Nacon MG-X Pro for iOS
Gaming on your mobile is a must in today’s gaming landscape. The rise of streaming services, as well as services like Apple Arcade, show that you no longer need a fat gaming PC or console to play full-fledged games. Earlier this year we already reviewed the Nacon MG-X Pro for Android devices and now Nacon has also released an edition specifically for iOS. We put this new version through its paces and found out for you whether the controller is just as easy to use’n recommended for the Apple ecosystem.
When you take the controller out of the box, it doesn’t look much different than the version for Android, except for the color. For Android, Nacon has chosen black and white for the iPhone variant. Also, the status lights where you can read the battery charge have changed slightly. That said, the device looks and feels extremely premium even in white. Also looking at the sliding system it feels extremely solid and you just have a piece of quality in your hands.
The MG-X Pro connects via Bluetooth 5.0 with your iPhone and thus does not use the Lightning connector at the bottom of the phone like the competition does. As for the future, that’s a wise choice. Apple is in fact required to modify the port to a generic USB C connector, so you don’t have to worry about adapters here for now. Another advantage is that your phone just goes into the MG-X Pro with case and all, something that we were annoyed by with other controllers when this is not possible. Practically everyone has a case on their cell phone these days, and it doesn’t feel right to leave it in without one’n clip to press.
By the way, your iPhone rests on a layer of rubber, so the chance of damage is actually zero. Nacon did make a mistake here though. iPhones have a pretty big camera island and the MG-X Pro doesn’t take this into account. The result is that the phone does not go into the inlet which makes it “separate” is on that side. Now the clamp is sturdy enough and the phone is also supported on the bottom, so it won’t fall out of the controller, but it’s an odd flaw in the design that has a very specific target phone after all. We’ve had several Pro and non Pro iPhones in the controller and everywhere the camera island blocked optimal setup. Indeed, on the iPhone 13 Pro, with which we tested the Nacon primarily, one of the camera lenses rests exactly on a plastic corner. That obviously cannot be the intention and is just very sloppy.
Another disadvantage is the fact that you cannot charge your iPhone while playing. Especially when you play graphics-heavy games, your phone’s battery will want to go hard. Whereas with a Razer Kishi or a Backbone you can charge while playing, that’s not the case here. Especially if you have to use your phone for the rest of the day and are not in a position to recharge, this may be a reason to choose another controller anyway.
Fortunately, there are also plenty of advantages to be found, the main one being that it feels great in the hand. It’s like holding an Xbox Series controller in your hands, where even the slightly rougher back has been incorporated into the design. Everything about the MG-X Pro feels great, from the buttons to the triggers, bumpers and sticks. You can tell from everything that you’re dealing with a premium product. The battery life of twenty hours is also quite long and allows for decent gaming sessions.
The price tag of the Nacon MG-X Pro is not soft with a suggested retail price of € 119.90 (for comparison, the Android version costs €79,90). However, it is true that we also see these prices with the competition and the differences with Android variants are not unique either.
We have mixed feelings about the iOS version of the Nacon MG-X Pro. On the one hand, it is a fantastic controller that we would recommend to anyone. On the other hand, there are the drawbacks of not being able to charge your phone while playing and the fact that the iPhones we tested just don’t fit well in the controller. The latter is actually incomprehensible for a device specifically designed for those phones. That’s also why it doesn’t get the maximum score.