The best accessories for your new Xbox Series X or S


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If you bought an Xbox Series X or S a year ago, your selection of accessories mostly came down to outdated gear designed for last-generation systems. Now you have many more ways to upgrade your Xbox experience. Maybe you need a better controller to optimize your Psychonauts 2 runs, a clearer headset for chatting with teammates in Apex Legends, or maybe you’re running out of storage space. Here are some of the best Xbox accessories you can grab today.

Controllers: go for stylish, go for Pro

Microsoft

It’s always smart to have a second controller handy. Even if you don’t play a lot of multiplayer games, you’ll regret not being prepared for a friend or family member who wants to play a Mortal Kombat game every now and then. And at the very least, it’s wise to have a replacement in case something goes wrong with your main controller. (We’ve all thrown our gamepads against the wall for one reason or another — no judgment.)

While you can just stock up on another Microsoft controller, there are plenty of options worth considering. The Anniversary Edition gamepad is just a little more at $70, and it has a punchy, translucent design that would look great on your coffee table. If you’re looking for something a little more colourful, the beautiful Limited Edition Forza Horizon 5 model is still here. If you find yourself running out of AA batteries, consider a rechargeable solution like PowerA’s dual controller bay. It comes with two batteries and lets you charge your gamepads in style.

Buy Xbox Wireless Controller from Microsoft – $60 Buy Anniversary Edition Controller from Amazon – $100 Buy Forza Horizon 5 Controller from Microsoft – $75 Buy PowerA Charging Station from Amazon – $25

Mat Smith, Engadget

For dedicated Xbox gamers, Microsoft’s second-generation Elite gamepad may be worth the investment. It has interchangeable thumbsticks, buttons on the back and a comfortable grip. Not to mention, it’s one of the few Xbox gamepads that you can charge via USB-C.

If you’re more interested in playing older games, or just looking for a different style of controller, we’re also big fans of 8BitDo’s Pro 2. It’s incredibly comfortable and the directional pad is one of the best on the market. It’s also a great controller for PC gaming (although any recent Xbox controller will also work on computers via Bluetooth).

Buy Elite Gamepad at Amazon – $180 Buy 8Bitdo Pro 2 at Amazon – $50 Specialized controllers are cool again!

Logitech

If you play Microsoft Flight Simulator long enough, you will realize that you can only get this far with a standard gamepad. Time for a flight stick! After consulting with flight simulator fanatics and reading plenty of reviews, we recommend hopping on Thrustmaster’s T-Flight Hotas One joystick. It offers realistic five-axis controls, fourteen buttons and a detachable throttle. And unlike some clunky PC solutions, it’s compact enough to fit on a coffee table or lap desk. (You can also use it with a computer, if you like.)

If you’re more into cars, we were impressed with Logitech’s G923 racing wheel. It feels like a real steering wheel, with a comfortable grip, steel paddle shifters and a trio of sturdy pedals. Once clamped to a table, it delivers a surprisingly realistic driving experience – all the better for tearing through Mexico in Forza Horizon 5. It’s certainly pricey at $400, but it’s an investment that will last for many racing games to come.

Buy T-Flight Hotas One Joystick at Amazon – $90 Buy Logitech G923 Racing Wheel at Amazon – $400 Increase Your Storage

seagate

If you were lucky enough to get your hands on a new Xbox Series X or S at launch, chances are you’re already familiar with their storage limitations. Fortunately, you can easily give yourself a little more breathing room with one of Seagate’s storage expansion cards, which are just as fast as the fast SSDs in the consoles. In addition to the 1TB card that arrived at launch, Seagate also recently unveiled 512GB and 2TB options. However, we recommend going for the 1TB option at this point – spending $400 for the 2TB just seems excessive.

You can also connect traditional hard drives, such as Seagate’s 2TB Game Drive, to the Xbox Series X and S via USB. They’re way too slow to run current-gen games at full speed, but they’ll give you tons of storage space for a much cheaper price. They’re handy to have with you for playing games from the original Xbox, as well as the 360. And they can also be used as “cold storage” to free up space on your precious SSD. Newer games can easily be moved back and forth between those discs, eliminating the need to download them again.

Buy Seagate Expansion Card (1TB) at Amazon – $220 Buy Seagate Game Drive (2TB) at Amazon – $130 Tune Your Sound

Engadget

You deserve better than your crappy TV speakers. While you can just plug any pair of headphones you have into your Xbox controller, we recommend investing in some solid wireless headphones. They will probably sound better and they eliminate the whole cord problem completely. SteelSeries Arctis 9X is one of the best options out there, with sturdy drivers, a comfortable fit and solid build quality. We were impressed in our hands-on testing, as they sounded just as good as the company’s excellent Arctis Pro PC headphones.

Buy SteelSeries Arctis 9X at Amazon – $200

8Bitdo

Tired of controlling Netflix playback with your controller? Then grab 8BitDo’s Media Remote. Available in long and short designs (the latter removes numbers and other external buttons), they’re well-made remotes to match the Xbox’s sleek aesthetic. I’ve used the short model to control 4K Blu-rays and tons of streaming apps, and it’s much easier to use than a controller when it comes to fast-forwarding. Now I don’t have to put down my drink to go to another chapter.

Buy 8Bitdo Media Remote at Amazon – $20
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