Reviewed: October 1, 2005
Type: Wireless Gamepad
Wireless controllers have now become a thing of the present and more importantly, the future. For me, wireless controllers are an essential part of my gaming life. I own two wireless controllers for each console (Xbox, PS2, NGC). The Wavebird for the GameCube is unique in that it doesnít feature a vibration function while almost all other wireless controllers do. That doesnít mean itís not a great wireless controller because it is. It just means you have to give up the force feedback in exchange for wireless freedom.
A little over a year ago GCM reviewed Logitechís Cordless Action controller. It received a perfect score (10) and has become the only PlayStation 2 controller we use. This year Logitech has released a baby version of this ever so popular controller called the Logitech Cordless Precision Controller. Each year Logitech seems to improve upon their previous designs whether it is a mouse or a pair of headphones. Unfortunately, this year has proven different when it comes to the new Cordless Precision wireless controller.
Aesthetics - 8
The Cordless Precision is slightly based on the Action Controller design of last year. Unfortunately the overall shape and structure arenít identical. Logitech decided to make the Precision bigger which is sad because this new design isnít nearly as good. I found it to be slightly uncomfortable because of its size. On top of that there are only three very miniscule differences.
One is that this yearís controller comes in only transparent blue (instead of black). Second is that the Cordless Precision is lacking the vibration button and cool oval Logitech logo. Finally, the third thing thatís different is that wireless receiver is a different shape to better fit the new Slim PlayStation 2 design.
Before the receiver would slightly raise the system because it was suited towards the older PlayStation 2 model. This new controller's receiver has been re-engineered to be flush with the system and allow it to sit flat on its belly.
Overall, the molded shape of the controller is comfortable, and every button is within easy reach. The D-pad is still one of the best and more defined pads around. The tops of the analog sticks are textured rubber and allow for precise control even under the sweatiest of circumstances.
Durability - 10
Much like its older brother, the Cordless Precision is a nice solid controller. Itís durable and can easily be dropped from standing distance and still work. Iíve purposely thrown this controller on the ground several times and it still functions like new.
Without the rumble feature in this model youíd expect it to be lighter. Itís kind of hard to tell when comparing the Action to the Precision because their weights are so identical. I performed a blindfold test on myself and found that the Precision is slightly lighter. The point being is that the Precision controller, overall, has a nice heft to it.
Performance - 9
2.4 GHz seems to be the standard for todayís wireless controllers and phones. It does what you would expect it to do and although 5.8 GHz is out, 2.4 GHz is cheaper. Logitech decided to stick with the 2.4GHz for the Cordless Precision which will allow you to play games from up to 30 feet away. Not only that, but weíre talking lag-free, just like a wired controller response times. Itís amazing how well this controller works even from 30 feet away even through walls (not like anyone will play this far away).
The controller uses channel switching so you can operate multiple controllers (up to 8) in the same room with no signal crossovers or interference. It also features proprietary power management software to power-down the pad after a certain amount of non-use. You can expect about 300 hours of gameplay from two AA batteries. Thatís a six times longer lifespan than last yearís gamepad.
Value - 7
This new controller isnít exactly new. Its shape and functionality is nearly identical to the Action controller of last year except for a couple of key differences. For one, its lack of rumble feature is disappointing, but thatís what Logitech wanted. They obviously wanted to make a cheaper controller that would have an extremely long battery life. They succeeded, giving gamers an amazing 300 hours per AA batteries.
Unfortunately thatís where the good things end. The lack of rumble feature is annoying because that helps to immerse people in games (or maybe thatís just me). Furthermore, this controller doesnít even come with the usual Duracell batteries that weíve come to expect from Logitech. And to top things off, this gamepad will set you back $29.99 MSRP, which is slightly too much for what youíre getting.
Overall Ė 8
The Cordless Precision Controller is a solid, durable controller that feels a little too bulky in the hands. However, it works great and the 300 hours of battery life is an extremely nice feature. Unfortunately itís the lack of features and relatively high price tag ($29.99) that makes this controller hard to recommend to hardcore gamers.
If you are looking for a great wireless controller then Iíd highly recommend spending the extra $10 and upgrading to Logitechís Cordless Action controller; you wonít regret it.