The Nintendo Switch is the fastest-selling console in the United States through the first 12 months of its life , and that has led to a wave of third-party peripherals. This includes a bustling segment of external-battery cases that extend the life of the Switch as a handheld machine. The latest entry in this space is the Pelda Pro from Amdisi, and it is the first that enables you to keep the charging case (which also acts as a stand) on while you connect to a television over HDMI.
The Pelda Pro is available for preorder for $140, and the standard version without HDMI is $59. Each version has an 8,000 mAh (milli Amp hour) battery, which almost triples the “fuel” tank of the Switch and its 4,310 mAh battery (giving you 10 or more hours of gameplay on a charge). But the reason the Pelda Pro is so much more expensive is because it includes a micro-HDMI port that you won’t find on any of the competitors.
Here’s a disconcertingly ripped Mario to demonstrate how it works.
I’ve used the Pelda Pro, and it has some neat features. But it serves a specific kind of Switch owner.
An extended battery is great, but keep in mind that, as with all of these external Switch cases, the Pelda makes Nintendo’s hybrid console bulky and awkward to hold. It’s something you can get used to, but it isn’t as ergonomic as plain Switch.
The battery adds approximately 6 hours of game time, so you can play something like Zelda or Super Mario Odyssey for about 10 hours without recharging. Simpler 2D games will last even longer. As you’re probably imagining right now, this is ideal for people who travel a lot and don’t have easy access to a power outlet.
But the Pelda Pro is especially good for traveling because of that micro-HDMI. After you get to your hotel, for example, you can break out two cables to charge your Switch and Pelda Pro while also continuing to play it on your television at the same time. The Pelda Pro comes with the micro-HDMI-to-HDMI cable that you need, and that connects into almost all modern televisions and monitors.
To emphasize its usefulness as a traveling companion, the Pelda Pro can also hold two of your Switch games in hidden compartments. It also has a wide metal kickstand that can withstand slight turbulence, unlike the Switch’s flimsy excuse for a kickstand.
So this device is all about options. Do you want to play a different physical game? Do you want to play on the TV or in handheld? Do you want to use your JoyCons connected or separate while your Switch is in kickstand mode? You can do all of that, and you don’t need anything extra in your carrying case except for an HDMI cable and a power cable for when the thing finally runs out of juice.
Now, do you ever find yourself in a situation where you would like to have those options? Well, then $140 for the Pelda Pro might make sense. For everyone else, it’s probably overkill.