Blog

The Best PC Joystick

 

The Best PC Joystick

After 6 hours of research and analysis of 16 products, we have concluded that the most suitable PC joystick for the larger world is the Thrustmaster T16000M FCS for its excellent value for money.
Our Pick, Best Mid-Range

Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

 

With its high precision and numerous settings, this joystick is ideal for simulation such as arcade games, whether you are right-handed or left-handed! It presents as a bonus a quality of neat finish.

Whether in a HOTAS pack, alone , in a duo or in a Flight Pack (including a rudder bar), the T16000M is an excellent example of an efficient and affordable model. It combines a neat ambidextrous joystick (removable grip) with an interesting throttle. This version seems to us the most relevant for its versatility. Indeed, the joystick alone is equipped with a throttle lacking in resistance, making it hardly usable in simulation, but, coupled with a throttle worthy of the name, it reveals all its potential, which makes it particularly pleasant to use. use. The brand has also developed a model officially licensed by Airbus based on the T16000M.

Best cheap

Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One

Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One

 

This more basic version offers a complete solution that is sufficiently stable and pleasant to use for arcade games. It also embeds an on-the-fly mapping system to easily create your own profiles.

Designed for the PC and the Xbox (or the PS4 ), this model is ideal for neophytes or arcade enthusiasts wanting to strengthen their immersion in the game. It uses a joystick and a throttle (detachable) allowing it to be one of the rare solutions so complete in its price range. On the other hand, this is done to the detriment of the general precision, marked by an excessively high flexibility of the various control elements.

Best high end

Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog

Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog

 

This replica straight from a military plane takes everything you would expect from an accessory of its kind while adding a quality of finish and exemplary precision.

The Warthog is often seen as the holy grail of PC joysticks. Indeed, its high-end pretensions allow it to combine an exemplary design and quality of finish with high-level precision. The settings are intended to be very complete and the ergonomics excellent. You will understand, such an object is not to put in all hands. The only downside that can be noted is the absence of rotation on the Z axis, which requires the addition of a rudder to have complete controls.

 

our selection

Our Pick, Best Mid-Range Best cheap Best high end
Thrustmaster T16000M FCS Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog
Thrustmaster T16000M FCS Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog
With its high precision and numerous settings, this joystick is ideal for simulation such as arcade games, whether you are right-handed or left-handed! It presents as a bonus a quality of neat finish. This more basic version offers a complete solution that is sufficiently stable and pleasant to use for arcade games. It also embeds an on-the-fly mapping system to easily create your own profiles. This replica straight from a military plane takes everything you would expect from an accessory of its kind while adding a quality of finish and exemplary precision.

 

 

Honorable mentions

Logitech G X56 HOTAS RGB (269 € at the time of publication): versatile, comfortable and responsive but perfectible . Coming to compete with the T16000M, this Logitech model is full of assets to please, with a nice variety of controls, a throttle that can be split in two and a comfortable and responsive joystick. It can be suitable for both simulation and arcade games. We excluded it from the selection because of reliability problems noted by some users and a perfectible stability when it is not fixed.

 

How to choose your PC joystick?

Switching from a controller or keyboard to a dedicated accessory is often a milestone that enthusiasts are ready to take to strengthen their immersion in their favorite games. Unfortunately, there are many brands out there and it is often difficult to determine which ones are reliable and which items are essential to get the most out of your gaming session.

To help you in your search, we have defined some criteria:

  • The composition of the pack: from one range to another, from one model to another, the composition of the pack can change completely. In the context of this article, we have focused on HOTAS solutions (joystick + throttle lever), capable of being suitable for the greatest number of people, but it is not uncommon to find combinations of two joysticks, HOTAS with rudder bar or joystick only. It all depends on your needs and preferences
  • Ergonomics : as with any gaming peripheral, it is important to ensure that everything is handled and that the various controls are accessible. This will allow you a better control in the game thanks to more natural and therefore more efficient movements. In the case of joysticks, it is also necessary to ensure the stability of the different modules, whether through a combination of reasonable weight, non-slip pads and lower resistance of the controls or permanent fixing.
  • Precision : in the case of flight simulators (air and space), precision is the key word in order to achieve the best possible success in the various maneuvers and attack phases. To do this, it is necessary that the various controls have sufficient resistance during movements or even notches to directly feel where you are. The resolution is also to be taken into account to define the capacities of the stick. For the latter, a value of more than 12 bits is interesting.
  • Overall quality : it depends on the materials used and directly impacts the durability of your device. In this sense, choose quality plastics or, if your budget allows it, models made of metal.
  • The adjustment possibilities and versatility : this last point allows you to adapt your joystick to the way you play and to your favorite titles. The adjustments can be made at the hardware level, with screw systems or appendages to add, or at the software level, using dedicated software. Generally, the more you go upmarket, the more possibilities are extended.

 

Our Pick: Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

Our Pick, Best Mid-Range

Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

Thrustmaster T16000M FCS

 

With its high precision and numerous settings, this joystick is ideal for simulation such as arcade games, whether you are right-handed or left-handed! It presents as a bonus a quality of neat finish.

Whether in a HOTAS pack, alone , in a duo or in a Flight Pack (including a rudder bar), the T16000M is an excellent example of an efficient and affordable model. The version we have chosen seems to us the most relevant for its versatility. 

It combines a neat joystick with an interesting throttle. The stick is also ambidextrous and can therefore be modified thanks to the removable grip provided. The ergonomics of the whole are quite interesting.

Indeed, despite the use of plastic, we are entitled to relatively heavy modules (1 kg for the stick) which guarantee excellent stability, even if no fixing is provided. 

The joystick itself is quite precise and has sufficient resistance. The control is done on 4 axes with a resolution of 14 bits. Its only flaw comes from the presence of a slight dead zone in the first degrees of inclination but a passage through the TARGET software makes it possible to reduce the impact in play. It is equipped, in addition, with a throttle lacking resistance, making it hardly usable in simulation. 

Fortunately, this version contains an additional module allowing to correct the shooting and to offer real commands, much more complete. It has good overall quality and sufficient strength. It can be adjusted via a dedicated dial. The integrated buttons are just as responsive and pleasant as those present on the other half of the pack.

Apart from these two elements, there are various buttons. They have good rigidity to avoid unexpected activation. However, the position of some, on either side of the stick, can be impractical in use, especially for small hands.

The management aspect is entrusted to the TARGET software that can be found on our high-end reference. It has many settings and allows you to configure a perfect experience by acting, in particular, on dead zones and macros.

Finally, versatility is clearly there when you have these two elements. This allows the stick to be both usable in arcade and simulation. If you opt for the joystick alone, we advise you to limit yourself mainly to the first genre.

Note that the brand has also developed a model officially licensed by Airbus based on the T16000M.

 

The best cheap PC joystick: Thrustmaster T. Flight Hotas One

Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One

Best cheap

Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One

Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas One

 

This more basic version offers a complete solution that is sufficiently stable and pleasant to use for arcade games. It also embeds an on-the-fly mapping system to easily create your own profiles.

Designed for the PC and the Xbox (or the PS4 ), this model is ideal for novices or arcade enthusiasts wanting to strengthen their immersion in the game. It is one of the most complete models in its price range .

To do this, it uses a joystick and a throttle (detachable), which are quite rare at this level. Both have a fairly basic quality, made of black plastic. The finish is correct and the design goes straight to the point. 

Connected to each other, they exhibit satisfactory stability, which remains usable once the modules have been separated thanks, in particular, to the low resistance of the controls.

This is done on the other hand to the detriment of the general precision which requires a minimum of resistance to precisely feel the different levels. Too bad, because the fairly classic handling is a real asset. The buttons fall easily under the fingers and are quite nice. 

There are 3 on the joystick in addition to an 8-way hat and a firing trigger. On the throttle, there are the ABXY and LT / RT controls in addition to a progressive left-right slider that can be used, for example, as a rudder bar.

Admittedly, they could have been more numerous but, given the price, the endowment is already quite complete. 

The precision of the joystick is based on 9 bits which offers a fairly limited result, even for arcade. This results in a slight difficulty in adjusting the trajectories and / or your target. The first degrees of inclination are its real weak point. The throttle, for its part, is a little too flexible to be really precise even if it remains better than the simple integrated potentiometers.

Finally, the tuning aspect is quite poor, with a little light dedicated software. Indeed, everything goes rather through the joystick itself with dedicated controls for mapping and choosing the preset.

 

The best high-end PC joystick: Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog

Best high end

Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog

Thrustmaster Hotas Warthog

 

This replica straight from a military plane takes everything you would expect from an accessory of its kind while adding a quality of finish and exemplary precision.

The Warthog is often seen as the holy grail of PC joysticks. Indeed, its high-end pretensions allow it to combine an exemplary design and quality of finish with high-level precision. You will understand, such an object is not to put in all hands. 

This HOTAS is the most qualitative model on the market. It takes the lines of the Warthog, American fighter plane, and contains a throttle that can be divided in two to manage two engines. 

The assembly, composed mainly of metal, weighs more than 7 kg, which guarantees it a foolproof stability. The latter can be amplified thanks to the integrated fixing via a screwable base.

The overall ergonomics are excellent, each element falls directly into the hand, regardless of your body type. Rather rigid knobs are a very good example of a compromise between efficiency and resistance.

The resistance to the tilt of the joystick is quite high but has a very good feedback allowing you a foolproof precision, ideal for maintaining an angle to the nearest half-degree.

At the level of the stick, there are 4 multidirectional hats accessible with the thumb, a double position trigger, a side button for the index finger and again a trigger and a button provided for the little finger, ring finger or middle finger.

The only downside that can be noted is the absence of rotation on the Z axis, which requires the addition of a rudder to have complete controls.

The Throttle itself is made of high quality plastic and has a real premium feel to it. It’s just as nice and precise as the joystick. Its base has 7 switches, 2 buttons, a switch and a wheel. 

The set is fully programmable via the TARGET software in order to set up a totally personalized experience. The throttle can even be fitted with 2 stops (IDLE and Post-Combustion position) which can be passed by slightly lifting the control.

It’s simple, once you have switched to this type of device, it is difficult to go down in range. On the other hand, it is advisable to know a minimum of the subject because it requires sharp adjustments.

 

Sources

  1. Android Authority, The best flight sticks for PC, Xbox One, and PS4, 20 mai 2021
  2. IGN, Best PC Joystick 2020: From Flight Sticks and Fight Sticks to PC Keypads, 20 mai 2021
  3. Digital, Comparison: Which joystick for PC or console to choose? October 2020 , May 20, 2021
  4. PC Gamer, The best PC joysticks for 2020, 20 mai 2021
  5. Windows Central, Best PC Joystick in 2020, 20 mai 2021

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also
Close
Back to top button
%d bloggers like this: