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Nacon RIG Pro Compact review: compact with caveats

Accent model Nacon lately put out its $50 RIG Pro Compact wired controller for the Xbox Series X / S (and Xbox One) consoles and PC, and I used to be instantly drawn to it. It doesn’t strive something revolutionary, however I’ve a factor for controllers that drastically alter the form of the console maker’s reference design. On this case, Nacon’s is a tinier, shorter tackle Microsoft’s newest controller, however the analog sticks and triggers really feel simply as giant — among the buttons are literally bigger. There’s much less distance between the place your thumbs lie on the sticks and the place the triggers are, which must be a boon for individuals with small arms or those that simply need to really feel like every little thing is well inside attain.

It’s a handsome little controller. However setting the shape issue to the aspect momentarily, one of many foremost options of the Rig Pro Compact is that it has a 3.5mm audio port for headphones and that it unlocks entry to the Dolby Atmos app on PC and Xbox when you plug it in. With it, you’ll get Dolby’s spatial audio developments by way of wired headphones or headsets you connect with the Pro Compact. It’s a pleasant incentive in case you’re searching for a wired controller, however I don’t contemplate this to be a must have function.

Whether or not you should purchase the Pro Compact relies upon totally on the scale of your arms. As I discussed, it’s a shorter controller from prime to backside than Microsoft’s, so there’s much less distance between the triggers and buttons. That change, whereas helpful for a lot of, has a number of knock-on results that may negatively influence your expertise with it, because it did for me.

I’ve medium-sized arms and their small grips tuck comfortably into my palms, however the rear part of the controller’s housing for the triggers will get in the best way of the place I’d usually relaxation my index finger knuckles on Microsoft’s controller. This possible received’t be problematic in case you’re somebody who retains each units of pointer and center fingers on the prepared on shoulder buttons (although, I’ve but to satisfy anybody who makes use of a controller like this).

One other change that is likely to be a problem for extra individuals is the relocation of the view, menu, and share buttons. They’re a lot nearer to very important controls on the Pro Compact than they’re on Microsoft’s controller. This one’s extra nitpicky than the final, nevertheless it results in unintentional presses throughout gameplay. The menu button is so near the X, A, B, Y buttons that it seems and feels prefer it belongs in that cluster of inputs. On the subject of buttons, the tactility of every face button feels spot-on in comparison with Microsoft’s controller, although across the again the rear triggers really feel like they’ve a shorter pull, which makes them much less satisfying to make use of.

One in every of my favourite issues concerning the Pro Compact is its companion app out there for Xbox and PC that allows you to tweak the sensitivity of each sticks (along with their respective lifeless zones). It additionally permits you to remap each button on the controller to your liking, change the actuation distance of the triggers, and toggle the directional pad between four-way inputs to eight-way for extra management choices. The vibration may be toggled on or off within the app, as properly. Microsoft helps you to regulate many of those settings with its personal controllers, however not each third-party firm goes by way of the hassle of constructing their very own app.

If many of the controllers in the marketplace for Xbox or PC are too large in your arms, the Nacon Pro Compact is pretty simple to suggest giving a strive at $50. It’s one much less factor to attach wirelessly or handle battery ranges for, and its 9.8-feet braided twine is prolonged and has a breakaway connector to let it safely detach if there’s pressure utilized to the cable. That’s all nice, however in case you don’t have any points utilizing Microsoft’s personal Xbox controller from an ergonomic standpoint, there isn’t a lot right here that’ll make your time gaming extra satisfying. I match into the latter group, and whereas I may get pleasure from informal gameplay with the Pro Compact, it’s robust to show away from the extra acquainted, snug curves of Microsoft’s mannequin.

Pictures by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge
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