7.5

KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips Review

A quality set of controller grips if the conditions are right.

Buying a headset is often just the beginning of your VR journey, while something like the Meta Quest 3 is a great starting point, it often falls to add-ons from third party brands to really put the finishing touches on the experience.

While their other accessories like the Comfort Head Strap and Vertical Charging Stand focus on the Quest 3 headset itself, the KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips turn their attention to the Quest 3’s Touch Plus controllers. At £21/$24.99 they don’t feel like a huge investment but do they improve the overall experience?

simply put

The KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips are a nice addition to a Meta Quest 3 setup. They add comfort and security but do come with a couple of drawbacks as a result.

the good bits

Improved comfort and security
Sleek, high quality design
Includes tracking sensor cut outs

the not so good bits

Connections can irritate larger hands
Back hand strap is quite rigid

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KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grip Covers

design

Remember when everyone had a Nintendo Wii? And more importantly, remember the craze that shortly followed where everyone raced out to grab silicone Wiimote covers in every colour they could? Well things have basically come full circle as the KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips are a very similar concept for the Meta Quest 3. 

There’s no outlandish colours here though, the KIWI design Knuckler Controller Grips are only available in a simple black finish but look suitably grown up as a result. The silicone that neatly wraps the body of the Quest 3 Touch Plus controllers is soft and pleasantly textured, offering far more grip than the hard plastic of the controller itself. The silicone outer layer also offers some protection against accidental bumps and knocks, a bonus more than a feature but certainly a welcome one.

If you opt for the slightly more expensive KIWI design Knuckle Grips with Battery Opening you’ll find a large hinged door built into the side of the controller. This flap closes securely and flush to the rest of the body so was equally as comfortable and I never noticed it in use, though there is channel a couple of millimetres wide that I worry will be an absolute magnet for dust and gunk. The Battery Knuckle Grips include a rather basic set of plastic straps to loop behind and help with popping out the single AA battery in the Quest 3 controller. I can’t argue they work, though they do feel like cheap film and I’d have preferred a more flexible fabric ribbon.

The strap that runs across the back of your hand is permanently attached with a simple buckle and velcro system that offers a good range of adjustment though I found the strap itself quite stiff. While any length adjustments did hold in place, the strap then bulged out a fair way as a result – I’ve only used the KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips for a couple of weeks however so these may relax more over time.

T

performance

This is my first experience with a set VR controller grips, I’d always just made do with the wrist strap on the Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I’d never necessarily felt like I was at risk of throwing them across the room but am always one to properly tighten up the wrist strap before playing so it felt like a logical evolution.

The moulded silicone cover provides a noticeable boost in comfort and hand feel, it’s a little softer and more assured. The textured surface also made it far less prone to slipping during fast hand gestures. It’s also quite nice to be able to release your grip and stretch out your fingers without having the Meta Quest 3 controller go swinging wildly and smacking into your wrist.

The one piece design does cause a couple of issues though, particularly with how the strap joins the body of the controller covers. I’ve got reasonably large hands and the way the KIWI design Knuckle Cover straps are riveted to the main body meant they tended to rub and become uncomfortable after a few minutes unless it was perfectly sat. It was more of an annoyance than anything painful but it did draw my attention to it and it breaks the immersion of what you’re doing as a result. While I’m fighting for my life in Beat Sabre the last thing I want to be thinking about is being pinched by the controller strap.

I also found the stiff nature of the back strap forced the Meta Quest 3 controller into a very specific position and angle in my hand. In some games like Beat Sabre where the rotation of the controller is less important this didn’t cause issues, but in others like iB Cricket where angle is everything I ended up taking the KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grip off as it just didn’t line up properly. 

A quick note on controller tracking performance, some users report issues with interruptions to tracking when using controller covers. The KIWI design Knuckle Covers include holes in the silicone designed to prevent tracking problems and through a few weeks of testing I didn’t notice any perceptible interruptions.

summed up

If you’re in the market for a set of knuckle controller covers for your Meta Quest 3 then this offering from KIWI design is a sound choice. A sleek design with soft silicone makes them a quality accessory that lives up to KIWI design’s strong reputation in the VR world.

They may not be for everyone and every situation, but that’s more a question on the concept of controller grips rather than the KIWI design Knuckle Controller Grips themselves.