Release Date: 10/1/2009
The Good: Great button placement, sturdy, useful software, great for entry flight sim gamers
The Bad: More advanced players will hate this, feels a bit cheap, spring is a tad stiff for more precise control, pinky button is poorly placed
For this being my first flight stick I like it. I decided to enter the flight sim genre, but you can’t without an introductory flight stick. This base model by Saitek feels great and works with most flight games. Most important the stick has rudder control (Z axis) which you use by twisting the stick. The buttons are all laid out around your thumb as well as the hat switch in the middle. I found this to be very comfortable, but people who like buttons on their base may not like this.
The stick has a trigger and pinky button, but I found that I hit the pinky button to easily because of how small it was. During intense fights, I would squeeze the stick too hard and press it. The stick also has a throttle control switch which feels nice and smooth. Overall when it comes to buttons there isn’t a lot so if you want to use every control on your game on your stick; look somewhere else. The stick feels good in your hand, but will make your hand sweat and chafe if you aren’t used to using them, and doesn’t have the nice rubber of other sticks.
The stick feels like it’s made of cheap plastic, but is surprisingly durable. The spring is sturdy but makes the stick feel a little stiff so precise control is a bit of an issue compared to higher end sticks. The stick also has removable feet, but I preferred them for more stability. The software is great and allows calibration, and assign buttons to the keyboard for games that may not support stick directly (most don’t, but you can assign buttons to most games). Overall the V1 is a great entry stick for a beginner, but more hardcore flight sim gamers should look elsewhere.