Modified Elite controller for Gears, review

(Omen LP) #1


From time to time threads about controller pop up, I thought I’d add to it.

I’ve been using Elite controllers for about a year (maybe 1.5 years), and while I really like them, I always found the paddles too easy to activate without meaning to. Either putting the controller down, or even when trying to quickly do something with the triggers, and having the whole hand move a bit…

I use one of the paddles for roadie run, which gets used a LOT, and that’s the button which tends to break and stop responding .

I sent one of such “broken” controllers to a company called Battle Beaver Customs, in Texas and I asked them to make 2 modifications:

  1. replace the paddles on the back with physical buttons, and

  2. replace the analog triggers with what they call smart triggers, which are basically on/off buttons, which instantly go from 0 to 100% . This makes them not suitable for things like car games, where you want to the pull range for things like acceleration/etc, but for shooters it’s fine.

I got the controller back yesterday, so last night I played with it.

I have to say the buttons on the back took about 10min to get used to (after a year of paddles), and once that happened, I much prefer the buttons! Plus, they put the buttons exactly where you tell them to, so it’s custom places for your fingers.

The smart triggers weren’t as big of a change, I did find I was able to fire the snub a bit faster, but that’s about it. I tested the triggers with all the different weapons and they seemed to work just fine… So definitely nice, but not as big of a jump as the back buttons.

Anyhow, so yeah, if you like your elite but aren’t crazy about the paddles, I highly recommend you check these guys out. I also found I was able to slide/bounce a little better with the back button too compared to when it was a paddle (I have A mapped to one of the back paddles/buttons).

(III EnVii III) #2

Point 2 - I can do the exact same in settings.

My bump stops are in and my sensitivity is like 5%.

So as soon as I press the triggers a tiny bit, they respond instantly.

Personally, I couldn’t get used the paddles but didn’t find a need for them either.

(HayMaker304) #3

Got a link? I need my sticks replaced on my elite.

(hilbert66) #4

Inner/outter deadzone?
Aim acceleration?
What selection do you choose in elite contrrlr?

(Omen LP) #5

Dont know if we are supposed to post links to vendors here, just google them :wink: . They do repair work too, not just upgrades.

The back buttons/paddles mostly replace face buttons for me so thumbs can stay on joysticks most of the time…

(cribbel) #6

Well on the elite controller,
You just need to dubble tap the search button, on top of the controller.
Too turn the paddles off / on.

There’s scuff controllers aswell. If you perfer buttons instead.

(thesuicidefox) #7

TBH it would have been a lot cheaper and easier to grab the Scuf Elite Paddle Control System ( It would give you better paddles (the default Elite paddles are complete trash) without the need to mod your controller.

The trigger thing is a waste IMO since the game recognizes even a slight input as a trigger press. I guess if you like racing games it could be useful but waste of money IMO.

When it breaks in 6 months you probably won’t be praising it as much. Elite controllers internal parts are literally identical to a normal controller, hence why sticks still get drift and bumpers still break.

You shoulda just waited for the v2 to come out.

(Omen LP) #8


Hmm… I probably didn’t explain things well since some of the comment aren’t relevant/applicable (must be my accent :wink: )


Re triggers: yes, I am very aware of the configuration abilities of the triggers. This is more about overtravel reducation. The elite “trigger stops” reduce trigger travel from 100% to about 50%. These triggers just drop it further, to maybe 5%. So if you are using the built in trigger stops, to decrease trigger travel, you would like this too. Nothing to do with engagement detection, it’s about how much the trigger moves.

Re disable paddles: don’t understand the relevance of this, I am not disabling the controls on the back, I am simply using buttons instead of paddles

Use scuff paddles: multiple reasons why not, main ones don’t like the placement (here I got the buttons exactly where I wanted), they still use the little elite green buttons which break (already lost 2 controllers cuz paddle buttons stopped responding; now I am not dependent on those tiny buttons holding up ) , and scuff paddles are attached to battery cover, can’t use with my batteries. So using the scuff paddles is a completely different concept.

You can, of course, use those, but this is apples and oranges.

Re breaking: lol, two of my elites stopped heing useful because of paddle button issues, in fact this new controller is one of those, so I am again able to use something which became a brick before. So I seriously doubt this is going to be worse… But yes, I will definitely provide an update if things break.

So far I much prefer the buttons custom placed to fit my hand over fixed placement paddles, and I like the firm clicks over the factory squishy presses. The triggers aren’t as big of an issue, it’s probably 90% buttons, 10% triggers, re impact & benefit…

This was a little pricey for me because of international shipping and duty, but if you are in the US, you can probably get paddles replaced with buttons for $60? It’s not that much more expensive than those scuff paddles, especially if your controller is useless because the factory paddle buttons stopped working :wink: (so scuff wouldn’t be an option anyway)

(Me0wMix CatFood) #9

I’ve been wanting to have Battle Beaver make me a custom elite for the exact same reasons. I just haven’t gotten around to it yet. Thx for the review.

(Omen LP) #10

You’re welcome :wink:

When I contacted them in Dec they told me they didn’t have any elites available, so I would have to send in my own. Since that’s what I was looking to do, worked out. Check with them if they have some available now.

NOTE: it can take few days for them to get back to you, via email, so just keep that in mind.

(Me0wMix CatFood) #11

Now that I think about it, I still have an Elite with dead paddles on the left side. I might send them that for a button mod. How did the buttons work with the rubberized grips? I need to replace the grips on this and am wondering if I should do it before sending it or if they do something special with the grips (since they are notorious for peeling).

(Omen LP) #12

They do have grip options, so they can do it for you. I didn’t do that because I use a chatpad which plugs into the controller: and their special grips would interfere with that :wink:
My controller had a dead paddle button too, works fine now, with their buttons.

Go on their website, select SendIn, and go through the form, you will see all the available options (grips, sticks, buttons, trigggers, etcb.

The process is: go through that form, and submit it. You will get an emailed copy. You then send them the controller with that printed form. They inspect and send you an invoice, you pay, and they do it.

I did pay for expedited work, they did it in 3-4 days and shipped it back.

(Omen LP) #14

Ok, so after playing it for few more days I have to say I really like it… The buttons are natural, and I found (and this might be coincidental) that with these triggers, I have far fewer cases of “I pulled the trigger but gun didn’t fire” (holding a lancer, holding a power weapon, etc - so I’m not talking about losing a gnasher fight, I’m talking about pulling the trigger where there is no time pressure, and gun not firing until I let go and re-pulled it).

I am doing, by my standards, very well with it, better than I have in the past, so I feel it definitely works better for my hands and fingers than a regular controller… As always, YMMV…