Skip to main content
Close-up of an Xbox Elite Series 2 controller. Credit: Microsoft

The Best Xbox One Controllers of 2022

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

Close-up of an Xbox Elite Series 2 controller. Credit: Microsoft

Why trust Reviewed?

Reviewed's mission is to help you buy the best stuff and get the most out of what you already own. Our team of product experts thoroughly vet every product we recommend to help you cut through the clutter and find what you need.

Learn more about our product testing
Product image of Xbox Elite Series 2 Controller

Xbox Elite Series 2 Controller

The Elite Series 2 comes with a number of interchangeable parts for customizing your play style as well as a built-in rechargeable battery. Read More

Pros

  • Designed for competition and accessibility
  • Performance-grade construction
  • Highly customizable

Cons

  • Occasional defective parts
Product image of Scuf Instinct Pro Performance Controller

Scuf Instinct Pro Performance Controller

Pros love the grippy texture on the underside and the paddle design, which makes them a lot more like traditional buttons than the Elite’s metal ones. Read More

Pros

  • Designed for competition and accessibility
  • Textured grips and non-slip surface
  • Highly customizable

Cons

  • Occasional thumbstick drift
Product image of Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Electric Volt)

Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Electric Volt)

This is the classic Xbox One controller with some modern quality-of-life improvements for the Series X era—with a flashy yellow-green coat of paint. Read More

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort
  • Attractive yellow-green hue

Cons

  • No underside paddle support
Product image of Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Robot White)

Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Robot White)

This is the classic Xbox One controller with some modern quality-of-life improvements for the Series X era—in a simple, clean “Robot White” color. Read More

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort
  • Minimalist white aesthetic

Cons

  • No underside paddle support
Product image of Xbox 20th Anniversary SE Controller

Xbox 20th Anniversary SE Controller

This is a commemorative 20th-anniversary edition of the classic Xbox One controller, with translucent charcoal coloring and some nice green accents. Read More

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort
  • Special anniversary stylings

Cons

  • No underside paddle support

If you’re playing games on an Xbox One, Xbox Series X (or Series S), or modern Windows PC, you’re going to need a controller that’s up to the task. There are a variety of high-end controllers for competitive players out there—as well as stylish limited-edition designs that let you express yourself—and we’ve got a lot of hands-on experience with this particular category.

Microsoft’s Elite Series 2 is easy to recommend; it’s highly customizable, built to withstand years of regular use, and is a little more accessible than your standard gamepad. A lot of serious players also swear by the Scuf brand, and the Instinct series in particular. Each of them comes with “paddles” underneath that let you keep your thumbs on the sticks.

Here are five of the best Xbox One controllers you can get right now.

Editor's Note

The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.

Product image of Xbox Elite Series 2 Controller
Xbox Elite Series 2 Controller

The best controller I’ve ever owned was the original Xbox Elite, and it lasted for about five years of constant use—till the day my four-year-old got ahold of it. I know esports professionals who use the stock Elite Controller, right out of the box, in championship play. It takes the classic Xbox controller design and marries it to top-of-the-line components. It comes with a number of interchangeable parts for customizing your play style—alternate thumbsticks, two D-pads, and four paddles for the underside of the controller—as well as a rechargeable battery.

You can connect the controller to any Xbox One or Series console, or most Windows PCs, via wireless, Bluetooth, or the included USB-C cable. With the configurable paddles, you can map your A, B, X, and Y buttons to the bottom of the controller, letting you keep your thumbs on the sticks at all times.

Pros

  • Designed for competition and accessibility

  • Performance-grade construction

  • Highly customizable

Cons

  • Occasional defective parts

Product image of Scuf Instinct Pro Performance Controller
Scuf Instinct Pro Performance Controller

The most skilled folks I’ve played Halo and Apex Legends with swear by Scuf’s Instinct controllers. They’re generally a little pricier than the Elite, but players love the athletic, grippy texture on the underside and the paddle design, which makes them a lot more like traditional buttons than the Elite’s metal ones. Like the Elite Controller, the Instinct lets you customize a lot of the pieces, toggle hair triggers on and off, and swap between different configuration profiles with the flip of a switch. Some reviewers say their Instinct developed thumbstick drift.

Pros

  • Designed for competition and accessibility

  • Textured grips and non-slip surface

  • Highly customizable

Cons

  • Occasional thumbstick drift

Product image of Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Electric Volt)
Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Electric Volt)

This is the classic Xbox One controller with some modern quality-of-life improvements for the Series X era. It’s compatible with any Xbox One or Xbox Series console, and most Windows PCs, via wireless, Bluetooth, or the included USB-C cable. There aren’t any paddles on the underside, and it takes two standard AA batteries, but these controllers are a joy to use. This one’s got a flashy yellow-green “Electric Volt” color that’s evocative of Mountain Dew—or the first two Xbox consoles. They’re pretty affordable, so I tend to replace mine every couple years when a new color comes along that speaks to me.

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort

  • Attractive yellow-green hue

Cons

  • No underside paddle support

Product image of Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Robot White)
Xbox Core Wireless Controller (Robot White)

This is the classic Xbox One controller with some modern quality-of-life improvements for the Series X era. It’s compatible with any Xbox One or Xbox Series console, and most Windows PCs, via wireless, Bluetooth, or the included USB-C cable. There aren’t any paddles on the underside, and it takes two standard AA batteries, but these controllers are a joy to use. They’re pretty affordable, so I tend to replace mine every couple years when a new color comes along that speaks to me. This one’s a simple, clean “Robot White” color that will look great in most rooms—especially if you’ve got a white One S or Series S console sitting next to it.

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort

  • Minimalist white aesthetic

Cons

  • No underside paddle support

Product image of Xbox 20th Anniversary SE Controller
Xbox 20th Anniversary SE Controller

This is the classic Xbox One controller with some modern quality-of-life improvements for the Series X era. It’s compatible with any Xbox One or Xbox Series console, and most Windows PCs, via wireless, Bluetooth, or the included USB-C cable. There aren’t any paddles on the underside, and it takes two standard AA batteries, but these controllers are a joy to use. This is a commemorative 20th-anniversary edition, with translucent charcoal coloring and some nice green accents. Because of its limited-edition nature, it may cost a little extra, but it looks especially nice for a standard Microsoft controller.

Pros

  • Superior design and comfort

  • Special anniversary stylings

Cons

  • No underside paddle support

Meet the tester

Alex Kane

Alex Kane

Sr. Editor, Search & Updates

@alexjkane

Alex Kane is a senior editor at USA Today’s Reviewed and the author of the Boss Fight Books volume on Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. He has written for Fangoria, PC Gamer, Polygon, Rolling Stone, StarWars.com, and Variety. He lives in west-central Illinois.

See all of Alex Kane's reviews

Checking our work.

Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.

Shoot us an email