn't register. Terrible! In the Soft Mat section below, I'll indicate if the mat has this problem in the cases I'm actually aware of.
   Fortunately, there is an easy fix if you're playing Dancing Stage: Party Edition. Go Options > Control Settings > Dance Play Settings. Now simply set the controller you are using to 'Off'; as the text at the bottom of the screen says, this will stop the non-directional buttons being used as input, thus solving the problem.

-Doesn't Work Properly
   Many of you may already be familiar with this technical term. Maybe your mat fails to respond entirely. Maybe the up arrow gives a down respose and vice-versa. Maybe just plugging the mat in crashes your console. Generally don't bother trying to fix these - just send it straight back and get a refund. Buy another mat while you're waiting for your refund to come through - it could take a while, but if someone sells you a product through any official channel (even eBay) that blatantly doesn't work, you should be able to get your money back. Also, e-mail me at to let me know which mat it was, so I can warn people about it in this FAQ!

4) Soft Mats
   Here's a table collating all the information I have on soft mats. In a lot of cases, you can't actually buy the mat concerned in this country, and the official sellers often don't export overseas, so I've just wimped out and told you to go look on eBay! Also if a mat is no longer available, I just link off to eBay and Amazon, which have them from time to time. If you have anything to add, please let me know at

"Name" - Manufacturer
Price (approx.)
Can Buy it from:
Button Override
Blaze Ravestation (New - has L/R buttons)
Game, Dixons bad ? Although now with L/R arrows, this is apparently not as good as the earlier version - which is odd. If you disagree, let me know at!
Blaze Ravestation (Old - no L/R buttons)
Generally good - one had a bad folded up arrow, but in such rare cases you can always get them to replace the mat with a working one.
Big Ben
Amazon, Dixons ? ? ??? Anyone got one of these, please tell me what it's like!
"Dance Mat Pro" - Competition Pro (New - has L/R buttons)
Extremely Brilliant. With the L/R buttons you can now play loads of other Playstation games! May suffer from Mat-Slipping, like its predecessor.
Competition Pro (Old - no L/R buttons)
Brilliant - can get an A on 9-foot songs with it! One went sticky within a month and was replaced, under the warranty, with a good one. Not good for modding, however, as when stuck down suffers from Mat-Slipping.
Amazon, eBay
Second hand only. Looks like the Venom mat… which doesn't bode well.
Joytech Dancing Mate
Virgin, good ? Although very resilent and reliable, these mats have big problems with both Floor-slipping and Mat-slipping. To be of any use at all, they must be modded, and then they're great.
Jungle Book-bundled 'Official' dance mat
The Jungle Book Groove Party bundle (with this mat and the game) can only be had second hand, but the mat is now available separately at HMV. Adequate, but went sticky after several months of use.
Konami Official
Good but no longer available anywhere it seems!
£5.34 - £17.96
A large range is available, and info on these seems sparse. Cheap, especially when bought in bulk, but don't forget postage and the 17.5% VAT that will be added when they arrive in the UK!
Logic 3 (new - Black on the back)
Woolworths, Amazon
Sturdy like the Compeition Pro, but closer to arcade dimensions (i.e. smaller than the CP) and without the XO problem. 9-foot songs have been passed on one. Possibly the best soft mat currently available! (Woolworths' website seems to think it is made by Thrustmaster.)
Logic 3 (old - White on the back)
Don't bother
"Utter s**t" "Bad" Luckily you can't seem to get hold of these any more even if you wanted to.
Mad Katz
eBay, or Asda!
Hard to find, closer to arcade-pad size, but serious sticky problems apparently.
MyMyBox Deluxe Dance Pad Ver2.5A
??? Looks like the RedOctane ones... they actually have a whole range, with the others coming in at $60, $50 and $30. Not sure about shipping to the UK.
Got one of these? Tell me about it!
RedOctane Exclusive
1/2 the price, 3/4 as good as the 'Ignition' (see below)
RedOctane Igntion
Very good - quite expensive! One from eBay gave a Left as well as Down when hitting Down, which caused problems. Another actually died after 1 month of use! But most users seem very happy.
"Elite" - Venom £9.99 Game good ? No word on this one, but based on past performance by Venom (see below), my advice is to stay away.
"Performance 2" - Venom
"Free" when you join Special Reserve for £7.50
Special Reserve
Mat-slip of doom! They should pay you to play with this mat, not the other way around. Avoid at all costs.

Soft Mat Maintenance
    When you first get out your new soft mat, I recommend the following. Unfold it slowly and carefully on the floor. Gently smooth out any serious creases. Then leave it alone for about two hours, just to settle. This takes some willpower but is definitely worth it in the end: if you immediately start dancing on it you are likely to crush the creases, making damage to the mat more likely. When it is good and ready, try a 1-foot song, then a 2-footer, then 3 all the way up to your current skill level. This should sort out any remaining creases.

   Needless to say, try to avoid any damage coming to the mat - watch out for high-heeled shoes, drinks, puppies, babies and other causes of general havoc. Also it seems that simply folding the mat can wear away the inner printed circuit, causing far more harm than if you dance on it for months on end, so try to fold it as rarely as possible. I store mine flat under the sofa, while another idea is to suspend it in a wardrobe from a clip-style coathanger.

5) Hard Pads

   Until early 2003, these were not generally available in the UK, and you'd have to find a Hard Pad on eBay or get some company to send you one from America. But as of 14/4/3, Special Reserve started selling a metal mat made by Logic 3 for £100, and they are starting to appear over here in greater numbers.
   In general, hard pads are much better quality than Soft Mats, but still not infallible. Here are the individual makes I know of:

Logic 3 metal mat v2.0
   The initial batch of these (v1.0) seemed alright, the main complaint being the loud creaking and cracking noises the panels make in the course of normal dancing. Unfortunately many of these pads quickly started to suffer from Sticky Response, and many were sent back. A reasonable amount of mat-modfication was found to fix the issue, but when buying a hard pad you really want the job to be done properly already.
   Logic 3 tweaked the product a little, the clearest external difference being the addition of more rubber feet (the first batch had 60, the new batch somewhat more). Sadly, these mats (v1.1?) still suffered from the same problems.
   Just as they did with their soft mats, Logic 3 then went back to the drawing board and came back with a much better version, the Logic 3 metal mat v2.0 available as of 20/10/3. It turns out to be sturdier but, as with any metal pad it seems, still not totally infallible. Available in a surprising number of gaming shops, and online from dabs for £75 (including postage). The main ways of telling them apart are that the v2.0 has a built-in control box (instead of a separate one), does not have lights under each panel, and the background of the 'Logic 3' logo is now silver, whereas it was white on the v1.0.

Metal Dancing Platform with Rail/Handle
   Trying to get a metal pad with a handle built in used to be nigh-on impossible, but just lately this seems to have been fixed. Both play-asia and lik-sang are now offering them, at £112.69 (free delivery) or £65.46 (delivery extra) respectively. Since websites often re-organise, I usually only link to their main page and let you find the right page from there. In this case, I'll make an exception: play-asia's is here and lik-sang's is here. All that is known so far about these mats is that play-asia delivers them verrrry slowly...

Cobalt Flux pad
   Expensive at $299, not including shipping out to England (which costs 'quite a bit'), the Cobalt Flux does appear to be the best available pad yet. The electronics are housed in a separate 'control box', which makes it less likely to get broken, and if the control box does break, they replace it. Originally as many as 1 in 15 control boxes had to be replaced, although a new model was brought out that is more reliable. The most impressive thing about these mats is they have an entire forum of their own (at the website) where you can discuss all your problems with the manufacturers and other users. From the look of it, they really do care, and problems do get fixed - it just takes time.
    Aside from the control-box problems, these mats seem to be indestructible, to the extent that you can even drive a car over one!

Konami official arcade pads
   Seeing players desperately seeking good metal pads, and having the means to manufacture them already in place, Konami actually sell their own literally arcade-quality pads. But for a cost of around £1000 (not to mention £200 odd postage), and without even the back bar being included, you'd be better off with a Cobalt Flux it seems.

Dancing King hard mat
   "Brilliant", reports one pleased user, "but down arrow became sticky eventually".

MyMyBox Konamix 2000 solo mode metal pad (6 button)
   One user is on record as being pleased with his. They go for $200 at MyMyBox. One notable selling point was that they make "0%" noise when you hit the arrows - something they've presumably improved from the old version, which was very noisy and very similar to the (old) Logic 3 metal pads.

Burn Star dance mat
   Appears to be identical to the MyMyBox pads - see above.

"Metal Arcade-style pads"
   Very good, replicating the look and scale of the arcade pads - but still get sticky sometimes. Not sure exactly who makes them, but this is what you'll see them under on eBay. Probably the same as the generic Logic 3 v1.0/MyMybox type of pads.

Konami 'Dance Performance' hard mat
   Another good mat from those redoctane people. Still some people have expressed disappointement with it, especially when compared to the (more expensive) Cobalt Flux (see above). Has even been described as 'utter poopy'...

"DDR Hard Pad Plastic"
Good, but one user reported that his "broke after 6 months of la senorita virtual".

6) Modded Mats
   A cheap soft mat can be improved by 'modding'. This usually amounts to mounting it on a bit of wood, thus preventing floor-slip by the sheer weight of it. Definitely a good idea if you're the least bit DIY-capable. Also means your mat will never be folded up again! Search the net for 'mat modding', or see the guides at or .

   There are also a number of simple modding ideas. You could stick velcro to the pad and the floor and hold it that way. Or you could just velcro it in the same way to a large bit of wood. Sticking a rubber mat of some kind underneath should fix slippage a little. You can buy anti-slip bits of material for rugs - try sticking them to the bottom of your mat.

   Some of the metal mats, such as MyMyBox or Logic 3 (which are almost identically designed), require some modding for decent performance. Try .

7) Home-Made Mats
   If you really know your DIY, you can simply buy the necessary components and build your very own super-cool dance pad. This is ultimately the best and coolest solution, but you need the skillz to make it work! As with Modded Mats, either search on-line for "home-made dance pad", or have a look at the articles at (which has instructional videos!), or
   If you think that you don't need any help, the only information you really need to know is that the arcade pads are each 11" (279mm) square, and the two pads are separated by a distance of 1 and 13/16" (46mm).

8) FAQ History and credits

   Thanks to the people at ddruk, ddrfreak,, the playstation boards, and everyone else that has one way or another told me something that adds to this FAQ!

30/5/5 v1.02 Thanks to Bucko for telling me about the 'Burn Star' mats.

19/8/4 v1.01 Little bits have been added over time. Most recently updated the news a bit on metal pads.

26/10/3 v1.0 Corrected some little niggling things, and put in the news about these metal mats with a bar/rail/handle built in. Thanks to air_jnr for prompting me to update this FAQ!

21/10/3 v0.97 Added the new info about Logic 3's Metal Mat v2.0, as reported by gozaimas on Also added Cyberg's useful comments describing the Joytech 'Dancing Mate' mats in detail - i.e., great apart from the slippiness.

16/10/3 v0.9 Proper revamp, with the final verdict on Metal Logic 3s (not good), and many other details that had come to my attention. Also corrected spelling of 'permenant' to 'permanent'. Feel much better now.

30/4/3 v0.82 Thanks to Ketil Froyn for finding out about these new Joytech 'Dancing Mate' mats. Also the Metal Logic 3 pads are now out, and looking good! I've finally got my act together and looked into this whole MyMyBox thing, and I've put in the Soft Mat Maintenance section.

25/3/3 v0.81 Metal Logic 3 pads won't be out until at least 7/4/3, according to Lawrence who spoke to Logic 3 directly!

15/3/3 v0.8 Thanks to Honey Monster for pointing out the existence of Cobalt Flux, and further recommending the new Logic 3 soft mats. Also to Tashbops for the important news that 9-footers can be passed on the new Logic 3s. And we now have Neomantix's opinion that the RedOctane metal pads are 'utter poopy' :)

27/2/3 v0.7 Added Zell_KFF and AkumaGM's bad Igntion experiences, and the_ditz's discovery of a Mad Katz pad at Asda that suffered a quick and sticky death! Also added the mat modding ideas from all sorts of people on ddruk.

17/2/3 v0.6 Insert comment on mat-scale vs arcade-scale, New Competition Pro mats don't suffer button override (thanks Bopman!), lots of annoying typos fixed, and this section added too.

16/2/3 v0.5 After months of lurking on message boards and forums, finally put everything I've learned into this one big document. Yay!

Send comments, suggestions, questions, mistakes etc to:
Feedback makes the world go round!

This document copyright Tim Mannveille 2003, and if you want to reproduce or distribute it, ask me first ( and then I'll almost certainly say yes.
Right now it should only appear at the following: