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eddiemac0
12-09-2004, 06:38 PM
Ok, Santa's coming soon, and I need to put some presents on my list (aka, FB+AEP and a stick)

I'm thinking about a full HOTAS, but not willing to invest in rudder pedals (so I need a z-axis on the stick).

What's everybody's rig? What are the features? Pros/Cons? Just want some consumer feedback.

Thanks!

eddiemac0
12-09-2004, 06:38 PM
Ok, Santa's coming soon, and I need to put some presents on my list (aka, FB+AEP and a stick)

I'm thinking about a full HOTAS, but not willing to invest in rudder pedals (so I need a z-axis on the stick).

What's everybody's rig? What are the features? Pros/Cons? Just want some consumer feedback.

Thanks!

jeroen-79
12-09-2004, 07:26 PM
The saitek X45 and X52 are a good HOTAS and have a rudder on the throttle.
They're cheap, $80-$130.
If you want a good set for little money then this is the best option.

If you insist on a twisty stick then you could get one with the X45 and use both.

The Thrustmaster Afterburner II has a similar rudder and a twisting handle but it has les buttons.
There is a force feedback version too.
I think it is in a similar pricerange as the X45, force would cost more.

CH Products has a seperate stick and throttle.
It is good gear with many buttons and good programming software.
No designated rudder but it has a microstick that could function as one.
Each seperate unit costs $150, a complete HOTAS is $300.

You could get just the throttle and use it with another joystick if you insist on a twisty stick.

Thrustmaster also has the Cougar.
It is a replica of the F16 HOTAS and can be expanded with rudders.
It has rotaries and a microstick that could work as a rudder.
It's gimbals aren't what they should be but overall it is a good set.
It costs about $300.

If your wallet is really thin then you could get a cheap stick and a cheap lefty/ambidextrous stick and use the latter as a throttle.
You can modify it a bit if you don't like a centering throttle.
It would hard to get 2 good sticks for much less than 1 X45 though.

While CH Pro or Simped rudders cost $150+ you can look around for second hand sets.
You could also buy a racingwheel ($40ish) with pedals and use those for the rudder.
Not the real deal but close enough and economical.

If you have a lot to spend get a Cougar or CH set, otherwise get a Saitek set.

GT182
12-09-2004, 07:38 PM
Jeroen-79, the X-52 has a twist rudder on the joystick. That's one good improvement over the X-45.

You can find good used Cougars forsale, once in awhile, at Sim HQ, and even on EBay.

Maj_Death
12-09-2004, 09:01 PM
Except to those of us who prefer the far greater accuracy of the rocker. But back to the point, the X-45 and X-52 are good choices for $80-130 US. The Couger is also good but it costs twice as much as the two listed above.

3.JG51_BigBear
12-09-2004, 09:09 PM
I recently got a Saitek Cyborg Evo after using MSFF2 for the last three years. Its a great stick, lots of buttons and features the hat switch that can be used for mouse view and shift keys to triple the number of functions you can have on one stick. It is also super cheap and features a twist stick for rudder. Its nowhere near as nice as the X-45 or the X-52 but its a good deal for the money.

eddiemac0
12-09-2004, 09:21 PM
Thanks for all the info guys.

I remember people complaining about the x52, and I've been looking at the x45 ever since I got into the game. What are the pros and cons between these two. (Leaning toward the x45 based on the shape)

P.S. How does rudder on the throttle work? (cause I hate using the "z" and "x" keys, too jerky, and my old stick was a twisty, so...)

Tully__
12-09-2004, 10:45 PM
The X52 has lighter spring centering which allegedly results in smoother use near centre and has twist rudder. It also claims to be able to swap profiles "on the fly" via the little mfd on the throttle base.

The X-45 has a rocker on the back of the throttle grip for rudder control which some people like and others hate. It is cheaper but only marginally less flexible in programming features (You have to alt-tab to desk top to swap profiles while in game. As Alt-Tabbing is not supported by many games, this sometimes makes profile swapping difficult unless you exit the game first).

If you can, try both before deciding.

Texas LongHorn
12-09-2004, 11:32 PM
I'm with BigBear. I have close to a thousand dollars worth of TM and CH gear laying around and guess what I use every day... A forty dollar Saitek Cyborg EVO <ggg.> I just love the thing. It's quite precise, tends to hold its calibration, has the twist rudder, and is adjustable to fit your hand. Plus it doesn't take up two acres of desktop real estate <ggg.> All the best, LongHorn

Maj_Death
12-10-2004, 12:30 AM
The rocker on the X-45 is an odd thing, no one can deny that. How it works is it is, well, a rocker. It pivots about the center much like rudder pedals and for me atleast, is about 3.5 fingers width. While it takes some getting used too, once you do get used to it it is very precise. And unlike with a twisty stick, you don't have to worry about grabbing the stick the wrong way and thowing your plane into a spin. But all that being said, it still feels wierd at first and I initially hated it. But now after learning how to use it I don't think I will go back to a twisty stick if I can help it. The biggest problem with the X-45 is the heavy spring. It is great at first but it quickly results in a sloppy and sticky center which make precise movements very difficult once the stick is worn in. The Cyborg also has some slop at the center after it is broken in but it isn't nearly as bad due to the lighter spring.