Logitech Rumblepad 2

Review

posted 7/27/2004 by John Yan
other articles by John Yan
Platforms: PC
Today we are going through to another in the new line of Logitech controllers and this time it’s for the PC. I’ve used a few PC controllers from them and mostly liked what they had except for the D-Pad. Let’s see if they fixed that and improved on other issues with the Rumblepad 2.

The Rumblepad 2 is physically similar to the old Dual Action gamepad from Logitech. Designed like a PlayStation controller, the Rumblepad 2 features twelve programmable buttons, a D-Pad, and two analog sticks. Four of the programmable buttons are triggers. Looking at the gamepad, you can easily be mistaken it for a PlayStation 2 controller from a distance. That’s not a bad thing as the design works and it’s been around for many years.

Each of the four main buttons is of nice size and protrudes from the surface at a nice height. Pressing the buttons produce good feedback and I liked the strength of the springs underneath. Spacing on the buttons is good and each button is clearly labeled 1-4 so you can easily know which button is being set in the game or OS.

Buttons five through eight are the triggers on the Rumblepad 2. Compared to the PlayStation 2 Cordless Action Controller, the triggers on the Rumblepad 2 actually feel a little better. The springs seem to feel a little stronger on this one over the PS2 controller but in reality they are probably the same. Sizes on the triggers are good and each button has the number etched into the trigger.

Two analog sticks offer good resistance in both movement and pushing. A common complaint I had of previous Logitech controllers were that the resistance with the sticks were too weak. They have corrected this with the Rumblepad 2 and now both sticks feel great. Each snaps back to the neutral position at a nice clip. The two analog sticks are also buttons eleven and twelve.

A mode and vibration button changes the operation of the controller. Pressing the vibration button can cycle on and off the rumble feature. The mode button will switch between analog and digital mode. Pressing it switches the left analog stick to a hat control while the D-Pad becomes the X and Y axis.

Above the mode and vibration buttons are buttons nine and ten. They are placed similar to start and select buttons and I use them as such in most of my games.

The outer parts of the grips feature a non-slip rubber coating that helps you grip the controller and should provide friction when your palms get sweaty. The same rubber is also featured on the top of each analog stick.

Now we come to a part of the product that’s been debated between our Editor-in-Chief, Charles Husemann, and I and that’s the D-Pad. Logitech has stated that all D-Pads in their new products are exactly the same. I found the D-Pad on the PS2 controller to be quite good while Charles though the Xbox one was a little, well, cheap. Now I see what he was talking about. In the PS2 controller, the D-Pad is sunk more into the surface, thus minimizing the give and rotation of the D-Pad. On the Xbox controller, it’s higher and gives more when moving around. The Rumblepad 2 is also higher up here than the PS2 version and thus gives a little more. Compared to the regular Xbox controller where the D-Pad doesn’t move or the PS2 where there’s four buttons for the D-Pad, the Rumblepad 2’s D-Pad does move around more. It’s really a matter of preference as the movement doesn’t hinder the performance. Playing through several MAME game and EA Sports games, I had no problems controlling the character on screen. Vertical and diagonal movements were translated to the game accordingly and I never felt I was out of control.

During the use of the Rumblepad 2 I found it to be pretty comfortable and accurate. Given that the design is PlayStation 2-ish, that shouldn’t be a surprise in terms of comfort. I liked the feel of the buttons and the analog sticks. Overall, the Rumblepad 2 is a solid pad at $29.99. There’s nothing really special about it, but it’s an overall good gaming pad to own.



B+
It's a solid gamepad for the PC that will appeal to gamers who like the PS2 design.


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