Windows Central Verdict
The GameSir T4 Kaleid is a sight to behold, with the lights on and off. The controller feels terrific to use with its mechanical controls and hall effect sticks, and the customization options, both ad-hoc and in the app are a joy to use. I just wish it was as multi-platform as advertised and could be used on Xbox and Playstation, but if you want a great PC or Switch controller, you'll love it.
Funky RGB lighting
Magnetic hall effect thumbsticks prevent stick drift
Gyroscope motion aiming
Satisfyingly tactile and mechanical buttons
Impressive control customization options via a dedicated app
Only compatible with PC, Nintendo Switch and Android
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When the press release for the GameSir T4 Kaleid originally landed in my inbox, I could tell from the photos I was going to love at least the aesthetics of this controller, but in my testing, it's proved more than just a pretty face. In fact, besides appreciating the fancy RGB lights of the T4 Kaleid, I've been well and truly spoiled by the use of its hall effect thumbsticks and mechanical buttons and find myself utterly heartbroken I can't use this controller on my Xbox console.
That's really all I have negative to say about this controller, so if you're interested in an eye-catching accessory for PC gaming, which comes with endless options for customizing your controls, then read on for my full GameSir T4 Kaleid review.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Price, availability and specs
The GameSir T4 Kaleid Wired Controller is available directly from GameSir, or from Amazon for $41.99 in the US and £41.99 in the UK. The GameSir Kaleid is also available on the official GameSir store on AliExpress. As far as I'm aware, GameSir isn't an easy brand to get hold of in physical stores, so you'll need to order their products online, but this may change in the future as the brand grows.
|Category||GameSir Kaleid Wired Controller|
|Connectivity||Wired, 2m detachable USB-C cable|
|Controls||Microswitch ABXY face buttons|
|Row 2 - Cell 0||Hall Effect Magnetic triggers and thumbsticks|
|Row 3 - Cell 0||6-axis gyro sensor for aiming and steering|
|Row 4 - Cell 0||Master button for on-device control|
|Row 5 - Cell 0||Rear M1 and M2 remappable buttons|
|Row 7 - Cell 0||Dedicated GameSir T4 Kaleid app|
|Row 8 - Cell 0||Optional hair trigger settings|
|Compatibility||Windows 10/11, Switch and Android 8.0 and above devices|
|Audio||3.5mm audio jack|
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Build quality & design
At first, the GameSir T4 Kaleid out the box takes an unassuming form, the design is akin to retro translucent Xbox controllers, and I've previously mentioned it reminds me specifically of the Xbox 360 Afterglow controllers. The retro vibes are undeniable.
The clear plastic of the controller lets you see the innards from the button plates with their fetching gold lettering and black PCB to the rumble motors, which I found a really neat visual. In fact, I was so impressed by how they looked under the translucent smoky shell that I had to record a video of them.
Upon plugging the GameSir T4 Kaleid into a PC or Switch, it immediately lights up and shows you exactly how much it shines, the lights are vivid but not glaring, and you can use the software that GameSir suggests to tinker the lights to your preference.
I had a lot of fun with the different light effects on the controller before I even started a game. The controller looks its best in the dark, and that’s a good thing.
You can change the light show without the app just by pressing the M button and moving the analog sticks left and right for four lighting modes or up and down for brightness. The USB-C cable that comes with it is durable and doesn't get tangled easily, but it's only six-foot long, which might be too short for playing on the Nintendo Switch comfortably from your couch. It's more than enough for a PC where you're closer to the screen.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Ergonomics & Comfort
The GameSir T4 Kaleid is really comfortable to use; despite it not being compatible with Xbox, it feels very similar ergonomically to an Xbox Series X|S controller, even more so with the grip texture on the back. With the clear plastic casing, you can be fooled at first by thinking the controller would feel cheap to use, but this isn't the case at all, and I really enjoyed how lightweight it was.
There are two buttons on the rear that can be mapped as you please, and these sit underneath the middle fingers and are comfortable to use. I prefer these flat mappable buttons to the paddles on my Elite Series 2 Core controller as they sit more naturally in hand.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Controls & Performance
The controls are where the GameSir Kaleid controller shines; they are just a joy to use. The mechanical switch ABXY buttons are incredibly satisfying and tactile, making gameplay feel extra precise. You also have the option to turbo-map the buttons. Pressing M and the Y button, for example, will engage turbo mode, which will repeatedly press a button for you. Great for spamming your resource generators in Diablo 4. Even the D-pad felt like it had more precise movement when pressing down than I'm used to.
The controller also boasts hall effect thumbsticks, which use magnetic sensors to measure the position and movement. This means you don't risk stick drift, as traditional cheaper mechanisms can wear down over time and heavy usage. It's impossible to really test these claims over time for this review. Still, I can say the controller feels surprisingly durable given its lightweight and plastic materials, and the sticks did feel remarkably sensitive (which I could adjust accordingly).
The triggers can be changed on the fly directly from the controller M button to be hair-trigger responsive, which can be preferred for shooters, just hold the button and tap the trigger to switch between modes. You'll want to change them back for a session of Mario Kart. If I could share one minor bugbear, it would be that the triggers themselves could stand to have a little more weight to them, but that could just be down to my personal preference.
The Nintendo Switch infuriatingly has an alternative layout of the ABXY buttons, but the GameSir accounts for this by letting you switch between Nintendo's layout and the more traditional PC/Xbox layout by holding down the M button and tapping A.
Another unique selling point of the T4 Kaleid is the option to use the 6-axis gyroscope to aim or steer by tilting the controller. This can provide a more natural and precise way to aim in shooters rather than using the joysticks, but for me personally, I couldn't get the hang of it as too used to the traditional methods. This may be fun for my son to try with racing games as it may be easier for him to understand how to steer.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: App and customization
GameSir did drop me a note prior to receiving this that the controller would need a firmware update out of the box, and luckily with the app, this was super simple.
What I did find strange is that sometimes the app would just decide my controller wasn't connected. However, it would still be working just fine, so it didn't affect my usage in-game, but I did notice a couple of times I had to disconnect and reconnect from the USB slot to get it to show up for customization, which was annoying but I'm hoping a further update may fix.
The app offers an impressive amount of customization options to really make this controller your own; you can create profiles for different game types and tinker with everything from the stick sensitivity and the individual vibration levels on each side to the light settings. Want to adjust min and max dead zones? Use this app. Want to turn off the rumble in the triggers? Use this app. It really does let you play with every element of the controller.
The app also lets you activate an audio-reactive mode on the lights, but this will only work with a headset plugged in, and if I'm using a wired controller, you can bet I'm not using a wired headset because that's going to end in a tangled disaster.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Competition
The most straightforward and obvious comparison can be made between the GameSir T4 Kaleid and the G7 Wired controller. They retail for a similar price, and the G7 has the benefit of being compatible with Xbox. Both of these controllers have the mechanical switch ABXY face buttons which I enjoy immensely, but you are getting the benefit of added hall-effect triggers and thumbsticks with the T4 Kaleid. Between the two, it really comes down to what you want to use the controller for and how much these extra features matter to you. You're getting much broader compatibility with the G7, but not the fancy parts and lighting.
If striking lighting is what you're looking for, a cheaper alternative would be the PowerA Spectra Infinity Enhanced controller, which, again, due to the lack of hall effect components, would be compatible with PC and Xbox alike. This controller is often on sale for $34.99, has a couple of mappable buttons, and you can also customize the lighting effects with an app. For me, though, I think the GameSir T4 Kaleid stands out in the aesthetics department due to its transparency, so it depends on what appeals to your taste.
GameSir T4 Kaleid Controller: Should you buy?
You should buy this if ...
- You want a controller for PC and Nintendo Switch that has a unique eye-catching style
- You want mechanical controls and hall-effect thumbsticks
- The transparent design appeals to you
- You prefer low-latency wired controllers
You shouldn't buy this if ...
- You want to play on Xbox or Playstation consoles
- You sit far away from your Switch (the cable isn't very long)
Whilst I'm gutted I can't use this with my Xbox Series S, I did implement a workaround by connecting it to my PC and streaming from my console. It's not the best solution, but I love how this controller feels in my hands. It's now my go-to as the best controller for PC gaming, and I'm tempted to get the GameSir G7 as well to enjoy the mechanical face buttons on Xbox. I have to say; overall, this controller exceeded my expectations. It's not just a flashy toy; it's a well-designed device that shows GameSir knows what gamers want.
Take your gaming to the next level
With a transparent design and personalized audio-reactive lighting effects, you'd be fooled by thinking the GameSir T4 Kaleid is a novelty controller, but under its pleasing veneer, it packs motion aim and steer technology, Hall-Effect magnetic joysticks and micro-switch face buttons that make this controller a joy to use.
Jen is a News Writer for Windows Central, focused on all things gaming and Microsoft. Anything slaying monsters with magical weapons will get a thumbs up such as Dark Souls, Dragon Age, Diablo, and Monster Hunter. When not playing games, she'll be watching a horror or trash reality TV show, she hasn't decided which of those categories the Kardashians fit into. You can follow Jen on Twitter @Jenbox360 for more Diablo fangirling and general moaning about British weather.