As you may have read in the first post "Let's go!", my Sim Racing journey started with a pretty rudimentary setup back in pre 2010 with a Logitech G25 clamped to a desk and it basically stayed like this for a long time. Sometimes the desk was more wobbley than others, it sort of did the job but all in all it looked pretty grim.
When the time came to get back into Sim Racing, I briefly contemplated to keep on using the G25 because it stills working and would do the job just fine (not thinking of compatibility problems at this stage).
However, with every minute of diving deeper into the Sim Racing world and seeing the potential all the new developments offered, I had to go a different route.
The Wheel and Pedals
In the beginning, I did a lot of reading, watching Youtube videos and just browsing around different Sim Racing pages to see where to begin.
Of course I came across the obvious names such as Fanatec (I even ordered a full setup, but more on this a bit later) Simcube and many others. As I didn't have much idea about what was currently going on in the Sim Racing space, I first was a bit (a "bit" is probably an understatement) shocked about the prices.
| I thought Sim Racing was supposed to be a cheaper alternative to Track Days!
In the end I was basically set on ordering (and did so) a complete Fanatec-Kit including:
- A Podium DD2 Wheelbase
- A Clubsport Wheel
- The Clubsport V3 Pedals
What felt like a couple of minutes after completing the order, I came across an article that mentioned that Logitech just released an all new Direct Drive Wheel - the Logitech G Pro Racing Wheel. This triggered me in two ways (and this is by now means a sponsored post - I wish though):
- I'm a huge Logitech fanboy. Basically all our office equipment - be it for GP Days or our other ventures - is made up of Logitech and it (so far) never failed us
- My trusted Logitech G25 Wheel and Pedals seemed to be literally indistructable and are still going strong to this day
At this stage it was clear to me that I had to try it.
So I proceeded a second Wheel + Predals of Logitech. Smart, right?
Due to some delays of Fanatec's delivery, the Logitech Wheel and Pedals arrived a bit earlier. After unpacking it and seeing as well as feeling the different to my old G25 wheel, I was already sold on the Logitech G Pro Direct Drive Wheel.
The Logitech G Pro Wheel
The first thing I straight-away noticed when comparing the Logitech G-Pro Wheel to Fanatec Wheels and other alternatives such as Simcube or Moza, was the slightly more "gamey" vibe to it.
While the other manufacturers usually go for the more realistic look, the Logitech Wheel looks a bit more like a game controller - well in the end, that's exactly what it is but personally I wouldn't have minded a more realistic approach to it.
Other than that there is not much to argue about it. I don't have much comparison but the built-quality feels spot on, especially when it comes to the buttons and knobs on the wheel itself, they feel super sturdy. So far I haven't found anything missing or needed during the couple of Sim Races I already have done.
While the wheel-base is quite big and made of plastic, I never felt it to be cheap or in anyway worse than what the other manufactuerers are putting out on the market.
What really makes the wheel different to other wheels (at least in my opinion) is Logitech's TrueForce technology. With it, the wheel transfers even more detail by what feels like a sound generator (I have to definitely find out more about how it works) into your hands but more importantly, the Sim Rig itself.
So if you hit a kerb in the Sim, especially the rumbly type, the hole rig starts to vibrate making the whole experience way more immersive than usual. I don't think it necessarly makes you faster but adds a lot to the overall experience of Sim Racing.
The G-Pro Pedals
Without having much to compare them to (except the Fanatec Clubsport V3 pedals), the G Pro Pedals felt and still feel a bit underwhelming. While I can't really say that they are lacking anything functionality-wise, they definitely feel a bit plasticy which makes the whole experience rather unexciting.
At this stage I have not much more to say about them. I still have to find the time to fiddle around with the different springs and spaces to increase or decrease the braking force as well as accelerator pedal feel.
Maybe I expected a bit too much from these new kind of load cell pedals, but they are probably the biggest difference to real world driving. Especially the brake pedal feel doesn't really compare to what it feels like in a real car.
Being a bit fatigued already by all the research that went into the wheel and pedals set, I played (no pun intended) "safe" when it came to the Sim Rig and going with the only brand I knew - Playseat.
The Playset Challenge with it's GT seat and positioning was anyways what I sort imagined myself using. With a discount being offered on their hompeage during this time I just went for it without putting much thought into it.
Since I can remember, I have always bought my non-office PCs in parts and build them myself. Yes, of course it takes a bit more time to research all the parts and get it all put together, the nerdy side of me definitely enjoys it though. For me, it looked like a nice way to spend a Sunday!
I definitely wanted to do it right in the beginning and didn't want to have to worry about having to upgrade in the next 2 - 3 years so after doing a brief research I went with the following configuration:
- Processor: Intel Core i7 13700KF
- Processor Fan: beQuiet Dark Rock 4 Pro (Yes, it's massive...)
- Graphics Card: Gainward RTX 4080 Phoenix 16GB
- Mainboard: MSI Pro Z790-A
- RAM: 32GB Corsair RGB DDR5-5600 (2)
- Storage: 1TB Samsung M.2 SSD (As the PC is only used for a couple of Sims that should be enough)
- Power Supply: beQuiet 1200W (There were some delivery problems with a lower rated Power Supply so I had to go for this arguably overkill one)
- Case: Corsair ICUE 5000x RGB
At the moment I'm just running a Single Screen (34" LG Wide Screen) setup so I definitely could run all the Racing Sims I'm currently using with a weaker setup.
But as it goes, you never know where this adventure will take us and I wanted to be ready for potentially upgrading to VR or a triple screen setup. Another benefit is the fact that I just need one PC to race and record at the same time as it has plenty of power.