Today at E3, Microsoft took the wraps off an updated version of their Elite controller for the Xbox, which addresses some of the issues of the original and adds even more features and adaptability.

The Xbox Elite controller was somewhat of a sleeper hit for the Xbox team, with sales far outstripping supply when it first launched. Years later, supply has caught up but so has the normal Xbox controller which now features options like Bluetooth connectivity to work with the PC that the original Xbox Elite controller lacked.

The new controller adds in Bluetooth and a whole lot more. There’s now an internal rechargeable battery pack with a detachable charging dock which provides up to 40 hours of gameplay per charge.

The thumbsticks now feature an adjustable pressure setting, as well as additional thumbstick options that can be swapped out, much like the original.

One of the flaws of the original Elite controller was that the rubber grips had a tendency to fall off over time, and the new Series 2 addresses that with new grips that wrap all the way around.

The adjustable trigger from the original Elite controller now offers more trigger settings with a third setting now added.

The original Elite controller was a fantastic addition to Xbox, despite its flaws. When it launched, the price was steep, and I think Microsoft was shocked to see how much demand there was despite the price. The new Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 is available to pre-order now from

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  • Alexvrb - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 - link

    These controllers WERE targeted at competitive gamers and diehards, and they thought like you... but they managed to garner more sales than anticipated. The new elite will probably likewise sell decent enough (especially with the addition of BT), even though I won't ever buy one.

    That aside, the more recent models of standard XB1 controllers are pretty darn nice for the money. At $40-50 (more if you get a fancy edition or their lab-custom models) they're probably the best controllers I've used dollar per dollar, I use one on my PC for controller-centric titles (2D platformers for example).
  • BlueScreenJunky - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    The only thing that might make me interested is if we can turn the back triggers trigger into additional buttons on PC. On the first one you can only map them to axisiting buttons which doesn't really make sense to me.
  • Samus - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    I mean hey, there have been some epic controllers, even from Microsoft (the Sidewinder Force 2) that cost this much. But this just doesn't seem to be one of them. Adjustable tension and fingerling buttons seem to be solutions looking for a problem.

    $180 is a ridiculous sell for ONE controller. You'd likely get more of a gaming advantage from a $180 pair of headphones that also work outside of games.
  • Valantar - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    The thumbsticks on my current Elite controller are going a bit wobbly, so this might be a good upgrade when the new consoles roll around. Hopefully they bundle them together again - that's how I got mine in the first place, at a noticeably better price than a console and elite controller by themselves.
  • dontlistentome - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    Will it work with Scarlett? At least if it will, you know you're getting 7-8 years use out of it.
  • flgt - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    I love my elite controller and I’ll probably buy the new one...but they have to make sure the reliability is there. They never improved the stick drift issue with the old joystick modules. If I didn’t have a ninja solder technician at work to help me replace my failed module I would be pissed off buying a new one after a year. If you can get 3-4 years of service out of it I would be happy. It’s how you interact with the console every day so I don’t mind spending a few bucks.
  • techfreak23 - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    I’m pretty excited for this. My current Elite controller has lasted me a little over 4 years with the only issue being the rubber grips started to come off. I just superglued then back and haven’t had any other issues since. I got it bundled with the Xbox, but have since upgraded to the X. I won’t mind spending the money if it will last 4+ years like this one has. The only thing that might not make that possible is the stupid built in battery. I would have preferred to have keep the replaceable AAA batteries as I have 3 pairs of rechargeable ones that are far easier and cheaper to replace...
  • Skeptical123 - Monday, June 10, 2019 - link

    I hope what ever person or team at Microsoft that pushed for a ~$150 dollar controller got a massive promoting. Regardless how I feel about their strategy and price I can't imagine the amount of profit they raked in. I was playing a game on xbox a lot at the time this came out and while my friends and I knew it was over priced there where not any good other alternatives. At least when we were active a year and a half ago. So a lot of my friends bought the pro controllers which where sold out a lot of places for months... It's important to mention there are few controllers that have buttons on the back so this gives you a competitive advantage in a lot of games since you can hit more buttons at once. I know this was the case for at least two of the current COD games then and I assume it was also the case for a lot of other games and a reason behind a lot of the pro controllers sells.
  • piroroadkill - Wednesday, June 12, 2019 - link

    Not commenting on the Elite specific changes, but is it only me that doesn't really care for the Xbox One controller over the Xbox 360 controller? It's not that the one is worse, it's just that I don't really care which one is in my hand. So much for the tons of improvements.

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