Old 14th December 2003, 09:43   #1
Viper007Bond
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What Joystick Should I Get?

Okay, so I've been kinda wanting a joystick and I dunno what kind to get. Any ideas?

What I want:
  • No force feedback
  • To spend less than ABOUT $40
  • Have good and compatible drivers
  • Be reliable
I've been looking at these 'cause they are at the Fred Meyer that I work at, but I can get whatever.

Saitek Cyborg Gold:



Microsoft Sidewinder Precision 2

Uh, no pic.

Anyway, I really like that Saitek and my friend had one, but does anyone know about the reliabilty of them or anything?

If you have a joystick, what kind is it and do you like it?

Thanks guys.

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:04   #2
james
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Why don't you want Force Feedback? It's awesome!

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:12   #3
Viper007Bond
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More expensive (like $20 more, right?) and I don't really need it.

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:20   #4
james
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spose so...

I have a (non-FF) Logitech Wingman Extreme 3-D, it's pretty cool but a couple of years old now. Seems joystick design has improved a lot recently - there was a good review on Tom's Hardware recently. *looks*

aha! 2 joysticks, 2 gamepads, 2 steering wheels

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:29   #5
Viper007Bond
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I'm gettin' a Saitek. Now for which one...

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:44   #6
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I'd buy the one you put the pic up of because it looks cooooooooooooool

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:56   #7
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Yeah, it does, but so does the one in that review which is a newer version of the Cyborg. It's more expensive though...

Anyway, you can take apart the Cyborg and put it back together to reconfigure it how you like (like the distances the things are apart and such).

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Old 14th December 2003, 10:58   #8
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You sound like you've convinced yourself then really - get the one from where you work (discount?!)

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Old 14th December 2003, 11:00   #9
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Yeah, 10% and double discount day is on the 19th.

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Old 14th December 2003, 11:17   #10
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w00t ^__^

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Old 14th December 2003, 13:24   #11
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I've tried about every joystick available...up until last year, anyway. As much as I hate to tout a M$ product, I always kept coming back to the Microsoft Precision-series joysticks as having the most durable construction. For my own needs, durability was of very high importance, just below compatibility and above features-per-dollar. The way I play, I tend to "slam" the stick around pretty hard, so the thing had to stand up to some abuse (this was more the case for force-feedback sticks, though).

I've had several brands over the past ten years, and Microsoft sticks always held up the best and lasted the longest for me. I've got three sticks currently, a Logitech force-feedback joystick that getting somewhat "loose" after about a year of gaming with it, a M$ Precision Pro Force-Feedback II, and some no-name POS I've had since I got out of college (unusable now). My previous M$ one was a first-generation force-feedback stick, and it never showed any signs of wear (aside from some marks where the stick enters the base) over 2+ years of use. My current M$ stick is still fully functional, too.

I've used the Saitek Cyborg several times, but never bought one myself. Comfort takes some getting used to. It feels more "delicate" than the M$ sticks, hence I've shyed away from them (based on my rambunctious methods), but I've never heard anything bad about them specifically. I've never broken one, either.

For top durability, based on experience I'd still recommend the Microsoft Precision 2. For physical configuration adjustment, the Saitek would be the best. For software config features, M$ would win again. The Sidewinder Config Panel offers about anything you could think to do with a joystick, and has fully customizable profiles, plus many pre-written profiles for popular games (I always changed them anyway, though ).

For reference, the games I spent the most time with (and with a wide variety of sticks) were Descent (up to v3), Descent Freespace, Descent Freespace II, Mechwarrior (all versions and expansions up to v4), Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator, CFS2 (+ mods), CFS3, Microsoft Flight Simulator 98 and 2000, Star Wars X-Wing, Tie Fighter, X-Wing vs. Tie Fighter, WingCommander, and a few other lesser known games.

My $0.02...

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Old 14th December 2003, 13:58   #12
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Don't you have one? *** :P (beat everyone too it! jaha, not litterally )
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Old 14th December 2003, 14:01   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Timzone8
Don't you have one? *** :P (beat everyone too it! jaha, not litterally )
You're thinking of the "Stick of Joy"...different than a "Joystick".

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Old 14th December 2003, 14:03   #14
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ScorLibran - 3 sticks? 0.0 Wow...

Anyway, this is just for Desert Combat, a mod for Battlefield 1942. It's a pain not being able to have a variable throttle.

I don't think I'd be too hard on my stick and BF isn't really that intense and I think the Saitek is purdy, although I'd imagine the M$ is compatible with everything under the sun, but it just seems... old.

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Old 14th December 2003, 14:16   #15
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what kind of games work well with joysticks? flight sims? could you even really play a first person shooter with one?

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Old 14th December 2003, 14:21   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by Viper007Bond
ScorLibran - 3 sticks? 0.0 Wow...

Anyway, this is just for Desert Combat, a mod for Battlefield 1942. It's a pain not being able to have a variable throttle.

I don't think I'd be too hard on my stick and BF isn't really that intense and I think the Saitek is purdy, although I'd imagine the M$ is compatible with everything under the sun, but it just seems... old.
You're right, the M$ sticks are "old" in design, with only minor improvements in the past 4-5 years. But it's more because the Precision sticks are proven and established. Nothing's perfect, but they quite simply haven't been improved because they've had no glaring need to be. For instance, Precision Pro FF --> FF2 was a very uneventful update.

If I were in you, and if durability wasn't quite as high of a concern, I'd probably get the Saitek if it meets the other requirements. Once durability is not a driving factor in the decision, I'd put the physical configuration benefits of the Saitek near the top of my list. Check out three things before you buy, though:

-1- Warranty. If the thing does break by defect, you want a recourse for getting it replaced.

-2- Compatibility. See if you can possibly try it out with your game-of-choice. If not, at least confirm that someone says they've played it successfully with that game (you can find that somewhere in the internet, if someone's done it). The joystick interfaces via DirectX (DirectInput), but I've had certain compatibility problems still arise. For instance, force-feedback would drop out CONSTANTLY with the first-gen Microsoft FF stick and Descent: Freespace (version 1). Fixed with a driver update, but I'd like to have known about that problem ahead of time, because I was the definitive Freespace junkie, having completed the game some 50 times in a period of a few months. (Freespace was one of the first non-proprietary games with force-feedback support.)

-3- Software configuration options. Fully programmable buttons are very preferable, but you may not have as much of a need for this as I do. I'm really picky about it, myself, but not everyone is. Microsoft has this, but I only saw Saitek's config briefly, and can't remember what all was there. Just make sure you can make it "do all the things you want, the way you want". Adjustable sensitivity, center null-zone, and a few other items are important too for "trimming" the stick in the software console as needed.

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Old 14th December 2003, 14:28   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by k_rock923
what kind of games work well with joysticks? flight sims? could you even really play a first person shooter with one?
Flight sims, space sims, and "Battlemech"-type games benefit the most with a joystick.

First-person shooters suck with a JS, in my experience. I've known people that got pretty good at using a stick with a FPS, but most of them came back to the keyboard and mouse after the "novelty" of using the joystick wore off. I tried it with Quake II, got my arse kicked all over the place. You simply can't move the cursor as fast and as accurately with the joystick. It "drifts" all over the place. I'd be trying to aim while people were emptying magazines into my chest. Sucked. (But that was just my experience.) BTW...I kicked ass on Quake with the keyboard. (Long time ago, though.)

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Old 15th December 2003, 12:18   #18
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Thanks.

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