38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2011
I really wish Microsoft would make joysticks again, as there's a serious lack of solid 100-150 dollar joysticks that provide the precision needed for flight sims in an ergonomic package..
That out of the way, I've been using Logitech joysticks since the old Sidewinder days and found them lacking in the precision and durability department. I saw their G940 system but most of the people who bought it use different pedals and the throttle controls had some issues as well, so I opted to buy things separately. Unless you go extremely high end like the Warthog, you're pretty much stuck with the the T-1600M for a reasonably priced, precision joystick. The joystick uses HALL effect sensors to precisely map out positions. With this, I can not be happier. My aim precision in Rise of Flight has gone up drastically since going with this joystick.
What I don't like about it, is that they designed it for left and right handed users, and because of this, it satisfies neither. The thumb rest pictured is beyond annoying for my hand and the hand rest at the bottom of the stick caused my right hand to get cramped. Into the box I went for the spare parts. They include another replacement panel for the other side so you can switch it to a left hand joystick. I simply added the second flat panel to get rid of the thumb rest. That solved that annoyance.. As for the bottom of the joystick, the hand rest does not come off, it simply turns. What I had to do to relieve my hand from cramps was to rotate that so that the hand rest aimed forward. The end of that aims upward at a curved angle, and I believe that was the culprit. With it facing forward I have had no issues with it.
The Logitech and my 15 year old Microsoft joysticks had far better button lay outs as well. The ones on the T-1600's head are once again, laid out to be ambidextrous, so in the end, no ones particularly happy. They work well enough, they just aren't designed well for people that are left or right handed specifically. The base buttons are fine. I never use them, but they're fine for what we need. The Throttle slider is not the best option for a realistic simulation, and as such I replaced it with a Saitek throttle quadrant. Joystick twist I suppose is fine as well, however I use Saitek Pro-Rudder pedals for precisions sake. I found that twisting caused me to also engage my ailerons.
Summary - Its unfortunate that this is the best joystick out there in this price range due to its lack of comfort and poor ergonomics for button lay out. It is very precise however, and if that's what you need, and you don't want to purchase a 500 dollar setup, this is really your only choice with out buying a used Sidewinder joystick. I've used it a number of months and am used to it now, but my complaints still hold.
44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
on June 20, 2009
The sensors are good: couldn't find any deadzones in the stick movement. The resistance and springback also feels great.
However, the buttons are all very flimsy and cheap (including the hat and trigger), which is regrettable. Also, the stick itself feels a tad too big, but that might be due to my small hands.
Twisting motion of the stick (for rudder use) has slight detection problems. If you gently twist the stick one way until it stops, it seems like that's as far as it goes but a sensor readout will show that you haven't yet reached 100%. Applying more pressure will force it through the difference, but then it makes me paranoid that I'll break the stick.
The base is large enough to be stable for most maneuvers (left, right, and back), but not when you push the stick all the way forward, it will lift the whole thing off the table unless you have your other hand on the base holding it down.
It seems like dust can easily collect at the base of the stick where it pivots, which might inhibit its smooth motions (it comes pre-lubed, which seems necessary by design). So I recommend that if you buy this stick, use a cover for when its not in use.
Overall, it's pretty decent. I don't have a very good base for comparison since the last stick I owned was a Microsoft Sidewinder way back in 1996. I chose this stick over the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro Joystick because I heard a lot of complaints about Logitech crapping out after half a year of use. So far I've logged 30 hours of flight time in Falcon 4.0 and about 10 hours of flight time in FSX, and the Thrustmaster still responds the same as on day 1. Granted I haven't had it for that long, so we'll see :)
35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on March 1, 2014
This will be kind of lengthy and i think one of my first reviews ever. But i hope to help guide your purchase of a flight stick as best as possible with my experiences and the amount of time i spent researching and sweating on what joystick to buy...
I am a flight-sim weekend warrior. My main use for the stick has been the game IL2: Cliffs of Dover playing on the ATAG servers w/ the team fusion mod. I also use it for War Thunder if i play full real battles (whatever they renamed it to..), and occasionally DCS A-10 if i feel like punching my computer trying to figure out how to do anything.
Used in conjunction with: Saitek X-52 throttle body, CH Pro Rudder Pedals, Track IR5
Quick review: I LOVE this stick. Until i have the career and extra cash to dump on a Thrustmaster Warthog (like $400), i will be using this stick without a doubt!
- GREAT tension, zone control, and return to center. the use of the halleffect is just impressive
- Ambidextrous for you lefties out there. I am mostly left handed in life and though i dont use it for the joystick, i get where them even thinking about us lefties is very generous. Well played Thrustmaster.
-It has a good feeling twist rudder setup for you without pedals
-The buttons are all crisp and have a good feel to them and within acceptable finger length, even for people with smaller hands like me. The included slide throttle feels good and have no problem with it (i use it for engine mixture)
-The trigger is crisp and not flimsy feeling
-There is a descent number of buttons to model things to. I would suggest labeling the buttons on the base if you plan on using them for certain things like landing gear ect.
-PRICE: for $50 it's well worth the value. If you are wanting to try the hobby out but dont want to spend much, dont waste your money on anything else (Logitech 3D pro is the only thing id say would be worth looking at, its a classic). If you are looking to buy something more expensive with more buttons and maybe a throttle body combo it may be worth considering getting this stick and a separate throttle body as i have done w/ the X52 throttle.
-not as many buttons as joysticks in higher price ranges. For the price though, can you expect more?
-The trigger has a fairly long trigger pull. I have actually found where i like it after use. reminds me of shooting a two stage trigger rifle where you can pull back to the secondary tension and know exactly where you are for clutch shots. Some may not like this however im sure. Hardly worth complaining about though overall. just thought id mention it.
-as i mentioned the tension in the stick is great. its very accurate. but if you end up having to hold the stick in positions for long period of time (aircraft w/o trim for example) you can start getting fatigued by it. Hasnt ever made me stop though. Id rather be tired after playing than pissed off by the joystick being floppy. just thought id mention it, someone may grip about it.
My summary statement:
i spent a VERY long time debating what to do on joystick. I had a X52 (non-pro) twice in my flight sim'ing life. They are cool sticks and probably one of the most popular out there. TONS of buttons, a great throttle body with MORE buttons, all kinds of crap to customize it. I mean it really is pretty impressive....
BUT I HATED THE JOYSTICK (i actually love the throttle with it)! It's tension/centering controlled by an 'adjustable' spring. Even out of the box it is flimsy. If you play it enough and slam it around enough flying it gets more flimsy and spring tension reduces. After a year with one stick i got fed up and bought a second one. This one too was flimsy and died. My frustration with centering problems and AWFUL deadzones made me decide never again with Saitek. This is just my own preference and experience in what i want out of a stick, others will rant and rave about how awesome the saitek products are. It is up to you to find what style and set up you want. It is frustrating but once you find that match, it is very rewarding.
I got my Thrustmaster and it fixed every complaint i'd ever had with flying and my joysticks. Using it in combo w/ the X52 throttle is a perfect match and i couldnt be more happy. Sure id like more buttons on my joystick, but it hasnt changed my ability to fly. Just have to be creative with the use of SHIFT+, ALT+, and CTRL+ custom key commands.
Hope this helps someone, I have never felt compelled to every write a review for soemthing before on amazon. Post a question if you have one; and if it helped please like it for me just so i know someone has read it. Thanks again and maybe ill see you in the sky!
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on December 18, 2010
I bought this joystick for use with modern combat flight simulators, namely Black Shark and Flaming Cliffs 2.
The joystick is very sensitive and accurate, and responds to even the slightest of touches. The stick is comfort and the button placement is OK. For right-handed people, reaching the right buttons can be difficult, and it usually means letting your hand off the stick, but it's better than not having them at all. I do not like the fact that the button are not labeled - none of them are. The throttle slider has a low resolution - it's sensitivity is not nearly in par with that of the stick's.
Using Windows 7 (and probably Vista and XP as well, though I do not have them to try), the joystick is automatically recognized and installed in 10 seconds. The hat switch, placed on the stick, is placed perfectly right - it is extremely easy to be reached using the thumb, during flight. I have read many people mention that the buttons feel cheap, plastic and tacky - while these claims or some of them are true, this does not derive from your ability to use them with ease. The twist rudder control works smoothly, accurately and feels very natural.
Overall, this joystick does everything you'd probably need from a joystick, and its main features, packed with its very affordable price, should be enough for flying even the most accurate flight simulations out there. It's got rudder control, throttle control, a very accurate stick and plenty of buttons. Just pick your sim, and you're ready to fly. Well, after you've read the sim's manual or follow some basic flight tutorials, that is.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on July 2, 2012
I've been using my T16000M for about three months now, and I think it's underrated. I upgraded from a Saitek AV8R, which is fair enough for the money, but I consider this stick, which costs about twice as much as the AV8R, to be more than twice as good. I doubt you'll find anything better at this price point.
The obvious strong point is the stick sensor mechanism, which works like a charm. The base of the T16000M is quite heavy and feels very solid, and the overall construction quality is good. The product is designed to be absolutely ambidextrous, and if you're left-handed you'll appreciate that a few small modifications with the hand rests will give you the exact same experience (or a mirror image, at least), as us right-handers. Once I adjusted away from the old habits I'd picked up using my AV8R, I had no trouble with the layout of the buttons on the T16000M. I have small hands, yet I have no trouble reaching them.
If you look at the picture, the little silver slide on the base is the throttle. The idea is that you place your thumb on it with your fingertips on the six buttons on either side of the base, depending on which hand you're using. This works well enough, although the thumb throttle is less precise and a bit more cheap feeling that the rest of the stick. The fingertip buttons (six on each side) are easy to find without looking because they all have slightly different elevations and the edges are angled to make them distinguishable by feel. This may take a bit of practice at first. To reach the six buttons on the other side of the base you'll have to take your hand off the stick. This could be a problem depending on what you mapped there, but I simply use them for non-crucial convenience controls and they work fine.
The truest criticism of the T16000M concerns the base of the stick, which does indeed emit a bright green light and is open to dust. I solved this problem by cutting a section out of an old sock and sliding it down the stick to the base so it covers that area like a skirt. This blots out most of the light and keeps the dust out. Crude but effective.
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on July 20, 2010
This stick replaces a Microsoft Sidewinder Precision 2 USB stick I have had for many years. I had seen some tech reviews and animated tested results of the advantages of the Hall effects sensors and I was very impressed. Having used the stick a bit I can say that the smoothness of the stick is excellent, there are no notch positions and it moves smoothly around in any circular motion. It's heavier then the old MS stick, 2 pounds vrs 1-1/2 pounds and it feels solid. The hat switch at the top and the fire button and other three buttons are comfortable and the feeling of the hand support is very good. The movement feels like it takes a further reach and seems to have more resistance, which makes it tiring to use, but not bad.
The green light is sort of silly, and actually distracting, but I'll let that slide.
Now the negatives and the main problems: The ergonomics for the rest of the buttons and throttle on the base are not that great.. they have compromised the design by trying to make it ambidextrous. I'm right handed and with my right hand on the stick using the six buttons on the left side they are not as easy to use as the Precision 2 because they are flat and their location requires having the stick sitting directly in front of me, If I move it to the right the throttle can't be reached with the left thumb like it can comfortably on the Sidewinder which has the throttle on the left and you can't operate the left buttons easily because your fingers are at the wrong angle to use them.. It can only be used if the stick is sitting right in front of you and even then it's a streetch to reach the throttle and move it up and down with your thumb. Meanwhile, the six buttons on the right side can't be used at all unless you take your right hand off the stick (are you crazy?), or try to reach around with your left hand to click them.. good luck... they are useless.
They should have made a right and left hand version of this stick. Like the ergonomic Sidewinder, they need raised buttons that you can easly feel with out having to look down at them. Also if all the buttons were on the left side along with the throttle (for a right hander) like the Sidewinder, this would be a great stick. And having the buttons numbered, engraved or raised, on each botton would be much more friendly, but again, they didn't because they were trying to make it for left or right hand use... too bad.
The main selling point on this stick is the Hall effect smoothness and comfortable grip and it does have two more buttons on the left then my Sidewinder does.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on August 28, 2010
I have been flight simming for well over a decade and have tried many different control devices. The Thrustmaster T-1600M is best I have found. It is very smooth. It has no imput spikes that plague similar devices. I would recommend it to anyone seeking smooth and predictable control for flight simulator.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 2010
I've had experience with several joysticks, wheels and pedal sets over the years so I looked forward to receiving my Thrustmaster with mixed emotions, because some of my past experiences had been less than sterling. But true to what I'd read, the T-16000M was really "plug and play" in terms of working without further configuration with Flight Simulator X. The various buttons are pre-configured for FSX and the stick itself works smoothly. There's not much else to say - it does what it is advertised to do and it does it elegantly.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on July 13, 2012
My old X-45 joystick/throttle bit the dust due to break inside the wire between the units. I looked for a suitable replacement for a long time, because I used to be a "real" pilot and wanted a unit for flight sims that was more than a toy. When I read about the accuracy of this one, it seemed like a good bet. It IS ACCURATE! The slightest movement of the stick is picked up. This is great for helicopter flying, because that is how it is in a real helo. The quality seems pretty good. It is solid and heavy, so it does not slide around easily. It can also be configured for either left or right hand use.
I only have two issues with this unit. The grip is too wide where your thumb and index finger go around the grip. I even removed the thumb rest, but it was still too wide for total comfort. The other, and more annoying issue is the force needed to overcome the spring tension in the centering mechanisms. If you need to hold the stick in a rotated, or tilted position for any length of time, you better have a strong hand and arm. The spring pressures are way too strong. If you had to fly a real aircraft like that, you would have an arm like a wrestler in no time. (If you didn't crash first) I am a healthy adult man, and this thing tires my arm out if I have to do much maneuvering in the flight sim.
BOTTOM LINE: Accurate, good Quality, Spring too strong, grip too wide,-- you decide.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on May 17, 2009
First of all I like the joystick.
There was one flaw the first day when one of the buttons stuck in when I pushed it. It turns out the button is connected to a shaft with a rubber plunger. I opened it up and fixed it with no issue. Maybe that should drop the rating but aside from that the Joystick has worked perfectly. I was a bit worried about the plug and play feature but it proved to be no issue at all.I'm running Vista 32. I do wish there was more software to tweak things like sensitivity but that will have to wait for now. The base is strong and is has good weight to it. There is joystick hardware so if you are a lefty it will work for you also. The throttle at the base bottom works fine but I wish it was in a different place but that is based on how I set it up on my desk. There is no dead spot that I have found and the stick is responsive and smooth which I like.You can use the Windows software to calibrate if needed but I have not needed this so far. I have recommended this joystick to many of my gamer friends and only positive feedback which tells me I made a good decision. I think 4 is a good rating for this joystick based on the one issue but zero issues after that and placement of the throttle which is just me and my preferred setup. I'm happy. hope this helps.