GameSir T4 Kaleid wired controller review
I’m delighted to say that the GameSir T4 Kaleid was a pleasant surprise. It’s certainly an eye-catching gamepad with its see-through casing and lovely RGB lighting, yet it stands head and shoulders above other controllers in its price bracket thanks to incredible customizability and high quality buttons and sticks.
If you’re sick of stick drift on the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Con controllers, the GameSir T4 Kaleid sidesteps the issue with the use of hall effect analog sticks, much like the fantastic 8BitDo Ultimate wireless controller. That reassured longevity, and overall high quality, has the T4 Kaleid standing alongside the best Nintendo Switch controllers you can buy.
That being said, it’s unfortunately not quite the best fit for its target console. The T4 Kaleid is wired only, which isn’t a great fit for Nintendo Switch. It also doesn’t have the reversed X and Y button placement, opting instead for the more standard Xbox Series X|S layout. However, the T4 Kaleid thrives on PC when paired with the T4k app which allows you to customize button layout, assign inputs to the rear paddle buttons and, perhaps most importantly, create your own RGB pattern.
GameSir T4 Kaleid: price and availability
The GameSir T4 Kaleid is available to buy right now for $41.99 / £41.99. You can purchase it either from GameSir’s official store page, or through retailers like Amazon and AliExpress.
That places the T4 Kaleid as cheaper than the official Nintendo Switch Pro Controller, and mid-range gamepads like the Nacon Revolution X wired controller. As such, it's certainly worth considering if you're on a tight budget.
GameSir T4 Kaleid: design
I’ve got a huge soft spot for controllers with translucent designs, so the GameSir T4 Kaleid was already starting to win me over when I first took it out of the box. However, the controller uses its aesthetic choice creatively. That’s because the circuit board within is gorgeously laid out, and the pair of RGB strips that wrap around either side of the controller are dazzling. It’s certainly a step up from many Pro-adjacent controllers that tend to play appearances safe with plain black or white colorways.
The fancy aesthetic wouldn’t amount to much if the controller wasn’t of a decent build quality, and thankfully the T4 Kaleid delivers here. The plastic shell is sturdy, while the sticks and face buttons feature a clicky, tactile feel. In the case of the face buttons, that’s due to the use of microswitches for a springy, crisp feeling press.
That same feeling applies to the D-pad, triggers and shoulder buttons, too. Overall, we have a rare case here of a controller delivering on almost all fronts. You really have to nitpick to identify design issues with the T4 Kaleid when it comes to its buttons. But if I had to, I’d say the placement of the Start and Select buttons are a little higher up the controller than I’m used to.
Additionally, this is the one of the few cases where I lament the fact that the controller is wired only. I feel that wired pads aren’t a good fit for Nintendo Switch. There’s no outward facing USB port on either the Switch or Nintendo Switch OLED, so the use of a wired controller here can be cumbersome. Plus, the T4 Kaleid isn’t compatible with Xbox Series X|S despite bearing the Xbox button layout. I still highly recommend it as a PC-first controller, however.
GameSir T4 Kaleid: performance
The GameSir T4 Kaleid is a surprisingly feature-rich controller for its relatively low asking price. And that’s not just because of its cool design and RGB lighting. There’s also a pair of mappable back buttons that can be assigned via the T4k desktop app.
This is another reason why I recommend the T4 Kaleid if you play on PC. The T4k app is incredibly robust and lets you tweak everything from the RGB pattern to button assignments and more.
One feature you might not know the T4 Kaleid has is a hair trigger mode. It’s not immediately apparent as there’s no on-board switches like with the HyperX Clutch Gladiate or the Xbox Elite Series 2. However, the mode can be toggled within the app and allows you to activate trigger inputs with just a short press. A bit of a roundabout way of doing things, but it’s likely a way for GameSir to save on components and keep costs down. A pretty smart move, overall.
Customization with the app leads the T4 Kaleid to be a fantastic controller for gaming. As mentioned, those hall effect analog sticks and microswitch-powered face buttons make for a sturdy controller that’ll resist much wear and tear over the years. The dual rumble motors also provide a strong layer of immersion, and can also be customized in the app.
It’s a fantastic controller for when fast button presses matter. Take online shooters like Fortnite or Halo Infinite, where quick reflexes and quicker button presses can be paramount to success. Or even platformers like Mega Man 11 and Super Mario Odyssey where precision is often key.
Should I buy the GameSir T4 Kaleid?
Buy it if...
You’re after an affordable controller for PC
The T4 Kaleid excels as a PC pad thanks to its companion app and sturdy build quality
You’re on a budget
Simply put, the T4 Kaleid won’t break the bank. In fact, it’s a bargain price for the features you’re getting.
You love customizability
Between its RGB lighting and fully mappable controls, the T4 Kaleid is perfect for players who like a layout to call their own.
Don't buy it if...
You’re after a wireless controller
The T4 Kaleid’s biggest drawback is its lack of wireless functionality. If it had that, we could be looking at a near-perfect pad.
You need a Nintendo Switch controller
The T4 Kaleid isn’t a great fit for Nintendo Switch, thanks to its wired-only nature and the X and Y buttons following the Xbox controller placements.