PDP Victrix Pro BFG Review: Top-Tear Modular eSport Wireless Controller For PS5
Does a versatile modular layout make a PDP Victrix Pro BFG the best esports controller recently released? Or is it a flop? Read on to find out.
- Ultra-Customizable Controls
- 2 lever Mappable Back Buttons
- Replaceable Stick Modules
- Quick Access Profile Settings Menu
- On-Controller User Interface
- Changeable Stick Caps and Back Buttons
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The gaming market is currently buzzing with pro gaming and modded controllers, - Sony's DualSense Edge, Razer's Wolverine V2 Pro, Scuff's Reflex, and others.
And it's no wonder, as the demand from gamers looking for the ultimate competitive edge keeps growing. With controllers’ ability to be customized, ergonomic improvements, and features that will help you react faster and win more, these are the perfect tools to bring your gaming up to the pro level.
Although the latest releases have lots in common, they also differ. We recently compared the Razer Wolverine V2 Pro and Sony DualSense Edge, and the Razer lost to the Edge due to its bulky design, awkward back button placement, limited app settings, and lack of some other features.
So how does the Victrix Pro BFG stand out from the pack? Let’s find out.
The product is an eSports controller, officially licensed by Sony, and developed by Performance Designed Products (PDP). It was released right at the end of 2022 for $180 at retail and is compatible with the PS5, PS4, and PC platforms.
PDP is an electronics company headquartered in San Diego. They have been rocking the gaming world since the 1990ies when they began manufacturing gaming accessories for all major platforms. PDP owns several brands, including Victrix, and has something for every gamer, from headsets to cases.
Packaging and Included Accessories
Let's start with the box. It has the familiar blue and white color scheme of a PS5, but with a splash of Victrix's signature purple. Give it a few shakes to loosen the bottom, and you'll find the product information on the back, highlighting all the amazing features of the controller.
Inside the lid, there is the logo and that exclusive purple color. The controller and all its accessories are safely tucked away in the carrying case, and at the bottom, you'll find the "Getting Started Guide" plus a 20% discount offer.
The case is made from a foam material and lined with mesh fabric. Made in black, it features the purple Victrix logo, and the zipper gives it that extra "oomph." Although it looks like it will 100% protect your BFG and accessories, it appears to be too soft and not that reliable compared to the DualSense Edge, for example.
As we open the case, we see the controller and accessories snug and secure - and even better, there's a USB Type-C cable tucked away in the top, underneath a mesh netting. Just the thing for when you're ready to get gaming.
The bottom of the case has been molded to perfectly fit the Victrix and its components, so you can pack them away without fear of them getting lost. Inside you'll find the fighting pad, a wireless dongle, and two alternate gates, all snugly tucked into hard foam padding.
And delving further, we get to the screwdriver, alternate thumbsticks, and d-pads that make up the controller.
Design and Build
We're moving to the design section, and it's a truly controversial subject! From what the controller looks like, it’s clear the BFG design project had the makings of a masterpiece, but it didn't live up to its potential.
Featuring a winning color scheme of black plastic and purple accents, this controller lacks the premium feel of a top-tier controller. The reason for that is that BFG has different patterns of plastic on all parts of the controller that don’t blend into one organic exterior, cheapening the product's overall aesthetic.
The shape of the BFG is great and very similar to an Xbox controller, complete with rubberized grip pads up front and subtly textured back panels to keep your hands firmly planted.
The bumpers and triggers are wider than on the PS5 controller, which not only improves grip but also makes it feel like it's made just for you. Plus, a newly-added function button below the touchpad is perfect for those quick commands. With large rubberized grips on the front and back of the controller, you'll never worry about slipping or dropping it.
The build quality aspect is lacking - I can't help but notice the cheap plastics used throughout the controller and the gaps between the BFG's components. If I squeeze the controller with some force applied, I get that squeaky sound, indicating I am very close to breaking something inside.
That’s a pity, as such a unique, modular controller deserves flawless implementation and premier materials. The controller’s aesthetic would be taken up a notch with thicker plastic and fewer textures and patterns used on the exterior. Having no gaps between the panels and zero noise produced with a firm grip would also change the BFR perception by 180 degrees.
Features and Specs
Talking about must-have pro controller features, there are four remappable back buttons on the inner edges of the handles, so you can customize your gaming experience.
The controller is also equipped with the patented multi-position clutch triggers, an addition that will give you an edge while you're playing.
On the top of the Victrix Pro, we have the mode switch to toggle between PS5, PS4, and PC gaming. On the bottom, you'll find the button to switch between wired and wireless play, with the newly added profile button right above it. The Pro BFG's 3.5mm headset jack is conveniently located in its traditional spot.
Given the modular layout (details in the paragraph below) and the ability to swap out the d-pad, analog stick caps, and frames, the BFG is the definition of a fully customizable controller!
Despite the abundance of the included pro-controller options, the BFX failed to include a few of the modern features—those adaptive triggers, rumbles, and the built-in front speaker.
Here comes the best part. The most important feature of the BFG is not its design or pro controller options, but its versatile, modular layout, which allows you to switch input layouts on the go. With the included screwdriver, you can quickly remove either side of the controller to your heart's content.
The modular layout allows for endless customizations. For example, you can go with a traditional PlayStation layout or Xbox's offset controller configuration or replace the right thumbstick module with the Fight Pad.
The Fight Pad module is complete with six microswitch buttons and is essential for anyone playing fighting games. The buttons are also equipped with micro switches, greatly improving response time and giving that satisfying mouse click.
The controller's "Tournament Lock" mode is an interesting feature I haven’t seen on other pro controllers yet. Enabled by a simultaneous press of the Function and Profile buttons, it disables the PlayStation's creating options and the touchpad. This way, the controller prevents any blunders during tournament play that could lead to the dreaded disqualification. Simple to turn on and off, it will help you keep your competitive edge and keep on playing.
Weight and Battery
Weighing in at 290 grams, this controller is equipped with a whopping 2000 mAh battery, which is more than double the power of the PS5 Edge Controller. Indeed, the BFG offers an impressive 18 to 20 hours of gameplay on a single charge.
In addition to a standard 3.5 mm head jack, this controller is also compatible with Sony 3D Audio on PS5, so you can enjoy a truly immersive audio experience. The newly added function button allows you to control the game audio (for example, mute and unmute your headset mic), as well as choose different audio profiles. And not to mention, there's a nifty onboard audio control, so you can take your volume up or down with just a simple press of the D-pad. Now that's what I call a top-notch audio experience offered by the third-party controllers.
With the flick of a button, you are able to switch between PS5, PS4, and PC play (via the X input).
The controller also comes with wireless and wired compatibility. When playing wired, you need to use the provided 2.4 gigahertz wireless dongle. This will allow for low-latency gameplay. When playing wired, make sure to use the provided 10-foot-long USB Type-C cable to get the full wired experience.
The cable is themed and comes in a signature purple color, plus one of its ends has the cable clip, and both ends have a fairy bead, which will prevent electrical interference or the buzzing noise in your headset when playing wired. This is such a smart added feature.
Back Buttons with User-Configurable Profiles
The four back buttons, built into the controller, are ergonomically placed and follow the contour of the BFG's handles, which is where your fingers naturally grip, with middle fingers sitting on the top ones, and ring fingers on the bottom.
The back buttons are curved slightly outward, which will help keep your fingers in place, while the textured grip adds to the feel as well. This is very important in competitive play, as back buttons are essential for maneuvering your character and getting the edge on the competition. Being very responsive yet requiring enough resistance to not be actuated by accident, they provide a satisfying click—in other words, these are the perfect back buttons.
Button remapping is a breeze and can be done directly from the controller on the fly with up to three different setups that can be saved to custom user profiles for instant access. The best part is that you can switch up your back button setup in a flash. Just press and release the profile button to hop between profiles - so you can be ready for any game in no time.
Trigger Locks - Patented Multi-Position Clutch System
The BFG is equipped with patented multi-position clutch triggers with five different stopping points to choose from. The functionality is perfect for those who want 100% control, as it lets you tune the trigger pull to your exact needs, from hair triggers to standard triggers or anything in between.
By default, setting 1 gives you the full travel distance click, and setting 5 is for the hair-trigger position, which is the quickest and most responsive setting and is ideal for FPS games.
Honestly, I find the feature to be very pro-level functionality-wise, but floppy design-wise. The plastic the triggers are made from feels very basic and has a slippery surface with no added texture for extra grip, which takes away the feeling of using a premium feature.
Swappable Analog Sticks Caps
The BFX comes with four thumb stick caps, which is a modest amount compared to other pro controllers that include six or eight pieces. Included caps are two standard concaves, one short convex, and one tall “sniper” one. How do they feel?
First of all, the caps rubber silicone compound is made from a soft rubber that normally delivers much grip, but surprisingly, the ones on the BFG don’t feel grippy enough. From experience, caps made of such gentle rubber wear out quickly and are not a good choice for long-term durability.
Secondly, the “sniper” stick cup didn’t impress me much at all. Although its additional height is a great idea, the cup surface is simply too narrow (can be compared to the Elite Series 2 longest stick), which can play a role in achieving your best results.
Software Customization - Victrix Control Hub
The controller comes with software; however, it is limited in what it can do. It is called the Victrix Control Hub and is a PC program that allows you to access the online start guide, customer service, plus firmware updates for the controller and the wireless dongle. I also noticed a nice added feature: the Calibrate button at the bottom left to recalibrate the thumbstick modules.
There is nothing else to be added in regards to the software, as there are no options to customize the controller settings such as button mapping, stick dead zones, or audio profiles. Hopefully, these features will be available in a future update.
I will start with the cons. The Vitrix Pro BFG build and the software both need serious improvement. Also, the controller is lacking a few key standard features, such as the built-in speaker, haptic triggers, and rumbles.
However, the positives overshadow the negatives.
Traditionally, most people think that esports and competitive play are only for FPS games, but there are a wide variety of competitive fighting and adventure games. The BFG can be tailored to all gaming genres, player styles, and preferences with its tremendous customization capabilities and a wide range of accessories—something that has yet to be seen on any other pro controller.
Furthermore, the Victrix Pro BFG is the ergonomic winner among all the latest pro controller releases. Shaped in the Xbox controller tradition, it lets you have a Playstation symmetrical stick layout on it, or turn it into a fight pad thanks to its modular design.
Its mouse-click bumpers, patented multi-positioned clutch triggers, and four ergonomically placed back buttons give you more bang for your buck.
The bottom line: I highly recommend purchasing the Victrix Pro BFG as your esports-ready controller. Would you buy it, or are the controller cons deal breakers for you? Share in the comments below.