There’s no shortage of third party Xbox controllers aimed at the pro market these days, and the Nacon Revolution X Pro controller looks to shake things up by doubling down on customization options. With familiar features such as interchangeable thumbsticks and customizable back buttons to more obscure choices like thumbstick shafts and removable controller weights, there’s plenty here to truly make the controller your own. It’s a shame that the controller itself doesn’t impress much beyond its customization options due to a lackluster design and awkward rear button placement.
Nacon Revolution X Pro – Photos
Nacon Revolution X Pro – Design and Features
Picking up the Revolution X Pro, the first thing I noticed is how lightweight it is. The entire controller is made from plastic which helps keep the weight to a minimum, but also makes it feel more like a budget mobile controller and less like a premium “Pro”-grade product as advertised. When compared to the standard Xbox controller, the Revolution X Pro is quite a bit wider, but still features the same offset thumbsticks layout, in addition to the typical Xbox face buttons you’d come to expect.
The Revolution X Pro is a wired controller that’s compatible with Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC. The nearly 10-foot-long USB-C cable is detachable and features a thick, braided design for durability. The controller and all included accessories fit nicely into the included hardshell zippered case that keeps things tidy for traveling.
I was a bit disappointed to find that none of the face buttons and triggers feel particularly good to press, often resulting in that too clicky feeling that some less-expensive controllers tend to have. The analog triggers are serviceable and feature a wide surface to rest each finger. The D-pad is pretty low-profile and a bit stiff, but has a nice press to it. Both thumbsticks are lightweight, snappy, and responsive, and can be customized a bit further with the included accessories – more on that below.
What makes this controller a “Pro”-level option is the inclusion of four rear buttons, customizable profiles, and a small flip-top box containing a selection of interchangeable thumbsticks, thumbstick shafts, and weights to really tailor your experience and give you plenty of control over how everything functions and feels.
On the backside of the controller are four customizable rear buttons. S1 and S3 sit along the base of the controller, and can easily be accessed by your two middle fingers. S2 and S4 are long, rectangular-shaped buttons that line the inside of the controller grips and can be pressed by either your ring finger or pinky finger. There’s a Profile button which allows you to toggle between one of four preset profiles, and a small switch to toggle between the classic and advanced profile configurations. Additionally, a 3.5mm headphone jack sits at the bottom of the controller and provides Dolby Atmos audio to any wired headphones you may own.
You’ll have the option to swap between the default concave thumbsticks or slightly convex alternatives (which actually feel more flat than anything). There are two additional thumbstick shafts that can be added to either stick to decrease the turning radius offered when you need more precision, like trying to hit the perfect shot with a sniper rifle. Lastly, there are three pairs of weights: 10g, 14g, and 16g which can be inserted into the bottom of each controller grip to add more weight if you so desire. While the heaviest option adds a total of 32g of weight, the difference was pretty negligible while actually using the controller. Still, it’s a level of customization I’ve yet to see in any controller, and allows you to fine-tune your ideal preferences for gameplay.
Nacon Revolution X Pro – Software
Keeping with the theme of near-endless customization options, the Revolution X app available for free on Xbox and PC allows you to dial-in your settings for just about every aspect of this controller. By default, there are four preset profiles, but each one can be edited or overwritten with your own preferences.
Every single face button can be manually remapped within the app, as well as the four rear buttons. Both the left and right thumbstick response curves can be customized to your liking, and each trigger’s travel distance can be modified to suit the type of game you’re playing. Additionally, there’s audio equalizer settings, vibration settings, and even the ability to customize the RGB ring that illuminates around the right thumbstick.
Nacon Revolution X Pro – Software
If you don’t want to dive into the granular customization options featured within the Revolution X app, you can simply use the default profile preinstalled on the controller out of the box. The four rear buttons can even be customized without requiring the app, allowing you to make some nifty on-the-fly presets.
In addition to the controller customization options, the headphone jack features Dolby Atmos for any of your wired headsets. While the number of officially supported games still remains incredibly low at less than 50, having spatial sound added to your games and movies without needing to buy a new headset is never a bad thing.
Nacon Revolution X Pro – Gaming
Aside from the extensive customization options available, I wasn’t particularly impressed with the performance of the Revolution X Pro controller. While it wasn’t a bad experience by any means, it never truly excelled at any one thing that would make me recommend it above the sheer number of options available in the increasingly crowded controller market.
I tweaked many of the controller’s settings using the Revolution X app on PC and found the out of the box experience to be just fine. In fact, utilizing the settings recommended for a first-person shooter actually made aiming more difficult and made me perform worse than the default option.
I spent most of my time fighting against the forces of Darkness in Destiny 2, taking the controller through many PvE and PvP activities to really get a feel for everything. One aspect of the controller that I didn’t particularly like was the four customizable rear buttons. S2 and S4 (located on the stems of the controller) felt awkward to press during gameplay, and I often found myself accidentally pressing S1 or S3 (the buttons along the base of the controller) by accident due to the low travel distance of all four rear buttons. The ability to customize any of the rear buttons on the fly was a nice touch, but I ended up disregarding the buttons after a while due to their inconvenience and accidental activation.
While the thumbsticks were both snappy and responsive, neither of the interchangeable options offered much in the way of grip, and I found my fingers slid off constantly during intense gameplay. Due to the wired nature of the controller, there was no discernable input lag during use, and I was pleased with the responsiveness of the analog triggers.
Overall, I would say my experience playing with the Revolution X Pro was good. Using it reminded me of being handed just about any 3rd party controller during the Xbox 360 era, not inherently bad, but you’d much prefer to use the real thing.