Unveiled during Microsoft's E3 showcase, the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is "designed to meet the needs of today’s competitive gamers"
Microsoft has taken the covers off its next-generation Xbox controller – the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2.
Unveiled during the company’s E3 showcase in Los Angeles, and “designed to meet the needs of today’s competitive gamers”, the firm claims its Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 offers 30 new ways to “play like a pro”.
You can improve your aim with adjustable-tension thumbsticks, for instance, shoot faster using the controller’s shorter hair trigger locks, and tailor the controller by storing three profiles on the controller itself. This allows you to switch between profiles on the fly, depending on what game you’re playing.
Microsoft also used the event to announce plans for the Xbox 2, currently codenamed Project Scarlett.
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Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 release date
The Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is available to preorder from Microsoft ahead of its November release date.
It will then go on sale in 24 Xbox One markets, via Microsoft as well as third-party retailers, on 4 November 2019.
The first markets include the UK, US, Austria, Belgium, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
Other markets will be able to buy the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 in time for Christmas.
Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 price
The Xbox Elite Series 2 costs £159.99 including VAT in the UK, or $179.99 in the US.
For that price you get the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2 plus a carrying case, set of six thumbsticks (two standard, two classic, one tall and one wide dome), set of four paddles (two medium and two mini), set of two D-pads (standard and faceted), thumbstick-adjustment tool, charging dock for in-case or out-of-case charging, and braided USB type-C cable.
Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 features
Interchangeable thumbsticks and paddle shapes
The Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 offers greater hardware customisation with its interchangeable thumbsticks and paddles. You can choose from standard, classic, tall and wide dome sticks, as well as between medium and mini paddles. Plus, add one of two D-pads, either standard or faceted.
Each of these can be set up using the updated Xbox Accessories app which lets you additionally remap buttons, triggers, bumpers and even remap voice commands to physical buttons.
In addition to being able to choose what style of thumbstick you want to use, when adjusting the tension, you can choose between three resistance settings – low (61.5gF), medium (73.1gF) and high (86.3gF).
These settings have been designed to match either the thumbstick resistance seen on the Xbox 360 or the resistance found on standard Xbox One controllers.
Microsoft has also developed firmware to automatically calibrate thumbsticks for improved dead zone control.
Shorter hair trigger lock settings
The trigger pull distance on the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is the shortest ever seen on an Xbox controller, helping you fire faster.
The controller now automatically recognises adjustments to the hair-trigger locks, too, meaning you won’t need to make changes in the Xbox Accessories app every time you change the trigger locks.
With the launch of the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2, you can save up to three custom profiles on the controller and switch between them and a default profile with a new Profile button.
LED lights on the top of the controller tell you which profile is selected.
The Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 comes with new wrap-around rubberised grips that not extend to the top of the controller to make gaming more comfortable and to give you more control.
You also choose how you connect your Elite Series 2 to your devices, including Xbox Wireless, Bluetooth, and USB type-C.
For the first time, the Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 comes with a built-in rechargeable battery with up to 40 hours of battery life per charge. The controller comes with a USB type-C cable and charging dock.
This, of course, depends on usage and is an indication of the absolute maximum battery life.