“PowerA’s Fusion Pro 2 is a great value at $90, but you get what you pay for with this third-party controller.”
Pack of many features
Handy volume control
Easy to customize
D-pad is a step down
Rear paddle is not comfortable
Let’s get it straight: Xbox Elite Series 2 is the best video game controller on the market today. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most expensive. Perhaps sensing an opportunity, third-party maker PowerA teamed up with a direct competitor to Microsoft’s own gamepad with Fusion Pro 2.
This wired controller is based on Xbox Series X | S and has many of the same extras as the Elite Series 2 at a significantly lower cost. It’s a powerful package complete with rear paddles, trigger locks, volume controls, and more. At $90, at first glance it seems like a great value over the $180 Elite Series 2 series.
The Fusion Pro 2 is really a solid third-party option for those looking for an Xbox controller with some bells and whistles. Just prepare a classic “you get what you pay for” case here, as it lacks the tight and polished design of a proper Microsoft product.
A key value
It’s hard to deny what a strong deal the overall package is. For $90, Xbox players get a lot of features here not available on the standard Xbox controller. For starters, it comes with a paddle pack, which adds four back buttons to the controller. That is one of the main selling points of the Elite Series 2.
On top of that, the controller comes with trigger locks that allow the player to adjust the tension on each trigger. There are three different settings for each, allowing for some very specific controller tuning. There’s also a volume dial at the bottom of the keyboard, allowing players to easily switch voices up and down. Tapping the dial button also mutes the chat, which comes in handy when it’s just a thumb click.
Those are the biggest features, but there are many more. The pack comes with a removable mask, anti-friction handle, extra joystick, and a carrying case to hold it all. It doesn’t have all the replaceable parts that come with the Elite Series 2, but it makes up for that with extra features.
It’s hard to deny what a strong deal the overall package is.
Price point really goes a long way here. For comparison, PowerA’s Nintendo Switch Fusion Controller is $100 and has a lot less in terms of extras. While $90 might seem high to someone who just needs a standard game controller, it’s a real steal when a similar product costs twice as much.
While it’s certainly more cost-effective than the Elite Series 2, that doesn’t mean it’s inherently better. There are a lot of compromises that players will make if they decide to go this route. Most notable is the fact that this is a wired controller, which is a big draw in its own right. This bundle comes with a nice mesh cord, but that still means you’ll need to be attached to your Xbox to play.
There are a lot of compromises that players will make if they decide to go this route.
Those trade-offs also appear in more subtle ways. The controller uses a normal four-way D-pad, which is surprisingly a step down from the Xbox Series X’s more omnidirectional pad. That part is also non-replaceable, so it can’t be swapped down. current.
The most noticeable difference comes from the rumble. The controller’s dual rumbling motors aren’t subtle; This is one of the noisiest controllers I’ve ever heard. Leave this on the coffee table and sound like it’s drilling through it. The technology just feels a bit cheap compared to the more precise rumble found in today’s video game controllers. It should be noted that the fact that it rumbles is an improvement over the Switch’s Fusion controller, which lacks feedback altogether.
Aside from those quirks, the button layout itself is completely usable. There are a few differences when it comes to depth, but this feels like a completely normal Xbox controller. It’s just the little details that bring the third-party nature to the fore.
The biggest feature here is the paddle pack, which adds four more back buttons to the controller. There’s a lot to like about these. It’s easy to map buttons to them, the paddles feel responsive, and the pack itself can pop out at any time.
It’s still an amazing value, but expect to feel the difference.
The location feels just a bit misleading. However. For my hand, the pack sits just a little lower than I would like. That meant I had to keep my back fingers raised higher, finding it difficult to find a comfortable position. After playing a few rounds Knockout City, I feel myself wanting to push out of the package altogether.
That’s a pity as the Fusion 2 has a lot going for it in the amenities department. The rubber grips are especially nice compared to the smoothness of a standard Xbox controller. The interchangeable trigger keys and joystick are also a welcome bonus, allowing players to truly customize the feel of the controller.
Of course, ultimate comfort is a subjective matter. The paddle pack may be suitable for some players, while others may feel it is just an embarrassment. No controller is a one-size-fits-all solution, but it’s one area where Microsoft’s expertise really becomes apparent. The company has spent decades creating the perfect Xbox controller, and it’s clear that when it comes to a third-party option that lacks those subtle tweaks. It’s still an amazing value, but expect to feel the difference.
The PowerA Xbox Fusion 2 is a good budget option for anyone who wants the extra features of the Elite Series 2 without breaking the bank. It’s a loaded package that comes with an impressive set of features. Just be prepared for its third-party nature. Its noisy motor, awkward back button positioning, and wired state make this a controller that comes with many compromises. If value is a primary concern, it’s a good choice. It’s not the best one out there.
Is there a better option?
Microsoft’s Elite Series 2 is the better piece of hardware, even though it retails for twice as much.
How long will it last?
Since it’s wired, you don’t have to worry about battery life. The controller itself feels sturdy enough, but it’s always hard to say how a third-party product will perform over time. However, expect to use it for several years.
Should you buy it?
Are not. Anyone who really needs the extra features is probably better off shelling out the extra money for the Elite Series 2. Otherwise, the standard Xbox Series X controller is perfectly designed for more casual gamers.