This is the SNES Classic Edition wireless gamepad you always wanted

8Bitdo wireless gamepad

The SNES Classic Edition is a truly wonderful thing, but it shares one of the same 'flaws' as its sibling, the NES Classic: Wired controllers. This is the most authentic experience since that's how we did things back in the day, but at this point in our lives, we've grown used to not having a cable connecting our controllers.

Enter 8Bitdo with the SF30 and SN30 wireless gamepad. These little gems are available now for $25 each and are something every SNES Classic owner should have.

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One controller, two designs

8Bitdo wireless gamepad

As with the SF30 Pro and SN30 Pro, we've previously featured for Switch and Mac, the SF30 and SN30 come in two designs. The SN and SF variants referring to the North American and European/Japanese versions of the original SNES/Super Famicom design.

On the SN30 you get the purple buttons, with concave X and Y, while the SF30 has the multicolored buttons with all domed finishes. Visually they're not identical to the real thing, with a darker grey finish all across the front, not just around the ABXY buttons. The grey matches the different shades found in the regular variants of the two different regional controllers.

The select and start buttons are also straight, not angled, but the size and weight are about identical to the stock controller.

Wirefree and happy

8Bitdo wireless gamepad

The reason to get one (or more) of these controllers is that they're wireless. The cable on the stock controller isn't particularly long so you can't get very far away. The SF30 and SN30 connect to the SNES Classic by way of a simple 2.4GHz dongle that connects to the controller port on the console.

The controllers charge over micro USB (cable included), and while I've not been given an estimated battery life, I haven't run out yet in my time with them. The SF30 Pro claims around 14 hours, so it'd be safe to assume this similarly sized controller would probably be good for around the same.

Besides being wireless and able to sit further away, the controllers feel exactly like the Nintendo ones to use. The buttons all have an authentic 'clickyness' to them, the D-pad feels as tight as the originals and unless you actually look down there's nothing to tell your hands you're not using the real thing.

Bottom line

Lots of people, myself included, adore their SNES Classic, but the length of the wired controllers was always a bit of a let down. $25 is a small price to pay to get rid of that frustration while maintaining the high-quality experience Nintendo delivered.

There's nothing bad to say about these controllers at all. The build quality is excellent, battery life seems great so far and every little detail is beautifully recreated. They're an essential buy for all SNES Classic owners.

Both the SN30 and SF30 are available now for $25.

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Richard Devine

Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy. Follow him on Twitter and Google+