GameSir T4 Mini game controller review
Games have seen a big increase over the past two years, partly thanks to new consoles and partly because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a great time not only for games and consoles, but also for gaming accessories which are diversifying the market with more options, especially when it comes to input controls like keyboards, mice and more. , of course, the controllers. With many people going mobile again, the need for more portable accessories has also become more evident. The GameSir T4 Mini is one of that new generation of controllers that has mobility at its heart, and we’re taking it for a ride to check out whether or not it makes compromises along the way to achieving its goals.
The GameSir T4 Mini, as the name suggests, is a smaller version of the gamepad manufacturer’s GameSir T4 Pro, which in turn is designed to be an alternative to Nintendo’s first-party Switch Pro controller. Appearances can be deceiving, as the saying goes, and the T4 Mini has plenty inside, if not more. In fact, it even outperforms its big brother Pro in at least one aspect.
This small size has a lot of advantages with very few disadvantages. It slips easily into a bag or even a large pocket, making it convenient to take with you wherever you go, especially if you’re using it with a smartphone. It will definitely be a hit with children or people with small hands, but it is comfortable for most people to hold and use.
Its compactness will of course have some drawbacks, especially for those with large hands. The plastic material that helps keep it light may scare some players off, but it is quite sturdy and durable in practice. The biggest design consideration you might want to keep in mind is the lack of “wings” or extended grips, something that gives some players confidence but doesn’t do much for others.
The most notable part of the GameSir T4 Mini’s design, at least apart from its small size, is its translucent black body, which not only gives a glimpse of its innards but also lets in LED lights. These lights can be set to a certain extent or turned off completely to conserve battery power. That’s not a core feature, especially since you’re relying primarily on muscle memory anyway, but it’s still a nice touch that might appeal to players with a penchant for such lighting.
Connection and controls
Although advertised as a cross-platform game controller, the GameSir T4 Mini is clearly designed for the Nintendo Switch. The layout of the buttons, sticks, and D-pad follows that of the Joy-cons, and the layout of the A, B, X, and Y buttons is the exact opposite of the Xbox layout. There are also special buttons for Home, Screenshot, Plus (+) and Minus (-) which only make sense on a Nintendo Switch.
Of course, all of these buttons can be used with any compatible device, which officially includes Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS, and PCs. The T4 Mini connects primarily via Bluetooth, but it can also connect to PCs with a USB-C cable. There is no compatibility with other consoles, whether Xbox or PlayStation.
Despite its size, the GameSir T4 Mini’s knobs offer excellent travel and have enough stiffness for responsiveness, but aren’t too clickable or sticky. Analog joysticks are very comfortable, especially with the depression in the middle for your thumb. Triggers and D-pad felt they could have had more depth, but aren’t huge deal breakers.
For those who constantly worry about breaking all four main buttons due to repeated brewing, the T4 Mini thankfully offers that familiar but still rare Turbo button. You can set this mode for a single button or for a set of buttons, and it can mean the difference between winning and losing for some games.
Performance and battery
When it comes to gaming experience, the GameSir T4 Mini is roughly on par with more expensive game controllers. It boasts of a 6-axis gyroscope which will allow you to drive more intuitively in some Switch games, but not on other platforms. GameSir also boasts of the controller’s dual asymmetric motors which may seem slightly more powerful than other controllers, possibly due to its small size.
This vibration feedback is something you might want to keep in mind when taking the T4 Mini with you, as it will naturally affect battery life. LED lighting, while sophisticated, can also have a drastic impact on how long you’ll be able to use the controller. GameSir advertises an average of 10 hours, and that’s more or less what we got in our testing.
It’s not a lot if you compare it to the 40 hours of the Nintendo Switch Pro controller, but it’s also a much larger controller. You’ll only need three hours to fully charge the controller, which is probably a good time to take a break, especially if you’ve been gaming for a long time. The controller will automatically shut off after 15 minutes of idling, just as a safety measure.
Finding the perfect game controller is almost impossible, as behavior and gaming needs can vary greatly from individual to individual. Some prefer a larger controller to hold with confidence, while others favor portability instead. Many want all the gadgets money can buy, but maybe they don’t have enough resources to buy something like this.
the GameSir T4 Mini Cross-Platform Game Controller, however, comes close to perfect, especially for those with smaller or medium hands. It doesn’t have a lot of downsides to its size other than having to fit a smaller battery, but it could actually be a good thing that will force players to take a break every now and then. And at just $ 35.99, it’s definitely a steal for anyone who likes to take their game anywhere, whether it’s on a Nintendo Switch or on a phone.