Is there a way to use Knobster without Air Manager?

Hi, I’ve been looking for a way to use my Knobsters within VR with the Piper airplanes from JustFlight. I was hoping I could use the Knobsters I own with Axis and Ohs, or Mobiflight, but none of those programs seem to recognize the Knobster as an input device. Does anyone know of a way to use this piece of hardware outside of Air Manager?

There isn’t. If you buy a Knobster or build one yourself and flash it with the DIY Knobster firmware, it only works in Air Manager. With a ‘real’ Knobster, your boned. If you have a DIY, you can always re-flash the Arduino with another firmware in Mobiflight.

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Thanks @Crunchmeister71 for the reply, that’s unfortunate. I found a way to make it work with 1 knobster, using the voiceattack mod (KnobsterVoice Tutorial - Demo (Play P3D / FS2020 / DCS World with Knobster) - YouTube). I was so far able to set all knobs in the Piper Warrior using voice commands like Comm one, Comm two or Nav one. The good news is that the output is also registered by Axis and Ohs, so that’s promising for more complex settings.

It would be fantastic if there is a way to use this with multiple knobsters.

You can easily build your own with a dual encoder, and Arduino nano, and a small project box. Would cost under $30US to build altogether. And you can flash it with Mobiflight and program it to whatever you want.

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True, I have no idea how to do so however and own no equipment to solder stuff. Tried to find out what parts to order exactly to diy it, but couldn’t find a guide for non-techies. That’s why I ended up buying the knobsters. Which is ideal for pancake screen flying, but problematic for VR.

Yeah, I built my first Knobster, and then got the Sim Innovations one. Honestly, I like my home made one better. Plus it can be reprogrammed if I want to. It was pretty easy, really. I got a dual encoder from Propwash Simulations, a 3 pack of Arduino Nano on Amazon for $12, and I had some small plastic project boxes left over from another unrelated project I did a few years back. It was super easy to solder and connect.

I made some by myself. For the best quality I spent not 10€.
For 15€ I got high quality encoders and Nanos by my prefered dealer, for longer life.
Yes you have to buy the Airmanager for 80€. ( Double rotary were too expensive)
Then I built an easy minipanel for using the encoders.


Very nice. Although those technically aren’t Knobsters. They’re Arduino controlled encoders. You can flash Arduinos as either Knobsters or with just a normal ecoder firmware.

The OP was asking if he could use a regular, Sim Innovations Knobster without air manager. And that answer is still no.

Great news on this front, the developer of Axis and Ohs has created a Bridge to connect Knobster directly to AAO - and thus from now on you can set it to manage events within MSFS. For me personally, the 4 knobsters I had laying around are now my VR radio/nav knobs. It works perfectly for VR.

Cannot thank the dev enough for creating this. Sim Innovations updated their Knobster library on github to make the bridge stable if you connect multiple Knobsters, so they’ve been very helpful as well.

The bridge is free to download on the bottom of the AAO download page: Downloads - AXIS AND OHS

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I am awaiting my Arduino Nano’s and dual encoders to arrive and came across this post. Have you yourself flashed an Arduino Nano using MobiFlight because when I went to there site it is listed as unsupported?

Mine is flashed as a Knobster. That’s done from within Air Manager. If you flash it from Mobiflight, it’s not a Knobster, but a dual encoder. That makes it more useful for other programs, but it can’t be used as a proper Knobster that way.

How you flash it and what tool you use to flash it depends on how you intend to use your knob. You can’t specified how you plan to use it.

If you use a Pro Micro you can build them as standard HID Joystick devices and then they can show up as Buttons in any software or even the sim directly…

Thanks for your reply. I’m only just getting back into Flight Sim after many years absence and having access to several iPads am interested in utalizing them. I’m in Australia and cannot find anyone that stocks/shipsgenuine Knobsters so I have had to go the DIY route. I thought I was going to have to use Air Manager (not purchased yet) but when I came accross your comment about Mobisoft I thought I might have a free way of utilising my Arduino Nano dual encoders so I looked at Mobisoft a bit closer. I saw that Mobisoft does not officially support the Nano which you claimed could be flashed and wondered if you personally had succeeded in flashing one as it is not that uncommon that things that are not officially supported are in fact possible.

I never claimed you can flash a nano with Mobiflight. My nanos are flashed as Knobsters with Air Manager. That’s how I use them.

You still haven’t specified how you plan to use your encoder. If you want to use them with Air Manager, then you have to flash it with Air Manager as a knobster. If you want to use it for another purpose with other software, I don’t know what you have to do. I’ve never done that.

If you have a bunch of iPads to use as screens, then I’d go that route. You can use free apps like SpaceDesk to turn your iPads into wireless touch displays for your computer and load Air Manager panels on them. Before I got my 2 touch screens, I used to use an iPad and an Android tablet in that manner. I still use the iPad as a side screen for a couple of my planes with their Air Manager setups.

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" OziGrunt"
Hallo aus München , Ich hätte da jemanden, der eventuell nach AU versendet.
Der DIY Knobster (nur Hardware) ist aus hochwertigen Komponenten in Deutschland zusammengebaut! ca…80€

Falls Du es selber löten willst: 2Encoderanschlüsse sind etwas eigensinnig Vertausch. Also genau so wie in der Airmanager Anleitung machen. Sonst dreht der eine Knopf falsch herum.
Meine Quelle würde auch Double Rotary Encoder incl. dieser Knöpfe für 27€ ohne Porto verkaufen.

Hello from Munich, I have someone who might send to AU.
The DIY Knobster (hardware only) is assembled in Germany from high-quality components! approx. 80 €
If you want to solder it yourself: 2 encoder connections are a bit obstinate. So do exactly as in the Airmanager instructions. Otherwise one of the buttons will turn the wrong way round.
My source would also sell double rotary encoders including these buttons for € 27 without postage.

Bonjour de Munich, j’ai quelqu’un qui pourrait envoyer à AU.
Le DIY Knobster (matériel uniquement) est assemblé en Allemagne à partir de composants de haute qualité ! environ 80 €
Si vous voulez le souder vous-même : 2 connexions d’encodeur sont un peu têtues. Faites donc exactement comme dans les instructions d’Airmanager. Sinon, l’un des boutons tournera à l’envers.
Ma source vendrait aussi des encodeurs doubles rotatifs incluant ces boutons pour 27€ hors frais de port.

Here is the answer to your Topic !!! Lorby Only with the Original Knobster

Thanks @FoxBauOld - it works like a charm indeed, I asked Lorby a while back if he could help out with this - and a dozen e-mails and a week later I had tested 5 iterations and had a working bridge program. Per Lorby’s request I reached out to Sim Innovations if they were willing to help out with their knobster connect api on github, and they adjusted some of the code so Lorby could access more of it.

Really great on both of their ends to help us out here with this. 11 out of 10 support!

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Or have a look on axair easy:

I have already purchased and am awaiting all the components to arrive so that
I can make my own DIY Knobster, thanks for you offer.

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