Best Xbox controllers 2021: Get the edge with these official and third-party pads

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(Pocket-lint) - Our archetypal prime is the Microsoft Xbox Elite Series 2. Other bully options are offered by the Xbox Wireless Controller, PowerA Fusion Pro 2 Wired controller, the Razer Wolverine Tournament Edition and the SCUF Prestige.


The Xbox controller has a beauteous awesome lineage already - aft the somewhat unusual signifier adopted by the archetypal console's chunky gamepad, the Xbox 360 introduced a caller signifier that's stood the trial of time. 

It's lone been somewhat revised since the Xbox One years, and has remained beauteous akin for the Xbox Series X and Series S, arsenic well. That's a testament to a large spot of design, but determination are inactive immoderate limitations to it. Whether it's not rather the close signifier for you, oregon due to the fact that you privation immoderate other buttons and functionality, picking up a antithetic controller could beryllium a game-changer.

There are myriad controllers to take from retired there; immoderate volition connection much options, others antithetic sizes and textures, and we've tested a immense scope of them. We enactment them done their paces successful a assortment of games and genres to spot however they clasp up to the competition, investigating for latency, comfortableness and features to travel up with a broad last ranking.

Whether they're wired oregon wireless, however overmuch they cost, what extras travel bundled successful - each of these number successful our estimation alongside the basics of the controllers' physique prime and craftsmanship, truthful work connected to find retired which are the precise champion connected the marketplace close now. 

Best Xbox controller: Our Top Pick

Pocket-lint

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Microsoft Xbox Elite Series 2

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For

  • Excellent customisation
  • Extra buttons

Against

  • Expensive
  • Has been known to person hardware problems

Microsoft spied that radical were getting into customized controllers a fewer years agone and decided to instrumentality the marketplace itself, and the 2nd mentation of its controller is formidable.

Like galore pro controllers, this happening is pricey, but it's got the bonus of authoritative status, and a immense scope of customisation options to fto you tune it perfectly.

Whether that's rear paddles successful immoderate statement you similar oregon thumbsticks that defy you the close amount, this is the champion controller for astir radical close present - if they're consenting to pay!

Xbox controllers we besides recommend

Here are immoderate different Xbox controllers that we besides counsel checking out:

Xbox

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Xbox Wireless Controller

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For

  • Well-priced
  • Comfortable and large to use

Against

  • No other buttons
  • No rechargeable artillery by default

The adjacent procreation of Xbox consoles, the Xbox Series X and Series S, has brought with it a caller controller.

If you don't privation each the fancy customisation and are conscionable seeking casual wireless play, the authoritative controller is the champion stake for you.

It's got immoderate bully improvements implicit the Xbox One version, including a dedicated fastener for screenshotting and capturing video clips, with improvements to its grip and texture, too. 

Pocket-lint

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PowerA Fusion Pro 2 Wired controller

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For

  • Impressive physique quality
  • Swappable beforehand plates and customisable back-paddles

Against

  • Wired
  • Not the cheapest option

If you privation a controller that offers immoderate earnestly pro-level options, including swappable faceplates, other paddle controls and antithetic sticks, this is simply a large mode to get them.

PowerA's sequel to its ain large controller manages to support the outgo moderately controlled, chiefly by sticking to a wired connection.

If you tin unrecorded with that, it feels astonishing to usage and offers utmost responsiveness.

Pocket-lint

 Get the borderline   with these third-party and authoritative  pads photograph  11

Razer Wolverine Tournament Edition

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For

  • Loads of customized options including trigger stops
  • Cheaper than in-house Xbox options

Against

  • Still reasonably expensive
  • Wired option

Razer makes a full scope of peripherals that are large for Xbox gamers, including immoderate fantabulous headsets, and its Wolverine Tournament Edition is simply a likewise awesome controller.

This is precise overmuch modelled connected the authoritative size and shape, but adds a akin bevy of options to the Xbox Elite controller. Those see trigger stops (hugely utile successful shooters) and programmable buttons to acceptable up your ain shortcuts easy - you tin adjacent trigger higher oregon little instrumentality sensitivity connected the fly, a existent boon. 

It's a superb pad that besides impressively undercuts the terms of Microsoft's ain pro controller, though it is besides wired (which astir superior gamers volition archer you is amended for latency anyway). 

SCUF

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SCUF Prestige

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For

  • Make it nevertheless you want
  • Superb build-quality and authoritative design

Against

  • Can get ferociously expensive
  • Better worth alternatives

If existent customisation is your priority, look nary further than a SCUF controller. These modded versions of authoritative Xbox pads bring an astir boggling scope of options.

You tin take colours and finishes for astir each spot of the controller, arsenic good arsenic features similar other buttons and paddles, antithetic grips and thumbsticks and overmuch more.

The much you add, the much your terms adds up, but if we had an unlimited fund we mightiness good spell for a afloat kitted-out SCUF controller. 

Other products we considered

The Pocket-lint editorial squad spends hours investigating and researching hundreds of products earlier recommending our champion picks for you. We see a scope of factors erstwhile it comes to putting unneurotic our champion guides including physically investigating the products ourselves, user reviews, marque quality, and value. Many of the devices we see don’t marque our last champion guides.

These are the products we considered that yet didn't marque our apical 5:

How to take an Xbox controller

There are perfectly hundreds of options retired determination erstwhile it comes to caller Xbox controllers, truthful we've laid retired immoderate of the areas you mightiness privation to deliberation astir earlier you marque your choice.

Why should you bargain a caller Xbox controller?

This 1 mightiness dependable obvious, but determination are plentifulness of reasons wherefore you mightiness request a caller controller - you could beryllium looking to play sofa co-op with idiosyncratic astatine home, oregon you could arsenic person worn retired your existing controller already. Many of the options we've looked at, though, volition besides beryllium charismatic if you're simply looking for a controller that'll assistance you to upgrade your gaming with other buttons oregon options, which tin beryllium truly utile for competitory games.

What volition you usage the controller for?

This is cardinal - further to the above, earlier buying your controller you should enactment retired what you privation it for. Is it for a kid oregon younger idiosyncratic to bushed up without costing excessively much? Or is it to assistance you larn immoderate amended question and power options utilizing other paddles and switches? There's not overmuch constituent successful buying a pro controller if you don't truly request it, aft all.

What signifier bash you privation for your controller?

Another bully starting constituent to deliberation astir is whether you similar the default signifier of the controller that came with your Xbox. If so, astir of the third-party options retired determination transcript it, but if not determination are inactive immoderate alternatives that beryllium otherwise successful the hand.

Do you request other buttons?

This is simply a large 1 - galore of the nicer controllers retired determination adhd other buttons to the mix, which you tin programme yourself for customized controls. These are sometimes back-paddles oregon buttons, and are large for competitory games similar Call of Duty wherever you'll payment from much power without taking your fingers disconnected the analog sticks. If you're looking to get amended astatine a pugnacious game, we deliberation they're a large option.

Should you spell wired oregon wireless?

Another large determination comes successful the signifier of wirelessness - extracurricular of the authoritative Xbox options, this volition typically adhd immoderate wealth connected to a controller's price. So, if you cognize that you privation other buttons and features and don't caput having a wired tether, that's fine, but if being escaped from cables is cardinal past you'll person to instrumentality that into account.

More astir this story

There's lone 1 mode to truly trial controllers, and that's to usage them - each merchandise connected this database has been hand-tested by our squad to verify that it meets not lone the standards acceptable retired by its manufacturer, but our ain exacting expectations, too.

We've played with them crossed aggregate genres to get a consciousness of however they perform, tried retired their customisation options to get our ain cleanable acceptable and seen however they header nether stress. Build prime matters to us, arsenic does however coagulated and comfy they consciousness to hold.

On apical of that, we've experimented to cheque their wireless connectivity and range, artillery beingness and stableness - these aren't stats that we'll ever aboveground successful our mini-reviews, but they play a cardinal portion successful forming our wide judgement.

We've been investigating controllers for years, and person often tried not conscionable the versions that you spot connected the database above, but besides their predecessors, truthful you tin beryllium assured that we're not plucking our ideas retired of bladed air.

Writing by Max Freeman-Mills. Editing by Conor Allison. Originally published connected 21 July 2020.

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