While the Xbox Elite is currently the best Xbox controller you can buy, its entry price is steep – around $ 150 at the time of writing. But it’s not the only pro-grade controller and luckily PowerA has something close to the Elite for around half the price.
It’s the PowerA Fusion Pro 2 and it’s a controller for the Xbox Series X | S and Xbox One with many of the same features you’ll find on the Elite and even a few you won’t find. Right now, this is one of the best budget alternatives to Microsoft’s flagship Xbox controller, you will definitely like it.
PowerA Fusion Pro 2
At the end of the line : If you like an Xbox Elite controller but don’t like the price, this is the alternative to get.
- Removable rear pallets
- Button remapping without software
- Two-stage trip stops
- Superb quality case
- Replaceable sticks and faceplate
- Integrated headset controls
- The handles get really dirty
- Paddles can come off too easily
- A single bulging stick
PowerA Fusion Pro 2: Pricing and availability
The PowerA Fusion Pro 2 is available for purchase now with a list price of $ 90 on the PowerA website. It is already possible to find a reduction, however. As of this writing, you can find the controller at most major electronics retailers like Best Buy and other third-party retailers like Amazon for $ 80.
PowerA Fusion Pro 2: What you will like
The PowerA Fusion Pro 2 has many of the features of budget third-party game controllers, but has a few features that bring it in line with more expensive controllers. For example, like pretty much all third-party Xbox controllers, the Fusion Pro 2 is wired, which at least means there’s no battery to worry about or charge. And since it uses USB-C, you’ll never be looking for a cable too long, either.
On the outside, the Fusion Pro 2 looks a lot like a standard Xbox controller. This is a good thing because it is comfortable to use and all the buttons are in the right place. Since it’s fully ready for the Xbox Series X | S era, you also get the dedicated share button in the middle. If you’re looking for trigger stops, you have two stages on both sides and each trigger has a slight texture on its edge to make it easier to hit in the heat of the moment.
The build quality is great and despite being more affordable, it doesn’t look cheap. It’s sturdy, but not too heavy, and has grippy rubber grips, uh, on the back. If you go for the black faceplate, you’ll also get some grip up front, designed to help keep palms sweaty out of its soft-touch finish.
The faceplate is changeable, however, and while there is only black or white available, you get both in the box and they easily snap in and out with tiny magnets that hold it in place. If you go for white, it’s a harder, smoother plastic finish (not soft to the touch for obvious reasons) with a touch of green around the sticks.
These are also replaceable, and while they require the faceplate to come off first, it’s no chore to insert a dome-shaped or longer stick if you prefer. Likewise, the rear paddles are removable if you don’t want to use them all, and if you don’t want them at all, the entire module can be replaced with a simple plastic cover. And it all comes in a fantastic carrying case.
The paddles themselves are very similar to the ones you’ll also find on the Xbox Elite. Magnetic contacts mean that even the slightest touch is all that is needed to activate them and they’re right at your fingertips. Remapping them is a snap too, with built-in control to do so and no need for a companion app.
The icing on the cake are the headphones’ integrated audio controls. They’re basic, with simple volume and mute functions, but it’s definitely better than having to manage them from the Xbox guide.
PowerA Fusion Pro 2: What you won’t like
Considering what you get for such an attractive price, there aren’t really many negatives to say. The most important is probably how dirty it seems to get.
I can already hear the comments; ” Wash your hands. “
I’m not sure why the grips on this controller seem to do worse than my now two-year-old Razer Wolverine TE when it comes to looking dirty, but damn it they are. Maybe it’s the material or the color that shows it more. Honestly, I don’t know, but keep a few wipes on hand.
There aren’t really a lot of negatives to say. The most important is probably how dirty it seems to get.
The paddles also have a habit of coming off if you get a little firm when pressing them down. They aren’t really required by a lot and it doesn’t take much to register a press, but if you’re a little excited it might be a little too much easy to send one flying across the room.
I would also have liked to see an additional domed stick included. The only one you get is the longest, but if you prefer to use two domes you can’t, and there’s also no choice to use one of standard length with a round top.
PowerA Fusion Pro 2: Competetion
There’s no shortage of good Xbox controllers, but there are a few that top the list. The first is the most obvious, the Xbox Elite v2. Compared already in this review, this is the standard set for Xbox controllers and the Fusion Pro 2 has a lot of similar features. The downside to the Elite is the price, but it’s wireless.
There’s also Razer’s Wolverine V2, which is similar in price to the Fusion Pro V2. It’s another one that comes with the new dedicated share button but has a very different design while also being comfortable to hold. It’s also wired, but you don’t have rear paddles, although there are additional buttons on the shoulders.
PowerA Fusion Pro 2: Should we buy it?
Choosing an Xbox controller is harder than ever, but in the best possible way. There are so many great options to choose from, but this is definitely one to add.
You should buy it if …
- Looking for rear paddles and remappable buttons
- You are on a budget
- You like the idea of ââbeing able to change sticks and breastplates
You shouldn’t buy this if …
- You really need to have a wireless controller
- Paddles and additional features are not important
The PowerA Fusion Pro 2 is a great Xbox controller. The negatives are really quite small considering the price you get for a pretty amazing price. It really is like a budget Elite controller and well worth your money.
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