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$94.99 list($149.00)
1. CH Products Flight Sim Yoke USB
$94.04 list($159.99)
2. CH Products Pro Rudder Pedals
$114.99 list($149.99)
3. PS2 Driving Force Gran Turismo
$112.09 list($189.90)
4. CH Products Pro Pedals USB And
$113.99 $98.50 list($129.99)
5. Saitek X52 Flight Control System
$29.44 list($39.99)
6. Logitech Cordless Rumblepad 2
$32.07 list($49.99)
7. PS2 Cordless Action Controller
$35.40
8. Logitech Extreme PC Gaming Headset
$106.39 list($149.95)
9. CH Products Fighterstick USB
$245.09 list($299.99)
10. Thrustmaster HOTAS Cougar Flight
$26.59 $26.51 list($49.99)
11. Belkin Nostromo Speedpad n52 (
$279.95 list($79.99)
12. Microsoft Sidewinder Force Feedback
$24.69 $23.78 list($29.99)
13. Logitech Rumblepad 2 Vibration
$142.49 $142.47 list($199.95)
14. CH Products Throttle Quadrant
$106.39 list()
15. CH Products Pro Throttle USB with
$44.64 $39.99 list($59.95)
16. Logitech Freedom 2.4 GHz Cordless
$71.24 $64.87 list($79.99)
17. Saitek J24C X45 Flight Control
$24.69 $19.49 list($34.99)
18. Logitech Extreme 3D Pro Joystick
$37.80 $17.49 list($49.99)
19. Logitech Wingman Force 3D
$82.64 list($109.95)
20. CH Products USB Combatstick 568

1. CH Products Flight Sim Yoke USB
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $149.00
our price: $94.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000056SPM
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 228
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Command the skies with the king of flight simulator controls, the Flight Sim Yoke USB. This one of a kind yoke offers features that will allow you to fly with the realism you've come to expect from CH Products. The Flight Sim Yoke USB provides 5 axes of control including, pitch, roll, throttle lever, propeller lever, and mixture lever. It also features 20 button functions, including 2-way gear switch, 2-way flaps switch, 8-way hat switch, two 2-way rocker switches, and 4 push buttons. Pilots around the world applaud the comfortably placed prop, throttle and mixture levers. It's the closest thing you'll get to sitting in your own cockpit. ... Read more

Features

  • Compatible with Windows 98, 2000, XP, Me, iMac, or Mac (with USB port)
  • Designed for use with flight simulator games
  • 5 axis of control including, pitch, roll, throttle lever, propeller lever, and mixture lever
  • 20 button functions including, 2-way gear switch, 2-way flaps switch, 8-way hat switch, two 2-way rocker switches, and 4 push buttons
  • 7 foot cable: easy setup

Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Training Tool
I recently bought the flight sim yoke and rudder pedals from CH Products. I was a bit hesitant because you really never know what you are gonna get online. However, the customer reviews tipped the scale and I decided to buy. The ship time was excellent and I received the items in a timely fashion. I use the yoke and pedals with Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 and I LOVE IT! It was very frustrating flying with the keyboard buttons and not realistic flying with a fighter type joystick. The yoke and pedals simulate the flying conditions well and make the simulator very addicting. I am using this simulator to supplement my real flight training. Although not exact, it really helps reinforce previous lessons and allows me to fine tune my skills for free. I have noticed, as well as my instructor, my quick learning curve. GREAT PRODUCT!!! I Highly Recommend It!!!

4-0 out of 5 stars Great but...
I really like this product. As a licensed pilot, this item gives a more realistic civilian PC flying experience then any joystick can. And for the price, it can't be beat. Sure, there are other yokes costing A LOT more, but unless you want to build a PC simulator you can log real time in, why bother?

My reason for 4 instead of 5 stars? The clamps are awful. They are designed only to fit really thick, flat desks. If your computer desk has a curved front, it's really difficult to get this to stay put.

The feel of the yoke is a little too plasticky. I would like to see slightly smaller yoke with a closer material feel to a real yoke.


This item is a MUST have for anyone who takes their civilian flight simulators ( Micrsoft flight sim, X-plane,Fly!) seriously. It's so much more enjoyable and realistic then using a joystick. Unless you have Airbus simulator add-ons!

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Yoke Ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I was amazed how well this product worked! It's definaly is a part of the aviation family. So are all the other ch products. I love the throtle control. Before I bought this, I used a keyboard and believe me there's a really big differance!
The nice thing about this yoke, is that there really isn't confusion in remembering the buttons, and switches. The hardest thing to remember is which switch is the flaps and wich switch is the landing gear. The trick to remembering is that the landing gear is on the left because landing starts with L and so does left.
I hope you'll buy this yoke and some of the other ch products!!!

4-0 out of 5 stars Good for the money
Good yoke for the price

I got this yoke a month ago and I love it.

It is the only simulator yoke that will simulate the realism of a an aircraft's yoke for this price. The functions of the three levers for mixture, throttle and prop. pitch are great to have and the two switches on the main body for the flaps and landing gear (if you configure them like that) are also really nice.

The negative points on this yoke are:
First, the really really really sensitive and hard to move trim wheel,
Second,the non smooth and full of friction yoke,
Third, the inability of the yoke to return to a single neutral position. It just stops wherever it wants.

Having said that, in order to get anything else with the features of this yoke would have cost you much much more.

I am currently flying a piper Cherokee and its counterpart piper warrior in the FS2004 simulator (in which the yoke intergrades seamlessly) and I find the whole thing really helpful.

Its not perfect but its really good for the money.
I have to say though that only a little extra effort from this company would have made this yoke much better.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Yoke
This Yoke is gr8. The clamps are very good, and the realism acquired in flight simulator with this thing is incredible. The price is very low, BUY IT ... Read more


2. CH Products Pro Rudder Pedals USB
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $159.99
our price: $94.04
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000512IE
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 455
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

PRO PEDALS® USB version (P\N 300-111) features a forward/backward slide motion for real simulation flying. A pivot movement of each pedal work as differential braking (toe brakes) as well as gas and brake control for racing simulators.

CH Products is actively working with the producers of all the new flight sim software to bring you something special this year. Add the 3 axes USB Pro Pedals to the 5 Axes USB Flight Sim Yoke and you have a level of control others only dream about. You want the best, get CH Products

  • Sliding motion of forward/backward gives rudder input for the "yaw" axis.
  • Heel-toe motion gives differential toe braking control.
  • Three axes of control
  • Plane or car simulator control
  • Seven foot cable
  • USB interface
  • Toe Brakes tested and fully functional in the "Fly!" flight simulator (PC Version) with Flight Sim Yoke LE USB.
... Read more

Features

  • USB interface
  • Sliding motion of forward/backward gives rudder input for the "yaw" axis
  • Heel-toe motion gives differential toe braking control
  • Three axis of control, plane or car simulator control
  • Seven foot cable

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT
Really great pedals!!!Make sure you get CH;s yoke.A MUST!The only thing is that the rudder pedals are really sensitive and do not require much moving in FS2004 in the air.Overall: Best of the Best!

5-0 out of 5 stars If you are a serious flight-sim fan, you must have these!
I use this product with Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 and have no problem with it. As a licensed pilot, these are possibly the best add-on I have ever bought to make my PC feel more like the real thing.

I don't know about using them for driving sims as a brake and accelerator ( I have a Logitech Wingman FF wheel that I use for that) But for flying sims, these are great.

A must have for any die-hard flight sim fan!

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent but doesn't work in space sims at all
Thier are so many versions of the same CH device that it's hard to review the right one.Thier are actually two versions of these rudder peddals.No rudder peddal on a separate USB port will support space sims.This is for airplanes only.It is a shame it could not be for both as quite a lot of people like both airplanes and space sims.The best way to use this is in MS Flight Sim 04's jet airliners.No other game supports the left AND right toe brake configuration.

5-0 out of 5 stars Realism
If you want realism, you can't get enough from just a joystick. These pedals are not just ordinary pedals. You will be amazed when you use these for flight simulator. They help me make those long banks, and now I can even taxi successfully onto the runway. The brake feature only makes these pedals better. When I first plugged the pedals into my computer, they were installed right away! If you like flight simulator, don't leave an experience like this behind you.

5-0 out of 5 stars CH's Rudder Peddels Work Great!!!
If you like to fly than CH can provide great products for Flight Sim pc games. I was amazed that you could buy these $51.00 cheaper then at any store! CH provides for you great working rudder peddels. You have amazing taxing control on ground and good control in the air. I ordered my Peddles with Free Shipping and as promised, they came 5 days.
The first time I tried them, as said before worked great! I released the barking brakes and moved the throttle forward. I was really bad with the peddles at first but I got the hang of it. They're really easy to slide back and forth and the toe brakes are easy to push.
Now flying is easier and funner!!! ... Read more


3. PS2 Driving Force Gran Turismo
by Logitech
list price: $149.99
our price: $114.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000DC64H
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 940
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Feel the road with incredible detail when at the wheel of the Driving Force Pro! This ultra-realistic steering wheel uses force feedback technology to produce the most authentic driving experience. Easy-grip rubber wheel turns 900° or a full 2.5 times just like a real car. For non-900° mode games, wheel automatically shifts to standard 200° mode. An exclusive carpet grip system keeps gas and brake foot pedals firmly in place. Other features include advanced rack and pinion steering, sequential stick shifter and optical sensing for steering control. Compatible with PlayStation 2. Comes with steering wheel, gas and brake pedals, power supply and user manual. Imported. ... Read more

Features

  • Sequential stick shifter, wheel-mounted paddle shifters, and a full set of PlayStation┬« buttons give you all the control you need
  • Comfortable, full rubber wheel realistically turns 2-1/2 times lock-to-lock. See a list of games that support 900 Degree Steering mode.
  • Automatically switches to 200 Degree Steering compatibility mode to work with other racing games
  • State-of-the-art force feedback technology lets you feel all the action
  • Textured floorboard features responsive gas and brake pedals and exclusive no-slip carpet grip system

Reviews (40)

4-0 out of 5 stars A GT4 Requirement....
Just my opinion...if you've been playing GT4 without it, you're going to have re-learn driving it. Steering feel is good, but I do have a few minor complaints. The brake and gas pedals do not have enough resistance -- it feels fake. Also, the shifter and the paddle shifters does not have enough "mechanical-resistance-precision". They are easy to double-click. The paddle shifters are located on the steering wheel, not steering column. You can be fumbling for the shifters during and/or after a turn. Finally, I wish there was a way to adjust the angle of the pedals. They seem way too upright for me making difficult to control gas and brake input (I place towel under mine).

So, in summary, it's not perfect, but there's nothing out there that comes close to it.

5-0 out of 5 stars A nice solid wheel

I'm a wheel newbie, but I liked the looks of this wheel when I saw it in a local retail store.It's very well made and solid, and includes gas/brake pedals and a +/- gearshift as well.The diameter of the wheel is a bit small, but it doesn't really detract from the experience.Besides, I've noticed Indycar wheels are small.

The wheel is a little hard to turn, feels like manual steering.But you get used to it quickly.I'd rather have some resistance instead of just a freely-spinning wheel anyway.The force feedback effects are great.In Grand Turismo 3 when your car is going close to it's limit, you can feel the car lose adhesion to the road and pull left and right irregularly.If you pop over a hill and go airbourne for a second you can realistically feel the wheel lose turning resistance.

Burnout 3 and Grand Turismo 3 are a BLAST with this wheel.

Here are my tips:

1.You must have a table or similar surface to mount it to.Something flat and around 2 or 3 inches thick and sturdy, I would guess.You cannot hold it in your lap.I've got mine mounted to a wooden chair turned sideways for now, not an ideal setup but still fun nonetheless.
2.Plug it in the top USB port on your PS2, otherwise some games will only want to use it for player 2.I don't think the picture "manual" tells you that.
3.This wheel also works on a Windows PC.Download drivers at http://www.wingmanteam.com/I'm not clear whether force feedback can/will work on a PC but I tried it in Need for Speed Hot Pursuit 2 with good results.I've heard you can get the 900 degree mode working in a PC but haven't got that far yet.
4.You'll need to plug in the wheel to a standard electric outlet, so plan for that.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Nice
I bought this wheel a couple of months ago.I have to say that I really like it.I don't believe that it made me any better at gran turismo, but it makes a lot of the races more fun.I mostly enjoy using it when I'm confident that I'll win a race.It's also fun when I feel like I want to be "really into" the race.

The force feedback is great.The feel of the wheel is great.The pedals are a little close together and I wish the pedal base was a bit heavier, but no biggie.I tend to hold the base still with my left foot, while using it with my right.I love the fact that the controls are also on the wheel so I don't have to pick up my control pad for certain things.Overall, this has to be the best wheel on the market and great fun for the hardcore gamer.

4-0 out of 5 stars Nice wheel with unique multiturn feature
Being a gadget lover, I decided to upgrade my Logitech Formula Force GP wheel to the well-reviewed Driving Force Pro. The bottom line is that the DFP is indeed a big step up, with 900 degree steering support, additional side shifter and better feedback effects. It also feels more rugged, though it is still all plastic.

This wheel is marketed as a Playstation2 accessory, but it does work under Windows, and that is half the reason I bought it. Just install the Logitech drivers and plug it in, no special tricks required. Currently I don't know of any Windows games which support 900 degree steering, but hopefully we'll see some eventually. For now, the DFP is working great for Richard Burns Rally in 200 degree mode. It still provides better feel (and more buttons) than the good old FFGP. It's also great with Gran Turismo 4 and Need for Speed 2: Underground on the PS2, which both support 900 degree steering.

Unfortunately, the DFP still suffers from a mediocre clamping system--not that this is the only wheel to be so afflicted. The clamps don't open quite as wide as I would like either, which made it hard to attach to my desk. As others have recommended, I suggest a using a TV tray.

If you are in the market for your first wheel, this is a very good choice, especially if you want something that works for Windows and the PS2. If you already have a wheel you like, this would only be worth the upgrade if you are a real driving nut.

By the way, this would have been a 5-star review if the DFP had a clutch pedal.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very good.
I had borrowed a Logitech WingMan Formula Force GP from a friend to see if I like it. One week later I was looking for the best. I now have the Logitech Driving Force Pro. It is very nice. It feels better in your hand and all the controls that are on the controllers are there. The gear knob is place close to the wheel so that your hand can easily change the gear with out leaving the wheel. If you don't like that, you have the paddles under the wheel. The foot peddles are nice and the pad grips to the rug very good.

The only thing that I thing should have been done is to place a colour band around the top of the steering wheel. This allows you to check that your wheel is centre when wrapping with the 900 degrees turning during a rally. I sometimes get lost and have to look down to see which way it is pointing.

VERY VERY GOOD!!
... Read more


4. CH Products Pro Pedals USB And IL-2 Sturmovik Software - Bundle
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $189.90
our price: $112.09
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00007JQLY
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 3269
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

If it's realism you're after, step into CH USB Pro Pedals. With differential toe brake support and a gas / break function, these pedals can take you from the airfield right down to the racetrack. Don't forget to buckle up! ... Read more

Features

  • Plane or car simulator control
  • Windows 98, 2000, XP, ME, iMac, or Mac (with USB port) compatible
  • Sliding motion of forward/backward gives rudder input for the "yaw" axis
  • Heel-toe motion gives differential toe braking control
  • Three axis of control

5. Saitek X52 Flight Control System
by Saitek
list price: $129.99
our price: $113.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00030GSJY
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Saitek
Sales Rank: 811
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

The most fully integrated PC Flight Control System

  • Precision engineering, ergonomic design and a detailed fusion of features deliver maximum aeronautical authenticity.
  • Advanced programming provided by Saitek Smart Technology (SST) software
  • Enhanced game play through intuitive Multi-Function display (MFD)
  • Illuminated buttons and MFD - ideal for low light environments
  • Rubber grips and ergonomic design for increased comfort and fatigue-free gaming
  • Part metal construction for increased durability and authenticity
  • Includes Roger Wilco Chat software - the ideal accompaniment for on-line multiplayer gaming
Joystick
  • Precision centering mechanism, non-contact technology on X and Y axes and constant spring force reduce free play, improve control and increase durability
  • 2-stage metal trigger; 2 primary buttons in 1 convenient position
  • 4 fire buttons including missile launcher with spring-loaded safety cover for instant access
  • Conveniently positioned metal pinkie switch provides shift functionality to double up on programmable commands
  • 2 X 8-way Hat Switches
  • 3D rudder twist
  • 3-position rotary mode selector switch with LED indicators
  • 3 spring-loaded, base-mounted toggle switches for up to 6 programmable flight commands
  • 5-position handle adjustment system to suit all hand sizes
Throttle
  • Progressive throttle with tension adjustment, detents for afterburner and idle
  • 2 fire buttons
  • Scroll wheel with built-in button
  • Mouse controller / hat switch with left mouse buttonl
  • 8-way hat switch
  • 2 x rotary controls
  • Smooth-action slider control
  • Clutch button initiates safe mode’ to allow on-the-fly profile selection, or to display button functionality
... Read more

Features

  • Illuminated buttons and enhanced gameplay through intuitive LCD Multi-Function Display.
  • Program your controller for each game using the powerful Smart Technology software.3 mode settings and cool-touch metal pinkie switch provide enhanced programming options.
  • Precision centering mechanism; no contact technology on X and Y axes and constant spring force improve control and increase durability.
  • 5 position handle adjustment system to suit all hand sizes with soft-touch, contoured grip for maximum gaming comfort.
  • Progressive throttle with resistance adjustment and detents for afterburner and idle.

Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
We can't compare this stick to Thrustmaster really because their stuff now is garbage.Thrustmaster pretty much forced Suncom (maker of the fab F-15 series) out of business with lawsuits claiming the newcomer was infringing on their patents to produce "realistic" flight sticks.Then we now have a monopoly on the supposedly authentic stuff which has produced crap like The Cougar.Thanks Thrustmaster!Then there's CH Products...good, smooth, but ugly, expensive, and low resistence.Saitek has been making these strange looking, possibly gimmick-rich products for a while.I think they've finally created a near ultimate HOTAS with the X52.

Clearly if you don't like twist rudders on the stick (as the real Comanche has) then you need to buy some pedals (everyone raves about CH's).But the throttle alone on this Saitek is worth the price.X-Plane and Longbow Anthology (when it works, which is rarely...might have to partition Win '95 spot for it) love this system.Every trim control and slider is recognized in X-Plane.In Longbow 1/2 I have most of the flight and cockpit commands in just one main mode and its pinkie mode.I'll save another mode and its pinkie equivolent for campaign comm stuff.That still leaves two more modes on this thing.Amazing.It's a bit of a headache programming it, but not from the standpoint of design.There's so much you can do with it that it's easy to get overwhelmed with where to put what command.Then you realize you could put such and such on a pinkie shift mode and move it over to the next button, yadda yadda yadda.It'll take hours unless you sit down and plan out your programming strategy ahead of time.But it pays off.Oh, and the mouse stick on the throttle works fine.I'm using it right now to surf the net since my Viewsonic optical was DOA (with no warranty, instructions, 800-number...unbelievable).I don't want to take my hands off the controls to retract flaps and gear after just taking off in an F-4...it's the easiest moment to stall.

My first gripe is that the twist rudder is a little weak on the spring to the right, but I set a significant deadspot in the control panel configuration to prevent me from accidentally yawing when I don't want to.Also, I haven't managed to get the toggles or the fire button to recognize pinkie shifts.For instance, I wanted engine offs and weapons jetison to be toggles+pinkie, with the fire+pinkie as master arm.It doesn't work with that, in Longbow Anthology, at least.But I need the keyboard nearby for a variety of other commands anyway, so it's not a big deal.I leave master arm on, I just wanted the neat effect of switching to it on the fly.There's nothing quite like having laser designator on a stick button to trigger one or two seconds before a hellfire impact, though.The lower hat on the stick does tend to get flipped occasionaly, but I put all my target next/previous/best/close on it.That makes it less of an issue.

The stick is adjustable to your handsize (my first adjustment that seemed perfect actually was too cramped) and it feels well built.I completely discount any complaints that the stick is too easy to tip over or has too much range of motion.If you're not strapping, taping, tying or otherwise attaching them to something, then you're an idiot.You should do that with any HOTAS.Even with my old Playstation I had the Flight Force Pro throttle and stick tied to the flat arms of a wooden deck chair with wrapping present ribbon/string.Couch throw pillows, queen size pillow, and standard pillow made great cushions.You can get a whole flight seat set up with just stuff around the house or from the local department store.Friends would freak out seeing me with Gunship 2000, Ace Combat 2, Colony Wars, and Star Fighter with that setup.Like I said, if you don't do twist rudders, buy pedals.If you don't like the stick, buy a CH one.The throttle is probably the best out there.I like the Saitek how it is and for the price you're getting stick and rudder for free when the only thing left on the market anymore that can compete with this is CH at $100 per item.I'm thrilled with my purchase.

2-0 out of 5 stars x45 > x52
I've owned the x45 HOTAS for almost a year since I decided to finally try the x52.Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the x45, I just got a little curious about the x45's older brother.

Here are my observations comparing the two HOTAS: x45 vs. x52

* x45 - Buttons/Hats were a little hard to reach with smaller hands on the stick, but I actually prefer the rocker switch for rudder control located on the throttle.I only wish it was designed better and more ergonomically.It felt weird for me to pull on the stick on the x52 and have to rotate the it for rudder control as more often than not I find myself rotating the stick inadvertently.Stability sucks while playing games, it's just not heavy/stable enough to keep from tipping often.SOLUTION: I've fabricated a bracket out of wood and steel to solve this.Solid as a rock on my chair or desk!Heavy as a rock though... =0(

* x52 - Buttons/Hats are easier to reach on the stick, but having the rudder twist on the stick is a drawback for me.I'd rather use the rocker on the throttle or rudder pedals.More available modes are nice, but I've honestly never run out of buttons on the x45.Stability sucks while playing games, it's just not heavy/stable enough to keep from tipping over.Fabricating a bracket to mount on would solve this.The x52 just feels much bigger than the x45.It's a little uncomfortable moving the stick around because of its size, but the huge deadzone in the stick seems to be the biggest drawback for me.Can't seem to solve it with software either...

Unfortunately, I will be returning the x52 after only a few weeks of use and going back to my trusty x45.It looks cooler than the x45, feels better, but functionality has not been improved for me.Biggest drawbacks of the x52 are as follows (in order of importance):

1) Huge deadzone that can't be compromised with software.My x45 doesn't exhibit this flaw.
2) Rudder twist on the stick rather than a rocker switch.I would have preferred that they improved upon the x45's rocker switch on the throttle on the x52.
3) The HOTAS just "seems" much bigger when I'm playing.It's a little uncomfortable how tall the stick is and how much I have to throw it around for fast game playing.

Anyways, my $0.02.Have fun with whatever HOTAS you end up going with.I happen to love the fact that I paid $64.98 for my x45 on amazon, less than half what I paid for the x52.In my case, the x45 is simply a much better buy for what I got.But whatever the case, go test drive first.See what works for you!Just make sure you can return either for a refund.

4-0 out of 5 stars shortages
I LIKE THE FEATURES ON THE X52. HOWEVER I FIND IT DIFFICULT TO USE THE TWIST RUDDER AND COMBINATIONS OF BUTTONS NEEDED TO KEEP INFORMATION OR A TARGET IN VIEW. THE GRIP ALSO FORCES ME TO MAKE A LOT OF LEFT TURNS BECAUSE WRISTS DO NOT BEND BACK AS EASILY AS THEY TURN IN. IN SHORT THIS WOULD BE A GREAT JOYSTICK WITH THE ADDITION OF A RUDDER ROCKER OPTION OR REPLACE THE TWIST GRIP. I HAVE AN X 52 BUT HAVE GONE BACK TO AN X45.

3-0 out of 5 stars Great idea, bad implementation
To be honest, I really like my x52 and plan to keep using it.However it could be so much better because of a few problems.

Problem #1, can't recalibrate.You'ld think some program that came with the 52 would be able to recalibrate the joystick, but no, it requires editing registry settings in regedit.Fine for a guy that knows computers but a bit advanced for others.

Problem #2, a lot of people are experiancing a huge dead-zone that is apparantly a hardware, not a software issue.Please read the forums at saitek for this issue at
saitekforum.com/showthread.php?t=6176

Problem #3, the mouse wheel does not work.See this thread at the saitek forums for more info.
saitekforum.com/showthread.php?t=6264

Possible problem #1, the stick is HUGE, and this size gets some getting used to.It feels like you have to throw the stick back and forth because it is so tall

Possible problem #2, the response curve for the joystick is different than for other joysticks.I've heard that the curve is linear instead of logarithmic.I don't know if this is true, but you have to adjust your in-game settings in order to get this stick to feel like others (In Pacific-Fighters, which is what I play, this means sliding all the sliders for the joystick responses way up).Furthermore, there is no Saitek utility to edit this response curve, if there isn't an in-game joystick response option page in your favorite game, you're stuck with what you're given here.

There are other problems posted by users at the Saitek forums, but I have not experianced them personally.My recomendation is to read through the forums and see if you can handle the risk involved in getting the stick.

My subjective conclusion: great idea and design, but it lacks quality assurance.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best joystick I have ever owned
The last joystick I have own was the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro.That thing seems like nothing compared to this.The picture you see at Amazon makes it seem like it is very small, but it is a pretty good size.
I don't know what this jotsick could be without the throttle. It brings out the full effect of the X52.The stick is what makes it thought.It takes awhile to get used to because it is so easy to turn.When I saw all the the fire buttons and everything on this I said to myself "Man, I need Combat Flight Simulator for this thing".
There is a button on the throttle that acts like your mouse.When you are in the middle of a flight of you can use that button on your throttle, instead of taking your hand of of the joystick to use it.I thought it was a really handy feature. I can't even start to name everything you can do with this.
The way it looks really boosts the rating.When I plugged it in the my 2.0 USB port, and I looked at it, basically everything was glowing blue.It was the coolest thing I have ever seen!It might seem funny for me being a pilot getting a joystick because it looks cool, but you have to give it some credit for that.
I was at Best Buy one day and I saw the X45.I pulled the throttle back on it, and it wouldnt stay in place.I went to Saitek's website and I noticed that they had a different model, the X52.I saw the features and I saw that this one had suction cups!So none of you have to worry about the problem the X45 had.
I hope my review was helpful and I would highly recommend this product, "Saitek X52"
... Read more


6. Logitech Cordless Rumblepad 2 Vibration Feedback Gamepad
by Logitech
list price: $39.99
our price: $29.44
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002XJBGE
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 572
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Experience freedom and eliminate clutter with the Logitech Cordless Rumblepad 2. Features 2.4 GHz of cordless performance with a 30-foot range; high-speed data transfer for precise control with no lag; dual vibration feedback motors allows you to feel all the hits, crashes, and explosions; 10 programmable action buttons plus mode and vibration selectors and 8-way D-pad; two analog sticks with smooth 360° control; and 100 hours of battery life. System requirements: Windows 98 and Mac OS and above. Imported. 3-1/2Wx8Lx8-1/2H". ... Read more

Features

  • 2.4 GHz Cordless Performance with 30-foot Range
  • 100 hours of battery life
  • Dual vibration feedback motors
  • Familiar button layout
  • Analog control

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars These are truly the best gamepads for the PC, >EVER<

I was very skeptical about these at first. They looked cheap and I was not sure how long it was going to last. Let me tell you, they are great!

I purchased two of them to play the new Lego Star Wars with my son and I am utterly blown-away as to how much more relaxed we are when we play. No more cords!!!! Its been over 9+ weeks of use at nearly every day and neither sets of batteries has died yet, and thats using the cheap-O's included with the pads!

I did get hung-up trying to configure them at first. PLease understand that their software works great and you need it for the rumble effect, *HOWEVER* the software was designed with the assumption that you only have ONE gamepad. It is next to impossible to configure two gamepads using their software. I finally figured it out by uninstalling their software and simply letting Windows XP discover the devices and going to the game(s) and configuring the pads there. Most games allow you to do this by simply changing the keyboard layout from a certain set of keys to whatever you input. So if a game is set to use "W" as its up key, simply press enter and the game waits for you to press any key that will represent the new layout. So go to your gamepad and press the UP stick. Windows will auto-populate the field with the proper settings. Very nice!

I highly recommend this device. Its VERY durable and cleans well (sticky fingers) not to mention it is GREAT to play a two player game from over 10 feet away in bean-bags as opposed to stiff chairs bound by cords! Buy this product now!

5-0 out of 5 stars Console gamers... Go PC!
This controller makes it just like Playstation.The buttons can be worked exactly the same.Dual joysticks.Rumble feature.No cords.It's awesome - seriously.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best gamepad around
I'm not generally a fan of wireless controller, for one simple reason.I don't need the wireless feature, and I'd prefer to not think about batteries.However, I was not about to pass up the $20 after rebates price on this pad.

This button arrangement of this pad perfectly fits Madden 2005, enhancing gameplay immensely over other pads that may require you to remember what button correspond to what in the manual. (Madden 2005 allows you to configure your gamepad, but the configuration does not work for all phases of the game, e.g., the snap, and the receivers may be labelled differently than set up in Madden 2005's button configuration utility.)

True, the gamepad lacks Force-Feedback in Madden 2005 - so does every other game controller.MADDEN 2005 PC DOES NOT SUPPORT FORCE-FEEDBACK FOR ANY GAMEPAD, PERIOD.That's EASport's fault, not Logitech's.

For the person with the calibration problems after replacing batteries, try unplugging the receiver unit from the USB port and plugging it back in.

If you want to play Madden 2005, and have no intention of playing games with Force-Feedback, but by the non-Forceback version of this gamepad, unless you get a deal.Similarly, unless you get a deal on this gamepad, or you really want or need wireless, get the wired version of this gamepad.

5-0 out of 5 stars Cordless freedom!!!... Outstanding
I had this unit for about a month, used it to play Half Life, and Need for Speed 2 Underground. Outstanding performance in both cases. I'm running a dell p4 2.GHz 512mb WinXP Pro SP2. Easy installation, no problems of any kind so far. The original batteries are still going strong. Hope this review is helpful.

5-0 out of 5 stars Can't believe it doesn't have a cord
Although this is a new purchase, and I've only used it for just over a month, it is the single best game controller I've had for my PC. I have several other Logitech devices in use on the 2 PC's in my home, and both have been performing flawlessly for over 2 years. This game controller was a stretch for me, I've never had much faith in cordless hardware. This unit may as well have a cord attached to it, it responds better than the Gravis controllers I've had (5), and the action on the joysticks is profoundly accurate. Durability is still in question, since I've only put 30 hours on this unit. My PC is a Dell Dimension 8200, running XP Home edition with service pack 2 already installed (CD version, minimal install). The games I play are Mechwarrior 4 and expansions, NASCAR games. The driving games have been hard to get used to, the controller responds so quickly that I'm not used to that amount of precision. For the price you pay, you can't go wrong. Especially if you're familiar with the Sony Playstation controller.
... Read more


7. PS2 Cordless Action Controller
list price: $49.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0001VNNE8
Catlog: Video Games
Publisher: Logitech
Sales Rank: 200
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Cordless Action Controller ... Read more

Features

  • Mini receiver plugs directly into console
  • Experience the freedom to play anywhere you want and eliminate cable clutter in your living room
  • Highly reliable 2.4 GHz radio-frequency technology delivers precise control with no lag and a range of 30 feet (10 meters)
  • Smaller, lighter, more comfortable, and more familiar than other controllers
  • Requires 2 AA batteries (included) to achieve 50+ hours of battery life with vibration on

Reviews (47)

5-0 out of 5 stars Outstanding accessory for PS1 or PS2
A comfortable and light controller with long battery life and complete functionality w/ both PS1 and PS2 machines.There is no substitute for the Logitch Wireless.I purchased three other brands that were cheaper, and returned all of them.If you own or have used Nintendo's Wavebird (Also an excellent product) this is the Sony equivalent.Well worth the steep price.

5-0 out of 5 stars This controller OWNS!
This controller OWNS all others! Corded or wireless this controller gives them the beat down, including the stock Sony controllers. GET IT NOW & PLAY!

5-0 out of 5 stars Perfect Cordless controller
I've had this for almost a year now and I don't use any other controller but this.
Battery lasts so long - even though I let it sit there for long time and every time I come back to play, it's still good. Definitately it lasts 50+ hours easily.
This is definitely built to last. My 18month old daughter has dropped this controller number of times and it still functions 100%.
There seem to be little lag, but I can't ask for more on this great cordless controller.

5-0 out of 5 stars This is the best PS2 controller available.
I am huge believer in 1st party peripherals for consoles, I find them invariably higher quality and more compatible with other hardware. That said; this wireless Logitech controller is by far the best controller available for the PS2.

Quality ****1/2 (4.5)

The controller feels great in your hands, the materials seem to be of the greatest quality. I have owned this controller for 6 months and I think that it actually feels better today than it did when I first bought it. My only gripe, and the reason for the 4.5 rating is that the D pad seems somewhat flimsy and doesn't have the solid feel of the Official Sony Dual Shock PS2 controller.

Battery Life ***** (5.0)

Incredible, this controller takes 2 AA batteries and they last a long, long time, in fact I have logged over 100 hours in a game (without rumble feature) and the batteries are still going strong. This is in addition to about 25 hours in GT4 with the rumble feature turned on.
The manual states that the battery life is 50 hours with the rumble feature on, I think that for the first time in history, a manufacturer has low-balled the battery life of a product.

Overall, this product is a more than capable replacement for your PS2's Dual Shock controller, and it's wireless! I absolutely love the clutter that this wireless controller eliminates, and I now have great respect for Logitech products. This is THE ABSOLUTE MUST HAVE accessory for your PS2.

3-0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect!!
This is a great control, the batteries last long (I think even more than 50 hours without vibration) and it works almost perfect. I would have given a 5 star if the X bottom didn't stay pressed down (sometimes) when I am playing. Maybe is the logitech design that the X bottom doesn't work always right. The orignal ps2 control, in the right, the bottoms( square, triangle, circle and x) are on a flat surface and that's why it works great. But this logitech design, the surface is not flat that's why the bottoms don't work as good as the original ps2 control. They should design a better control, but with flat surface for the bottoms to make it as functional as the original ps2 control. ... Read more


8. Logitech Extreme PC Gaming Headset (980233-0403)
by Logitech

(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0001NYK1G
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 2083
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Logitech Inc (980233-0403) Extreme PC Gaming Headset ... Read more

Features

  • Noise-canceling microphone filters out unwanted background noise
  • Great for Internet gaming, voice chat, online conferencing, or voice command; inline volume and mute control allow convenient operation
  • Sleek, behind-the-head design is perfect for hours of comfortable wear
  • Ratchet boom keeps the microphone in its optimal position
  • Dynamic stereo sound with large, 30 mm drivers lets you immerse yourself in your games and music

Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT
This rocks, ive been looking for a good pair of computer headphones for about a month this is the first pair that works and looks good. A must have for hardcore gamers (like me!!)

5-0 out of 5 stars Good Piece of Hardware
I'm very happy with this new pair of headsets.They look great.., they make me look more attractive when I'm gaming (I'm joking) But the materials used for the construction are excellent. Beleiveme that you will be wearing something good and confortable.
The sound is just great and you can adjust the microphone in any position as you can, because the material allows you to put in any shape you want.

1-0 out of 5 stars Read Carefully
I bought this headset for what it was.When I got it-- and wore it-- it made my ears hurt the way it's worn.

I'm saying this:I'm not wearing it wrong and it makes my ears hurt.I'm disappointed with this product; they could have produced something a little more ergonomic.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Sound Quality In and Out
I was at first surprised to get this thing in less than 24 hours.I plugged it into my PC and used it right away.I was able to hear music from games and people's voices very clearly and the people I talked to said that my voice was coming in perfectly.I just find this works extremly well.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not great for those with glasses
If you wear glasses, consider getting a different headset. Because this is a behind the head model, it rests on your ears -- similar to a pair of glasses.If you already wear glasses (like I do) you will most likely find it uncomfortable.The headset does have exceptional voice pickup and sound quality (for gaming) however.It is just a bit uncomfortable with glasses. ... Read more


9. CH Products Fighterstick USB
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $149.95
our price: $106.39
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006B84X
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 3358
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Awarded the #1 Joystick in Multimedia World's Readers' Choice Awards, the FlightStick looks and feels just like a real jet stick, built with potentiometers rated to 2 million cycles, sturdy base and fire buttons rated to 10 million shots; when you grab on, you'll feel the difference of CH's quality craftsmanship and durability. ... Read more

Features

  • Compatible with Windows 98, 2000, Me, and XP or Mac OS 8.6 and above
  • USB programmable joystick
  • 3 axis and 24 buttons (three push buttons, one mode switch button, three 4 way hat switches and one 8 way point of view hat)
  • Total of 132 programmable functions with the new Control Manager software (included)
  • Realistic F-16 handle

Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Awsome
I recently bought this Fighter Stick and it was worth every cent. IL-2 runs great on it and Microsoft 2004, Lock On and other games I have. I have many joysticks before and always wanted this one. But it was a toss up with the Thustmaster joystick and the CH Fighter stick. After reading reviews like mine I was convince that I made the right choice. The only bad thing I seen so far was the price. But it true what you pay is what you get. I also got the USB Throttle Controler too. And just recently order the CH Rudder Pedals. My flight sims and taken on a whole new era. All I can say get this product, but setting up the product with the games can be tricky. So bepatient with the setup menu in the games. I have had some problems in figure out. But what I done so far, has been worth every minute. I high recommend this product and all CH Product. If you are into Flight sims like me, get the edge and take the fight to them. Now I want to really fly.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wow, very satisfied
I used a Logitech Wingman since 1999 and the thing finally deteriorated to the point of not being able to use it.When I started looking around for a replacement, I found the Microsoft Sidewinder interesting.But the fact that they don't make them anymore I found to be a downer.Instead I decided to make the big jump and get a Fighterstick and I am glad I did.First, the Fighterstick has excellent range of motion.The thing probably moves 45 degrees left, right, forward, and back which allows for very fine movements if need be.I play Aces High with this thing and have mapped out many controls to the joystick.This has allowed me to be much faster the having to use the keyboard for lots of stuff.I think I have an average size hand and the buttons are well placed.My only gripe is that the hat switch is a little far away for my thumb to reach with ease.I've always prefered to use the number pad for looking around anyway, but if you are a fan of the hat, this might be a problem.

Perhaps my biggest reason for buying it is te reputation of CH, which is quality.This thing is screwed together and uses heavy gauge plastic.The thing feels like you could drop it off a building, pick it up and start playing again.This sturdy construction does not take away from how comfortable it is.At first, I thought they could of done better with the ergonomics.But now that I've been using it for a couple weeks, I don't notice any comfort problems.I have seen some reviews mention the placement of that red button on the bottom front side of the stick and that it can get in the way of white nuckle flying.I personally don't have a problem with it.I've actually mapped it out to my microphone and I think it's pretty handy.

Now that I have it, I can't see how I got by without it.Its shear capability in combination with its solid contruction make it a must have for the serious flight sim gamer.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best PC joystick on the market !
I have owned the CH Products Fighterstick for a little over a month now and I am now ready to compose a full review. I have been a MS Sidewinder force feedback2 user for years. I was very happy with that stick but when I started playing Lock On I decided that it was time to step up to the plate and purchase a real HOTAS system. At first glance the fighterstick appears to be built to last. It is constructed of very heavy gauge plastic and all of the devices seams are sealed properly. It is not flimsy or fragile in appearance or feel.

The stick only comes with an instruction sheet. There is no owners Manual or software disk included. The new owner must download the drivers and CH Control Manager software from the CH website. Setup is a very simple operation which involves plugging your stick into it's own USB port and running the drivers software. Setup was completed without a hitch and I did not miss the absent owners Manuel. I then proceeded to use the CH Manager software to configure the stick for the first time. It was at this time that I encountered my first and only problem while using the software. While attempting to configure the Y axis I noticed that the stick's signal would jump from one end of the scale to the other with very little movement from the stick itself. I could not figure out what the problem was on my own so I called CH customer service and they told me to be sure and center the two trim wheels before configuration. Sure enough after I corrected the position of the two wheels, the configuration process was completed without a problem.

Next, I ran Lock On in order to put the stick through it's first flight trials. The Fighterstick fits my medium sized hand very well. My only complaint is the fact that button #2 is located very high on the stick and is hard for me to reach without repositioning my hand. I believe this is due to the fact that this stick is based on the design of the F-16 joystick configuration. The problem with this choice of design styles is that the real F-16 stick is mounted between the legs and at about waist height inside the cockpit, where as the CH Fighterstick will be mounted on some ones desktop. This creates an ergonomic problem that the F-16 design was not meant to handle. Beside my issue with button #2, I have experienced no other problems with manipulation of the stick ingame.

Stick response and accuracy are very good. I can pull all kinds of high "G" maneuvers, fire all kinds of weapons and deploy my counter measures with a level of speed and accuracy that I have never experienced before. All the buttons work as programmed and the x/y axis is very smooth. Some say that the springs in the stick base are very lite. I don't feel that there is anything unusual or loose concerning the feel of this stick. I am very comfortable with the level of tension in the stick. Keep in mind that I have been working with the Sidewinder up to this point and that this may be the reason why I don't have a problem with the level of tension in the stick.

CH Control Manager is a wonderful program that gives you the ability to adjust all of the sticks important settings. It also allows you to create your own personal button program maps which can be loaded or saved for future use. CH Control Manager does not come with a tutorial so you will need to consult with an experienced user in order to fill in the blanks left after you have read the online user guide, as I did. After asking a few questions on an internet user forum I was ready to begin programing the stick for the first time. Once you know how to use it, CH Control Manager is a joy to work with. However it is not as intuitive as I would have liked it to have been.

The CH products Fighterstick is considered the top of the line PC flight controller. Unlike Thrustmaster's best stick it doesn't have any outstanding quality control issues. The Fighterstick has an excellent maintenance record and I am confident that it will last me for many years of flight siming fun.

4-0 out of 5 stars CH does it again!
Great stick for games that support switch buttons.Not so great for games that don't.To better discribe this, it's three push buttons(for most games) and the others are switch hats that control a lot of fighter games, but not space sims or other kinds of joystick related games.I can use it on an F16 sure, but I want to use it on my other games as well.X2 The Threat doesn't support or recognize switch hats as buttons nor the rudders I got with this stick.Thier are about 32 commands, but you have to program them in and that is with the toggle and hat switches combined, not just the push buttons.The stick is made of polycarb and is tough as nails, but it needs to support more games.No problems installing stick or downloadable software.Works great in Sturmovik except needs better set up in the game it'self but thats a game issue.

5-0 out of 5 stars great product, great tech support
I recently bought the fighterstick, throttle and pedals USB.

At first I was at a loss on how to program them, then I stumbled accross www.ch-hangar.com, a support forum where questions are answered by CH Products employessand members of the community.

When I asked for help I got a full custom profile for Battlefield: 1942 that works great.

You can tell this stick is built to last, and the throttle and pedals are solid also and the software is excellent.

My only complaint is the placement of a button on the lower shaft of the joystick where my right pinky rests--preventing me from getting a true white-knucle grip on the stick (the same button also appears on the combatstick usb model).

[Update:I was able to remove this button without much trouble so all is well. I did not have to disassemble the stick to do this.]

I have yet to set the stick up with IL-2: Forgotten Battles, but I feel confident I'll get some help if necessary. www.ch-hangar.com also has a section with downloadable profiles for a number of games which is very handy. ... Read more


10. Thrustmaster HOTAS Cougar Flight Control System
by Guillemot
list price: $299.99
our price: $245.09
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000062SSB
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Guillemot
Sales Rank: 2617
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Far Beyond Reality

The most realistic flight simulation controller is here.

The HOTAS™ Cougarlife like in design, life like in performance - this is truely Hands On Throttle And Stick. Based on the actual controller found in the F-16 fighter aircraft, the HOTAS transports you to the furthest reaches of FlightSim technology.

From the second you grab hold of both the stick and throttle, you notice the difference. All metal, black, and deadlythis is the HOTAS. This controller offers you up to 28 programmable buttons, multiple programmable hat switches, and adjustable resistance for the throttle, afterburner, and idle detent, These are just a few of the many features of this revolutionary stick and throttle combo. Without question, the HOTAS Cougar is the controller for true flight enthusiasts.

  • Replica US. Air Force F-16 block 52 controller (Stick and Throttle)
  • Full metal casing including base, handle, and buttons
  • 28 programmable buttons
  • Multiple programmable hat switches
  • 5 to 10 axes
  • Adjustable resistance for throttle, afterburner, and idle detent
  • Long travel coolie hat
  • 18 pound springs for solid resistance
  • Easy to use Foxy programming software with pre-programmed functions
  • Full speed USB connection delivering responses 8x faster than classical USB plugs
  • 16k of internal memory for quick access to programming files
  • Flash upgradeable hardware to ensure long term compatibility
  • High definition digital axes for gaming graphics at high resolutions
  • Compatible with standard analog rudder pedals
... Read more

Features

  • Full speed USB connection delivering responses 8x faster than classical USB plugs -16k of internal memory for quick access to programming files.
  • Replica US. Air Force F-16 block 52 controller (Stick and Throttle) - Full metal casing including base, handle, and buttons -28 programmable buttons - 5 to 10 axes - For PC
  • Adjustable resistance for throttle, afterburner, and idle detent - Easy to use Foxy programming software with pre-programmed functions -
  • The ultimate in flight sim control, Thrustmaster is renowned for it's flight sim gear. One outing with the HOTAS Cougar and you'll realize why.
  • This all-metal replica of an actual F-16 controller puts you in the cockpit and lets you take absolute control of your fighter's movements and actions. This stick and throttle goes far beyond reality.

Reviews (21)

1-0 out of 5 stars Immediate Bad POT
Feels great but I too have been burned with a bad POT. If this was a car it would be recalled immediately ! Too bad they did not go to extreme measures to ensure a quality product. Looks feels great. Currently just a nice looking conversation piece.

Still waiting on my replacement POT.........

1-0 out of 5 stars Works Great for a few months....then croaks!!!
This is truly an impressive joystick/throttle combination. I was overjoyed when I got this as a gift. It worked great for the first few months of use. Unfortunately, the system fell into disrepair, mainly because of poor quality pots. This is a common problem with these units. After spending an entire day taking apart the throttle and cleaning the pots with jewelers glases, reinstalling the firmware and finally giving up, I am looking for a replacement. It REALLY BUGS ME to see what was spent on this item and see how shabbily it was constructed. LET THE BUYER BEWARE !!!

1-0 out of 5 stars Hardware problems ruin Hotas Cougar.
I always loved Thrustmaster products but the Hotas Cougar is a dud. Far too many of the units have hardware problems. Mine has a problem that every few minutes causes the computer to think that it is not attached to the computer. It loses calibration when it does this. After a lot of effort I got the company to accept a return on it, but they sent it back saying it was fine. I have bought the CH products controllers and have had absolutely no problems. They are the way to go.

5-0 out of 5 stars TM Cougars:For Hard-Core FltSimmers and tech gurus
Personal Testimony:
Well, Ive been into flightsimming since 1985. Ive owned every one of Thrustmaster's flight controllers since the: FCS/WCS, FLCS/TQS, FLCS-Pro/TQS, FLCS-Pro/TQS w/Dig Upgrade Chips, and now the Cougar FLCS and TQS controller set. All of these still exist are in working order in my "collection bin", except that Im using the Cougars presently.

I have not needed to fix the Cougars and Ive had them for about 2+ years now. With proper care (dust covers and keeping the dust off them), not beating on the stick & throttlem or hamfisting the little switches when using, proper electrical care when plugging them (they do contain electro-static sensitive EEPROM chip); they will last a long long time. These are not plastic like all the previous TM controllers, but rather are metal. Being in a Falcon4 flight sim squadron, I put in about 5-10 hours a week using the Cougars. So my Cougars have been used for at least 1000 hours and dont have a scratch or exhibit any spiking or other symptoms.

Reliability:
While it is true that many have bad pots and switches either from the day they were recieved or after 100s and 1000s of hours of use, the vast majority do not experience this kind of mechanical failure. TM will send you the parts for free if you write/email/call them. Yes, it did take about 4 months for me to get backup parts (I didnt need them yet). And yes, there are HALL Effect (electro-magnetic parts) to replace the moving pots (potentiometers) which make the controllers even more long lasting. This would be for those with the money and is very worth the investment if youre logging 100s of hours in your favorite flight sim.

Complexity:
Cougars are not for the techically challenged or timid flight simmer. You will have to know how to program in the TM button command file language (or just slightly modify the existing ones to meet your needs), know how to hook up your flight controllers to work with the Cougars, understand Windows controller utility, use the TM Command and Control setup software, use the FOXY stick file editor and Cougar maintenance software (which is super), understand flight controls as they relate to the aircraft you are simulating an how that maps to the stick buttons and axes, understand the complex flight sim (for hard core simmers that would be: Falcon4, LockOn, MS-FS, IL2 and others).

Support:
Thrustmaster controllers, and COUGARs in particular have a super user community of technologically adept users that are there to help world wide due to the web forums. (...).
With almost a 100 Falcon4 and LockOn online flight squadrons, which you can find with any inet search engine, there are lots of opportunities to get help and join a online flight squadron. The software and bios (flash micro code) is a free download, as are many user controller files. The negative side is that this is a French and Canadian business (Guillemot) that took over the American owned Thrustmaster company, so there are delays in getting parts and finding new units. One often has to find them on Amazon or Ebay (and I dont advise buying used ones as you may be buying a damaged set).

Value:
Or bang-for-the-buck? One movie date with condiments will cost you near $50 for about 2 hours of fun, or $25/hr. You will get 100s-1000s of hours with TM Cougars. Thats $300/100 or about $3/hour if you only fly 100 hours total (which is not very hard core flight simmer). Thats just the quantitative value. For the qualitative value you have the realism, full functionality and "feel". Realism wise, I own a real FLCS and TQS from a F16-A fighter jet. When you put the Cougars next to the real set, they are almost identical in form and function. In fact, the functionality of the Cougars are user definable due to their programmability - where as the real ones have set functions. Just put the Cougars in your hands, and you will feel the solid construction and will have as close as you can come to the real things in the palm of your hands.

Realism:
See for yourself, compare these real HOTAS from a F16-A with the picture of the COUGARs which emulate those found in a F16-C:
(...)
In closing, the TM Cougars have a steep learning curve and require care, patience, perserverance, technical skills and some serious bucks. They are clearly for the high end or "hard core" flight simmer. The CH Products Pedal Pro (gameport or USB) work well with the Cougars. If you want force feed back, I recommend that you instead get a MS Sidewinder Pro2 USB which is a stick, throttle and rudder with FFB all in one with limited user function programmability. Other sticks and throttles Ive tried like: Saitek and Ch Prod have their place, but must bow to the king of controllers: the TM Cougars.

Fair skies and check six,
AV8R

2-0 out of 5 stars Badly disappointed
At a cost of $269 this was touted as "the last joystick (HOTAS) you'll ever buy." Wrong!! In less than 2 months, the potentiometers (pots) started giving out and caused a lot of stick spike in Aces High. Thrustmaster pointed me to Amazon and Amazon pointed me to Thrustmaster. I pointed to a hole in my wallet and a stick that was barely usable. This seems to be a well known problem and new pots can be had for another hundred bucks. I sold mine as is, took a $100 hit and bought CH USB stick, throttle and peds. It will be a cold day in hell before I spent another nickel with Thrustmaster. ... Read more


11. Belkin Nostromo Speedpad n52 ( F8GFPC100 )
by Belkin
list price: $49.99
our price: $26.59
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000DC643
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Belkin
Sales Rank: 733
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Built to conquer your enemy, the Nostromo SpeedPad n52 captures all the advantages of its critically acclaimed predecessor, the n50, and cranks up the juice with advanced options to dominate your game. It puts keyboard and gamepad functionality into one small and easy-to-use device, delivering more tools for customizing your game than ever. Using feedback from hundreds of gamers, our engineers designed the n52's intuitive nature and stylish versatility to give you easy access to your arsenal of deadly maneuvers. So start programming up to 104 functions now-and watch how dangerous you become. ... Read more

Features

  • More tools for customizing your game than ever
  • Designed with an intuitive nature and stylish versatility
  • Captures all the advantages of the critically acclaimed n50
  • Cranks up the juice with advanced options to dominate your game
  • Combines keyboard and gamepad into one small, easy-to-use device

Reviews (22)

3-0 out of 5 stars mac users beware, if not gaming
the best aspect of this controller is being able to program macros, i.e. making one key trigger multiple events. I refer specifically to using it for non-game applications, e.g. music software, web software, etc. the windoz version allows recording of events but the mac version doesn't provide recording of a series of events but you must plug them in one by one. very 1990's. oh well. glad I did a buy-return.

5-0 out of 5 stars not just for gamers
I picked up my n52 recently because I was looking for an accessory that would help me use my computer more efficiently.I have to say that I am terribly pleased with the ease of use, construction, and durability of this tool.

I like the stiffness of the action of the keys, and although I have a fairly small hand, I have no trouble reaching any of the keys.The mouse wheel probably should not have been contracted out to the lower bidder, but It is not the worst I have ever used.

Within ten minutes of loading the software, I was typing away with perfect ease, and I spent the first evening developing a pattern of key assignments that would let me flit between at least three different programs with ease and perform program specific tasks with minimal key-strokes in each program.

The hand rest is brilliant and feels like an arch support for my hand.

I would reccomend this tool for anyone who works with computer aided design or another field that involves complex imput.

5-0 out of 5 stars BUY IT
K.I.S.S, Both the review and the product. It is easy and effective in usage and setup, works like a dream. I've been considering buying the z board from ideazon, but then I think "why" the n52 is all I need. They got it right this time. Buy it. Oh, I also love Falcon Northwest Computers but they warned me away from this because past products have been shoddy. This is Now, not Then, and this is a great gaming device. Period. ... P.S. I,ve been pc gaming since I was 10, I started with an Atari 400 with a tape (as in tape recorder) drive as its primary input device, WOW Loads could be 1/2 an hour. I've seen a lot of products come and go, and I love this one. guess it shows.

5-0 out of 5 stars N52 a must for FPS and others
By far the best imput device for gaming i have yet to see...ordered it with free shippin for 26$ and received it in 7 days.
Had a little hitch installing the N52 ended up having to install the drivers manually for theloadout manager to see the N52 after that it was a snap creating and editing profiles is very easy.
Still goin to take some time to get used to it,but feels great and every time i use it i feel it becoming part of my hand:)Being able to move it to your lap is a big plus..highly recomended

5-0 out of 5 stars Good for ALL gaming
I read the review above and I have to agree with them, this thing is awesome for gaming in general.I play primarily FPS, but also RTS.I have yet to find a game it isn't worth using in.They keys are a lot better lined up for your fingers than the keys on the keyboard, and with the "shift" capabilites you can have each button do multiple things.I have been a user of the speedpad since the original n50.I love that I can create macro's that will do things I can't do in the game, like the dodge move in original UT.

I also found that since my hands are always in the same place, I can create a template to use and apply that to each new game without having to remember what the keyboard key is for that action.(ex. button 5 is always forward, regardless of the game.)

Just be sure to follow the install instructions as it can get tricky and not work if you don't. ... Read more


12. Microsoft Sidewinder Force Feedback 2 Joystick
by Microsoft
list price: $79.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00005NIMB
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Microsoft
Sales Rank: 10522
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

In a wild, hair-raising dogfight, precision and control are critical. That's why the SideWinder has been reengineered for even more accuracy. With its comfortable handle and an improved throttle, this professional quality stick feels as great as it performs. Having the SideWinder on your side is like having an Ace for a wingman.Microsoft SideWinder is an ultimate joystick! ... Read more

Features

  • USB connection for plug-and-play ease
  • 16 programmable functions; 8 buttons plus 8-direction hat
  • Rotating handle gives precise rudder control
  • 16-bit 25-MHz on-board processor delivers 100 different forces
  • Save and download programmed game commands into game-specific controller profiles

Reviews (43)

4-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant joystick!
I just bought this joystick used from eBay, so I'm not hired by someone to say this, but i think this is a fantastic joystick. I had no problems whatsoever to connect it to my PC (Win XP, SP2). Yes, it is a nuisance and true that MS doesn't offer support, but none was needed either, so there. I even installed the Win 98/2000 drivers, which worked fine.
Apart from that the jostick feels great, does the job well and when you stroke it gently it gets itself into position. What more could you want, really?

4-0 out of 5 stars A fine stick for XP
This is a good joystick for casual flight sim and mech-combat games. It's fairly responsive, it has eight buttons plus an eight-way hat and a throttle. It does not have the shift button of the original MS Force Feeback Pro, but it also does away with that sticks oversized power brick.

It lacks some specialty features available on other sticks. Many games demand more buttons. For these, you may require an additional throttle or button-brick. It also lacks the extra dimensional controls of sticks such as the Gravis Xterminator, which are useful for some sims.

Overall, this stick is worth picking up if you can get it for a price in line with other force feedback sticks, but the current market has inflated its price beyond its usefulness.

I feel obliged to comment on XP support, as several others have disparaged it:
This stick works consistently without additional software on each machine I have tried it on with XP Sevice Pack 2. I don't know if there are problems without SP2, but I can't find the forums other reviewers have mentioned, so I'm inclined to think the problem has been resolved.

1-0 out of 5 stars wont work with xp, microsoft discontinued support
I really have to wonder about some of the recent reviews on this sidewinder. I wonder if they are written by people selling this unit (no authorized dealers sell the sidewinder for a year, it is only third party sellers).

Microsoft discontinued this a year ago along with ALL support. It will not work with with XP. just google sidewinder, usb and joystick and you will see many many people who are having problems. I am not talking about n00bs, but experts on various gaming and flight sim boards.

It will work one day and not the next, you need to do some pretty serius registry hacks once a week.

and as I said microsoft will tell you they have nto supported this joystick for a year, and have removed all their supporet pages. If you mention this joystick and xp, they will say, sorry, can not help you at all.

1-0 out of 5 stars will not work with XP
I am suspicious of anyone who says this USB version works with XP. I half wonder if it the seller sof the used itmes that are posting such misinformation

If you look on various gaming fourms you will see that this model will NOT work well with USB and XP. people have all kinds of headaches.

Microsoft does NOT support this device one iota. I d do not mean their support is poor, I mean their website itself says they no longer support this at all. thye removed their support pages long ago. no drivers no fixes etc.

miorosft no longer makes, sells or supports ANY sidewinders.

the only place you will find them is NON-authorized vendors (note amazon is not sellng this item, it is from a thrid party.)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Joystick - Unbelievable durability.
I bought this Joystick in December of 2002 and I've been constantly impressed and surprised and the durability and strength of this unit over time.I usually have to return a joystick (force-feedback or non) within 6 months because at least one button broke or a problem with centering.This joystick has never once gone out of calibration and the belt driven force feedback is powerful, but never overwhelming.

Overall a must have product for Flight Simmers seeking to enhance their enjoyment of any flight sim game (Lock-On, IL2 through Pacific fighters, and of course MSFS 2004).

Get one and see for yourself. ... Read more


13. Logitech Rumblepad 2 Vibration Feedback Gamepad
by Logitech
list price: $29.99
our price: $24.69
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002XJBG4
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 1256
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Still using a standard gamepad? Then you're missing out on a whole extra dimension in gaming: vibration feedback. Grab the Logitech&reg; Rumblepad™ 2 Vibration Feedback Gamepad and feel what you've been missing. It uses not one but two vibration feedback motors, weighted differently and spinning independently, to let you experience every turn, bump, dip, and crash. And it feels great in your hands with its familiar button layout and all the controls you need to dominate.

  • Dual vibration feedback motors : Feel all the hits, crashes, explosions, and many more effects .
  • Rubber grips : Specially textured rubber gives you a solid grip
  • Familiar button layout : 10 programmable action buttons, plus Mode and Vibration selectors and 8-way D-pad
  • Analog control : Two analog sticks give you a performance edge with smooth 360-degree control
  • Software included : Customize buttons, download game profiles, assign shift-button, and more
  • Quality construction : As if you'd expect anything else from Logitech
... Read more

Features

  • Compatible with Windows 98, 2000, Me, or XP; Mac OS 9 or Mac OS 10.x or higher
  • Dual vibration feedback motors
  • Specially textured rubber gives you a solid grip
  • 10 programmable action buttons, plus Mode and Vibration selectors and 8-way D-pad
  • Two analog sticks give you a performance edge with smooth 360-degree control

Reviews (12)

4-0 out of 5 stars Better than their Dual Action
This controller is better than Logitech's Dual Action USB, even if you ignore the added vibration feature.The area under the four main buttons has been hollowed out, making it easier to hit them, and all the buttons have a slightly higher-quality feel.

The biggest improvement is in the D-Pad.The D-Pad of the dual action is terrible, which makes it unusable for many types of games.For example, it is impossible to reliably use even simple fighting game moves such as SubZero's freeze or Ken/Ryu's fireball.The Rumblepad's D-pad, however, is much improved, plus it has a useful button that swaps the D-Pad and the left analog stick in case your game doesn't recognize the D-Pad (some don't).The D-Pad feels a little strange, and it doesn't quite reach the quality of the D-Pads on Nintendo or Sony products, but it does the job.

I have this pad, a Logitech Dual Action, and a Saitek P880, and I recommend this pad as the best of the three (unless you need six thumb buttons or a shift button, in which case Saitek is still a good choice, with or without vibration).

5-0 out of 5 stars Good
This is really good gamepad. It feels really comfortable in your hands and it fits nicely. The only problem with it is that the rumble feature does not work with all games. Overall, this is a really good controller.

1-0 out of 5 stars Mac users beware
This device is not fully functional for Macs.The gamepad does weird things with some games and is difficult to calibrate.Most importantly the VIBRATION DOES NOT WORK FOR MACS.

2-0 out of 5 stars Whats going on?
O.K. the box says it works with the 05 EA sports games but theres no rumble if any one can help please send an e-mail thanx.

5-0 out of 5 stars great gamepad
This is my first ever gamepad for a PC and it sure beats using the keyboard (for gaming). This USB controller is the best on the market for PC gaming. It's very simliar to the PS2 controller. Fits very comfortably in my hands. Logitech did a fantastic job w/ it's ergonomics. Personally, I wish they would've added some color to it by using transparent "jewel" buttons instead of the black. Maybe even make the whole thing transparent (like some PS2/XBOX controllers). It has a steel blueish metallic finish. Great price point, I got mine for 23 & change. WIN98,2000,Me, & XP, Mac OS X (v10.2.3+).... no "rumble" feature w/ macs
... Read more


14. CH Products Throttle Quadrant USB (300-133)
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $199.95
our price: $142.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0002A59Z4
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 1538
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

CH Products is the innovative leader in precision control devices for industrial and commercial applications. CH Products has developed a wide range of controllers for a variety of applications. Its precision joysticks and trackballs have been integrated in a host of uses, including kiosk, motion control, heavy equipment, biotech devices and security cameras. PRODUCT FEATURES:6 Axis 24 Buttons;6 Physical Detents;Control Manager software enables 350 button positions. ... Read more

Features

  • Built with the same rugged construction you've come to rely on with CH Products
  • 6 Axis 24 Buttons 6 Physical Detents
  • Fully Programmable with CH Control Manager software (included)
  • Control Manager software enables 350 button positions
  • Compatible with Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000 and Windows XP and all Windows-based games

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Nicely Done package/ great value
After reading the Dec. '04 review in Computer Pilot I ordered it. Fine tuning is a bit involved but repetition makes the curve easier. Configuring from one a/c type throttle to another is easy with the downloadable manager from CH prod. Compared to the GoFlight modular system this is great value. Unless $$ is no object and you're not interested in building a home cockpit, the CH line of av-sim controls is well suited to the aspiring and advaced flt. simmer.

5-0 out of 5 stars BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK!
Great product! Takes a little playing with the Sensitivity and Assignments settings in MS Flight Simulator 2004 in order to fine-tune it, but no problem. I am no gaming nut or PC guru just private pilot, who will most likely never fly a craft with a 4-engine throttle quadrant! Also, the technical support is very responsive to a technical question.

5-0 out of 5 stars Flight sim nut? Real-pilot too?BUY IT!
I bought these in preparation for my multi-engine pilots license. Of course, I have been flying planes on Microsoft ( and Sublogic) well before I could get into a real cockpit. This is probably one of the best items from CH Products, especially if you like flying multi-engine aircraft or will be upgrading to flying a REAL multi-engine aircraft soon.

Microsoft and CH products have helped keep me sharper in the cockpit by allowing me to practice on the days when I can't go up for real. This product cannot be beat for customizability. I can go from a Beech Baron set-up to a Boeing 747 set-up just by playing with some settings. And if you have the CH Yoke and Rudder pedals, you have a relatively real flying experience without leaving your home.

If you are into military sims, this probably isn't for you. If you have Microsoft flight sim, X-plane, Fly or any other civilian sim and you value realism, you must get these.

$150 isn't cheap, but thats the cost of one hour of flight time in the Multi-engine plane I will be learning in. One hour of flight time versus hours of honing my skills at home? A worthy investment indeed!

The only downside, as there is on all CH products, are the clamps to hold it to the desk. They are really designed to fit desks that are thick and flat. If your PC desk has a curve to the front or is relatively thin, you have to find a better way to secure them to your desk. Wedging books or papers usually helps.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great for 747 freaks.
This is the control console in most major jet airliners.It provides throttle(of course) as well as air/fuel and individual engine control. Can be useful in Piston and Turbo Props too.But is mainly used in Flight Sim 04 and the passenger jets.After watching that turbine spin up on that pilot episode of Lost how could you not want one. Turn that darn thing off already! ... Read more


15. CH Products Pro Throttle USB with 8-Way Switch3 4-Way Switches 3-Buttons
by CH PRODUCTS

our price: $106.39
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006B84Z
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 9533
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

This is the one you've been waiting for. The USB Pro Throttle is the foundation of the advanced gamers control setup. The Pro Throttle button features will add the ability to successfully conquer the most advance sims and your best opponents. The smooth throttle slide control will help you out maneuver your opponents for hours in online combat arenas. You want the best, get CH Products. Sporting combat features to allow the new throttle to excel at flight sims to first person shooter games. New features of the pro throttle include a mode switch to allow three defined sets that can be switched on the fly. An LED light array to show the user which button set he or she has loaded: regular, combat, or advanced mode. A mini joystick is mounted for control with the thumb to allow advanced targeting, 360-degree view control, an excellent tool for racking up the "frags" in first person shooting games. The Pro Throttle USB is the meanest tool for combat / flight simulation produced by CH Products to date. ... Read more

Features

  • Compatible with Windows 98, ME, 2000 & XP for PC and MacOS 8.6 with Input Sprockets 1.7x for Mac
  • Mini-joystick for precise pointing or movement in supported games
  • LED mode switch indicator for PC users
  • Left handed jet grip style throttle
  • Ergonomic jet throttle grip

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Awsome again
This is my first USB throttle Controler. Well I say it will be my last too. There is no other CH Products rock period. I can remember all the other joystick I have bought before and all the money I have wasted. CH is the only way to go. And no I don't work for them. I am a gammer and a flight sims pilot. With this throttle controler and there joystick, well all I can say is wow. It only made my flight sims even better. Well next stop is the rudder pedals. I want it as real as I can get. The price to me was high, but for the product it worth every cent. You can programs this throttle controler any way you want. But you should know how to set up flight sims games. This is for advance gamers. So be patient set it up. It rocks and right on CH Products. If it not CH Product, well it not a Flight Controller. Works great on my IL-2, Microsoft 2004, Lock On, Air War of Vietnam, Microsoft Firepower, and other Flight games I have. I high recommend this product.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good, but it could have been better
First of all, I believe this product should be complemented with a good joystick, CH Fighterstick being the first choice. Of course, it can function alone, but I really can't think of any situation where one would need a throttle without a joystick.

The device is extremely light compared to similar units. The resistance, however, is slightly stronger, making some kind of fixing it to the table almost mandatory. Either that or you'll have to push it down every time you move it, so the friction does the stabilizing.

The motion is linear rather than arcing, which requires some time getting used to. I'm still not sure if this was a good decision.

There is a number of hat switches and buttons on the throttle and you'll probably never run out of them. Their placing, however, is not as good as with Cougar's throttle, for example. In my opinion, an ergonomic rework of the unit would be beneficial. In any case, if you need more buttons, programming options make further possibilities almost infinite.

There is also a microstick which is quite useful, but there are no dials. A minus, as modern flight sims make good use of dial controls.

Programming abilities are exceptional and belong to the very top. Complemented with CH Fighterstick, there is no other equipment to rival it.

As with other CH gear, the feel is somewhat toyish, but don't be fooled by it - this is a quality product and it will last very long time.

Verdict: Fine product to complement your CH gear. Reliable, with great programming abilities, but it could have been even better with dials, arcing motion and somewhat improved ergonomics.

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't know what I did without it!
This is an amazing product, it truly transforms your flight sim experience. I had been used to the simple [$$] joysticks with the throttle as a little nob on the side of the thing. This, as part ofa HOTAS system (like another CH products jostick), is just worlds apart -- they give you about a bazillion 4-way hat switches, which I use to increment prop pitch, fuel mixtures, supercharger stages, flaps, &c, and three buttons on the front. They also have an interesting mini-joystick, which theoretically one could use as a mouse, although I haven't gotten that to work -- but it is useful for other sorts of analog-action motions, such as the rudder control.

The motion is smooth and stable, and it has a large enough base that it doesn't slip around when you're ... Read more


16. Logitech Freedom 2.4 GHz Cordless Joystick
by Logitech
list price: $59.95
our price: $44.64
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006OP9C
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 2497
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

It's called a "joy" stick for a reason and in this case it's due to the exhilaration and freedom of gaming cordlessly. This ultra-responsive cordless joystick features an easy-twist handle with aluminum trigger and weighted rubber base. The high-speed 2.4 GHz receiver (included) connects to your USB port to deliver reliable, lag-free performance up to 20' away. Other features include precise rudder control, 8-way hat switch and 10 programmable buttons. Comes with set up guide and CD-ROM software to customize buttons, download game profiles, assign shift buttons and more. Requires Windows 98/2000/Me/XP or Mac OS 8.6 or later and Input Sprockets 1.7. Imported. ... Read more

Features

  • 50+ hours of game play with 3 AA batteries (included)
  • Have complete freedom of movement during gaming with cordless technology
  • Ten programmable buttons, eight-way hat switch and a precision throttle
  • Comfortable stick with intuitive button placement
  • Turn on a dime with precise twist-handle rudder control

Reviews (22)

2-0 out of 5 stars Worked great .. for 2 Days
Man I was So excited to get this , Took it out pluged it up Worked nicely.. had a slight leftwards pull that seemd to go away after i used the Clear clabrations utility I got from Logitec, however on day 3 it stoped working, would not connect to its reciever just sat there and Blinked ... So I said ok no problem ill go and look up the supprt information at logitec.. no help there , closest thing I could find for an answer was the batteries were going bad.. nope .. new batteries and still not working.. Ive since sent it back to amazon to get a refund and am now in search of a different model. I guess I should of red these reviews more closely.. ive found a few that said theirs went out soon after plugging in also .... Logitec ,, bad

2-0 out of 5 stars Not for a Mac!
This joystick is advertised as compatible with Mac systems, specifically OS 8.6 or later.In reality, it is incompatible with System 10 and barely compatible with system 9 since it has no applicable software for Mac.The advertising is wrong and should be changed to "Not for Mac, PC only".Very frustrating.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wireless, without the hassle.No setup needed in WinXP
I like the fact that I can put the batteries in, connect the usb, push a button, and be using the joystick in less than 90 seconds. I don't like installing manufacturer's software and I never register my product, why would you?

Batteries last as long as the 9v does in my smoke alarm.This takes 3 AA batteries, but my point is, it isn't top on my list of things to care about until it is time to change them, when the light turns orange it's time, and unless you bought 99Cent store batteries, you won't feel ripped off if you have to put fresh ones in.

I have used this joystick almost daily for the last year and there isn't one sign of a problem, actually there is really hardly any sign of use at all.It is tight, calibrated, and it works perfectly.

Don't believe people when they say this joystick is a cheap piece of garbage that won't last, it is just not true.It is just as good as similar products at much higher prices.Consider ch products, top of the line rudder pedals, well my toe brake in those went bad because the sliding motion snapped a wire inside, I paid something like $150 and it broke, why? you should have seen how thin that wire was.

My point here is that the quality is at least equal to the more expensive brands, and in my opinion the design is superior, though I would prefer more buttons and a twist lock. But I just disable it and it really doesn't get in the way or twist too easily.

Hey maybe that's the reason there can be two opposite experiences with the same product.I don't use the twist and it is perfect, I wonder if the twist messes something up or stretches a wire to become less functional,like the toe brake broke in my rudder. Check out www.toebrakebrokeinmyrudder.com for cool pics and me the webmaster and moderator.Just log on.

Wow this raises many questions, but one thing is certain, you won't be able to judge the quality by reading these reviews, you have to try it yourself.

2-0 out of 5 stars STUPID BATTERY'S!
Slick exspensive joystick. By the way you have to make sure the scencor reads the joystick for it to work. anyways I had the battery's go out on me in the middle of a flight. so my tip to you is either have back up key board keys for flying or get a new joystick.

Good pc games:halflife
C-strike
Battle field 1942 (the ultimate war game)
You can drive tanks boats, jeeps, motorcycles, planes carriers etc. helocopters too.

1-0 out of 5 stars Lack of quality craftmanship
I have had no problems with any of the Logitech products (including their joysticks).This Logitech Freedom has given me nothing but problems.After using two defective joysticks, I lost my patience.

The joystick wouldn't respond to movement right after I took it out of the box and installed the software.I liked the idea of having a cordless joystick, so I got a replacement.After 1 month with the new one (and not having used it in 2 weeks) one of the buttons stopped functioning.I have never had a problem with Logitech joysticks in the past--but this one has been a hassle!Save yourself trouble and money--don't buy the cordless!

The joystick is flimsy and button placement is terrible.The only thing nice about the cordless is that beam range is excellent and it's a USB.Don't waste your money on this!(Unless you want to have a 'new' joystick every month). ... Read more


17. Saitek J24C X45 Flight Control System Joystick and Throttle (USB)
by Saitek
list price: $79.99
our price: $71.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00005TOTG
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Saitek
Sales Rank: 6893
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

SAITEK J24C ... Read more

Features

  • Features 2 fire buttons, 1 4-way hat switch, detents for throttle control, rudder controls, and 2 rotary controls
  • Unique Flight Control System designed for extended gameplay
  • Powerful--all controls are fully programmable via SGE
  • Highly ergonomic shape gives total game control
  • Illuminated buttons for night-time use

Reviews (32)

3-0 out of 5 stars Works okay, but not very ergonomic
I bought this joystick for use in the BF1942 mod: Desert Combat. I had to hunt down a special file to get this joystick to work with this game though, which was actually a limitation of BF1942.

The controller itself is pretty bulky, but I guess that's to be expected from a joystick/throttle combo. I'm used to gamepads, so this took a little getting used to.

The reason I give this 3 stars and not 4 is because of the rudder control. It's inconviently located on the thottle control in such a way as you have to bend your wrist down almost 90 deg to reach it. Using the rudder control for more than 10 minutes and you'll start to experience pain in your wrist.

Fortunately, the controller comes with a great Profile Editor utility which lets you bind the controls to pretty much any keystroke imaginable. So, you can use this in any game, but it takes time to either hunt down an existing profile on the web, or building your own.

To be fair, this joystick is probably better for flight sims than combat.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best of the Best - from a GA pilot
This is the best fighter throttle and joystick combo out there.The product is easy to install (follow the directions, the throttle plugs into the joystick and the joystick plugs in to the computer.) and the configurability is excellent.

I am a GA pilot and use this for both combat sims (IL2, LOMAC, Aces High), X-Plane and FS2004. The construction is rock solid (it is not made of cheap plastic like most joysticks on the market) and the ability to change the tension on the joystick and throttle are an added bonus.

Bottom Line: If you're an avid flight sim fan looking for a joystick, skip the rest, buy the best.

5-0 out of 5 stars No peripheral is ever perfect...
This HOTAS has more promise than any other joystick or gaming peripheral I've used so far.The programmibility of the stick is awesome by itself.I love the look, the price point, and the button placement design of the hardware.It doesn't work for everyone, so test drive it first before you buy.I've been using this setup for about 5 months now...

When I took this thing out of the box, installed the software (use the saitek site, not the CD!!!) and loaded Mechwarrior 4, I was somewhat dissappointed.The weight of the joystick and throttle cause them to slip and silde with stronger game movements.The rubber pads on the bottom don't really work all that well.With this setup out of the box, in spite of everything I love about it, I give it an unremarkable 1.5 stars.

However, EVERYTHING changed when I decided to mount the two pieces to brackets I fashioned for desk or chair use.By using the mounting holes below the stick and throttle, the x45 became a serious gaming peripheral and buttons that were hard to use before (rudder rocker switch) became easy and almost effortless!The biggest shortcoming of the x45 for me is stability.The mounting bracket solved this.

This is not a joystick for everyone.My hands are a bit smaller, so I had a reach a little more but not uncomfortably for certain buttons.Out of the box, this piece is something of a letddown because of its instability for practical, more aggressive gaming.Slap the HOTAS on a wood and steel bracket, you're ready to rock.

Just don't forget to make a hole for the tension screw on the throttle!I had to take my bracket apart last week to make this change and it's a pain.

Saitek x45 out of box == 1.5 stars
Saitek x45 mounted on bracket == 4.75 stars

1-0 out of 5 stars USB Compatible?
I received my Saitek X45 Joystick & throttle but only the joystick has a USB connection.The throttle has a different connector that will not fit any slot on my computer.I am not sure what type of connector it is because there is absolutely NO statement of any type about this either on the box or in the manual included.In fact I don't think there is any mention of installing the hardware at all (except for saying to install it prior to loading the software).

I never used the IL-2 Sturmovic WWII combat simulator software working because it slowed my whole system down.just trying to click on what I wanted to do (mission, etc.) was almost impossible.I had to slightly move my mouse and guess where it would stop (about 3 seconds later) and then click.Finally I just gave up.

I am just returning the whole thing.

2-0 out of 5 stars Great Idea, poor execution
I purchased the X-45 to replace an aging Fox 2 Pro and at first all seemed to be OK. However in a short period of time the swashplate that rides on the centering spring (visible in pictures on the main joystick shaft) began to bind due to the excessive amount of spring tension. Simply put, the spring it uses is way too strong for the joystick. This problem is rectified on the next up unit the X-52 which is an excellent system. The mainshaft is aluminum and the spring pressure almost not noticeable.

I emailed the Saitek people about the problem, and they told me that "sometimes moisture can get on the shaft and cause it to bind, but that using a teflon lubricant can sometimes cure this"
I tried every type of lubricant I could think of and cleaned the shaft between tries with contact cleaner and it just could not be cured. The pressure from the spring is just too much, and sadly it doesn't need to be that strong. I tried to cut a turn of the coil off the spring... but HA-HA... spring steel is much too strong for me... it would take a jewelers pair of bolt cutters to reach in there. The problem is not because the spring is too strong to overcome... rather it binds up the plate to the point where you have to apply so much pressure that when it finally lets it move, you overshoot the amount of pressure needed so it becomes as if you were repairing a watch with a sledge hammer.

I thought that I would be able to adapt from using the twist method for rudder control on the Fox 2 Pro to the rocker switch on the X-45 but once again I was dissapointed. The amount of travel on the rocker is insufficient for making small corrections. Again... the X-52 corrects this problem by allowing the twist feature for rudder control.

Furthermore the friction control on the throttle is almost non-existent. Eventually the throttle will loosen up as the demo units in the stores will show you, but they are way too stiff when new/un-used even to the point of rocking up off their base when trying to make an adjustment. There are "keyhole" mounting holes on the bottom of the units so that they can be mounted to a lap board, desk top, or arms of a chair, anything that will allow the screw heads to be raised from the surface and the unit locked on. (screws NOT provided of course)

When you first place your hand on the joystick, you will find it to be a tight fit. My first thought was that it was made for kids hands, but then I discovered the one button I could not locate and it was on the front top of the joystick and required your hand to go around and on top of the guard. An unusual fit to say the least, but something you can come to terms with easily enough. All being said, the quality of the work is fine, but the functional use of the unit is poor. ... Read more


18. Logitech Extreme 3D Pro Joystick
by Logitech
list price: $34.99
our price: $24.69
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00009OY9U
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 2362
Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

Extreme 3D Pro Twist-Handle Joystick ... Read more

Features

  • Stable, weighted Base Keeps joystick from moving around for enhanced control
  • Quick and easy access to fire weapons
  • Twist Handle Provides rudder control, direction control, and view changes.
  • Rapid-Fire Trigger Fires shots in quick succession.
  • 8-Way rubberized Hat Switch Select from 8 points of view.

Reviews (34)

2-0 out of 5 stars I am returning mine to Amazon Today!
I read reviews about this joystick both good and bad and still went ahead, took a chance and ended up wasting my money on it.On the first day use, it had lost it's calibration to the right as others have already mentioned before. I found a quick fix to get back calibration was in mid-game, to quickly remove and reinsert the USB plug and it would be good for about 10 more minutes before the right lean would go again.What a hassle. I am returning mine today to Amazon, then I am going to purhcase a Saitek Cyborg EVO Jpoystick.They have to be better....but I guess I will see.Too bad Microsoft isn't making Sidewinders anymore, this controller replaced a great Sidewinder Precision 2 that the hat switch went bad on after many years of use.Such a shame for an otherwise great controller.The stable, heavier base is nice not having to worry about the thing moving around on my desk.The button layout on stick for a right hander felt good.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good joystick but there are a couple problems
This joystick is pretty good overall. It has a large base so it stays stable on your desk. It's well constructed. I haven't had any calibration issues like other people have. But you can't program mouse functions to button commands. It also has a very strong spring which wears my arm out very quickly. Overall I recommend this joystick. If you want a basic joystick. Personally I'm going to get on that has a seperate throttle and more buttons.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mac user's perspective
I've only used this joystick on a Mac, so I can't comment on the quality of the drivers and software for Windows. Here are my impressions from using it:

* Installation was cake. I plugged it in to the USB hub on my keyboard, and that's it. No drivers to install, no need to even bother with the included CD.
* Throttle control is very smooth and precise.
* Pitch, roll, and yaw (rudder) are also very smooth with great feel. This is not a sloppy flight stick in any way.
* All the buttons are well-positioned, assuming you are right-handed. The buttons on the base are extremely handy in a flight sim, for setting things like rudder trim, or for toggling various features on your aircraft.

I got this stick primarily for use with the X-Plane flight simulator, and it works extremely well. The base is very stable when used on a desk or lap, and the joystick as a whole has a solid, smooth feel. If you don't need or want force feedback, this is an outstanding joystick at a good price.

1-0 out of 5 stars Do not buy if you plan to map the buttons.
This joystick feels nice in the hand, but it has serious flaws. Every time I spent about 10 minutes mapping the buttons to a game, the joystick would lose this information about 30 seconds into the game. I then went to the Logitech website, installed the latest drivers, and downloaded their pre-configured game maps. I still got the same errors. It had this mistake on over 5 games, both old and new. I even tried it on 2 different computers with no luck.

It's a shame it has this fatal flaw because otherwise it was very decent for a cheap joystick. When I asked for help from Logitech, they kept telling me to "download the latest drivers" over and over, which I had already done.

I must give it 1 star because I used it primarily for flight/space sims. It just can't give any functionality in that role.

3-0 out of 5 stars Decent, but has calibration issues as listed
I only paid like $14 for this thing on eBay, so I'm not out as much $$ as if I had bought it retail. I experienced the same problems everyone else here has experienced. For me, the twist was centering at about 35% to the left, so flying a chopper in BF Vietnam was quite interesting! If I tried to circle around to the right, it would take a LONG time, but if I circled left, it would work normally.

I went to Logitech's web-site and downloaded the calibration clearing utility. When I ran it, I got a weird error message and it didn't work. The tech support there was a bit lacking.

After reading some reviews, I realized that the entries for the Logitech controllers needed to be deleted out of the registry. If you know how to uninstall an application from Add/Remove programs, and know how to run regedit from the Run command, you can take care of this issue and you'll have a working joystick that'll probably last another month or two. Make sure to delete the entries for this joystick in HKLM and HKCU. It's pretty simple, but an unnecessary PITA.

I like the joystick, just wish it wouldn't lose calibration. My next joystick will be fully digital. ... Read more


19. Logitech Wingman Force 3D
by Logitech
list price: $49.99
our price: $37.80
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00004VUFH
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: Logitech
Sales Rank: 1892
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

With its force feedback technology, Logitech WingMan Force 3D adds a new level of realism to most games, while its space-saving design helps reduce desktop clutter. The powerful new joystick features a lockable twist handle function for accurate rudder control, seven fully programmable buttons, an 8-way hat (POV) switch, and a smooth, high-precision throttle. When using the stick with the included Logitech WingMan software, players can double the number of programmable functions by using the shift button option, create and save customized button functions for their favorite games, print out profiles for a quick reference and even download new game profiles from the Internet.

The WingMan Force 3D joystick is easy to set up and use. Its USB interface provides plug-and-play performance with the Microsoft Windows 98 and Windows 2000 operating systems. With TouchSense technology licensed from Immersion Corporation, force feedback is available in all PC games written to support standard force feedback for joysticks. The WingMan Force 3D joystick comes bundled with Castrol Honda SuperBike World Champions by Midas Interactive Entertainment. This exciting motorcycle racing game provides the thrills of high-speed competition with excellent gameplay and very engaging force feedback.

... Read more

Features

  • USB plug-and-play connection
  • 7 programmable buttons
  • 8-way hat switch
  • Rapid-fire trigger
  • Stable, weighted base

Reviews (53)

1-0 out of 5 stars Awful ! Worked for one hour.
I had to return this one the same day I got it. The centering was horrible. I couldn't even taxi without veering to the sides, in MSFS 2004.

As someone else pointed out, I guess all Logitech joysticks have a nagging problem, which crops up sooner or later.

Sidewinder is the best I've used so far.

2-0 out of 5 stars Ok for beginners, but get the sidewinder if you're serious.
I recieved this joystick as a gift.I have more gripes about this joystick than anything else.The button layout seems like it's made for basketball players.The centering is awful, out of the box this thing couldn't stay centered, even with the dead zone set and everything zeroed out.Now it seems like whatever the stick is attached to inside the case is loose.I can wiggle the stick around with absolutely no resistance.My roomate has the $185 sidewinder and it is much better, it feels solid with no looseness. $185/$35.If you can afford the Sidewinder, it's your only choice.I'm saving up for it as we speak.

5-0 out of 5 stars Force feedback is fun!
This joystick is definitely a lot of fun. I never had a force feedback joystick before, but I certainly will not go back to the plain variety after this. I got it mainly to play MS Flight Simulator, and it works great with that, although I had to modify the default button assignments to make it more logical layout wise. It is fairly easy to do. The design is ergonomical and looks good. The number of buttons is ok for most games. The accompanying Wingman software is of questionable value, but you do not have to run it to use the joystick in games, despite what Logitech's instructions say.

The feedback effects themselves are great. They are powerful enough, unless you want to play an armwrestling match with your joystick. It really does give another level of reality to the games. It was quite a shock to see the stick move on its own the first time when the instructor was flying the airplane in Flight Sim. The centering does have a different feel than simple mechanical joysticks, but it is pretty easy to get used to it. A fun toy!

5-0 out of 5 stars A very good product
This joystick is very good for pretty much all Flight Sims. It includes a trigger, for the Combat Flight Sims, and it has 5 other buttons. It also has a throttle, which is a standard for all joysticks. And is dosen't need installation software. Bottom line, an exelent product.
***NOTE: Do not unplug the USB cord from the jack unless the computer is OFF.***

4-0 out of 5 stars Best stick on the market, butthere's room for improvement.
Good stick overall. Button layout is excellent, especially the buttons around the hat - you can quickly hit them with the thumb. I love the force feedback and will never use a non-feedback stick. Stick feels comfortable in my hand. I have taken to placing the computer box under the table between my legs and taping the stick to the top of the box with masking tape. This holds it down and puts the stick about where it would be on a real plane (though this prevents me from using rudder pedals).

That said, the stick is not perfect. My gripes:

1) Durability/Quality: I am a hard on the stick and I go through two of these sticks a year. After about six months of sim-flying the stick develops what I call "rudder flutter", in which the rudder (which is activated by turning the stick) flickers to the left repeatedly. (I am right handed and tend to twist the stick counter-clockwise.) There is no strong yawing left of the airplane when this happens, but the rudder flapping in the virtual "breeze" sucks energy out of the plane. Now, my one computer game is Red Baron 3d, which is a World War I combat simulator. The planes are pretty realistic and, as such, they tend to be underpowered to begin with; the lost energy means that I don't have as much speed to do the various aerial maneuvers necessary to dogfighting. In conclusion, "rudder flutter" = death. Neither recalibration nor reprogramming nor reloading solves the problem; I just have to buy a new stick. I would gladly pay more for a sturdier product without the "rudder flutter" bug.

2) Buttons: the buttons are responsive, clicky and springy, and comfortably situated. The problem is, there aren't near enough of them. Visibility is crucial to combat sims, and the game I play requires a lot of "views". That means a lot of buttons, and a lot of buttons is something the Wingman doesn't have. Seven is more than none, but it's less than ten. And I need ten at least.

The Wingman 3D is a good stick, and since Microsoft stopped making the Sidewinder it's the best out there. But I'd like it more if it were sturdier and had more buttons, that's all. ... Read more


20. CH Products USB Combatstick 568 with 8-Way Switch & 34 Programmable Functions
by CH PRODUCTS
list price: $109.95
our price: $82.64
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006B84W
Catlog: CE
Manufacturer: CH PRODUCTS
Sales Rank: 15112
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Product Description

With the look and feel of a real F-16 "Falcon" jet stick, the F-16 CombatStick USB offers gamers excellent control with the right amount of buttons which are layed out perfectly on the handle. Link this USB F16 Combatstick with a USB Pro Throttle and a set of USB Pro Pedals and you will have a USB "hands on" game control setup. If you want the best, get CH Products. ... Read more

Features

  • Compatible with Windows 98, ME, 2000 & XP for PC and MacOS 8.6 with Input Sprockets 1.7x for Mac
  • Total of 34 programmable functions with the new Control Manager software
  • 3 axis and 18 buttons (six push buttons, one 4 way hat switch, and one 8 way point of view hat)
  • Dual rotary trim controls allow for precision adjustment of ailerons and elevators
  • Quality components and construction

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good, but some small drawbacks.
First off, this review is meant for PC users.Since CH Products is one of the few companies that supports Macs the only joystick better than this one would be their next step up, the Fighterstick.For a Mac I would give this 5 stars.Also, I will be reviewing the CH products Flightstick, Combatstick, and Fighterstick at the same time (using the Combatstick here as the base) since they are all pretty much the same except for the number of buttons.

The first and best thing about these sticks and their partner throttle is that they are based of the F-16's flight control system much like the old Thrustmaster systems from the early '90s.This gives them the double bonus of an added realism connection, which all flight simmers want, and a very good choice of buttons and layout.After all, the military used decades of research and experience to arrive at the optimum joystick design when they made the F-16 and almost all other modern fighters have a very similar joystick layout.

While the layout may look strange and even a bit cluttered at first glance, it turns out to be very easy to use once you get a hold of it.These joysticks are about 35% larger than the old Thrustmasters, this gives them enough room on the head for the extra 4 buttons hats to be used safely, but also means you will actually be using the side buttons as your secondary ones before the top groups.This takes a bit of getting used to since it's different than all the other joysticks out there, but since they are where you would naturally have your fingers on the joystick when at rest it doesn't take long.

I found the layout to be superior to all the recent Saiteks as a result of this attention.The Saitek joysticks of recent years, particularly the Cyborg line, have been designed with looks first, and then a little thought for function.As a result they have been very uncomfortable to use.

Another link these CH Products joysticks have with the Thrustmasters of old is that they use springs to hold the joystick in place and measure it's movements.There are both positive and negative results of this choice.The main negative is that the springs will wear out and break before the current digital measurement devices, exactly how much earlier remains to be seen as CH products is rather new in the game market.Given their solid reputation in the commercial sector I'd bet we will still get a hearty number of years out of them.A last and rather small second side effect is that the brand new joystick is that the brand new springs are rather stiff, and you will experience some resistance when crossing the axis' early on.I found this went away completely after 30 hours of use and wasn't much of a problem after the first 10.

On the plus side the springs mean that the joystick will snap back to center quickly and consistently, making calibration a breeze and programming in a dead zone a thing of the past.Most importantly, you get even more precise control than with the competitors.Not much considering how good they have gotten over the years, particularly the Logitechs, but it's still better.

Finally we get to the major differences between the 3 sticks offered by CH Products, the number of buttons and the price.

First, we will start with the "economy" Flightstick, if you can call a joystick with an $89.95 list price economy.However, a quick look at it's features prove that is its role since it only has a trigger, 3 secondary buttons, a standard HAT, and 2 trim wheels.Also, all the secondary buttons are on the head of the stick, which is a bit of a reach.However, since the buttons are rather large (the footprint was intended for a 4-button HAT) that problem is somewhat countered.On the upside, this it the only joystick in the line that isn't molded for a right-handed person.I'm betting most lefties have learned to fly right-handed by now since most are designed for right-handed people, but I imagine that's welcome news for some of you.

The next one up is this Combatstick, my personal favorite.With a list price only $20 more than the flightstick, and a less than $10 difference and Amazon.com's current prices, it's well worth the upgrade for an extra 6 buttons and another trim wheel.Also, the secondary buttons are moved off the head of the stick so they are much easier to get to in a hurry.This leaves the buttons on the head for tertiary controls.In fact, with my Il-2 setup I don't even use the 4 button hat.Admittedly I play on the lower end of it's realism scale.

If your one of those people who likes to run their games at the highest realism settings you will want the extra buttons of the Fighterstick, because of it's extra hats it has 4 more buttons.Even better it has a mode shift button, basically 'shift' for the joystick.This button toggles the functions off all the other buttons, with the normal hat counting as 8 more.Using this you end up with a whopping 24 programmable buttons.Tack that on to the Pro Throttle with it's HATs and buttons and their special software to add other levels to them and you can have more buttons than anyone should ever need.Assuming you aren't playing flying a bomber in Il-2 with full realism and refuse to use the keyboard.

In the end my only gripe about these products is their high cost, much more than I would normally pay for a joystick and the reason I docked them a star.However, I can understand why they are this high a price.Hardcore flight sim enthusiasts have proven time and time again that they will pay whatever is necessary to get the next best advantage in their field.The fact that they also have pretty much a monopoly on controls patterned off of the real thing and the Mac user field probably factors in as well.

Since I am a hardcore flight sim enthusiast, I still paid for them, and I was always able to give it a positive spin by reminding myself that I paid as much as the throttle and stick combined for my graphics card and I'll get to use these a lot longer.We just wont even mention the sound system. ... Read more


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