The Best Xbox Series X Controllers for 2021

Whether you’re still waiting to purchase an Xbox Series X or finally have the console in your hands, you’re probably looking for a second controller for more gaming options. Or maybe you’re searching for an important controller upgrade that gives you much-needed personalization. We took a look and found all the latest and best controllers that are compatible with the Series X: Here’s what they are and why they’re awesome!

Further reading

Scuf Instinct Pro

The scuf instinct pro, facing the front.

Scuf is known for its modular controllers, and this is one of the best available, including very sturdy components with options to switch out the instant triggers and thumbstick to different versions, and a new performance grip to prevent slipping. It also includes four programmable back paddles similar to the Xbox Elite Series, which you can map to any buttons you want, based on how you want to play. The headset is wireless or wired depending on preference, and uses a USB-C port to connect. If you feel like changing the design for your controller, you can purchase additional faceplates from Scuf and switch them out as you prefer. You can also create up to three different profiles for your favorites games so you don’t have to keep remapping on the fly.

The downside is that, like many things associated with the Series X, Instinct Pro supplies are limited, and you’ll have to sign up to get a notice when the next batch drops.

Xbox Elite Series 2

Close up view of the xbox elite series 2.

The Elite Controller was a marvel in its time, with customizable back paddles, high-quality triggers, and special thumbsticks to enable even the twitchiest gameplay, and options to sub out various parts with different pieces to get just the feel you wanted. The Series 2 returns with a Series X compatible model that sports even more customization options, plus an amazing 40-hour battery life. It’s also taken steps to fix some of the problems of the original model (like the notoriously flimsy shoulder buttons) with a more durable design, making this controller more worth picking up than ever before — particularly for pro gameplay.

Thrustmaster ESWAP X Pro

Showing the modular parts of the thrustmaster eswap x pro.

The ESWAP X Pro is specifically designed for Series X compatibility, so it’s a great pick if you want to ensure that there won’t be any compatibility issues. It also includes a ton of tech to help you personalize your gameplay and give you a competitive edge – like swapping between different preset configurations during a game, physical locking for triggers, and lots of re-mapping options for the extra buttons in the back. It’s also highly modular, with interchangeable mini-stick, grips, triggers, D-pads, and thumbstick caps … ideal for gamers who like to tinker with both setup and feel. However, keep in mind that is a corded option, not wireless.

Razer Wolverine Ultimate

The razer wolverine ultimate with rgb lighting shown.

Razer also has a highly competitive controller ready for the Series X: The Wolverine comes with six different remappable buttons and interchangeable thumbsticks that allow you to alter the height and grip of the sticks to match your gameplay, plus a similar option to swap between different D-pads. It supports Razer Synapse on Xbox, too, which makes it easy to remap buttons and experiment quickly to find the loadout that’s best for the game.

And, of course, there are some RGB lighting effects packed into the controller too, which you can customize to whatever you find the most stylish (or least distracting). Like the Thrustmaster model, this control is also wired.

Turtle Beach Recon (Series X)

Close up of the front of the turtle beach recon (series x).

The Turtle Beach Recon headset line has always been an excellent, dependable option for playing on Xbox. Here, Turtle Beach has updated the Recon line specifically to include a Series X controller, and the results are yet again impressive. In addition to the stylish incorporation of controller grips, you’ll also notice a separate little audio dashboard at the top of the controller: This is designed to pair with a Turtle Beach headset and allows you to quickly mute, turn on the EQ, enable “superhuman hearing” model, and adjust game/chat mix, among other modes.

It’s also a clever controller in other ways: You can tune your own preferred thumbstick sensitivity, and program two back buttons to map to whatever you prefer. Note that the Recon controller (Series X) is a wired controller, so playing wirelessly will not be an option here.

Xbox Wireless Controller + Windows 10 Adapter

The xbox wireless controller and windows 10 adapter.

If you’re perfectly happy with your current controller but wish you had a second model that could do a little more, take a look at this controller bundle, which adds a wireless adapter for Windows 10. That allows you to take advantage of the great interplayability between games on Xbox and Windows while sticking with the same reliable controller. The adapter can support up to eight controllers, so you can also connect any others you may have. With the Xbox accessories app, you can also remap buttons and create different profiles!

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