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Xbox Series X|S controller Windows 11 review

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When gaming on a PC, a controller isn’t exactly a requirement but can be massively helpful in several games, especially the likes of Rocket League, FIFA or just about any racing game. Now there are many PC gaming peripherals available out there, first-party accessories are almost always better, albeit a bit expensive. 

In this article, we review the Xbox Series S/X Controller on Windows 11 to see how well it fares when used with a PC instead of an Xbox. 

Watch the Logitech G502X Plus review in English or Hindi below or continue reading the article.

Also read: Logitech G502X Plus review: Does top pricing fetch top performance?


Build Quality

My first impressions of the build quality are rather nice. This is a heavy controller with a nice bit of weight to it but it isn’t so heavy as to tire out your hands. If you’re comparing it to something cheaper like the usual 2.4GHz wireless controllers that you can pick off Amazon, there’s a bit of weight here.

That weight pays off as the controller not only has a nicer grip, but the vibration motors inside do a great job of giving you feedback from the game. In a racing game like Wreckfest or even a sim racing game like Assetto Corsa, the vibration is plenty enough to give you decent feedback on what’s going on with your car. 

The joysticks are also rather grippy and have a concave dome carved into them to rest your thumbs. The only complaint here is that Microsoft is still using pot-based joysticks instead of Hall effect sensors, which means you’ll eventually run into stick drift issues. But that’s the case with all of Microsoft’s controllers, including the Xbox Elite lineup. 

The buttons are also nice and snappy, although the glossy plastic means your fingers will easily slip off if you have even slightly oily or wet hands. The Xbox logo lights up, but other than that, there are no indicators on the controller. 

You get a decent amount of travel with the triggers, and while they’re not as good as the adaptive triggers on the DualShock 5, they’re pretty easy on the finger and will offer a much greater deal of control than your average off-the-shelf controller. 


Connectivity, Battery Life and Features

While the controller automatically connects to the Xbox, you’ve got to use Bluetooth with Windows. There is an optional 2.4GHz adaptor that Microsoft sells, but that’s a separate purchase, so we’re not going to consider it in the review. That said, having the option is always nice. 

Bluetooth connectivity is a one-time process that doesn’t take much time. All you have to do is hold down the connection button at the back of the controller for three seconds, and a Windows 11 PC will automatically detect the controller and will ask to pair. Once paired, you press the Xbox button to power up the controller and it’ll automatically connect to your PC within a few seconds. 

There’s no noticeable input latency either, even if your PC is connected to multiple Bluetooth devices, and the connection is reliable as long as you have enough battery power. Finally, you can also use it in a wired mode thanks to the Type-C port on the controller, which is also required for updating to a new firmware version. 

The controller takes two AA batteries as its power source. Users have had a love-hate relationship with this approach, but the batteries last around 8-10 hours in my use case and are fairly easy to replace. You also don’t need to worry about battery life degradation as there’s no internal battery.

Once again, Microsoft has a charge kit for the controller featuring rechargeable batteries, so you can go down that route if you want. There are also numerous third-party charging kits and docks available at nearly the same price. 

As long as you’re using the controller on a PC, it’s not going to offer much in terms of features when compared to just about any other controller on the market. You can use the Xbox Accessories app to test the controller, create custom profiles and keybinds as well as update the firmware, but that’s about all you can do. If you want, you can use the controller as a mouse replacement which can come in handy at times.


Pricing

At the time of writing, the controller sells for ₹4,899 or about $60. That’s a pretty decent price for the controller you’re getting. However, considering third-party wireless controllers like the Redgear Pro Wireless are available for a much lower ₹1,399 or about $17, you can choose a cheaper alternative.

That said, no third-party controller comes even close when it comes to the convenience, build quality and compatibility of the Xbox Series X controller. So if you have the budget, this is a very good controller that’ll last you a long time and will be compatible with every game and PC gaming platform and with the Xbox.

Also read: Keychron K2 V2 review: Best entry-level mechanical keyboard?

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: yadullahabidi@pm.me.

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