Spadnext vs AxisAndOhs

Long story short:
Iam a IT-noob that dont know anything about programming software and have the VKB gladiator for a while and just purchased the Virpil CM3 throttle (took me 3 days to understand the software but with some help from youtube and the forum I finally get the basics)
I want to set everything up for mainly the PMDG 737/8 and the Fenix A320
Ingame setup doesnt work for some keybindings so I probably need supporting software.
2 options that keep popping up: Spadnext and AxisAndOhs
So which one to get and why?
keep in mind:

  • userinterface
  • userfriendly
  • support
  • cost (spadnext you have to pay extra for example, updating software every year with a max of 32 - 50 euro depending on what edition you get)

My preference is Spadnext when i check out the tutorials on youtube, but i would rather have your opinion on this matter.

Thanks in advance

Im a longtime Spad.Next user. It has the better userinterface.
For most, if not all, hardware, there are profiles or „snippets“. You can download them trough the app for free and easily adjust it to your needs.

Also, the official discord is very helpful and has all the info u need, once u get stuck with something.


FSUIPC7 is also another option. Nominal cost once. A proven platform for simulators for many years. I have Lorbys A&O’s for StramDeck apps only, prefer FSUIPC7 for any hardware setups.

1 Like

Spad fan here, although I’ve never tried AAO extensively so I can’t do a direct comparison. Both seem to have avid fans and once you’ve committed to either of these and have used it to program your hardware, you obviously tend to stick with it. Whichever you pick, you can’t go wrong. Once you start using them, you’ll find there’s absolutely no need to map anything in the in-game controller settings, perhaps only camera views but nothing else. After a couple of years of using Spad, I get the goosebumps whenever someone mentions that he can’t figure out how to bind something using (gasp, yikes) in-game controller options. I’ve even forgotten what these look like.

Spad is the more expensive choice, because with MSFS you absolutely need to use the beta channel to get all the latest updates therefore you need to have an active license to get those updates (which come very frequently, almost on a weekly basis). Which means depending on your hardware (e.g. if you want Elgato Stream Deck support) you may end up buying the complete license (90 EUR). Then a year later you need to start paying 15 EUR more to update your subscription on a yearly basis. There are plans for 2-3 years or lifetime.

Is it worth it? Absolutely. Once you start using it, you can never go back and the money investment seems a trivial thing.

Does it have the best UI out there? Absolutely.

My main gripe is its severe lack of documentation. It seems that once they decided to suspend the forums and migrate to Discord, the limited documentation and examples that used to live in the forums simply froze in time. Nowadays the only way to get some decent examples is to either ask in their Discord and hope someone answers (the creator usually does) or watch the various tutorial videos in Youtube. These will mostly give UI-related examples, most of which you could have figured out by yourself with some trial and error.

However once you start digging for more complicated stuff, like how to build non-trivial regular expressions, how to use certain and seemingly undocumented features of spad etc, you will find out there’s virtually zero documentation or examples. I think this is where AAO shines. Even in the UI, I’ve found options that I’ve no idea what they’re doing or how they’re actually supposed to be used and no one seems to have ever asked about these in the official Discord channel.

Other than that, Spad is amazing and well worth its money. Judging by the info you gave on your background, Spad might just be ideal for you if money is not an issue.

ps: I don’t generally use ready snippets, as I like to program everything on my own and so far I’ve managed just fine. Perhaps I might just look at a few to see different approaches to achieve the same result.


I’m afraid I’m soured on Spad.Next, the documentation is awful, and when I joined the Discord to ask some basic questions, I was treated very poorly. Trying Axis & Ohs, so far at least the documentation makes a lot more sense.



Looks like I’m the only AAO guy? I found it easy to use and was able to setup my flight deck quickly.

I actually own both and have recently stopped using SN and now only use A&O. They are both pretty good — SN does have the better interface.

But, in my case, the phenomenal Streamdeck support (and all the panels on pushed me over to A&O. Really great stuff.

1 Like

I use SN a long time and its so easy to use and progrsm all airplane
AO is much more complicate

Longtime Spad user here, was curious about A&O too. Spad is a lot more powerful it can do practically anything you can think of and then a bit more you wouldn’t have imagined. The user interface is great too.

The only downside I see about Spad is that I see a lot more profiles and content posted for A&Os than for Spad. Yes there are many profiles in Spad but only for a few of the more popular planes and for some devices.


I have both and I also think Spad user interface is easier and does not require additional modules to be loaded and configured. Both allow you to customize old HW devices, like VRInsight panels (including its displays).

On the other hand AxisAndOhs has a feature that allows you replicate virtual gauges and custom panels in a web browser that can run local or remote. In particular you can clone the FMC/CDU of some of the popular payware airplanes on a tablet connected to WiFi and use it from the tablet. There are other applications for that but in most cases you need a separate package for each aircraft. AxisAndOhs includes all in one package which is loaded as a free addon of main program.

I´m still a fan of Lorby´s tools. He did very nice ones for FSX/P3D. I hope he brings them back for MSFS too, specially AITracker that allowed you to inyect AIs with flight plans and formations in real time. I used that a lot and I really miss it now.


There are weirdos like me trying to fill the gap. :slight_smile: I need to get back to publishing and setting things up for use!

I must say your work is really appreciated. Thanks!
Every profile published really helps a lot many other users.

You are not alone – I use AAO, and since it works fine for me (probably matches the way I think), and it has a good StreamDeck Addon, I have stuck with it and am now fully invested.

I don’t know SN features, I use AAO for:

  • handling MIDI devices (both input - buttons, knobs and output - lights embedded in the buttons) - Behringer X-Touch Mini, Novation Launchpad Mini)
  • my DIY panels based on Leo Bodnar’s boards
  • yoke, throttle, rudder pedals
  • voice control (pretending being a pilot flying, issuing commands to pilot not flying)
  • Knobster
  • writing simple RPN scripts.

Manual for AAO is very comprehensive, support is great - Lorby implement some features (like recognizing MIDI devices by their MIDI not USB ID) just to satisfy my individual needs.


AAO can also “scan” MSFS, and then give you access to all the H & B Variables, as well as being to find & monitor A vars (of course)

Do not know if Spad can “find” all then access H & B vars ??

After watch some Spad youtube videos, it does seem that Spad’s new Stream Deck module is quite a bit more powerful than the AAOs one. ? That also might make be consider to “jump ship” from AAO, and start using Spad ! - or maybe just use the best of both .


I’m late on the reply. But huge vote for It’s probably my most critical addon because it pulls all my hardware together. Interface is good. I’ve learned to use it quite well. Though compared to the power users of spad, I’m just an amateur.


In my opinion there are no real “power users” in spad :smiley: If not half, then at least 1/3 of the technical questions I’ve asked in their Discord are answered either vaguely or sometimes inaccurately or whatever, even by the most experienced of the users there.

Partly due to lack of official documentation, the app getting continuously improved and each 3rd party dev implementing their aircraft differently from others, every spad user seems to have their own approach on how a thing can be accomplished. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing as spad can be used as an “open” platform to configure your plethora of devices rather than something that must be used strictly. It’s more of a way to see how others are doing it and get inspired by them, rather than just copy/paste whatever it is they’re doing.

But yes, overall it’s the most critical app for me as well. At this point I would refuse to use MSFS if I couldn’t also use spad (or AAOs if push came to shove). I’d rather throw away all hardware and revert to Ace Combat 7 with an Xbox gamepad.

1 Like

I have used Spad for MANY years and it is a good program. Unfortunately their “Customer Service” has always been, shall we say, “somewhat lacking”.

Is AAO “Customer Service” - support, any better ???
Nobody seems to be willing to write documentation these days !!

(Unless it is a Government contract, and they can charge an arms and a leg for it )

I’m new to AAO so I haven’t needed to contact them yet. I don’t recall seeing any outstanding negative comments so far.