Big on Cooling, Big on Price

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Ever since Gamevice made waves with its iOS controllers for iPhone and iPad in the 2010s, side-by-side controllers that let you slap your phone have been all the rage. Shortly after, Gamevice partnered with Razer to create and launch the Razer Kishi. iOS-specific side-by-side controller (Coming to Android this winter).

The market for such peripherals is hot, and lesser-known manufacturers like GameSir have found niches with similar designs targeting the mobile market. The GameSir X2 stands out, and that’s how an all-new controller with active cooling, known as the GameSir X3, has come to fruition. Well, we’ve spent quite a bit of time with similar controllers for our Buyer’s Guide, so it’s time to put the X3 through its paces and see how it compares to the competition.


Right off the bat, the GameSir X3 is a big controller. Sure, the footprint remains pretty much the same compared to the X2, but it’s much thicker, though with a fan built into the center of the device, which provides plenty of room for shoulder triggers. If you enjoyed the design and wide mobile phone support of the X3, regardless of its size, you can enjoy the added benefits of a cooling fan with the X3.

GameSir X3 hands-on in the box

The central USB-C can be angled up and down so you can easily slide a large phone into the USB. This also helps you remove USB-C without worrying about bending or breaking it. Competing devices do not have this feature. It’s rarely mentioned, but it’s a great feature at the core of its design.

GameSir X3 hands-on usbc bend

GameSir X3 Hands-on Bottom USBC Port


Feel is very important when it comes to gaming controllers: how the buttons feel, whether the thumbsticks are full size or not, and the general weight and comfort of holding the controller in your hands for long sessions. These things are important, but everyone has different tastes.

GameSir X3 Hands-on Front Phone App

The big, easy-to-charge GameSir X3 hits a good middle ground. Sure, it’s heavier than the X2 thanks to the fan in the middle, but this also means the controller is thicker, and the middle and index fingers rest on the shoulders. ‘s buttons and triggers have more room. This is accentuated by rounded corners and a slightly outwardly curved grip. The controller feels great in the hand and is great if you’re using a larger phone that adds weight to the controller.

GameSir X3 hands-on button

What’s really nice is that all the buttons offer Kailh switches, no membrane here. Even the directional pads that work surprisingly well in fighting games despite their small size each feel a click afterward because the thumbsticks aren’t full size but more like sticks on nintendo he switch , this problem still occurs. Choose from concave or convex thumbstick caps, and swap the placement of the face buttons whether you prefer the Xbox or Nintendo Switch layout. This feels good.

Close GameSir X3 hands-on button

The layout mimics that of an Xbox controller, with the sticks off-center and the right stick quite low and not suitable for large hands. Then drop your right hand palm down with your index finger on the top shoulder button. So if it’s okay on Switch, it’s okay here.


Overall, the GameSir X3 is a reliable controller thanks to the fact that it connects to your phone via USB-C. Wired connectivity is the only option as there is no Bluetooth, but this offers easy connectivity and low latency, making it ideal for competitive Android gaming, but not to complement streaming games which add their own latency. will also be

GameSir X3 Hands-on Button Fan Gap

The GameSir X3 offers a very unique feature with a fan placed in the center of the controller, so you might be wondering if this helps with gaming performance. You’ll need to remove the phone’s case to get access to the plastic. Fans keep things cool if you want to do this every time you slam your phone into his X3. It can hold steady frames longer, especially in demanding games like Genshin Impact and Apex Legends Mobile. It’s not loud enough to bother me, but I can hear it when I turn it on.

GameSir X3's Hands-On Fans Lead By Far

GameSir X3 hands-on fans close up

If you want to use a fan, you have to turn it on and plug it into the central USB-C port because your phone doesn’t have enough juice. This only powers the fan, but there is a second USB-C port on the bottom right through which you can power your phone. You can power the fan and your phone at the same time while keeping your phone connected to the controller.


GameSir serves the app properly Called GameSirThis is how GameSir products update their firmware, and it also allows you to create shortcuts to launch games from a single app.

GameSir app gameplay page

GameSir app home screen

The app is also a way to update the software to recognize changes in button placement (remember, face buttons are interchangeable).

GameSir app button layout

Still, there’s no way to adjust the fan speed or turn off the fan’s blinking LED. This is strange considering there is an app. Why not provide these features?


The GameSir X3 Type-C gamepad sells for $100 in most stores, including Amazon, which is famous for its mobile game controllers. Still, even the Kishi v2 retails for $100, so it’s not far off the price of similar designs from Razer and others.

The price is fair for what you get, but some scoff at spending so much just to play some mobile games with a physical controller.

Buy GameSir X3 Type-C


final thoughts

We’ve never taken a big interest in features like fans, but in this case the GameSir X3 definitely lives up to its promise of keeping things cool. It sounds sure, but it helps keep the frames consistent.

GameSir X3 Hands-on Front Final

So whether you enjoy GameSir X3 depends on what is important to you. If you want to get the most performance out of your phone, the GameSir X3 comes in spades, but that means you’ll have to deal with the extra bulk, weight, and noise. , may be perfectly acceptable for you. Additionally, if you want more portability and don’t mind losing a fan, the X2 is a good choice as it has a similar design.

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