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View Full Version : what is the best joystick?



woetr
02-14-2004, 09:49 AM
I am playing IL2 FB for a while now with my old joystick and I am looking for new one now. What would you guys recommend?
Does anybody have any experience with the Logitech Freedom 2.4?

Any advice would be appreciated.

woetr
02-14-2004, 09:49 AM
I am playing IL2 FB for a while now with my old joystick and I am looking for new one now. What would you guys recommend?
Does anybody have any experience with the Logitech Freedom 2.4?

Any advice would be appreciated.

AC_Cobra
02-14-2004, 10:02 AM
I like my 5 yr old Microsoft Sidewinder Force Feedback (the original)

ELITE1499
02-14-2004, 10:11 AM
saitek cyborg 3d usb. its pimper than MY joystick

http://www.gamersdepot.com/accessories/saitek/cyborg_3d_usbgold/shot.jpg

aerick2
02-14-2004, 10:18 AM
Saitek X45. Hands down the best stick out there in my opinion. It has a TON of programable buttons & hats and very solid construction. I have had zero problems with mine.

georgeo76
02-14-2004, 10:28 AM
Best is relative, what quality's are you looking for?

MSFFB is supposed to be the best FFB stick, but it has problems working w/ some games (like CFS3 and LOMAC)

X45 has ton's of features and a great price tag, but you get what you pay for.

CH and Thrustmaster make some of the highest quality sticks, but they are priced accordingly.

http://webpages.charter.net/Stick_Fiend/images/buck2.gif
"I don't think it's quite fair to condemn a whole program because of a single slip-up. "
Fiend's Wings (http://webpages.charter.net/Stick_Fiend)

SkyChimp
02-14-2004, 10:37 AM
I agree the X45 is a good stick. It's also the lowest priced full featured hotas available, that I know of. My only problems with it are that the stick is not comfortable for me - I have a big hand. The rudder control is a rocker-lever on the throttle and takes getting used to. And the stick squeaks mercilessly.

I really liked the Logitech Digital Wingman Extreme. It was heavy, which I really liked. Was comfortable. Performed well. But after 3 years or so, the thing stops centering and gets sloppy. But until then, its a good, solid, servicable, inexpensive stick.

Regards,
SkyChimp
http://members.cox.net/rowlandparks/skychimp.jpg

woetr
02-14-2004, 12:27 PM
Thanks for the info!
I had never heard of saitek, looks solid, although I don't know yet if I can get it here in The Netherlands.
I was looking at a Logitech stick, but I know the centering problem of their Digital Wingman, which made me a little hasitant.

oFZo
02-14-2004, 12:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by woetr:
Thanks for the info!
I had never heard of saitek, looks solid, although I don't know yet if I can get it here in The Netherlands.
I was looking at a Logitech stick, but I know the centering problem of their Digital Wingman, which made me a little hasitant.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

forget Logitech!!! As soon as I can afford it I'll get an x45.
Being Dutch like you I'd order online.

-oFZo
http://homepage.ntlworld.com/paul.bryant3/ETSigHolland.gif
Founding member and Offical Keeper of The Herbs of the Eurotrolls.

"I have given you all the seed bearing plants and herbs to use." - The Bible

aerick2
02-14-2004, 12:37 PM
Yeah, my old stick was a Logitech Wingman Force 3D and it developed that annoying centering problem after a while too.

Fox_4
02-14-2004, 02:17 PM
I bought a Saitek Cyborg 3D Gold USB from gameplay.com a few weeks ago for 19.99. At that price it's brilliant value. I was unsure if it'd have solid win XP drivers but the drivers that came on the cd in the box worked perfectly.

pinche_bolillo
02-14-2004, 11:00 PM
I keep telling you guys, get a stick like me and you will smash even the best of them.

http://static.zoovy.com/img/higgytwins/-/spongebobtvgame.jpg

Destraex
02-14-2004, 11:27 PM
You guys ever heard of the

Thrustmaster HOTAS Cougar

THats the absolute best if you can afford it

MosDef_99th
02-14-2004, 11:28 PM
Pinche now thats a REAL stick....better than my Logitech

Hristo_
02-15-2004, 12:55 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Destraex:
You guys ever heard of the

Thrustmaster HOTAS Cougar

THats the absolute best if you can afford it<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Allow me to disagree. I've use dit about a year.
In my opinion, it is overpriced junk http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif.

Poor gimbal construction, center slop (feels like a detent), sticky feel with throttle, clunky throttle detents. Absolutely no precision near the center. It is all about looks and great programming abilities.

Switched to CH Hotas and never look back.

Destraex
02-15-2004, 01:53 AM
Plastic Joysticks do seem to be easier to fly with Hristo, I agree with you there. However I just love the feel of a full metal (including buttons) joystick.

I guess its just about taste, they say you really need to install softer springs to get a good feel from it. I have not done this though. Other good thng is that it is repairable, I think you can get spare parts for it.
Oh and you can plug rudder pedals directly into it (I may get usb rudder pedals eventually though).
Offcourse all of the buttons are fully programmable too.

Supposedly the US airforce use it to train on, don't know if thats true though.

Plastic fantastic just detracts from the flying feel of the game for me. Its personal taste I guess

http://us.thrustmaster.com/images/hotas/hotas_logos.gif

http://us.thrustmaster.com/products/hotas.php3?skin=Hotas

SpeedyGonzales-
02-15-2004, 07:18 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by woetr:
I am playing IL2 FB for a while now with my old joystick and I am looking for new one now. What would you guys recommend?
Does anybody have any experience with the Logitech Freedom 2.4?

ms sidewinder f/ozflag f if you can get one

Chuck_Older
02-15-2004, 07:25 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SkyChimp:
And the stick squeaks mercilessly.

http://members.cox.net/rowlandparks/skychimp.jpg <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Confucious say:

"Celestial monkey with chirping X45 must needs apply Pledge furniture cleaner to an old sock and wipe down under portion of spring loaded joystick baseplate, for much happiness, also for game play with enhanced silence" http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

VW-IceFire
02-15-2004, 07:42 AM
I've heard the X45 doesn't stand up very well under the test of time. Great stick but short lifespan...I wonder what stick I will buy when my Sidewinder Precision 2 finally kicks the bucket.

http://home.cogeco.ca/~cczerneda/sigs/temp_sig1.jpg
The New IL2 Database is Coming Soon!

Chuck_Older
02-15-2004, 07:45 AM
Ex-Saitek reps have told me, on another game forum, that their microswitches in particular as prone to failure. We'll see, I guess, since I have an X45 and love it. I don't mind yanking the thing apart to fix it, but I'd rather not http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif I have waaaaayyyyy too many other things to fix around here.

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

SeaFireLIV
02-15-2004, 07:50 AM
I have a similar experience to skychimp. I`ve got a 2 and a half year old stick (Logitech Extreme Wingman 3D)- Nice and heavy, but like he says, it`s become sloppy and not too responsive.

So I bought a new one, still Logitech cos I was happy with last. But tried a new Freedom 2.4 Cordless. The cordless thing is great, if a tad unnecessary (but it was same price as the corded!). Has extra buttons, very good. It works perfect- except...

It`s too damn light! I use a bit of extertion on the stick and it comes away from the desk. I`m in 2 minds whether to stay with it or take it back.

SeaFireLIV...

http://img12.photobucket.com/albums/v31/SeaFireLIV/LAlowblue.jpg

Chuck_Older
02-15-2004, 07:58 AM
Easy fix- make some friction between the two. Desks are usually pretty slick. Get an old foam type mouse pad and attach it to the bottom of the joystick with something non-permanent like velcro, so the grippiest part (is that a word?) is against the desk. Or just put some velco strips right ON the desktop.

I bought a PC desk with a keyboard tray specifically because the joystick for flight sims would be at about the right height. I think a big problem is that on a desktop, you tend to push away, but on say, my keyboard tray, I'm tending to push DOWN.

I recall that some manufacturers back in the day had suction cups on their joysticks. If you are clever, you could remove the bottom plate of your stick, drill four holes, install suction cups, re-assemble, and presto- joystick stays put.

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

SeaFireLIV
02-15-2004, 08:04 AM
Hmmm. Just tried the Mouse thing... seems to work. Thanx. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Chuck_Older
02-15-2004, 08:08 AM
That worked?!?! I mean, uh, of course it worked! No problem. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

Flyby99th
02-15-2004, 08:41 AM
Cougar owner here. It's great for it's immense programmability. There's that cold feel of metal that takes some getting used to (gloves?). The throttle detents are adjustable, as is the "stiffness" of movement. Build quality in some areas left a lot to be desired. Primarily the gimbal material is prone to wear, leading to on-center play (wobble). I've replaced the joystick gimbal, a beefed up unit provided by a member of the Cougar community, and it is much better now. I had requested a replacement gimbal from Thrustmaster. I was told a new one would be sent, bu was sent a scavenged one. It has more center play than the original one! I sent a letter of complaint about that http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif Also I have replaced two axis pots: one for the throttle and one for the Y axis on the joystick. So this HOTAS is not for the casual user. You'll have to be willing to repair it within a year of purchase. That's a real shame because of it's initial cost. But again support within the Cougar community is there. One can actually spend the cost again in having it rebuilt by Cougar modders that will provide great gimbals, and super axis pots that won't fail. I've read that the quality of these mods is very high, and what he Cougar sh ould have been in the first place.
Having said all that, for now my Cougar delivers on the promise:HOTAS! It's a good stick with great features rather than being a great stick with great features. I recommend it with the aforementioned warnings. Go to Frugal's Cougar world, or ebay to find a used one. I douth that new ones have been improved insofar as gimbals and axis pots. Very heavy, the stick and the trottle. I like that.
Flyby out

Hold very very still. This won't hurt at all

Insuber
02-15-2004, 08:53 AM
&gt;Does anybody have any experience with the Logitech Freedom 2.4?

Yes I do, I've used and enjoyed it over the last 6 months, it is a beatiful piece of hardware. Recommended.

Regards,
Insuber

Xnomad
02-15-2004, 11:43 AM
I could never go back to a non Force Feedback stick. I had the Sidewinder 2 from MS and upgraded to the MS Force Feedback II. You really do get a much better feeling for flying, the stiffness gives you an idea of how fast you are flying and the shaking tells you when you are about to stall. I don't know what to do when it breaks http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-sad.gif as MS stopped making them a while ago. I got myself a CH Pro Throttle and CH Pedals too.

Question: Does anyone know who will now take over the FFB market? Are there any decent alternatives is the Saitek FFB any good?

P.S. LOMAC was fixed for FFB with the first patch.

http://www.xnomad.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/sig.jpg

Hristo_
02-15-2004, 12:11 PM
Out of the box CH stuff works flawlessly. No need for additional modding and repairs, unlike Cougar. Programmability of CH is on par and in some areas surpases that of the Cougar.

So, when you compare the cost, turns out you need a lot more money than initial cost to make the Cougar work as advertised. With CH, you get what you pay for.

Taylortony
02-15-2004, 12:30 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
Ex-Saitek reps have told me, on another game forum, that their microswitches in particular as prone to failure. We'll see, I guess, since I have an X45 and love it. I don't mind yanking the thing apart to fix it, but I'd rather not http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif I have waaaaayyyyy too many other things to fix around here.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Had a X36 gameport for about 4 years plus without a fault............bought a x45 usb after i got xp so i could use it fully with xp, have ran it for nearly 3 years now, had a dickie microswitch on the trigger at 2 years plus, contacted Saitek UK (out of warranty)and the help assistant went downstairs got one off the line and posted it out to me for free, on coming to replace it a wire was loose so resoldered it and it is still going strong.

Bought a Thrustmaster Cougar HOTAS this weekend and that is sitting on the desk next to my x45 till i get the pedals (also on order) The Cougar is well built although i find the buttons do not fall to hand as well as the X45 in my opinion and the switches are a bit stiff at the moment, no doubt they will bed in.

As for the comments about the Throttle units well, at the moment i think the F16 manufactures should have asked Saitek to design there throttle assembly as it feels much more comfortable and falls better to hand, oh and i'm one of the rare people that love the rudder rockers http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

I would say one thing on the programability of both sticks, having read a lot about the HOTAS version being so programable, well its nowhere as good as the Saitek version, which is virtually point and click, more of a XP version, where as the Thrustmaster one is a throwback to DOS, why it was never brought up to date where you could select a button in a menu and press a key to enable it similar to Saiteks version beggars belief, and they have the gaul in the menu to say everyone copies their design...lol

Chuck_Older
02-15-2004, 12:45 PM
Well, it was comments from EX-Saitek personell http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Maybe a case of sour grapes on their part?

I love my X45, loved it even more when I found I could adjust the friction in the throttle http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

I think a lot of the complaints about it's size and dimensions are really caused by the height at which the X45 is used. My X45 HOTAS is almost in my lap, my keyboard tray is about 1 inch above my thighs. It's a very natural feeling for the controller. If I put it on my desk's top, it is awkward and hard to use. I can't comment on the X45 being bad for folks with big hands because I have medium sized hands, but I have heard you can remove the pinkie trigger slide, and there is a fully usuable button underneath it that is better if you have big hands.

*****************************
from the Hundred Years war to the Crimea, from the lance and the musket and the Roman spear, to all of the men who have stood with no fear, in the service of the King~ Clash

Taylortony
02-15-2004, 12:53 PM
Yes I love it, but other was at a good price, you can remove the pinkie bar and there is a cut out in the slide to operate with your finger..................... original x36 did not have one (Pinkie Bar)... and if you have the suckers on the base take them off too its a lot more stable

(FIN)-Cowboy
02-16-2004, 02:22 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SeaFireLIV:
It`s too damn light! I use a bit of extertion on the stick and it comes away from the desk.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I used to have this same problem with some of my old sticks, but then Neil Young offered some advice: "kinder, gentler, Machine gun hand" and lo - no more flying sticks. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

These days I'm a X45 man after years of flying with Microsoft Precision Pro. It has taken some time in getting used to it, especially to rudder buttons instead of having a twist joystick.

But after a while, I noticed that my flying has gotten a lot 'cleaner', i.e. I'm not pulling the rudder to either side all the time anymore, instead I'm flying more in long, swooping arcs with more speed - this has improved my skill especially with the later war German planes that require constant speed to survive.

Note to Saitek flyers: you most likely need to change the "0 100 100 100..." lines in your conf.ini to "0 10 20 30 ..." in order to get a much more comfortable response from those extra axis in your joystick, especially for rudder which otherwise feels like an on-off button.

--
Tylymiez - the official choice of n00b-hunters since 2002!

terencemace
02-16-2004, 11:20 AM
I have a Logitech Freedom 2.4 and love it. Works great.