Are you looking for the best joystick for a flight simulator to play on your Mac or PC? Let’s see the best options on the market.
For air lovers, we have created this guide and comparison to help you find the best flight simulator joystick on the market for Mac users. Everyone will be able to choose the one that best suits their flying style and budget.
Simulation joysticks are, of course, less modern than gamepads, but as always in the PC world, the competition is huge. Among the most prominent manufacturers, we must always think and take into account the inevitable Logitech, Saitek and Thrustmaster offering multiple products at all price levels.
What is the best joystick for PC and Mac flight simulators?
The modern market for joysticks and flight controls for virtual flight (flight simulators) is quite extensive. Prices vary depending on the manufacturer and the materials used. How not to get lost in this world of devices and find a joystick that fits your hand perfectly? We help you to find the best to buy. Let’s see the top options on the market.
Logitech G Saitek Pro Flight X56 Rhino
Logitech has designed the HOTAS X56 to enhance the experience of virtual reality and flight simulation games, a genre that is becoming increasingly popular. It’s the perfect example of total control, with analog controllers, RGB lighting, 16-bit roll, 189 programmable buttons, and more.
The changes go beyond appearances, with technical updates to respond to feedback from the gamer community and provide an even more amazing experience for flight enthusiasts at all levels, from casual gaming to professionally tuned simulation.
In modern space simulations, control becomes more complex than in traditional atmosphere-based flight simulations, with many more inputs required to gain real control of the spacecraft. Pitch, roll, yaw, backward, forwards, up, down, left and right, everything must be taken into account.
That’s why you need the new mini analog sticks, which provide four additional axes of control. Attributable to any game axis function, or programmable with the included software, exhaustion of control options is no longer a problem.
The X-56 Rhino’s control surfaces are incredibly precise, thanks to a 16-bit aileron and lift shaft, each with Hall-effect sensors. Developed from the ground up, Saitek’s 16-bit solution enables extremely precise flight.
A revolutionary adjustable handle spring system allows players to change the force required to move the lever. Four variable resistance springs are included to provide a total of five different options.
The X-56 Rhino has two throttles, ideal for situations where one of the engines is off, requiring you to drive only the second engine.
Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog
The Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog is a replica of the US Air Force A-10C attack aircraft flight pack, and this joystick is licensed by the US Air Force.
Constructed entirely of metal, this flight simulator looks and feels like the true A-10C steering wheel. The joystick includes two four-way hat switches, each with built-in push buttons. When it came out, it was the first joystick to incorporate these features.
Each of these four-way buttons and switches provides realistic pressure to simulate the true A-10C flight cushion. The Warthog HOTAS is a standalone joystick that does not require any other device to function.
Then we have HEARTT or Hall Effect AccuRate technology. These are 3D magnetic sensors (Hall effect), which allow surgical precision and will not decrease over time. The resolution is 16 bits (65536 x 65536 values) and has a system with five helical springs that allow a linear, smooth, and firm tension, without dead zones.
The flight handle itself is made of metal and weighs over 3kg. It has a removable metal base plate and can be desktop or home mounted. There is real pressure on buttons and triggers that mimic the real flight segment of the A10. There are nineteen action buttons, with an eight-way hat.
Logitech G Saitek X52
The Saitek X-52 is one of those very rare legendary joysticks (or flight systems, if you prefer that term). Thousands of flight sim enthusiasts have one, and it is a reference in itself.
The X-52 is a two-part system consisting of a separate lever and throttle. The controller connects to the throttle and the throttle unit is connected to the PC with a USB connection.
So despite having 2 pieces it only requires a USB port and no external power supply. In addition to the material itself, you will find a CD with drivers and software, as well as a short manual in the box.
On the remote, you will find a trigger with 2 levels, and 4 buttons, one of which is equipped with a safety cover. All but one of these buttons are LED-backlit.
Also, on the joystick itself, you have 2 8-way hat switches, a 3-way mode switch, and a pinky switch, which is like a trigger, but at the bottom of the handle instead of at the top, and acts as the “shift” key on your keyboard.
At the base of the handle, there are 3 spring-loaded 2-way toggle switches to return to their neutral position. The stick grip also incorporates an axis of rotation, or torsion axis, used to control the rudder in flight.
The throttle unit houses even more controls. Obviously, there is the throttle shaft itself, which has several notches for stopping, idling, and afterburner. On the throttle grip, it has 2 rotary controls, a linear slider, a mini mouse and a mouse button, a scroll wheel (with click function), another 8-way hat switch, 2 push buttons, and a button. clutch, which temporarily locks all other command inputs if you press it.
Thrustmaster T.16000M FCS HOTAS
The Thrustmaster T.16000M FCS Hotas uses TARGET for keyboard shortcuts and has a large library for different games. The TARGET software can also assign its own keyboard shortcuts and finally, even game developers can add their own. Besides this really well-designed software, the build quality is really amazing.
This joystick has many features and it can seem difficult to use. In fact, it has so many control buttons and functions that it looks as intimidating as a real airplane joystick. However, having a lot of controls or buttons can be a good thing, as long as they are in the right places and are comfortable for the user.
When you look at the device, you can tell it has incredible build quality, it’s something you can expect from the manufacturer. The exterior parts are molded plastic and while they cannot be seen, the moving parts are actually metal, making the device quite heavy.
While being a bit heavy isn’t always good when it comes to gaming devices, for a joystick that doesn’t need to be lifted, it’s really beneficial. The buttons also have a firm tactile feel that gives you enough comfort and response to give you the impression that you are actually flying an airplane.
Mac Flight Simulator JoyStick: Logitech Extreme 3D Pro
With advanced controls and a rudder with a twist grip, this joystick remains stable and precise during aerobatic competition or long-range flight.
When the games cost 50 dollars or more, you want to make the most of them. Investing in a joystick is definitely one way to go and it’s a must for simulation games, but with so many options, how do you know you get the right joystick to enjoy your favorite game? The Logitech Extreme 3D PRO is up to the task.
For those who play space combat simulators or flight simulators, a joystick really helps to amplify the experience. According to some forums, players of the space simulation game Elite: Dangerous had decent performance and features with the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro Joystick. Therefore, it is a good choice to start your flight sim joystick experience.
The Logitech Extreme 3D Pro is a simple but robust USB joystick that requires no additional connection. It has everything you need: 4 control axes (front/rear and left / right lever, a turning lever for the helm, and a throttle lever), 11 buttons (1 trigger, 5 additional buttons on the handle, and 6 on the base) and an 8-position selector at the top of the neck.
This controller is comfortable, reliable, and easy to use. It is available at a more affordable price than many other controllers and is in the hand of many PC gamers. In fact, it is a great option for those who want to take their gaming experience to a whole new level. Want to know more and read user reviews? Just follow the link below.
Logitech G PRO Flight Yoke System
It is a flight simulator controller that takes the simulation experience to the next level thanks to the handwheel and handcuffs that make the simulated flight experience unforgettable and similar to professional flight simulators. With this controller, our plane will be even more precise and realistic. We can control the rudder by choosing from 25 programmable buttons or, alternatively, we can implement the pedal. And with the three levers of the acceleration dial, we will be able to program the throttle, the flaps, and the mixture of our aircraft to create our flight simulator position and have the feeling of being in a real cockpit! On the left side of the flyer, we have a HAT button to change the viewpoints. These features make it the best PC stick for Flight Simulator. Want to know more and read user reviews? Just follow the link below.
That’s all now, folks. These are some of the best joysticks for the Mac flight simulators. So go ahead and check out these controllers and see which one you like the best. Also, for any questions, feel free to comment below.
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