Should you upgrade to the new Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2?
Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is a big upgrade, but pricey
Beyond the improvements to durability, the Series 2 also sports tension control for thumbsticks, which can be a boon for competitive play, allowing you to crank up sensitivity without losing accuracy. It comes with three stages of trigger locking too, as well as three separate profiles for bindings. Unlike the previous Elite controller, this one also comes with Bluetooth as standard for use with Project xCloud on mobile and compatible PCs.
Perhaps the best thing about the controller is the charging dock and internal battery. Microsoft says the battery life lasts around 40 hours depending on how hard you push it, but I've very easily exceeded that to around 60 hours in early testing. There's no way to say how well the battery will handle its lifespan over time, as pertain to battery degradation and so on, but early signs are very positive.
Still, having four additional (optional) paddle buttons on the back, tension-controlled joysticks, and lockable triggers is a hard sell for $180, I would argue, given that an Xbox One S console itself starts at around $250 these days. The Series 2 is by no means so good that it's a must-buy purchase for anyone, even the most serious gamers. The base controller is more than good enough, and costs only $40.
If you want the best of the best, though, the Series 2 is worth a look. You may get a lot of value out of the charging dock, additional features, and the ability to bind system-functions such as Xbox screenshotting and TV volume controls to the paddles, making the upgrade more than worth the asking price.
Probably the best controller ever
With improved parts and durability, the Series 2 is everything the original Elite controller should have been and much more, but it's still very pricey.
Best on a budget
Bluetooth without breaking the bank
The base Xbox One controller more than gets the job done, with an ergonomic design and robust materials. However, you'll have to pick up a rechargeable battery kit separately.
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Jez Corden is the Managing Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!
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