The 8BitDo Pro 2 is a sequel to the SN30 Pro+, and these two retro-design controllers look almost identical. That aside, the Pro 2 has some significant upgrades. These changes make the 8BitDo Pro 2 one of the best third-party controllers you can buy for less than S$60.
- Modes: Switch, X-input, Mac, D-input
- Bluetooth 4.0, USB-C
- 20-hour battery life
The grey and white versions of the 8BitDo Pro 2 give a strong retro vibe, while the black version looks more modern. Weighing 228g, it feels great in the hands, thanks to the grips (gripless version is the SN30 Pro) that have a textured finish on the back. A significant part of the weight is due to the controller's 1000mAh rechargeable battery, which is rated for 20 hours of gameplay. The battery bay can also fit two AA batteries, which can be useful in a pinch. Charging is via the USB-C port, which also allows you to connect a cable to use as a wired controller.
All the buttons you need in a controller are found on the 8BitDo Pro 2, and more. The face buttons' ABXY layout follow Nintendo's positions, while the thumbsticks are symmetrically positioned like a PlayStation controller. In my testing, the positions and tactility of the buttons are excellent. Besides these standard buttons, there are two additional back buttons on the grip, labeled P1 and P2, which give you more options during gameplay. Assign these as any of the standard buttons, or you can create macros using the 8BitDo Ultimate Software. I used the iOS version, and creating a macro was seamless. You can save three different profiles on the device, and you toggle between them using the button between the two thumbsticks.
With previous 8BitDo controllers, you hold one of the face buttons while turning it on to determine what console or device you are using it with. The Pro 2 has a selector at the back with four settings, a much more convenient solution. I tested the 8BitDo Pro 2 on the Nintendo Switch and macOS, connected via Bluetooth. Playing platform games, I had no issues with precision. I'm a modern Tetris buff, and in a fast-paced game of Tetris 99 on the Switch, the Pro 2 completely fulfilled my need for a responsive controller. Furthermore, its excellent D-pad is even better than the first-party Switch Pro controller's. Note that on the Switch, the Pro 2 doesn't support HD rumble and turning on the console using the Home button.
The 8BitDo Pro 2 is an excellent third-party controller that supports almost every platform, including smartphones and tablets. Its retro design is an added bonus. You can find it on Shopee, Lazada, and Amazon SG for around S$60.
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