The new Turtle Beach Stealth Ultra controller is in a word – Awesome

On rare occasions, I get to just enjoy a new product. This is one of those times. Sometimes, something comes out that is unexpected, fun, new, and satisfyingly awesome. The Turtle Beach Stealth Ultra controller aptly fits this bill. My Elite Series 2 controller is now starting to collect dust. Let me explain why.

From the moment the controller hit my hands out of the included black and purple case, I had a strong feeling it was a winner. Similar to the Elite series’ controllers, the Stealth Ultra comes with a carrying case. Good call here from Turtle Beach. Too many controllers suffer from traveling casualties due to crumbs, dust and unnecessary drops. I’ve actually gone through a handful of Xbox Series X controllers due to drops and drift (Drift being the worst culprit – and no they didn’t work after trying all the YouTube fixes out there). In addition to the controller and case, Turtle Beach includes thumb stick covers, a USB dongle (for low latency gaming) and a quick charging magnetic dock.

The only thing missing here that I wish Turtle Beach included would be modular pieces. The controller isn’t quite as customizable as the Elite Series for example, so you won’t find swappable thumb sticks or a different D-pad option. Yet, I don’t even really care. The controller just looks freaking sweet, and it is. The reality is, there are so many good things the controller does have that the Elite Series 2 does not. My favorite being the amazing display smack dab in the middle. It’s not just a simple display. Instead, it’s a command center with a plethora of delightful options. Options such as button mapping with profiles, dead zone and axis response modes, vibration intensity, audio enhancements, RGB lighting, and I can even get my social media notifications.

In all fairness, I could not get the social media notifications to work on my device. My phone found the controller quickly via Bluetooth, but I could never get any options to work. I’ll troubleshoot this later. I hope it works for everyone else, because one of my biggest peeves in gaming is when someone goes idle, and I just know they are checking their phones causing my team to lose. Hopefully, by some miracle this could help them with their phone separation anxiety. My favorite things to toggle are the RGB lighting options on the device and the button mapping. Gone are the days of me accidentally punching while trying to evade and shoot in Apex…I hope because good grief is it a humiliating way to die.

The controller is the best I’ve held. That’s hard for me to say too, because the Xbox Elite Series 2 controllers really are awesome. The Turtle Beach Stealth Ultra feels better for several reasons. The first reason is that it’s simple lighter with slightly longer handholds. The second reason is that the buttons have an incredible tactile clicking sound that is ridiculously satisfying. My kids absolutely love this thing for the buttons. Finally, my biggest hope is the fact that Turtle Beach advertises that the Stealth Ultra is made with “Antidrift” thumb sticks. They installed “contactless, hall effect thumbsticks that use internal magnets instead of full contact analog style sticks.” If this prevents drift and trashing my controller, then this controller wins it all. I am not lying when I say, I have gone through almost 10 Microsoft Series X controllers because of drift.

Shame on me for not registering them and getting the warranty on several, but my gosh I’m done buying controllers from Micro$oft.

A few other great options separate the Turtle Beach Stealth Ultra from the competition. On the back of the controller are four additional mappable quick-action buttons. Okay, I’ll be honest, I don’t use them, but my kids do, and they destroy me in all games. Like the Elite Series controllers, these buttons ergonomically fit just under where my fingers naturally lie on the back of the controller. Unlike the Elite Series controllers, they cannot be removed. What I do use is the short click option on my triggers. A simple switch on the top of the controller makes for shortening the click depth of either trigger to make it a button press as opposed to a full trigger pull.

I’m sold on this thing. It’s not just because of how it feels or the display but because of the way it plays. Movement feels so stinkin’ smooth on the thumb sticks, the battery life is killer, it charges ridiculously fast, and the responsiveness feels that much better when I connect the USB option as opposed to using Bluetooth on my PC or Xbox.

Let me help you out this Christmas season. If you or a loved one are in the market for a new controller, here is your choice this year. Sure, you can buy a simple Microsoft option, but I can almost promise you will regret it within the year. If the Turtle Beach Stealth Ultra stands the test of time with use, it will go down as one of the best ever made. Happy Holidays, and happy gaming all!