A serious gaming enthusiast understands that there are a few things that the typical controllers just can’t offer. For those who enjoy American Truck Simulator, Euro Truck Simulator 2, Drive Club, and Gran Turismo, only a good gaming steering wheel will take you as close to the real driving experience as possible. Well, you may not have wind rushing past your face. However, you’ll like the intuitive feel as your in-game vehicle’s wheels negotiate and screech around corners. In fact, if you’re eagerly waiting for Forza Motorsport 7 and Project Cars 2 to vroom in anytime this year, like me, bracing yourself with the best steering wheel for gaming isn’t an option, it’s the only option.
- Product Name
Has progressive brake pedal, 12-button easily accessible layout, tough rim with incredible force feedback, features Thrustmaster quality at a budget price, upgradable components
Priced to sell, easy to use, has some amount of rumble, USB-powered, lots of accessible controls, programmable buttons
Affordable, 1080 degrees of rotation, steel gear shifters with solid click, ps4, ps3, and pc compatible
Officially licensed for ps4, 11 action buttons, 12′ diameter wheel, wide adjustable brake and gas pedals, 1080 degrees wheel rotation
Decent design, helical geared feedback force, rev counter, upgradable with a 6-speed manual shifter
Great feature-to-price ratio, adjustable pedal heights, curved rubber grips, resembles the original Italia edition
Replica of the Ferrari Italia edition, affordable, steel shift paddles, genuine Manettino dial
Saves you money, quality components bundled up together, dual-belt system, 3-pedal set
Best Steer wheel for PS3, ideal for Grans Turismo, nice button layout, rubber overmold grips
Numerous programmable buttons, steel pedals, adjustable pedal face locations, incredible force feedback
Gaming Steering Wheel Buying Guide
When hunting for the best gaming steer wheel, everything boils down to your comfort, ease of use, and near real-life experiences. So, these are the most important features to look out for before ordering for a racing wheel for your gaming escapades.
Vibrations & Force Feedback: This feature alone throws your conventional mouse and keyboard out of the water. The essence of a gaming steering wheel is to mimic real-life driving experiences in the digital driving world. Nothing else does that better than being able to experience all the resistance, jumps, and jolts caused by the different conditions of the roads that you’ll be cruising through.
Pedals: You need to be a little vigilant here. Your set’s pedals need to offer optimum comfort for your gaming experience. Worth noting, these pedals are either made of plastic or metal with the latter being a little pricier. Again, if you have a little more to spend on the best, it’s good to go for a pair that is easily adjustable both vertically or horizontally to accommodate your feet.
Rotation and Wheel Diameter: Regular cars use larger steering wheels than those in real racing cars. This is so because a regular driver will have to make several U-turns on the road which is made easier by a large (14′ to 15′) wheel. On the other hand, real-life or in-game racing cars rarely have large turns to negotiate since they speed on tracks. As such, a small steering wheel with drastic results is all racing cars require.
Thrustmaster TMX is amongst the best gaming steering wheels under 200 dollars. This affordable kit is purposely designed for the entry-level enthusiasts who want to fly and screech the corners without going broke. The package features a racing wheel and a pedal set with gas and progressive brake pedals.
In case you’re new to these models, Thrustmaster is an American brand established in 1990 in Hillsboro, Oregon. This is a giant brand that designs and manufactures computer gaming peripherals including joysticks, steering wheels, and game controllers both for PC and gaming consoles. Thrustmaster TMX isn’t their best-in-class. However, TMX is amongst Thrustmaster’s best racing wheel for beginners at this price. It’s their latest addition in their series of force feedback gaming steering wheels. It costs way less than half of its high-flying models. Amongst its greatest features is that it can be upgraded with time to enhance the realism. We’ll come back to this later, though.
The wheel measures 11’/23cm. Amazingly, it features force feedback which is a unique feature for a standard wheel at TMX’s price point. What makes this ‘force-feedback’ worth the mention is that it’s offered by a belt and pulley mechanism. That’s a step up from the bungee cord mechanism found in several Thrustmaster gaming steering wheels including the Spider. The belt-pulley mechanism pushes the wheel back smoothly and quietly mimicking a real life racing feeling. Whether you’re cruising on-road or off-road, the Thrustmaster TMX racing wheel delivers an excellent approximation of the feedback as your car drifts through the corners and the tires grip the road.
With a reasonable price, you get a tough and good-looking wheel with a layout similar to other flagship models from this brand. Similar to most of its siblings, Thrustmaster TMX wheel flaunts a well thought out and tough design. It has 12 action buttons all positioned within your reach. The placement of the buttons within your thumbs’ reach is great especially for racing games where you’ll rely on the handbrake for a good part of the race. All the 12 buttons resemble those on Xbox one controller. You also get a D-pad that makes it easy to navigate the menus. Right after the wheel, TMX boasts steel paddle gear shifters. These have been impressively distanced from the wheel and turn with the rim. The flappy paddles also have an audible click sound when they are engaged and always spring back to their position. Worth noting, you’re free to replace them with a gear shift of your choice if these don’t give you the fun you need. Our comprehensive list of the best gaming joysticks in 2018 may have a standalone gear shift for you.
The rim is made of tough plastic and has rubber grips at the 3 and 9 positions. Our panelist thought that it would have been a good idea if the entire wheel was rubberized considering that it makes 900 degrees rotations. However, the rubber padded sections still offer enough grip for a limitless immersion into the game especially if your hands are mostly at the right and left positions. One good thing is that the wheel has been tightly and securely mounted to prevent all sorts of wobbling. Worth noting, unlike in the TX, this Xbox steering wheel is permanently attached and can’t be replaced. Behind the wheel is a tough plastic housing that clamps to a table or a desk via a clamping mechanism.
About compatibility, it’s good to know that Thrustmaster designs its kits to be compatible with several systems and gaming consoles. The TMX doesn’t fall any far from the rest. It supports PC (Windows Vista, 7, 8, 10) and Xbox one right out of the box. Thrustmaster TMX also supports about all games that accept gaming steer wheels. The sweet spot with this kit is that it’s easy to upgrade with several components from the same brand. You may, for instance, replace the 2-pedal set with a 3-pedal one and also bring the THBA add-on shifter onboard.
- Several components are upgradable
- Offers strong, quiet, and smooth force feedback
- Its brake pedal is progressive
- Its permanently-attached rim can’t be replaced
Hori is a PS3 and PS4 steering wheel that could be a good option to those on a budget. Well, a gaming steer wheel is good than no steering wheel at all. At below 100 bucks, Hori is an OK wheel for a casual gamer who need some sort of relief from the keyboard and mouse. Hori is a Japan-based brand that has been around since 1983. It claims to be amongst the first 3rd party gaming accessories makers in the world and targets different genres of games including flight, racing, and fighting simulation. This company has since diversified its markets and currently has its headquarters in the USA, the UK, and Hong Kong.
Being frank enough, Hori won’t set your gaming room on fire. It didn’t happen to us and won’t happen to you either. It’s a 99 dollars thing, remember! However, it still offers some degree of vroom in Euro Truck Simulator, Project Cars, and Dirt 3 among other games with the few features it has to offer. In fact, it competes favorably with the Thrustmaster T80 around the same price only that some of its major limitations could be a total deal-breaker.
Right out of the box, Hori Apex looks quite impressive and promising. It’s made of plastic and covered in rubber to offer excellent grip. This ps4 steering wheel is stylish and emulates that of a sports car at 11 inches. Hori has a 3-spoke D-shaped rim with up to 10 action buttons on the center column. Similar to Thrustmaster TMX, all the control buttons are placed nicely so you can reach them without taking your hands off the rim. The buttons are quite similar to those found in PS4 controllers.
A good thing we liked about the Hori Apex is that the buttons, pedals, and paddles are fully programmable. As such, you can always customize the commands to favor you in any game. There’s also an adjustable dead zone at the 12 o’clock position that helps in holding the straightaway for centering configuration. One thing that really did put us off was its 2700 full rotation which can only be adjusted to 1800. As expected, adjusting the DOR down to 1800 only made steering harder and cumbersome.
Past the wheel are the plastic pedals which we found to be somewhat on the cheaper side though we had to swallow that given the price. Again, unlike in Thrustmaster TMX, these gear shifters are too close to the rim which limits your comfort as you do your thing. We loved that Hori Apex offers 2 mounting options. You can opt to use the table clamp. You’ll, however, have to snug and tighten the clamp regularly- this is common with most table clamped wheels. Another option, which I wouldn’t recommend, though, is the suction cups.
The pedals are just that…black pedals with 3 customizable sensitivity inputs and a retractable footrest that you may never have use for. The pedals have nothing much to offer other than what they have been designed to do. They aren’t as immersive and offer only a small amount of resistance. On the upside, you only need less effort to press and are super responsive. Again, the pedal set won’t be sliding all over the place in the middle of the race. Regarding compatibility, Hori Apex works well with PS4 and PS3 units, but not so great with PC. You’ll have to utilize a third party program with the necessary drivers to set it up for your PC.
- It’s great for the price
- Lots of control buttons
- Among the best steering wheel for ps4
- Gear shifters feel flimsy and clumsy
As you’ll find out, Thrustmaster has a major foothold on our list of the 10 best gaming steer wheels 2018. This is quite an improvement considering that they only scooped a single slot on our previous write up of the best gaming racing wheels 2018. The T150 is an answer to a serious gamer who’s looking for a superior quality gaming wheel with a whole lot of extras without costing the earth. Taking it out of the box, Thrustmaster T150 resembles the Ferrari edition. However, in my opinion, the Ferrari edition has a toyish feel especially because of its Ferrari logo and red rubber on the rim. The T150 seems like a replacement of the now discontinued Thrustmaster T100. Again, a closer look at it shows that a few features have been borrowed from its pricier sibling the T300. The wheel’s overall design and the chipset and toggle that allows you to switch from PS4 to PS3 systems all seem to have trickled down from the T300.
The wheel and the base are made of hard and tough plastic. The rim is 11 inches in diameter and has more rubber covering (the blue parts) than what we found in the TMX. It, therefore, has a little bit nicer feel in the hands and your palms won’t get much sweaty. Though the rubber’s decent feeling usually fades with time, it’s quite impressive that it never reaches the overly unpleasant levels though it remains noticeable. The button layout is quite identical to that of the T300 and the Hori Apex. It features 13 action buttons 2 of which have been included in the base.
Like most gaming steer wheels, the buttons are within easy reach. The L2, R2, Share, and Option buttons are on wing-like extensions of the center column. The PlayStation face buttons are on the right-hand side and can be easily accessed by the thumb while still holding on to the rubbery blue handgrips. You also find the D-pad just below the PS buttons. The base also contains the L3/R3 and a switch button that lets you select between PS3 and PS4 systems. Alongside these controls is a mode button that you’ll utilize as you select your optional wheel accessories. We also loved the steel sturdy gear shifters on this unit. Unlike the plastic paddles that we saw on Hori, these paddles feel tough and natural. They won’t break any time soon also.
If there’s one feature that makes Thrustmaster T150 a go-to racing wheel for serious enthusiasts on a budget is its realistic force feedback. The way that this feedback translates all the imperfections on the roads into realism is way beyond what it costs. Thrustmaster seems to have succeeded in their quest to bring you a silent beast with smooth and precise force feedback effects. T150 sports a combination of belt-pulley and gears systems. Unlike in the cheaper models, this one is less susceptible to decoupling and gear slippages which result in unnecessary noise and damages.
Another great aspect of this T150 ps4 racing wheel is its 1080 degrees of rotation with up to 4096 values of control. This is step up from Hori’s 270 and 180-degree rotations. Well, you won’t require all these steering degrees in all games. Thankfully, Thrustmaster makes it possible to pull the degrees down to up to 270 degrees. This helps in minimizing the oversteering effect that may be brought by its maximum rotation capacity. Similar to other low priced kits by Thrustmaster, the pedal set in this package will require urgent replacement if you like pushing the pedals through the base. It doesn’t feel any toyish though. It’s plastic but strong and sturdy.
- High-end features in a budget-friendly gaming kit
- Upgradable with the T3PA-pro and T3PA pedal add-ons and the TH8A shifter
- Not the greatest pedals
Thrustmaster seems to have the best racing gaming racing wheels for everybody. Whether you’re a new entrant with a few bucks to risk or a gaming enthusiast looking for the best wheels that money can buy, Thrustmaster has got you covered. Their Thrustmasters T80 is a reliable unit to bet on at the lower side of the spectrum. Well, you shouldn’t expect much from this 90-dollar thing. However, it has superior racing sensations than your typical gaming controllers. This should also top your list if you’re looking for a set that will hone your racing performance in preparation for the high-end models.
Released on July 1, 2018, this Thrustmaster T80 was the first PS4 licensed racing wheel. It comes fitted with an official firmware that allows the PS4 consoles to automatically recognize it. It also supports all racing games on PS4. The T80 isn’t made solely for the PS4, though. This racing wheel works excellently with the PS3 and PC as well.
Though an entry-level package, Thrustmaster T80 is a solid model with several useful features and customization options. Its wheel tells it all. At 12 inches in diameter, the T80 is slightly larger than its siblings, the TMX and Thrustmaster T150 both which have 11-inch wheels. The larger diameter of this unit’s wheel offers you plenty of room which positively contributes to your gaming comfort without feeling toyish. The T80 also has a straightforward and decent button layout with easy to reach buttons that can be hit without moving your hand.
The control arena offers 13 buttons with L2/L3 and R2/R3 buttons on the rim for seamless access. A good thing with these buttons is that some can be reprogrammed to suit your needs. Admittedly, the T80 is the only racing wheel that we covered in this category that offers 1080 degrees of wheel rotation. This is a great feature considering that most high-end models only give you 900 degrees rotation allowance. However, you’re also allowed to adjust the steering sensitivity if you feel that the 1080 degrees will lead to oversteering. The T80 also has 2 paddle shifters behind the wheel. Unfortunately, you’ll have to live with that gear shifting option since there’s no option to add a stick shift.
Thrustmasters also has a superbly light setup. This ps4 wheel is fully powered via a USB cable. A bright LED located at the center of the wheel lights up to indicate a correct connection. Powered force feedback is mostly the reason why most steering wheel kits require cable powering. Well, active feedback was the last feature that we expected from this unit. Your rides won’t be so flat, though. T80 manages to offer some form of constant resistance through bungee cords. This may not be strong enough for the hardcore drivers, but it’s still sufficient for someone who’s coming directly from the mouse and keyboard.
Thrustmasters seems to have a common problem with its pedal sets. This is a major concern even in its highly priced models. This one, for instance, is all-plastic and may not withstand an extremely rough driver behind the wheel. However, it’s a good idea that it has a wide footrest and that the pedals are quite wide and adjustable. The brake pedal also offers progressive resistance which is a good thing. Unfortunately, you’ll have to come up with ways to prevent the base from wandering all over your floors.
- It’s inexpensive
- Adjustable brake and gas pedals
- Large wheel offers plenty of room
- Has no force feedback
A bit pricey than most of the gaming steer wheels that we’ve reviewed thus far, the Logitech G29 is admittedly one of the best steering wheels that the market has witnessed so far. This one has been meticulously tuned to offer the best of the digital racing experience. Technically, Logitech Driving Force G29 comes in 2 versions; the G29 and the G920 both which are successors to their last-gen sibling the G27. The G920 is one of the best gaming steering wheels for Xbox one and PC while the Logitech G29 is designed for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4as well as PC.
Logitech is a great rivalry of Thrustmasters. While the latter is respected for their affordable gaming steer wheel sets, the former is a hitter when the topic is about durability and longevity of use. Established in 1981, Logitech isn’t any new to us. It reigns supreme in our previous work of the best wireless presenters for 2018. The Logitech G29 is quiet a recommendable unit if you’re looking for a gaming kit that you’ll hold onto for quite some time.
G29’s wheel is a complete replica of the G27’s with only a few changes on the buttons layout. In fact, digging deeper into its internal hardware brings some more similarities that have trickled down from the G27. Logitech seems to have left no stone unturned in bringing you a set of almost real gaming wheel and paddle. The wheel, for instance, measures 27cm in diameter and has a metallic frame and thoughtfully stitched leather finish. This is one reason why we can’t compare the G29 with the plastic and rubber T80 from Thrustmaster. G29 feels pretty much sturdier, hardier and ready to take about all sorts of abuse.
The control panel seems quite busy and houses all the action buttons including the Share button that takes a snapshot of your actions in a snap. You also get a D-pad here and a 24-point selection dial. Notably, the Share, Option, and PS buttons which have a greater deal if you’re using the G29 on PC. However, you can always assign some other functions. Right above the center column is a line of multi-colored LED indicators. Though of little importance, the multi-colored LEDs act as a rev counter. They alert you on when it’s time to kick the gear shifter. This is an excellent way to ensure maximum acceleration is maintained throughout the laps without getting off the tracks.
Another interesting feature with the Logitech G29 is the realistic force effects with an excellent translation of every terrain that your car’s tires cruise over. G29 uses anti-backlash helical gearing technology that offers exceptionally smooth and quiet steering action. This unit employs 2 extremely powerful motors with a strong force that’s likely to cause fatigue and arms ache after some time. Though the wheel offers 2.5 turns at 900 degrees only, we found the rotations quite enough for most of the major racing games including DriveClub and Project Cars.
If there’s an area that Logitech throws Thrustmasters out of the water is in the floor pedal system. The 3-pedal set consists of the accelerator, clutch, and brake. These pedals are all made of steel and are well tuned and won’t break easily. You may also choose to add the 6-speed Manual Gear Shifter which is sold separately. However, it isn’t compatible with PS3.
- The rim is covered with real leather
- Has decent pedals
- Made to last
- Strong force feedback causes arm fatigue
If you’re looking for the best gaming steering wheel for Xbox one, this Thrustmaster Ferrari 458 Spider could be it. Ferrari 458 is a 7/10 replica and a budget friendly option of Thrustmaster’s original Ferrari F458 Italia edition. This original version was released soon after the launch of Xbox one. With Thrustmasters’ knack of designing and replicating high models into easily affordable units, digital racers have been eagerly waiting for the release of the F458’s second edition.
Ferrari 458 Spider’s wheel is quite similar to that of its predecessor. The bold Ferrari logo resides at the center of the wheel. The rim is plastic and has a nice rubber covering from the 1 o’clock to 5 o’clock on the right-hand side and 7 o’clock to 11 o’clock on the left. The red rubber grips not only look but also feel good and offer optimum comfort and control. A nice feature worth pointing out here is the curvature at the 2 and 10 handling positions where your 2 hands are likely to rest for a better part of the race. These curved portions make tackling tricky turns super pleasant and easy. Quite thoughtful!
As with any other racing wheel, all control buttons are positioned on the wheel spokes. Designed specifically for Xbox one, it’s needless to say that Ferrari 458 has all the buttons on the Xbox controller. Buttons A/B and X/Y are on the right and left respectively while the Push-To-Start button represents the D-pad. You also get a pause button and a menu button to navigate through the available options. Behind the wheel are 2 up/down gear shifters. Another sweet spot here is that the pedal shifters are stainless steel and feel more durable thereby smashing the flimsy plastic pedals on Hori Apex. Even better, Ferrari 458 Spider allows you to replace the onboard pedal set with a standalone manual gear shifter with time.
The wheel mounts on your desk or table via a desk clamp- no other option. However, when properly adjusted, this clamp does quite a good job, and you won’t have to readjust seeing that Ferrari 458 has almost no rumbles at all. In fact, we found the kit extremely lightweight and you could place it on your laps and do your thing comfortably. The setup is another easy part. This one doesn’t require cable powering since it does not offer powered force feedback and vibrations. We can live with the absence of force feedback given the steal price. But we felt that just a little vibration to make smashing the opponents lively and fun would have been a nice thing.
The pedal set has been designed to match the price. The 2 pedals (acceleration and brake) are wide enough, and the angle of inclination is customizable. Worth mentioning, the brake pedal features progressive resistance which at least helps in creating realistic racing sensations. A slight gripe though is that the foot pedal set still wanders around despite having several non-skid patches.
- The bungee system offers smooth resistance as you steer
- All the control buttons are on the wheel
- Has no mic/headphone input
Thrustmaster Ferrari is another 7/10 replica of the original Ferrari Edition. This one costs a few bucks below the Ferrari 458 Spider. This is probably the lowest you can go in mimicking the legendary Ferrari Italia. Comparing the Italia to 458 Spider, the most visible difference is the rather toyish red patches being replaced by a good-looking all black polished plastic and rubber cover.
This model doesn’t put the Ferrari 458 Spider down in all battles though. For instance, we did love the numerous wheel handling positions that Spider offered and which the Ferrari 458 Italia lacks. The good news is that the curved 2 and 10 o’clock positions have been retained in this model. These positions offer a steady and non-sweaty grip that is ideal for long tricky races.
The wheel itself is 11′ in diameter. Quite similar to the original Ferrari Edition, this has a well established 3-spoke design with 8 digital control buttons positioned on the 3 center columns. The best part is that these buttons are all programmable and have been clearly displayed. An ‘Engine Start’ button is also available. It also acts as Xbox 360’s D-pad. An additional button that we didn’t touch on the Ferrari 458 Spider is the Manettino dial. This allows you to make several changes in certain in-race settings, for instance, changing player views. You can also use it to fine-tune the traction or as a driver assist. All these and other features make Ferrari 458 Italia a star replica of the real GT-car.
Another feature that I need to put clear is that Ferrari 458 Italia has a rotational range of between 270-900 degrees. True. This limits your immersion in several games. However, we noted that it still offers excellent freedom in a plethora of realistic driving styles in an array of racing games. Your racing experience is added some boost by the presence of 10cm metallic paddle gear shifters. These exemplary shifters feel sturdy and ready to take several million hit ups and downs as you alternate the gears. They are easy to hit and offer a tactile and instantaneous response. On the other hand, the pedal set features the gas and brake pedals. This has nothing much to talk about except that the angles of the 2 pedals are easy to adjust and have realistic resistance.
Its setup is another walk in the park. The Ferrari 458 Italia is compatible with both the Xbox 360 and PC. The package ships with USB2.0 full speed cable fitted with an In-line Quick Release Connector that makes connection easy and safe. Worth mentioning is that this gaming steer wheel doesn’t offer force feedback. No wonder it only requires USB powering for all its functions. The base also comes with an easy to set up V-shaped DIY clamping system that easily mounts on desks and tables.
- Best steering wheel for Xbox 360
- Well built
- Has no force feedback
Scouring harder for some of the priciest yet most fulfilling models, the market offers the Thrustmaster VG TX. Well, this racing wheel isn’t any new on the market. However, consider it a complete bundle of about all the best-in-class components offered by Thrustmaster. For less than 500 dollars, you get the T3PA Wide Pedal Set, 28GT Leather Rim, and the Thrustmaster Servo Base. All these components are what most of the other upgradable and lowly priced models cry for. As such, it’s quite a steal getting the 3 fully bundled up in a package like this.
Starting with the 11′ rim, Thrustmaster seems to have put all their efforts here with the intention of bringing real life experiences into your digital world. The rim is quite similar to that of Thrustmaster 458 Challenge. You’ll tell that it’s a gem right from the box due to the high-quality materials that has been used on it. The rim features a non-skimped all-metal design and authentic leather covering. It feels real in your palms and successfully delivers force feedback in the right amounts. Worth mentioning, this VG TX rim can be used in most Thrustmaster steering wheels in its T-series catalog. It’s compatible with the T300, T300 RS, T500 RS, GTE, T500, and the famous Ferrari 458 Italia Edition.
Needless to say, the buttons are all housed in the metallic center column in a beautiful layout. There are 6 well defined and conveniently positioned buttons, a 3-position switch on the right and a D-pad next to the TM logo. All these action buttons are easy to access blindly without getting your eyes off the track. Behind the wheel are 2 thick and well brushed metallic paddle shifters that turn with the wheel. What we like about them is their unique finish and the nice click sound they make as you navigate the gears.
The wheelbase kit is compact and is fitted with a fan that cools it down. I think the best part about this base is that it’s a standalone unit that can be fitted with any rim or pedal set that you religiously rely on to make those heroic laps. The good news is that Thrustmaster also sells it as an item on its own. This allows you to bundle it up with all the components that offer you the best experiences while remaining within your budget. It’s a famous unit. This means that you won’t hassle looking for a cockpit or stand to mount it on.
The wheelbase if fitted with a dual-belt system that offers 900 degrees of rotation. This belt system delivers quiet yet powerful force feedback minus all the rattling associated with the helical gear systems. The force feedback is incredibly responsive and calibrates itself smoothly when turned on either direction. The 3-pedal set is pretty nice too. The set is quite heavy and stays put without sliding all over. The pedals’ face plates are metallic and adjustable. One thing that sets these pedals a notch higher than the rest is that they offer different amounts of resistance with the brake’s being the strongest.
- Has a standard3-pedal set
- Built to last
- Pedals can’t be inverted
After offering us some of the best PC gaming headsets in 2018, Logitech has yet another component that you need to add to your gaming arsenal; the Driving Force GT. This is the official Gran Turismo gaming wheel. However, you’ll find it hard to let go off the wheel if you’re a diehard fan of Need for Speed (ProStreet and Shift 2), Gran Turismo (Prologue and GT 5) and Euro Truck Simulator. Logitech Driving Force GT ships in a huge tight signature box with a carrying handle for easy transportation. Well, the entire box has a busy face on all its sides. You’ll be able to assemble the components just by reading the illustrations on the box. The presence of Gran Turismo on the side is evident that Logitech Driving Force GT is specially designed for Gran Turismo 5.
Pulling it out of the box, Driving Force GT has an appealing first impression. This unit feels several folds heavier and stronger than the pictures on the box can illustrate. Taking an overall look at the rim and wheelbase shows that this unit is race-car inspired. The rim, for instance, is 11′ in diameter and constitutes of sleek plastics and hard rubber-covering at the 2-5 and 8-11 o’clock positions. The 2 and 11 handling positions flaunt comfortable rubber overmold grips to help you withstand all the shock that the force feedback may throw at you.
The button layout is clean and way less complicated than that of the Thrustmaster VG TX and the Logitech Driving Force G29. Designed specially for the PlayStation 3 systems, you’ll find all the PS3 gamepad buttons on Driving Force GT’s spokes. Besides the L3/R3, L2/R2, D-pad, and Select buttons, you also get a 24-turn red real-time adjustment dial just below the logo emblem. This is irreplaceably handy in GT 5 Prologue and is used to fine-tune suspension and setting the brakes midrace. A good thing with all these buttons is that they are reprogrammable and are compatible with PC too.
Quite different from other gaming steering wheels, Logitech Driving Force GT does not employ the usual metallic or plastic gear changing paddles. It has 2 tiny buttons L1 and R1 and a right-hand side gear stick. We found the L1/R1 buttons stiff and quite hard to cope with especially after being used to the large shifters. Once again, you can also assign the buttons a different task, for instance, shifting gears in racing games and use the gear stick as a handbrake.
The wheel offers 900 degrees of rotation and has auto-calibration just like in a real car. It also has convincing vibrations and a force feedback technology that is quite responsive and instantaneous. What we didn’t like though is that these features, though good, are not adjustable. The pedal base is sturdy and feels to be well built. However, the pedals are a little on the soft side. You may tackle this by placing a halved tennis ball or sponge at the back. At the back, the pedal has 4 non-slip rubber feet and a retractable carpet traction bar all that work collaboratively to keep the pedal base put.
- Has decent steering accuracy
- Convincing force feedback and vibrations
- Lacks gear shift paddles
With a good 4.3/5 star rating from its over 1,500 verified Amazon reviewers (when writing this), you wouldn’t be wrong to call Logitech G27 ‘ the Mother of All Racing Wheels.’ You’re more likely to praise the Logitech G27 racing wheel more if you ever used the G25. It’s quite evident that Logitech had utilized several shortcuts and skimped several vital features while designing the G25. The results were a frustrated community of racers and anticipation for a refined badass worth the crazy price tag. That’s where the Logitech G27 had to set in.
The 11′ wheel is a replica of the G25. It feels more realistic in the palms thanks to its genuine leather covering. The wheels skeleton is metallic including the rim and the 3 spokes. If there’s one thing that contributed to the downfall of the Logitech G25, that must have been its underfed wheel. What really turned off its users was that only 2 out of 10 action buttons were positioned on the wheel. Despite having irresistible programmability, racers had to take their hands off the wheel to engage the other buttons.
Today, the evolved version of the Logitech G25 flaunts 4 more buttons placed on the wide center spokes. The new beastie now has 3 control buttons on the left and 3 on the right. The only gripe with the buttons on the wheel is that they aren’t labeled. To avoid frustrations, you may consider finding a way of marking them. The wheel also holds 2 metallic paddles at the back. It’s a good thing that the paddles are attached to the wheel and turn with it. The Rev counter initially that we came across on the Logitech G29 again makes a comeback in the G27 in the form of a 5-pair array of LEDs atop the wheel hub.
Just like in the G29, these LEDs light progressively from green to red in line with the RPM. Worth mentioning, the shift indicator LEDs also integrate with the gaming software and will thereby indicate when the user should shift the gears. Unfortunately, you may find the LEDs quite annoying especially when gaming in a dark room.
Logitech engineers seem to have taken a lot of considerations from G5’s customers’ complaints. This is quite evident in the great craftsmanship that we find in the evolved version’s 3-pedal (throttle, brake, clutch) layout. In the previous model, it was a common mistake to press the gas and the brake pedals at the same time. This has been effectively tackled in the latest model so you can now effectively step on any pedal without minding the rest. The G27 also allows heel and tow shifting. The pedal plates are crafted from steel but are housed in plastic cylinders.
Another fantastic feature that makes the G27 one of the best gaming steering wheels that we ever reviewed is its effective force feedback. The Logitech G27 rules here. It offers enough of these responses so you can tell how the wheels are handling the weight and when they are about to lose their traction. This helps you to act fast and also makes racing more real.
- Great force feedback
- Metallic wheel and pedal plates
So, is it time to ditch your keyboard and mouse for a gaming steer wheel set? There you have an inexhaustible list of some of the best steer wheels we came across on the market. You may also peruse this write-up for some more options. Regardless of how much your budget allows you to spend, we covered options from both sides to ensure that all gaming enthusiasts are covered. Of most importance, remember to be vigilant on the model’s compatibility with the platform that you’ll be using.
Did we leave out a racing wheel that you feel we should have included here? Feel free to add your review in the comments section. Again, do you know of friends who really need to upgrade their gaming arsenal? They’ll be glad if you shared this piece with them!!