The constant hassle of remembering to charge batteries or the inconvenience of your controller dying halfway through a game can be a major pain. This is part of the reason I changed to a charging station so I could hook up my controllers and leave them to charge. I couldn’t switch to a wired controller because of the two rowdy dogs that are constantly running around the room. Wouldn’t it just be easier to be able to leave out the batteries altogether? Well, now you can!
Evil Controllers have come up with a new Vision Backplate that you can attach to the back of your controller, getting rid of the need for batteries and rechargeable packs. The guys over at Evil Controllers were kind enough to send me out one of their Vision Backplate DIY Kits for review purposes.
The Backplate itself has been completely redesigned, resulting in the controller being a lot lighter than it previously was. The Backplate does not change the feel of the controller, but does make it easier and more comfortable to use due to there being no battery pack on the back. Overall, the removal of the battery pack should reduce uncomfortable hand cramps that occur during long game sessions.
When the Backplate kit arrived, I was glad to see that everything needed was included. I had the Backplate, the required Torx Screwdriver tool and a 6ft Mini USB cable that is used to charge the Backplate. The installation help video is below.
I will admit, the thought of removing the need for batteries altogether was a bit daunting. I had visions of me totally screwing my controller up or breaking the Backplate to the point of no repair. These thoughts and visions were totally uncalled for.
When it came to fitting the Backplate, it really could not have been easier. It was a case of taking the back of the controller off, removing the battery spring connectors and then putting the Backplate into place and putting the screws back in. That is it! After screwing everything back into place securely, just hook up the controller to the included USB cable and plug into your console and let it charge. There are LED Charging Indicator lights on the top of the controller where you plug the USB cable in – Red for charging and Green for charged.
You will also find a small red button next to where you plug in the USB cable. This button allows you to turn the controller off with a simple click. So, say for example your controller turns on accidentally and there is no console within range, instead of having to hook it up to a console, you can just press this button and the controller is off. I know this was easily addressed when using a battery pack by just removing the battery pack and plugging it back in. I think the red button is a good way of getting around this issue and kudos to Evil Controllers for including something to make things just as easy.
Because having a built-in battery instead of a battery pack can cause the inside of the Backplate to get a bit warmer, you will notice that air vents have also been included. Warm air should be able to easily leave the back of the controller. In turn, this should extend the life of the controller.
The tech specs state that the lightweight Backplate should hold over 36 hours of charge. I haven’t used the controller for 36 hours as yet. I am at about 15 hours so far and still on full battery charge when I press the Xbox Guide Button on the controller. I usually lose a couple of battery bars when using my rechargeable packs after about 4 hours, so, so far so good.
I am really excited to have replaced my bulky battery pack with the newly designed Vision Backplate. Not only is it one of the easiest modifications that I have added to my controller to date, I think that it is a great idea and it has such a simple, yet effective design to it. If you suffer with the same issues as I did with batteries running out, or forgetting to charge battery packs, then this will solve everything at once, as well as adding a bit of style to your controller. Prices start from $29.99 USD.