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AkulaR32

What Hardware Do You Use for Flight?

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How do you play: More sim, less messing around, or more casually?

 

How happy are you with it?

 

 

As you can see from my stats thread, right now I play a little more casually, with a 360 controller. I don't come from FSX, but I have a lot of seat time in more serious auto racing sims. I found Flight because I have a TrackIR and wanted to try it out elsewhere. I'm not willing to put up with all the fuss of setting up FSX properly.

 

I do have an interest in planes and flying, however, more seriously learning how to pay attention to instruments, checklists, and VOR/ILS basics are interesting to me. And I'd like to be able to use a controller that doesn't so easily cause such dramatic inputs (passengers are sick with one misplaced thumb.)

 

I know, for my personal happiness, I would need a joystick and pedals, but I'm especially curious how many of you play flight with yokes in the appropriate (or all) planes and how much they enhance the gameplay for you. The real thing that kills me is that the Cessna 172 has a yoke, and it tends to be the go to trainer plane in real life, so that may leave me wanting for a yoke.

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I use the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro, a rather cheap (the price, not the quality!) but quite popular and often afviced joystick, and the Saitek Combat Rudder pedals. I've been flying for years (decades) but only recently bought the pedals for Flight. Flight is about the only game I play by now so to me it was worth the money.

 

I am not so interested in a yoke: many planes have other kind of controllers and it doesn't bother me at all to fly a plane that has a yoke with a joystick. If that WOULD be a problem I would have a real problem because I will never be able to get all kinds of possible controllers: they don't all exsit for the PC and it would cost too much. :wink:

 

The pedals are great and I really love them, but for someone who is new to flightsimming, I would say to first get a joystick. The mentioned Logitech has a rudder twist (you can turn the joystick itself a little to apply rudder) and although that doesn't work too well (so I discovered after getting the pedals... :wink: ), it does work a little: good enough to get you going. But a joystick itself is mandatory for me (although quite a few people are very happy with the well implemented mouse control mode of Flight!).

 

I would only buy rudders if you certainly knew this is the kind of game you want to play for a long time. They cost too much to just give them a try and then leave them untouched. I deeply regret not getting mine years ago. (Atlthough my pedals haven't been around that long yet and maybe I wouldn't have liked the older models as much as I like the Combat rudders.)

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Saitek X52Pro / TrackIR / Dual monitor setup

That's about it really. I've never had pedals or a yolk and don't intend on getting them (at the moment).

 

I'm more than pleased with my setup as I use Flight as entertainment and a challenge more than the fully blown flight trainer that it was never intended to be.

 

Whatever hardware you use Flight is always useable and enjoyable, even on a basic system. :p0504:


Blackrat

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I see I didn't answer the initial question: How do you play: More sim, less messing around, or more casually? :wink: I think I play it semi-simlike. I like to plan a flight, think ahead, stay in the VC all the time, use the proper procedures, touch as much buttons as possible, use approach charts sometimes, use VOR sometimes and 'GPS' (GMap right now) other times. Seems 'more sim' but then again... I sometimes do things a real world pilot would never do (like overspeeding to get down to the runway after approaching it too high or simply land way too hard). And apart from all that: I am also in it for the nice pictures, the mood (those great shadows!!!). It's one of the reasons I like Flight more then other sims, which to some people says enough about my simming mentality. :wink:

 

I certainly am not a casual flyer but I don't feel the need for perfection as most simmers (seem to) do. :wink: I like to sim what I like to sime and the rest I don't care about that much. I don't need it to be 100% realistic as long as it feels 'just like the real thing' to me.

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I'm a casual serious simmer. Most times I fly according to my mood, but since getting Alaska I've been pretty serious: generally only refueling at airports with fuel, taking off from the last place I landed, etc. If I want to fly a particular job, I've been flying to that airport first. This is pretty much how I flew FSX. I expect to relax these rules a bit to fly challenges and aerocaches of the day when we get them.

 

I use CH Products yoke, joystick, throttle and pro pedals and have had this setup for many years and many flight sims. I set up the controllers according to what the real aircraft has: yoke in the Maule, joystick for everything else so far, etc. I used to fly the FSX Cessna 172 with the joystick to try to get finer control for some of the lessons, so there isn't a really strict rule here. I don't use the throttle in a glider, but there's a "throttle wheel" on the joystick that's set up to operate the spoilers. In a helicopter, the throttle action is reversed to simulate the collective stick. No sailplanes or helos in Flight yet, but I'm sure they'll work like they did in FSX.

 

Keep in mind that the pro pedals have axes for both aircraft rudder and toe brakes, and the toe brakes can be set up to be throttle and brake in a car racing game (with little physical blocks to keep the "rudder" axis fixed). Also, I've used a yoke in car racing games successfully.

 

Hook


Larry Hookins

 

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

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Long time casual flyer here, currently using CH Product's Flightstick Pro, Pro Pedals, and Saitek's Throttle quadrant. Both of my CH controllers are the old gameport versions, they're plugged via a pair of gameport to USB converters.

 

Hook mentioned above that the CH pro pedals can be used with driving sims, the opposite might be true as well. If you already have a pedal set from a driving controller, you might try using them at first. A three pedal set should give you rudder control and brakes. You wouldn't have differential brakes, but you would be able to both stop the plane and hold it in place when you need to.

 

One more suggestion: Before spending money on controllers, read through the hardware forum and get a feel for the pros and cons of the various brands.

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How do you play: More sim, less messing around, or more casually?

 

How happy are you with it?

 

 

As you can see from my stats thread, right now I play a little more casually, with a 360 controller. I don't come from FSX, but I have a lot of seat time in more serious auto racing sims. I found Flight because I have a TrackIR and wanted to try it out elsewhere. I'm not willing to put up with all the fuss of setting up FSX properly.

 

I do have an interest in planes and flying, however, more seriously learning how to pay attention to instruments, checklists, and VOR/ILS basics are interesting to me. And I'd like to be able to use a controller that doesn't so easily cause such dramatic inputs (passengers are sick with one misplaced thumb.)

 

I know, for my personal happiness, I would need a joystick and pedals, but I'm especially curious how many of you play flight with yokes in the appropriate (or all) planes and how much they enhance the gameplay for you. The real thing that kills me is that the Cessna 172 has a yoke, and it tends to be the go to trainer plane in real life, so that may leave me wanting for a yoke.

 

I am a low-time real-world pilot, and I mostly sim fairly seriously, but feel sims are also the place to do silly things that would probably kill you in the real world. :)

 

I use a Logitech G940 set for stick/throttle/pedals and am fairly happy with it. It's a great value, but has it's shortcomings. I'd prefer a more expensive set without those little issues but it would cost 2.5 times as much money, so I can live with it.

 

The other important hardware for a flight sim of small aircraft is TrackIR, and you already have that.

 

Yokes are more common than sticks in real planes, but not (so far) in Flight. The Maule is the only current plane using a yoke.

 

Yokes do have advantages in sims, like in real life, as you can easily hold them with either hand while the other manipulates other controls. This is especially useful for right-handed mousing.

 

Don't worry about getting controls similar to those in planes you hope to fly someday. While the general knowledge transfers from sims, the physical skills really don't.

 

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Started flying PC sims after I got my first PC in 1986. Started using a CH Yoke and Pedals when about 15 years ago. When I quit flying FS9 6 years ago due to the aggravation factor, I threw most everything I had in the dumpster except Track IR and the CH pedals, which I am using again with Flight. I decided not to buy another yoke, cause it really was a pain to have to attach it to my PC desk for flying, and then remove it to use the computer. Besides the CH Yoke had a quirky trim wheel which never worked right, and it wasn't as smooth as I would have liked in the action of the yoke.

 

After I installed Flight and was amazed at how well it flew with just a mouse, I went and bought an inexpensive yoke that I had read many great reviews about, the Logitech 3D Pro. It is much better than the CH yoke I had that cost 3X as much. Tons of buttons, smooth action, easy to program, and is solid. I can't understand how they can build it for the price they are selling it for. To me it's a quality product. The Track IR with their latest software works better than it ever did with FS9, and the CH pedals with toe brakes are also working very well with zero problems.

 

I try to fly regular procedures that I would use when I fly a real aircraft, which I have about 600 hours in. Pre flight, check lists, try to make every landing, smooth, and touch down right near the runway threshold, fly ILS's if they are there, use VORs if possible, practice slow flight, occasional stalls, all things a regular pilot would do. Flight adds to that realism for me, much more than any other PC sim I have flown, and I have flown or owned quite a few.


PF3 Beta Tester

Bob Cardone        P3D 3,4       FlyVirtual.net   Aivlasoft EFB2  /pf3-supporter.gif

 

 

 

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As sim-like as feasible.

 

Controls:

TrackIR - still tuning this, but it's amazing, plus it frees up the hat on the joystick.

Thrustmaster T.Flight HOTAS X - most affordable HOTAS around, plus it's quality. Also, the rudder on the throttle is so much better than stick twist. I really do need to get proper pedals though.

 

Settings:

Assists on brakes and prop effects enabled (no analog braking on a stick, and not enough fine tuning to counter prop effects at the moment).

HUD and POI disabled. Makes takeoff and landing with wind a bit challenging, but it beats all that visual clutter.

 

For flying, I'll find a job I like, alt-tab out to Skyvector, lay out a quick path, note VOR's when possible and then scribble it all down. I'll then check the AF/D and TPP for the destination airport and add any notes about that. And then I'll flip to the airport diagram for my origin airport to figure out the taxiways (no skipping, taxiing is half the challenge). On landing I'll do the same for the destination airport, especially if it's a confusing place like Honolulu.

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I tend to spend money on hardware with the thought it will last me several years. I am however more of a casual simmer, as I find my time pretty limited especially during the summer months. In the winter months I will be much more active in simming. But I have been flying flight sims for many, many years. Namely civilian flight sims by MS, along with some combat flight sims, like the IL2 series and the DCS series.

 

I was flying with the TM Cougar, modded with the NXT gimball mod with hall sensors - I got the Cougar in 2002, modded it in 2005 , and until a couple months or so ago that is what I always used, along with the TM Elite Rudder pedals. I also used Track IR3, then Track IR4 during this time as well. Great that you already have Track IR, you will find it most beneficial for flight simming.

Recently I upgraded all my control hardware, first got the Track IR 5 just to have the latest, and then the TM Warthog stick and throttle setup, and the Saitek Combat Pedals. So far I have been very pleased with this setup. Flying a plane designed for a yoke does not bother me at all with the stick and throttle setup, as it will work just as well, and works great for my combat sims including helicopter flying as well. I certainly went with a more pricey setup, but I know I will continue with flight simming for many years as I have in the past.


Don B

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P.S. I also have TrackIR. I was thinking about controllers only. Love my TrackIR. (If I had to choose between rudder pedals and TrackIR I'd choose TrackIR!)

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P.S. I also have TrackIR. I was thinking about controllers only. Love my TrackIR. (If I had to choose between rudder pedals and TrackIR I'd choose TrackIR!)

 

Me too. Track IR is used constantly by me, rudder pedals not so much.


PF3 Beta Tester

Bob Cardone        P3D 3,4       FlyVirtual.net   Aivlasoft EFB2  /pf3-supporter.gif

 

 

 

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Indeed, the Flight Team has made me one very happy camper after implementing Track IR support and working toe brakes.

I will certainly continue to support Flight going forward now.


Don B

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I use the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro, a rather cheap (the price, not the quality!) but quite popular and often afviced joystick, and the Saitek Combat Rudder pedals.

 

I use the same stick...it's great and you're right, not at all expensive. I do not however have rudder pedals. Out of curiosity, when you use rudder pedals, what do you map the stick's twist axis to? Right now, my twist is mapped to my rudder.

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I use the same stick...it's great and you're right, not at all expensive. I do not however have rudder pedals. Out of curiosity, when you use rudder pedals, what do you map the stick's twist axis to? Right now, my twist is mapped to my rudder.

 

I simply have removed the assignement of the twist stick axis: before you know it you apply unwanted rudder with it (all the time) which also rules out any other assignement...

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