When I was at E3 back in July, I had a chance to get an early review of the new 360 Charge Base that is manufactured by NyKo. While I was able to play around with it, get a feel for how well it was made, and determine how good it was in the span of roughly twenty minutes, I wanted to actually be able to use it in my own home. After all, you can only do so much with a peripheral without actually having access to a console to really see how the unit works. Luckily, I have been able to get my hands on a unit of my own and really go in depth on it.
The unit itself is different from NyKo’s previous designs, such as the Charge Station, which you actually have to remove the battery from the controller and lock it into place. While that version worked well, NyKo realized that eliminating the need to unplug the battery is something that consumers would appreciate in order to cut down on time. The Charge Base does just that by providing batteries that have connectors in order to simply lock the controller into place on the charging station itself.
The charging base itself is a little longer than two 360 controllers next to each other, roughly about a foot long. The slots are angled to allow you to easily dock the controllers into place, providing support for the controllers while the batteries recharge. On the front of the unit are two lights, laid out horizontally. When a controller is charging, the light it corresponds to will light up red. It will stay that way until it is fully charged, changing the light to green for a short period of time before actually shutting off completely to conserve power. Charging time, I’ve found, is never longer than thirty minutes, although this varies depending on how long your gaming session is.
The replacement batteries that are provided in the charge station, as previously stated, have three connectors on it in order to lock into place on the base itself. The batteries can hold a charge of up to 25 hours, providing ample power for any long session of gaming. A little downside, however, is the fact that the batteries sometimes don’t fit in properly without a little force. While the first-party Microsoft batteries slide in easily, I did find that the NyKo battery has a slightly different design and, thus, it can be a little difficult to get the battery to lock into place on the back of the controller. Granted, once it’s in there the first time, it seems to get easier to remove the battery and put it back into the controller. This is a minor con, but it is a little annoying.
All in all, I like what the Charge Base has to offer. It retails for around $34.99 and will provide you with a very solid choice when it comes to recharging more than one controller. This is a unit worth picking up if you are looking for a better option than your usual choices.
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