Game Guys review - Nyko PS Vita Power Grip

1:39 PM, Aug 16, 2012   |    comments
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Back in the 1980's and early 1990's, Nintendo had a slogan that stated "The power is in your hands".  Never has this been more true in gaming than with Nyko's PS Vita Power Grip, an ergonomic grip for Sony's PlayStation Vita -- complete with an integrated extended battery for the portable gaming device.

For better or for worse, the Power Grip is made of a velvety plastic.  Fortunately, the plastic's texture is comfortable in the user's hand and doesn't feel cheap.  The two handles that extend down from either end fit well enough into a full-grown adult's palms without feeling so large that younger/smaller users would have issues with it.  Typing on the Vita's touchscreen, though, can be a bit of a stretch when using only one's thumbs as the user's hands are (due to the handles) farther apart than they would have been without the Power Grip installed.  Then again, because of the handles and the hands being slightly farther from one another, accidental touches of the Vita's rear touchpad are few and far between.

As for the internal extended battery, it does seem to provide a extra life and playtime to the Vita off of a single charge compared to the Vita on its own.  While the exact full-to-empty time was not measured, the Vita did last noticeably longer to the point of being amazed that the device did not yet need to be plugged in.

Plugging in the Power Grip to charge is quite literally no different that plugging in the Vita itself.  The charging cable simply plugs into the bottom of the Grip in the same location it would on the Vita.  Furthermore, the Power Grip charges the Vita's internal battery as it charges itself due to the Grip's power pass-through port.  Nyko kept things simple and, quite often, that's the best way to be.

Now, PlayStation Vita owners who have taken advantage of Nyko's earlier peripheral releases should know that the PS Vita Power Grip does get in the way of those items.  The surprisingly good PS Vita Speaker Stand, for example, cannot accommodate the Vita when the Power Grip is installed.  Owners will need to pop their Vita out of one and into the other -- an action that is simple to do but seemingly cumbersome in this world of streamlined and modular tech accessories.  The issue, however, is hardly an issue at all and most owners of these incompatible accessories will likely not mind much at all.

Priced at $29.99, Nyko's PS Vita Power Grip is one of the more expensive third-party Vita accessories on the market.  Rival companies CTA Digital's and DreamGear's non-powered grips, for example, are priced at $12.99 and $19.99 (respectively) and offer similar functionality.  Nyko's grip might be the better of the three in overall quality and, should its extended battery be a desirable feature (something the other two lack), the difference in price should be justifiable for most PlayStation Vita owners.


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