reviews\ Nov 6, 2002 at 7:00 pm

WOW Adapter (With Out Wires) - PS2 - Review

Saitek’s Wireless Adapter for PlayStation controllers is a must-have for those who want to back away from the console and monitor

It’s referred to simply as WOW ­ meaning WithOut Wires. But that acronym could easily describe the freedom the wireless controller adapter for the PlayStation2 gives to game players.

The device also has a pass-through port that allows users to plug a DVD remote into the console without removing the receiver.

The Saitek unit consists of four parts, and is extremely easy to install. The receiver plugs into your console controller ports. There are two interchangeable battery packs ­ each uses four AA batteries (but more on that in a moment). The hub, which is what the controllers are plugged into, can be positioned anywhere within 30 feet of the receiver.

The battery packs are interchangeable. Four rechargeable batteries come with the kit, and they are required to charge for 12 hours prior to first use. After that, six hours of charge time equals eight hours of game play. The receiver does have a light which shows charge status. Therein lies the only drawback of this system. You do need another set of batteries to use while one set charges. Using regular AA batteries is fine, but they will eventually wear down. Four additional rechargeable batteries may be a little more expensive, but at least they allow you to interchange and continually recharge one set during game play.

To use, after installing, simply turn on the PS2. That activates the receiver. If the hub doesn’t light up almost immediately, you just have to hit the scan button to turn it on. It will turn itself off if not in use and connecting with the receiver.

When it comes to the range of the Wireless Adapter, several tests were employed. First the hub was buried under a pile of blankets and other assorted material. It still worked. Well, how about from another room? The daughter was used to watch the screen while the receiver was taken into another room approximately 20 feet from the console. The only line from hub to receiver was through the wall. Still, no problem.

What about response time? EA’s Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers requires quick reactions and, because of that, was used to test the response time of this device. There was no noticeable slowdown or lag between the time the command was entered on the controller and the command was actualized in the game.

The suggested retail price (on the  Web site) is $39.95. That make this an affordable alternative to purchasing a totally wireless control system.

This is a wonderful system that eliminates that short leash to the console which serve to trip up passers-by much to their chagrin and the disconnected game player’s horror. The unit is compact, has great range and is designed (in regards to rechargeable battery packs) very well. This is a must-have for PlayStation owners who want to back away from the console and monitors, and get a bit more relaxed when gaming.

You are no longer connected to the console by a wire which others can trip over. This also means you don’t have to be camped out on the floor directly in front of the console unit and monitor (television or otherwise) unless you want to be. You can back away, and get into a comfortable chair.

You need to have a replacement set of batteries if you plan on using this system all the time. There is a recharge time, and while one set is recharging, the other is needed to power the Hub. Even though it is more expensive, it is better to go rechargeable all the way and rotate your active battery packs.

Verdict: 9
Ok, in reality you are not totally wireless, but this takes advantage of your existing system and gives you the convenience of a wireless system without having to invest in one. This is an excellent system


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