Accessories

Gamesir X2 review: Turning phones into Switches

Supports a decent amount of games, but has its hiccups

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One of the standard peripherals for any device capable of gaming is a controller. In the early days, most home consoles introduced a joypad with buttons and triggers designed for ease in gaming. I mean, instead of having to type the commands, you just had to press a button and it does it for you. Of course, even this kind of technology expanded to portable gaming devices.

Nowadays, you can use controllers to play games on your smartphone. In some genres like driving simulators and sports games, touch controls may not be the best way to play them. In their place, a controller is an ideal peripheral to have. This is where the Gamesir X2 Type-C Mobile Gaming Controller comes in, and that’s a mouthful to say.

Honestly, the entire name alone speaks of all the features the controller comes with, and on paper, it’s all good stuff. But is it something you should consider for the games you’re playing? Let’s find out.

A design that resembles a portable console

Upon initial inspection, the Gamesir X2 has the buttons and triggers you see in most controllers. Honestly, I find it weird that they incorporated Xbox/Nintendo face buttons but PlayStation triggers, but that’s just nitpicky. Also, the whole controller is made of hardened plastic that feels a little durable, but don’t try any drop tests on it.

At first glance, you would think it looks like a display-less Nintendo Switch, and I agree wholeheartedly. It comes with a USB Type-C connector for your smartphone, provided that it has a USB-C charging port and OTG connection support. When you plug your smartphone in, you basically get something that resembles the Nintendo Switch (OLED Model).

The only thing, though, is that it supports phones up to 6.5 inches in length. See, the whole controller extends to provide enough space for your smartphone to nest inside it while you play. Phones like the realme narzo 30A fit here quite well, so be sure to check your phone’s length first.

Setting it up was a little longer than expected

Now for what I think was the weird part of the experience: setting things up. Usually, plug and play controllers like the Gamesir X2 should be easy to set up. I mean, all you really have to do is plug it into your phone, and it just works. Apparently, there’s a lot more to it than just that as you need to tinker some phone settings first.

I mentioned earlier that your phone needs OTG connection support to use the Gamesir X2, and you have to toggle this in your phone’s settings. Once that’s done, it’s recommended that you download the Gamesir app to properly set up the controller. Unfortunately, you can’t use the app to create specific control mapping for certain games. After a required update, the Gamesir X2 is ready to go. 

Honestly, for something like the Gamesir X2, this was a rather long set up process. I mean, most controllers — with or without Bluetooth support — end up relatively easier and simpler in the set up process than this one. Alas, it’s a necessary process if you want the controller to work as intended.

Easy to use, but not recommended for all games

Once you set everything up, the Gamesir X2 works quite well and is easy to work around. It supports a wide variety of games, depending on which mode you switched the controller to. See, there are light indicators on the right side of the controller that turn blue or green, and you can only switch to either mode through the app.

If the light is blue, it will only work for games that are officially supported by Gamesir. This means that these games are fully mapped out against the Gamesir X2’s buttons and triggers. In my time using the controller, I found that most driving simulators and sports games work best with it. Honestly, the Gamesir X2 nails the controls so well in this regard.

If the light is green, the Gamesir X2 will work across all games provided you add them on the app. In essence, Gamesir will assign its own control mapping, even if the game comes with its own controller mapping. Even if the buttons and triggers work, I found that in games like Call of Duty Mobile, it doesn’t follow the controller mapping. I’m honestly better off using touch controls instead of the controller.

Charge or play, it’s one or the other

Another feature I found with the Gamesir X2 is support for power pass-through. Yes, you can actually charge your phone while it’s connected to the controller, as long it has a USB-C charging cable. Honestly, this is good considering that your phone’s battery drains a lot faster when you play longer.

Although, when you choose to charge your phone while connected to the controller, you can’t use your controller. Within the app, there’s no setting that allows you to do this, which is a bummer. I guess that’s your reminder to take a break from playing too much with the controller.

Is this your GadgetMatch?

The Gamesir X2 is a decent game controller for all kinds of smartphones. Even with the long set up process, it’s easy to use and work around once you start playing. If you wanted to know what it feels like to have a Nintendo Switch, the Gamesir X2’s design roughly resembles that.

I caution you, however, that it suits those who play a lot of driving games or sports games like NBA 2K. See, these are some of the games the controller officially supports, so the experience is much better with them. Most games people play aren’t fully supported by the Gamesir X2, and the control mapping is whack if you try to play them with this controller. 

Overall, the Gamesir X2 is well-suited for a specific set of mobile players, even if it caters to everyone somehow. It’s not for everyone, and it’s better that way.

The Gamesir X2 retails for PhP 3,499 /US$ 65.78  and is available on online shopping stores with various GameSir authorized resellers.

Accessories

3 accessories that should be inside your gym bag

Forget trackers and sports watches

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Working out has been a holy grail in my daily life. Even though gyms are closed, I made it a habit to use my gym bag. It made it easier to keep my stuff organized, and it helps with compartmentalizing. I can focus on my workout when I dedicate a space for everything related to fitness.

By now, you probably know the usual essentials that should be inside your bag. Smartphones, smartwatch, resistance band, hand wraps, water bottles, extra clothes, and more.

But I’ll let you in on my little world: I have three mainstay accessories inside my gym bag which I deem essential for my workouts — whether it’s at the gym or at home.

Soundcore 3

A portable Bluetooth speaker isn’t something I would use at the gym. But on my outdoor workouts and the social distancing imposed in almost every location, I need entertainment that allows me to still be in tune with my surroundings.

This is why the Soundcore 3 has been a great companion that I bring in my routines, especially when I decided not to use my pair of wireless earbuds.

It pumps up the bass even at low volumes, making my cardio exercises a bit more fun. And its dual drivers with pure titanium diaphragms minimize distortion for clearer audio.

The Soundcore 3 also has easy controls and carries a massive battery that gives you 24-hour playtime. Yes, my dear friend. You can listen to more than 400 songs on a single charge.

But what I like about it the most is its IPX7 rating. It gives me peace of mind when I hold the speakers with my sweaty hands or when I work out in the rain. And because I can bring it to the shower whenever I practice my dance moves.

The Soundcore 3 retails for PhP 3,195.

Powercore 5000

Another mainstay in my gym bag is an ultra-compact power bank from Anker. Called Powercore 5000, this power bank slides easily in your pocket (or your bag’s pockets). With 5000mAh capacity, it can recharge either my phone or my Soundcore 3 whenever I take a rest.

It does not support Qualcomm’s Quick Charge, but it still sports an exclusive PowerIQ technology so you can still experience high-speed charging for your gadgets.

Nonetheless, it comes with a travel pouch so you can keep your power bank safe, a MicroUSB cable for connectivity, a welcome guide, and a worry-free 18-month warranty.

The Powercore 5000 retails for PhP 1,295.

Anker Powerline 3-in-1

I like being prepared and ready at all times. This is why even a cable was able to count as a mainstay in my bag. Anker’s Powerline 3-in-1 is a handy accessory since it has interchangeable connectors — Lightning, Micro USB, and USB-C.

It makes it easier to charge several devices that have different ports, without carrying multiple cables that would probably populate my organizers. Luckily, the Powerline 3-in-1 keeps the internal wiring protected so I don’t have to worry about replacing cables anytime soon.

Plus, it has an MFi certification from Apple so it charges fast and safe — which I lend to my friends that use an iPhone, who for some reason, always forget to carry their own cables.

The Anker Powerline 3-in-1 retails for PhP 995.

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Nothing launches first product, the ear (1), for only £99

Featuring 34 hours of battery life

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Over the past few months, OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei kept teasing his brand-new venture after leaving his previous company behind. The new venture, Nothing, promised interesting and innovative products for the audio segment. Because of the teases, we already know a lot about the company’s first product: the ear (1). Now, it’s time for the main course.

Nothing has officially launched the ear (1) for markets worldwide. As depicted in official product photos, the wearable will feature a semi-transparent chassis and charging case. It will have pressure-relieving vents and customizable silicone ear tips.

Inside, the ear (1) sports a capable 11.6mm driver and will feature Active Noise Cancellation. The Active Noise Cancellation has three different modes depending on the environment you’re in.

Besides the default Transparency mode, Light mode, as the name suggests, is a more moderate form of noise cancellation which lets some noise in. It’s perfect for when you still need to be aware of your surroundings like during commutes. On the other hand, Maximum mode blocks in all noise for when you’re in very busy environments.

For connectivity, it will support Bluetooth 5.2 for seamless connections with your device. It comes with an ear (1) app which includes features like Find My Earbud, an equalizer, and a gesture control menu.

As teased before, the charging case will indeed have 24 hours of battery life (and more). It will supposedly have 34 hours of charge. Each bud will have 5.7 hours of listening time and can charge to full in only ten minutes with the case. The case charges wirelessly and can be charged with any Qi charger.

The ear (1) will retail for GBP 99. A limited drop will open on July 31 through nothing.tech. Official sales will begin on August 17.

SEE ALSO: Carl Pei’s Nothing intends to raise $1.5 million from the community

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Accessories

realme teases Android’s first magnetic wireless charger

Called the MagDart

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Wireless charging is making a huge push. Last year, Apple resurrected the MagSafe system, opening up the magnetic charging solution for iPhone users. However, If you’re from the other side, you’re likely wondering when Android is getting its first magnetic charger. Well, wait no more. realme has officially teased an upcoming magnetic wireless charger.

Leaked by GSMArena, the company will launch the realme MagDart will work like Apple’s MagSafe charger. However, according to the leaked render, the charger is larger than Apple’s charger.

The report does not spoil the exact hardware inside the charger, though. However, it does indicate that the charging power will be more powerful than 15W of wireless charging. realme also promises that the magnetic charger will be the fastest once it launches soon.

To coincide with the charger’s upcoming release, realme is also launching the first compatible smartphone: the realme Flash. Not much is known about the upcoming phone, but it is touted as “the first Android smartphone” that can support the charging solution.

Besides the charging solution, the company is likely launching a flurry of accessories to go along with the magnetic system. Apple has, of course, used the MagSafe system to add in other accessories for iPhone users.

SEE ALSO: realme Pad renders show-off single rear camera, stylus slot

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