What HOTAS to get? I can't decide

Hello all :slight_smile:
I currently have a Thrustmaster T.16000M flight stick. I bought it used on ebay and its been working fine for a year now. However, I don’t have a seperate throttle, so I have to use the joystick’s little slider to control engine thrust. That isn’t optimal so I wanna have a full HOTAS now.

I have 2 main ideas right now:

1st idea: Keep the current joystick and buy a Thrustmaster Throttle Quadrant (Airbus Edition). I am mostly flying the A320 or other Airbus planes so it would fit well.

2nd idea: Buy a Logitech X56 set and sell the old joystick. The throttle of this set doesn’t have a reverse thrust area though.

Option 2 is obviously the more expensive one and just fits my budget of around 260€. I am more a casual simmer which means that I sometimes don’t play the sim for several weeks and sometimes I play it several times a day.
This makes me insecure if it would actually be worth it to spend ~260€ for the Logitech set instead of only ~90€ for the Thrustmaster throttle.

I’d like to hear about some of your experiences, maybe someone has/had one or both of this sets and can give me an advise.

Have a great day :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

Stay away of the X56!!!

You may be lucky, but lots of them have hardware design flaws that do matter. They are:

  1. Ghost clicks: For somewhat unknown reasons, the throttle quadrant randomly clicks some buttons. It seems to be caused by a combination of underpower (the stick draws much more power than the USB specification defines), E.M. interference and pure simple wiring faults due to poor placement inside the unit. My workaround is to program every command to the throttle quadrant to have a 0.2s delay. Works most of the time but demands work. Also, you should turn off the LED illumination, which is the main attraction of this device. Some people have some success using powered USB hubs (not me) while others opened their units to replace all the wiring and installing ferrite cores to cope with the interference (someday I might try that).
  2. Stick misalignment: from time to time, upon turning on or waking the computer, the main stick remains stuck at the lower-right position and unresponsive. It must be realigned with the Logitech application, a process that takes a good 2 minutes between opening the app and performing the alignment.
  3. Poor quality switches: With time, the switches become unresponsive, due to contamination with skin oil. The unit has to be disassembled and treated with contact cleaning spray or isopropyl alcohol periodically.
  4. Finish comes off: There is some kind of varnish on the unit that comes off with use. This HOTAS gets ugly very quickly.
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To be fair for MSFS2020 a variation of option 1 will give you the best milage.

For General Aviation and Civil Aviation you will benefit from the extra axes that a throttle quadrant like the the Honeycomb bravo offers.

A traditional hotas like the x56 is great for military jet or space simulation but gets a bit limited once you need prop pitch and fuel mixture axis options.

I also think the Airbus themed Thrustmaster throttle falls down a bit here too unless you absolutely specialise in tubeliners.

So…for something that will serve you as a good all rounder within the General Aviation\Civil aviation experience the Bravo would be the natural choice.
Indeed even if you wish to spread your wings into WW2 warbird combat like IL-2 the bravo has all the tools for that job too.

Quick disclaimer.
I don’t own the Bravo, but I do own 2 Virpil CM throttles. I love them to bits but for warbirds and GA multi engine props I have always felt I needed a bit more…thus when I upgraded to the CM3 I kept the old one too…side by side I have more axes but there are cheaper ways to achieve this and I still think I’ll maybe build a 3d print/multi axis device like the ones that Authentikit have designed.

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To OP/TL;DR: I recommend that if you want a versatile setup for combat and civilian sims, go for a TWCS throttle which can be bought separately and should pair well with your current T16000M. If you want a more civilian-based peripheral setup, definitely consider the Thrustmaster Airbus Quadrant or a Honeycomb Alpha and Bravo setup. Avoid X56, I’ve reviewed it on my YouTube channel and it is not great value for what you get due to the QA issues.

Going to be honest, the Honeycomb Alpha and Bravo are great products and if you plan specifically on doing only civilian flight simulators, then those are the best options you could go with in terms of peripherals.

However, if you plan on not only doing civilian flight sims but you also want to get into combat sims like DCS World and IL-2 Sturmovik, I would much rather suggest a HOTAS setup like the T16000M FCS Hotas (though do note that the twist axis on that stick is a terrible potentiometer that is prone to break quite easily, might be better to just get rudder pedals to use with the T16000M) or a Gladiator NXT Joystick + TWCS Throttle which is still less than the cost of a Honeycomb Alpha and Bravo.

I mainly say this because I that in DCS World and IL-2 Sturmovik, I will be moving the stick around quite a lot and sometimes do really fast deflections so as to get the roll going faster or pulling back harder to get the edge, but I’m not 100% sure if the Honeycomb Alpha could withstand such high forces being applied when it was designed to be moved in a smooth and calm fashion in the world of civilian flight sims. The lack of buttons will also hinder you in something like DCS World where even a CM3 Throttle + VPC Constellation can be limited and require you to get a button box for the best full-on amount of buttons.

I currently use a Gladiator NXT + Virpil CM3 Throttle and currently awaiting MFG Crosswind pedals. Ultimately, I find this setup is perfect for me in Flight Simulator 2020 and all the combat sims I play like IL-2 and DCS. I do, however, have the flap axis on the CM3 and the Gladiator Throttle Axis which I use for propeller pitch and mixture respectively. However, it really does depend on the usecase. I just wouldn’t see myself or frankly anyone who would actively want to use a yoke in something like an F-18 or the A-10 but it could be an option, just might be a bit more limiting.

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keep the T16000, get the TWCS (The throttle of the same line)

https://www.thrustmaster.com/products/twcs-throttle

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Thanks to everyone, I decided to stay away from the X56. I went for the Thrustmaster TCA officer pack and I’m happy with it.

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I’ve finally spared someone from this X-56 frustration! I puzzles me how many people complain about this product but no one openly says it is bad… I guess it is a defense mechanism to ease the pain of wasting so much money in such a bad product.

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