PDA

View Full Version : Flightsim Hardware review: LT 3D Cruiser (2 axes, 7 buttons)



Cold_Gambler
12-10-2007, 01:01 PM
Today at the Danger Dogz Laboratories (just past the priory, up the lane, past the loo, make a right at the celery patch, left at pub and down the stairs in the village house of ill-repute) we received a new piece of flight sim kit for review.

Who among us does not appreciate having a few more buttons to assign and a few more axes to configure? Don't answer that, it's a rhetorical question.

Who among us does not appreciate having to pay over $USD100 for two axes and 7 more buttons? Don't answer that, it's another rhetorical question.

Who among us has had to sneak new hardware, obtained in a fit of weakness at the local electronics shop, past the co-chair of the Expense Committee? Answer that, I want to feel I'm not alone.

Well, LT industries has apparently heard our calls of simulated distress. I mean dissimulated stress. I mean distressed simulation. Feck it.... you know what I mean...

ANYWAYS. Long story short: there is a fantastic new piece of equipment which can now be mounted at a ridiculously low price in your simpit. And no, you won't find it advertised at the back of those free newspapers which leave your fingers looking like you'd just finished a shift in a coalmine. May I present to you the LT 3d Cruiser:



http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/ControlassignmentsLT3DCruiser.jpg

YES! The Little Tykes 3D Cruiser arrived this morning in our lab!

A quick run down

The LT 3D Cruiser is a 2 Axes (side to side and little flip switch... I lied: the supercharger is not assigned- the flaps are) 7 button USB controller manufactured in bold primary colours.

Teh review

Installation.

Installing this controller was so simple a two-year-old could do it. I plugged the USB into a USB hub and it was instantly recognized by Windows XP Home SP2. No special drivers, no special hardware management, just wonderful plug-and-play. All buttons and axes were recognized by IL2.

Teh "feel"

This is an area of much debate in "the sim community" and therefore a subject to be approached with some circumspection and care.

Is there too much tension, too little tension? Is there a good centering? In this author's opinion, this is very much an area of personal taste, but I would say that the "feel" is that of plastic. In taste I would also say plastic, but in spots there may have been some spit-up mashed peas. Also the flip-switch axis tended to stick somewhat on the "upstroke", this coincided markedly with the taste of regurgitated mashed peas. I'm not sure if this is a feature or a bug and I will endeavour to update the review after I hear back from the manufacturer

The USB Cord - it roxxors

The USB cord was a definite welcome surprise on this unit. If you are like me, you probably find the USB cords can never be long enough... how often have you asked yourself "how much would it have cost the manufacturer to include just 2 more feet of cord"? Well, let me tell you. Little Tykes Industries did NOT cheap out in this area. The cord is an impressive 8 feet long; bravo Little Tykes, this author applauds you. If only more flight sim hardware manufacturers would follow your lead!

In-game use

This unit has many advantages that are otherwise not readily apparent.

The unit's bold colour scheme allows easy identification of buttons and controls in a darkened Track-IR environment and/or with one's peripheral vision. Similarly, the oversized buttons are perfect if you already have a HOTAS and are buying this as a secondary button bay. When you are in a panic and your fine motor control is compromised, you will be happy to be able to stab in the general direction of the control... and get the right one.

Sadly, this leads me to address the principal (and only at this time) shortcoming of this unit. Little Tykes opted for a highly unsatisfactory solution for fixing the unit to the simpit surface:


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/LT3DCruiserbottom.jpg

ONOES!! NOT SUCTION CUPS!!1!!111!

If you are in aforementioned panic and stabbing wildly at your coveted LT 3D Cruiser you may be happy to have hit the button you wanted to, thanks to the large size of the buttons, but you may also find that the controller is no longer affixed to the table.

While Little Tykes Industries decision to use suction cups is not a deal breaker should you be buying this unit as a button bay, it does unfortunately mean that this reviewer cannot recommend it to those of you who were considering using it as a primary HOTAS in place of your Saitek X-52 or MS-FFB2 + CH Throttle set up.

Prior to wrapping up this review, here's a picture of the LT 3D Cruiser in context.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/Picture001.jpg

FINAL SUMMARY

This is a fantastic new offering with an excellent value/price ratio. We applaud LT Industries for entering the competitive and marginal flight sim control market with such an innovative product. It is, however, not without it's faults and we hope the manufacturer will address these in a future revision.

Pros:

- 2 axes + 7 buttons @ C$2.99 = almost priceless (literally- I can't even get a decent capuccino for 2.99 anymore)
- Ease of installation and use
- 8 foot USB cord
- Bold choice of colours (may or may not be your bag, but it livens up otherwise boring sim pits)

Cons:

- Suction cups?!? WHY?!? Could've been a contender but this author cannot recommend it as a HOTAS replacement until the manufacturer addresses this shortcoming.

Overall score: 4.5 / 5

Cold_Gambler
12-10-2007, 01:01 PM
Today at the Danger Dogz Laboratories (just past the priory, up the lane, past the loo, make a right at the celery patch, left at pub and down the stairs in the village house of ill-repute) we received a new piece of flight sim kit for review.

Who among us does not appreciate having a few more buttons to assign and a few more axes to configure? Don't answer that, it's a rhetorical question.

Who among us does not appreciate having to pay over $USD100 for two axes and 7 more buttons? Don't answer that, it's another rhetorical question.

Who among us has had to sneak new hardware, obtained in a fit of weakness at the local electronics shop, past the co-chair of the Expense Committee? Answer that, I want to feel I'm not alone.

Well, LT industries has apparently heard our calls of simulated distress. I mean dissimulated stress. I mean distressed simulation. Feck it.... you know what I mean...

ANYWAYS. Long story short: there is a fantastic new piece of equipment which can now be mounted at a ridiculously low price in your simpit. And no, you won't find it advertised at the back of those free newspapers which leave your fingers looking like you'd just finished a shift in a coalmine. May I present to you the LT 3d Cruiser:



http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/ControlassignmentsLT3DCruiser.jpg

YES! The Little Tykes 3D Cruiser arrived this morning in our lab!

A quick run down

The LT 3D Cruiser is a 2 Axes (side to side and little flip switch... I lied: the supercharger is not assigned- the flaps are) 7 button USB controller manufactured in bold primary colours.

Teh review

Installation.

Installing this controller was so simple a two-year-old could do it. I plugged the USB into a USB hub and it was instantly recognized by Windows XP Home SP2. No special drivers, no special hardware management, just wonderful plug-and-play. All buttons and axes were recognized by IL2.

Teh "feel"

This is an area of much debate in "the sim community" and therefore a subject to be approached with some circumspection and care.

Is there too much tension, too little tension? Is there a good centering? In this author's opinion, this is very much an area of personal taste, but I would say that the "feel" is that of plastic. In taste I would also say plastic, but in spots there may have been some spit-up mashed peas. Also the flip-switch axis tended to stick somewhat on the "upstroke", this coincided markedly with the taste of regurgitated mashed peas. I'm not sure if this is a feature or a bug and I will endeavour to update the review after I hear back from the manufacturer

The USB Cord - it roxxors

The USB cord was a definite welcome surprise on this unit. If you are like me, you probably find the USB cords can never be long enough... how often have you asked yourself "how much would it have cost the manufacturer to include just 2 more feet of cord"? Well, let me tell you. Little Tykes Industries did NOT cheap out in this area. The cord is an impressive 8 feet long; bravo Little Tykes, this author applauds you. If only more flight sim hardware manufacturers would follow your lead!

In-game use

This unit has many advantages that are otherwise not readily apparent.

The unit's bold colour scheme allows easy identification of buttons and controls in a darkened Track-IR environment and/or with one's peripheral vision. Similarly, the oversized buttons are perfect if you already have a HOTAS and are buying this as a secondary button bay. When you are in a panic and your fine motor control is compromised, you will be happy to be able to stab in the general direction of the control... and get the right one.

Sadly, this leads me to address the principal (and only at this time) shortcoming of this unit. Little Tykes opted for a highly unsatisfactory solution for fixing the unit to the simpit surface:


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/LT3DCruiserbottom.jpg

ONOES!! NOT SUCTION CUPS!!1!!111!

If you are in aforementioned panic and stabbing wildly at your coveted LT 3D Cruiser you may be happy to have hit the button you wanted to, thanks to the large size of the buttons, but you may also find that the controller is no longer affixed to the table.

While Little Tykes Industries decision to use suction cups is not a deal breaker should you be buying this unit as a button bay, it does unfortunately mean that this reviewer cannot recommend it to those of you who were considering using it as a primary HOTAS in place of your Saitek X-52 or MS-FFB2 + CH Throttle set up.

Prior to wrapping up this review, here's a picture of the LT 3D Cruiser in context.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/Cold_G/Picture001.jpg

FINAL SUMMARY

This is a fantastic new offering with an excellent value/price ratio. We applaud LT Industries for entering the competitive and marginal flight sim control market with such an innovative product. It is, however, not without it's faults and we hope the manufacturer will address these in a future revision.

Pros:

- 2 axes + 7 buttons @ C$2.99 = almost priceless (literally- I can't even get a decent capuccino for 2.99 anymore)
- Ease of installation and use
- 8 foot USB cord
- Bold choice of colours (may or may not be your bag, but it livens up otherwise boring sim pits)

Cons:

- Suction cups?!? WHY?!? Could've been a contender but this author cannot recommend it as a HOTAS replacement until the manufacturer addresses this shortcoming.

Overall score: 4.5 / 5

leitmotiv
12-10-2007, 01:10 PM
The mother of all elevator trim wheels.

tempest_tamer
12-10-2007, 01:16 PM
cheap indeed

Divine-Wind
12-10-2007, 03:40 PM
Hey don't make fun of my yoke.

Cold_Gambler
12-10-2007, 04:19 PM
Hehe...
all joking aside, I actually do intend to use it as a button bay http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Dagnabit
12-10-2007, 05:10 PM
And the horn will be perfect for warning other planes to get out of your way. And imagine the other guys face when he goes into a "road rage thing" and you open up with the 30MMs.....Its a must have!!!
Dag

BillyTheKid_22
12-10-2007, 08:53 PM
http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

jensenpark
12-10-2007, 09:08 PM
Cold_Gambler - please return to your cage...

Your family and meds miss you.

Tab_Flettner
12-10-2007, 09:11 PM
Great post! I challenge you to complete an entire sim-pit in this theme.

Targ
12-10-2007, 09:16 PM
Sweet!
I really like that but I think I will wait until the price goes down to a more reasonable 1.98.

Waldo.Pepper
12-10-2007, 09:51 PM
Not a word of a lie. I really want one of those and am tempted to start haunting my local Value Village.

LEBillfish
12-10-2007, 11:29 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Cold_Gambler:
Hehe...
all joking aside, I actually do intend to use it as a button bay http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

awwwwwwwwwwww............That's so sad http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif



not

Worf101
12-11-2007, 08:01 AM
It is far too early in the morning to be having my chortles pulled. But I must admit you had me goin. Quite funny indeed.

Da Worfster