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Home / Tips and Tricks / A Premium Mobile Controller for Game-Streaming Future – Review Geek

A Premium Mobile Controller for Game-Streaming Future – Review Geek



Grade:
9/10
?

  • 1 – Absolutely hot garbage
  • 2 – Sorta ljummet sopor
  • 3 – Strongly incorrect design
  • 4 – Some advantages, lots of disadvantages
  • 5 – Acceptably imperfect
  • 6 – Good enough to buy for sale
  • 7 – Good, but not the best in class
  • 8 – Fantastic, with some footnotes
  • 9 – Shut up and take my money
  • 10 – Absolute design Nirvana

Award: $ 69.99

MOGA XP5-X Plus controls on a white deck
Eric Schoon

While most mobile games are designed with touch screens in mind, we are starting to see more console / PC games that can be played on mobile devices via streaming platforms such as Google Stadia and GeForce NOW. When it comes to these types of games, you will need a controller to be able to play them properly, and the MOGA XP5-X Plus from PowerA was specially designed with these platforms in mind.

Here’s what we like

  • Comfortable shape
  • Great feeling entrances
  • Built-in battery bank

To be more specific, the Xbox Game Pass streaming service will launch on September 15. XP5-X has been officially licensed by Microsoft for this service, and Samsung is announcing it as a controller to be purchased with the Galaxy Note 20 (even if it works with any Android phone). However, there are plenty of these mobile controllers today, so is the XP5-X worth its relatively high price of $ 69.99? Let’s find out.

The control unit itself

MOGA XP5-X Plus from above
Eric Schoon

It doesn’t take long for you to realize that the XP5-X is modeled after the Xbox One controller. In fact, it is shaped almost identically to one. I use an Xbox One controller regularly, so the shape and layout felt natural to me, but fans of controllers like the Dualshock 4 will need to adjust.

In terms of layout, the only thing that is important is to note the few useful buttons and switches that are scattered around the control unit (wireless / wired switching, power on / off and a battery life indicator) and the rear “advanced game buttons.” The rear buttons can be programmed to do whatever you want, and the process is quite simple. Just hold down the green programming button at the bottom of the controller, perform any input, and then press the rear button you want to reprogram.

MOGA XP5-X Plus SideviewEric Schoon

Something that I often find missing in third-party controllers is the buttons themselves – balancing the buttons so as not to be too sensitive or fixed is difficult. However, it’s not a problem here, the face buttons feel nice to press, and the same goes for triggers and bumpers. The rear buttons are fine-tuned – sensitive enough to be easy to press while being fixed to avoid accidental inputs.

MOGA XP5-X Plus from behind
Eric Schoon

The joysticks are covered in a nice grippy texture and the movement is smooth as butter. The D-pad also impressed me, even on many advanced controllers the D-pad may feel weak, but it’s nice and responsive on the XP5-X.

Finally, as with the controller in general, it uses a hard plastic for its body that is extremely similar to the standard Xbox One controller. It feels nice in the hand and it gets help from the soft grip material that covers each handle.

Connection time

The XP5-X can be connected wirelessly to any Android device, and it can operate in wired mode like a standard USB game controller. I tried using it on my computer to test this, and in wired mode it worked fine, but I could not get it to work in wireless mode at all. (PC Player side note: You can switch between DirectInput and Xinput by holding down “Start” and “Select” for three seconds while it is connected to your computer.)

MOGA XP5-X Plus from behind
Eric Schoon

There are two ports on the XP5-X: a microUSB and a USB-A. The microUSB port is used to charge the controller or use it in wired mode. The USB-A port is used to charge your phone from a 3000 mAh battery bank inside the control unit. This is a great inclusion from PowerA – games streaming services can eat up your phone’s battery, so it’s a real selling point to be able to charge while you play. There are also some battery indicator lights at the bottom of the controller, so you always know how close you are running out of juice.

Play games

Chances are you will use this controller with your phone, which PowerA planned for by including a handy phone clip. The clip slides easily on the control unit and should work for most telephone models. As a reference, I used my Pixel 3 XL when I used this controller, which is 6.22 x 3.02 inches, and according to PowerA, the clip fits on any phone that is up to 3.12 inches wide. The clip felt quite secure and is very adjustable so you can get the perfect angle for your phone.

MOGA XP5-X with phone
Eric Schoon

The Xbox Game Pass streaming service may not be out yet, but the beta is, and of course, this controls works with all old mobile games. I decided to test both to cover all bases and to evaluate how well the controller works with the streaming platform for which it was designed. I wanted to push Game Pass Beta to its limits, so I originally tested two games: Ori and Wisp’s will and Forza Horizon 4 –both relatively fast games that I am quite familiar with.

Something I was happy to see right from the bat is that I save progress for both games synced from my computer to my phone, which means I do not have to suffer through Forza Horizon 4 tutorial again that you can seamlessly switch between platforms without problems. One thing to note is that you can press the Xbox button on XP5-X to open a simple overlay where you can perform some actions such as inviting friends to your game. This works in the same way as a regular Xbox controller would do on a PC or Xbox One, and it’s nice that this was also included on the phone.

Performance in both games was not good. I saw noticeable input delay and frame rate or, and Force managed to see, sound and play terribly. The service is of course in beta, but I decided to throw it a leg by also playing Untitled Goose Game—A simple look and play game. As expected, the experience was much better, so your mileage varies depending on the games you want to play.

So then it’s a bit of a downer on the Game Pass streaming service, but it does not have much to do with the controller itself, so I also played some regular mobile games. Even in a fast platform player, I did not notice an input delay in the control unit’s wireless mode. The XP5-X feels great to play with and it easily competes with other advanced controllers for comfort and build quality.

Conclusion

MOGA XP5-X Plus angle view
Eric Schoon

XP5-X does not do much to wow you, and it does not have to – game controls are, after all, pretty simple products. So at that point, all that matters is the build quality, along with some small bonus features that the manufacturer can sneak in. And on that front, I would say that the XP5-X hit the nail on the head. It’s an incredibly comfortable controller to play with; the quality of life features, such as the rear buttons and battery life indicators, are great inclusions; and the internal battery bank is a nice touch.

This controller is on the more expensive side of things at $ 69.99 (even compared to most console controllers), but I think it squeezes in enough bonus features to justify that price. If you are looking for an advanced controller to enhance your mobile gaming sessions – whether they are streaming or locally installed – this is a great option.

XP5-X launches on September 14 to coincide with the launch of the Xbox Game Pass streaming service.

Grade: 9/10

Award: $ 69.99

Here’s what we like

  • Comfortable shape
  • Great feeling entrances
  • Built-in battery bank




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