Fanatec Direct Drive

It is an open secret that we are working on a Direct Drive wheel. I have posted in several forums and there are some bits of information here and there. It's time to open a single thread for this subject.

This post will be updated from time to time and the main purpose for us is to collect information of what you really want. Of course we already have nailed down several specs but there are still things we can change or add. So please tell us what your dream system looks like.

Models
We are developing more than one base. The main difference will be the maximum torque. The torque range is starting at a competitive level far above the CS WB V2.5  and ranges up to a level most of you will not be able to use for a long time. 
It will not replace the CS WB V2.5 and we will keep this model as the best non-DD solution on the market.
The DD wheel bases are the first products of a complete series of hardcore products which are positioned above the ClubSport series. This series will include wheel bases, steering wheels, pedals, shifters and handbrakes in the (very) long run.

Plug&Play
The DD will be a typical plug&play product like other Fanatec wheel bases. All in one housing and no cable mess. 

Certification
Like any other Fanatec product, the DD will be fully certified and lab tested. This will avoid EMI issues and other interference with your other devices. The DD uses a lot of power and huge magnets are involved so this is a very important point which is often not considered until you get a lot of mysterious issues and damages to your whole system.

Compatibility
PC for sure as this is the main market and there is no reason that it should not work on Xbox One. The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.
We have a great relationship with all racing game developers and you can be sure that there will be broad support for this wheel base. Our target is to set a new standard in simracing.

Motors:
We looked at the current motors on the market and there was nothing which really fulfilled our requirements. Those industrial motors were not designed for simracing. Steppers and hybrid steppers deliver a way too notchy feeling for a hardcore product, no matter how good you tweak the software. Also other servo motors are always a compromise. Therefore we developed complete custom servo motors where we decided about what speed, torque, size, power consumption, pricing etc. we need.

Steering Wheels
All the current ClubSport steering wheels will be compatible. We developed a new QR system on the base to handle the extra power but it will stay a quick release. 
There will be no cable from the wheel to the base or to USB. The wheel will be able to rotate unlimited without the risk to snap off a cable or to disturb you while driving.
The CSL and CSL Elite steering wheels will be compatible as well but torque will be reduced if such a wheel is detected.

Software 
Please let us know what kind of software your are expecting to get with the DD. What parameters do you want to adjust and how and where do you want to adjust these parameters. We are pretty flexible on this point.

Target Dates
Disclaimer
Dates are always a very sensitive subject. In principle you need to understand that the DD technology is not only new to us, our DD wheels are completely designed from scratch and a breakthrough for the whole industry. This involves some completely new technology which had to be invented and everything is customized. A lot of unknown factors are not good to give any solid time projections. 
We simply cannot give you any guaranteed dates at this point. But at least you get some indication of our target dates.


Community event: 
There will be a community event where we invite interested simracers to test and compare our new DD wheels directly to all other solutions on the market. Time and date is not defined yet but it will obviously be before the launch date. More news and how to apply for this test will be posted here.

Beta Test: 
The external beta test will start after all internal tests are done. We will also make a separate announcement where you can apply to become a tester. We are interested in the opinion of current DD users and ultra hardcore users as well as people with analytic and structured thinking which are able to find remaining bugs and make suggestions for improvements. 
Please make sure you already filled out this form

First public appearance:
We plan to show this product at the Simracing Expo this year.

Launch date
Q4 2017


Pricing
There will be a significant difference to the current wheel bases we have so there will be different performance levels at different price points. As the current CS WB V2.5 is still priced significantly lower than any other DD wheel on the market (please compare it with a full system incl. steering wheel with buttons) there is still room for us to make a very competitive offer.
Our new DD bases can compete in pricing as well as superior functionality and performance. 


Oh and did I mention the beauty of them? :)






 
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Comments

  • wow.great news
  • Fantastic news. Even if i'm quite happy with my CSW v2, but i'm watching the DD wheel market since long time. So i really can't wait to get my hands on a Fanatec DD wheel base.
    Bring it on! :)
  • edited June 4
    Awesome news !!! I am sure that the wheel will be fantastic. Good luck and good work to the Fanatec dev team
    :)>-
  • edited June 4
    where can i klick the buy button  :-bd joke

    that sounds really awesome, and i'm waiting longtime on a news like that. how thomas write that text here, that dd bases must be awesome ! 

    @ thomas,  what exectly you mean with software for dd ? do you talking about something other then the fanatec driver or the 5 different settings on the wheel ? maybe a new application ?

    will the new dd bases have the same mounting points on the rig like the csw or csl ? ( 3 hole triangle or 4 holes with adapter ) 

    that is a very good reason to come to the simracing expo :D

    men that is so excited, you made my day, and that sounds like there some new great and bigger stuff is going on at fanatec  >:D<  

    can't wait to here more about your dd bases !!!!
  • Great news Thomas. Thanks for shedding some light. The next level of Fanatec is coming;)
  • edited June 4
    It's good to see that different DD bases with different torque output are in development. Consumer target groups vary.
    But i hope there will be a "no-compromise"-wheel base with more than 20-25Nm and a lot of speed and fidelity, even if the price is a lot higher. Speed and torque output should be similar or better than any current DD wheel (26Nm-Bodnar or OSW with MiGE/Lenze motor).
  • edited June 4
    Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
  • Great! 
  • edited June 4
    Such great news... Loving it. I can see where my 13th month paycheck will be going to. LOL There will be a community event where we invite interested simracers to test and compare our new DD wheels directly to all other solutions on the market. Time and date is not defined yet but it will obviously be before the launch date. More news and how to apply for this test will be posted HERE. COUNT ME IN TO APPLY!!! And plans for sim expo were already made, so I'm psyched as (green) hell to come to Germany in September.
  • Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
    Thomas already stated that Sony found the V2(.5) is too expensive. That's why we got a CSL E base in stead. So they need to be more convinced of a product to be sold to their standards.
  • Interesting, I Look forward to seeing this "New QR system"  Imo the old version severely lacked and wore out WAY quicker than it should have....Adding yet more FFB power will push this new version to the limit.  

  • This is excellent news. Many thanks for sharing an update. Is there an English version of the beta test application form? It makes it a bit easier to fill out for some of us.
  • Really great news!
    As far as i know, sony is already developing the next gen. Platform PS5.
    Are you in contact in this regard?
    I hope we don´t wait as long for a PS5-License, as for the Ps4!

    Best regards


  • Can't wait to buy it :)
    Thanks for this great news !
  • edited June 4
    Great news the so long awaited Fanatec DD WB finally has its own dedicated blog entry !
    This is already rising hype among simracers on forums :D

    Some questions/remarks about the currently revealed informations:

    All in one housing: so you mean power supply will be integrated to the base ? I'd personally prefer external PS because it makes repair/replacement easier and allow for minimal size wheelbase.

    Custom servo motors: good news for specs that will suit the best simracing ffb needs. Although customers will undoubtely be very demanding on reliability. Is it developped internally or hand in hand with a reknown brand ?

    Software parameters: SMS went an interesting route for pcars ffb for which they exposed parameters building the ffb (Fx, Fy, Mz and many other parameters). This made a powerful tool but was a pain to tweak because it was not possible to do it in realtime. As a member (funding community) I tried to lobby for a button box (or at least an API to be able to make the buttons ourselves) that would allow tweaking those ffb parameters in realtime (which of course was way beyond their acceptable demands).

    This is what I would love to see on your DD, ffb parameters than can be tweaked in realtime so we can feel the result of the changes immediatly, while driving. Otherwise those tweakings take a huge amount of time and most people get discouraged. Realtime is the way to go, with still the possibility to save the parameters to make presets of course.

    I see 2 ways how this could be achieved:

    1°) An external button box: it would be made of many potentiometers (or rotary switches) so you can dedicate 1 parameter to 1 switch, which allow much more direct tweaking ability compared to a single switch for which you would change the associated setting by navigating though a list of parameters.

    2°) Voice command: an alternative that would undoubtely be worse looking into. I was using voice recognition for flight sim a few years in the past (tweak flaps, command landing gear, command flight computer display etc) and it was very efficient as I could do a lot of things while still remaining focused on my flying.

    Imagine how powerful it would be to be able to tweak your DD WB and ffb parameters by voice. You could make the tweaks without removing your hands from the steering wheel for a perfect feel of the change you are doing. It would also be great for VR helmet users for whom a button box is less convenient (and VR helmets have built-in mic). Also the voice recognition tech is mature enough for that kind of use (it was already ok years ago when I used it for flight sim) and I guess it is accessible enough to integrate it to your product. I think it would be fantastic to put on our VR helmet and be able to call back a ffb preset by just saying the name it was saved to (I would still want to be able to display in the VR view a summary of all current settings to ease up the tweaking management).
  • This is the info I am looking for. Can you please tell us more about what parameters you want to change?
  • Bump Im there what ever it is and I aint even read it yet :)
  • I would be happy to contribute being a former CSW owner and current AccuForce and OSW (SimuCube / small Mige) owner.

    Using both the AF and OSW reveals some pro's and con's to each system that some users fail to recognize imo. There are currently some titles that are not able to leverage their FF system to reach optimal results and much of the OSW community limit their use to iRacing and may have little experience with other titles using DD systems so some issues are not discussed or solved by hardware / game developers.

    It's not that any of the DD-systems aren't great - they are but, they could be even better across more titles.  Being that Fanatec already has some very nice wheels / features / hardware available makes entry into the DD market a good choice imo - especially if console support can be offered.

    One thing that the OSW users would like is broad support for custom wheels, QR's and button boxes being that many of them already have invested significant expense to purchase one-off wheels / BB's and displays.

    As more Sim-racers move to VR, button layout and variation becomes more important also while display use may be less important.

    Advanced FFB tuning options are great for some but, it might be best to offer a couple of different paths depending on how deep the user wants to go into the tuning process (Basic / advanced).  Personally, I like SimCommander's tuning options but, some find it overly complicated and totally unnecessary so it's better to design for different preferences from the start imo.

    These are just some of the things that you may want to consider while in the design process imo.  I look forward to seeing what you develop for the Sim-racing market and I think more and more players are going to move to DD-wheel use. What many Sim-racers don't yet understand is how DD use can be trans-formative for racing games, spurring growth and even greater interest in the hobby / sport.
  • Regarding Software ........... maybe something similar what the SimCommander software is doing for the AF wheel. Would be great to have a function which auto-calibrates the FFB based on game/sim telemetry.
    But i think it's quite a big effort to make someting like this.
  • Regarding Software ........... maybe something similar what the SimCommander software is doing for the AF wheel. Would be great to have a function which auto-calibrates the FFB based on game/sim telemetry.
    But i think it's quite a big effort to make someting like this.
    Well if its to be done I'm sure Tommy and his team will do it and get it right, with our help  :-bd
  • This is excellent news. Many thanks for sharing an update. Is there an English version of the beta test application form? It makes it a bit easier to fill out for some of us.
    https://www.fanatec.com/eu-en/client/beta
  • edited June 4
    This is the info I am looking for. Can you please tell us more about what parameters you want to change?
    Hello Thomas,

    When I tweak my ffb (cswv2 owner), the first thing I set is the force felt at the highest speed turn. This is what I consider being my "main ffb strength". I try to set it to leave as many room as possible for understeer and oversteer effects (so I keep an eye at clipping too). I also consider reaching a strength that is not ridiculously low or high, and if I plan an endurance race I admit I tend to set it a (slightly) bit lower to help consistency and limit physical strain.

    When this is done I generaly face 2 mains issues: unbalanced effects strength and exagerated sharpness/harshness of effects.

    Unbalanced effects strength: the main unbalancing concerns understeer/oversteer. Either they are not felt enough to be a good help when trying to reach the grip limit, or they are felt too strong and then they disturb your driving by interfering too much with your inputs.

    Another frequent unbalancing is the kerbs vibrations and also the bumps/holes of the track (and effects when going offtrack, like grass / sand). Ideally I want kerbs vibrations strong enough to feel well when I'm driving on it (for non flat kerbs of course) but not too strong so it doesn't feel unnatural. Same for bumps/holes on track which can sometime feel overdone (although I admit I have no real reference point to judge that). And same for off-track which often produces very unpleasant effect when overdone in term of strength.

    Exagerated sharpness/harshness: when I got the csw (it was the v1 at this time) I was coming from your gt3rs wheelbase. By nature the latter produced very soft/smooth ffb, the effects were always very pleasant even with old and/or arcade games titles. I was very disturbed when I switched to the much more analytic csw as ffb effects were felt so harsh in comparison with the gt3rs. It was probably partially due to project cars which was still in development at this time, but I had the same feeling with older games I tried (or just more arcade games, like when I tried "the crew" with the cswv2). It took me some time to get used to that more analytic wheelbase producing sharper ffb effects, for some time I was even regretting the great smoothness of my previous gt3rs.

    Fortunately I got used to this over time, although some effects can still feel exessively sharp from time to time. So with my dream ffb unit I would like to be able to tweak that, by softening some effects while still keeping sharpness where it is needed and without loosing the finest details (which seems one of the main strength of DD wheelbases).


    Although from what I know about how ffb effects are produced I understand doing the above may be a very complicated task. I guess it could only be done well if you can work with the game developper to get access to the forces computed by the physics engine and that are used to make the ffb effects. With such a deep access you can then tweak the balance for each force mixed to create the ffb, and you can also apply filtering on each independently before mixing them, which allow a more refined tweaking.

    This is basically what pcars was offering, although it was not tweakable in realtime. And even if this is allowing a more fine tweaking than applying filtering over the final ffb signal (after mixing) I guess it would still remain difficult to target a specific effect like tweaking kerbs vibration specifically for exemple (making it stronger/weaker, sharper/softer, without affecting the rest of the effects).

    Assetto corsa uses a different method. While I guess the main ffb is still built using the same method (by mixing forces at the rack computed by the physics engine, and iirc some other forces taken elsewhere like at the suspensions), this title doesn't offer access to this mix balancing/filtering to the player (so it would require to work with kunos if you want to get access to it). But this title also use an additionnal layer where some effects are "canned effects". This is the case for kerbs vibrations, or also understeer (with an optionnal function they call "enhanced understeer", which is a good starting point but lack tweaking possibilities to be really usable. Atm I find it too unnatural to use it, but it could be very good and helpful if we could tweak some parameters about it). This additionnal layer of canned effects has the benefit of letting you do that specific filtering, affecting a precise effect only with the others remaining untouched.

    And then we have the games with which you have almost no access at all to the ffb parameters and with which you can only apply filtering over the final signal. Doing so would certainly produce the less efficient/precise tweaking, unless you manage to make a superfast AI able to identify effects to apply filtering on specific ones only.


    Finally, Dean is also right that too much or too complicated parameters discourage many users. It is certainly good to have different tweaking levels like he suggests, for exemple with a simple mode where you would have a single parameter for sharpness affecting the whole ffb. A deeper level could allow the same (+levels) by frequency bands (would this let you isolate kerbs vibrations ?). And then the deepest level for hardcore users where you put all the tweaking possibilities you manage to create.

    Still related to Dean comment, I would suggest you create a server side presets database. So people with little time or will to create complicated presets could at least download them very easily, with a built-in feature so there is no mess with dowloading and copying files in a given folder. The user would just select a game and could then choose to use presets made and shared by other users, being global presets or even per car presets. This would promote and take advantage of the work of the community of users, and would justify your work on offering deep tweaking possibilities. Because even if 0.1% of the users make use of it, you can be sure a large part of the userbase will take benefit of the presets shared by those 0.1%. If it works well you can even later add votes/comments/downloads to help filtering the most popular presets.
  • edited June 4
    About the other devices above clubsport range:

    I have been wondering for a long time if a ffb pedal set would be technicaly doable (and commercialy viable).
    I mean pedals driven by motors or actuators.

    This would allow for insane possibilities like:

    - tweakable pressing feel
    - variable throw
    - tweakable clutch hard point (position and feel !)
    - clutch slipping effect
    - realistic and tweakable ABS effect (by pushing back the brake pedal)
    - presets (completely different pedals feel from car to car !)

    The same could apply to a H-shifter (one day, I used a user-made program that was emulating a H-shifter with the old microsoft sidewinder ffb flightstick):

    - tweakable number of gears
    - tweakable gear engaging feel
    - tweakable throw
    - tweakable resistance (neutral)
    - tweakable gears spacing
    - badly-engaged gear effect !
    - presets


    Also about the vibration motors on the pedals (brake and gaz): the current version using the motors and moving mass is nice as a decorative effect but the latency is too high (the time it takes for the motor to induce a fast enough rotation to the mass to produce the vibration) to make this feature really usable as a wheel lock/spin signal.

    I have been thinking for some time about trying a mod based on a lower latency vibration system, and that would not be attached to the pedal set but integrated in elastic straps that would be worn over ankles (so no possible crosstalk, and I hope good feel of the vibrations). Although to be convenient I guess it would ideally require to be wireless. I wonder if this would become fast enough (latency) to really help you react in time to wheel lock/spin, or if it still could not beat relying on visual and sounds informations.


    And a last idea which came to my mind one day: contracting straps to wear over thighs to transmit haptic feel for centrifugal force in curves. Because in a real car (maybe not/less in a racecar where you are hold well by a harness, idk), you tend to contract thigh muscles to resist this centrifugal force.
    I wonder if such a system would make it easier to go to the grip limit in curves by the use of memory muscle, as I always found complicated to find this limit in a sim, where such force is missing (unless you have a moving cockpit to simulate it).
  • edited June 4
    This is exciting news
    What a weekend it's been for Fanatec :) I agree that the power supply should be external. This makes maintenance, replacements etc much easier moving forward.
    Quick release and backward compatibility with rims is great to hear.

    In regards to options in the software I would personally like:
    Motor Gear Ratio Changing (increase/lower torque <> increase/lower wheel rotation speed)

    Personal gear change indicators. Allow me edit what the wheel displays / how the LEDS flash etc when I'm hitting the limiter etc.

    Ability to adjust each FFB input the game sends to the base on a more granular level (Not Just FFB = 100) e.g. FFB (Bumps) FFB (OverSteer) etc and allow us the ability to adjust all of these individually from 0-200% (if the game sends them in such a recognisable manner of course)

    Auto Clutch ;)

    USB Data Output on the base that we can use to connect USB Dials/Dash/Rev Counters directly to etc.

    Temperature Monitor by default in when menu.

    Time/Clock in menu

    Ability to download community setups (uploaded by users here on the forums) much like steam workshop (Like having Pit Crews / Engineers for those less likely to tweak but still want the best effects)

    Dual Firmware capability for those testing and wanting to keep a stable base for gaming.

    Macro recording (some games require we bring up a menu, move the joystick to select the fuel mix, close the menu). Recording a macro that maps this particular set of movements to a single button on the base (directly in the driver) would be exceptional. This can be done in the driver application or in the wheel base menu.

    Ability to adjust clutch throw/sensitivity in the wheel menu.

    Ability to manually set a cruise control / speed limiter buttons etc in the pc driver menu. When button "x" is pressed the speedo can not send output above 59kph etc.

    Emulation mode (emulate a CSWv1/v2/v2.5/CSR Elite / CSL Elite etc :)

    The ability to control the brake / accelerator rumble motors directly from the base (customise their rumble effect/strength etc)


    I'll keep thinking and update this post with other ideas, perhaps one or two may be useful :)
  • Something I would love is a wheel that can receive torque as input and return the wheel position to the software. I don't understand why current wheels are driven using position input. From a simulation standpoint, physics simulation is computing a torque applied to the steering wheel, I want to feel that torque without any tuning, the closest thing to real world. If I have billion settings to make the wheel feel "right" it is that we are going away from what a simulator is supposed to be.
  • edited June 5
    This is the info I am looking for. Can you please tell us more about what parameters you want to change?
    Hello Thomas, I hope I can be included in the beta test this time! As you may know I already have a SimuCUBE direct drive to compare to as well as experience with most other direct drives on the market. So far I have hands on experience with the Leo Bodnar V2, AF pro, and various OSW setups with MiGe, Kollmorgen and Lenze motors. I also have plenty of Fanatec rims to test with :smile:
  • wow ,what a big week for announcements. way to go fanatec
  • edited June 5
    Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
    Thomas already stated that Sony found the V2(.5) is too expensive. That's why we got a CSL E base in stead. So they need to be more convinced of a product to be sold to their standards.
    that's is not true  In a recent conversation with GTPlanet regarding the wheel, Kazunori sheds light on what was on everyone’s minds after first seeing the images of the wheel emanating from The Copper Box Arena in London. Namely, is it or is it not a direct drive wheel?  Kazunori states this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’, which means the wheel is directly attached to the steering shaft itself! Thrustmaster is doing away with the usual belts and gears and replacing them with a direct drive motor which will be employed by this new wheelbase.

    https://www.gtplanet.net/thrustmasters-new-gt-sport-wheel-to-include-direct-drive-motor/
  • Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
    Thomas already stated that Sony found the V2(.5) is too expensive. That's why we got a CSL E base in stead. So they need to be more convinced of a product to be sold to their standards.
    that's is not true  In a recent conversation with GTPlanet regarding the wheel, Kazunori sheds light on what was on everyone’s minds after first seeing the images of the wheel emanating from The Copper Box Arena in London. Namely, is it or is it not a direct drive wheel?  Kazunori states this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’, which means the wheel is directly attached to the steering shaft itself! Thrustmaster is doing away with the usual belts and gears and replacing them with a direct drive motor which will be employed by this new wheelbase.

    https://www.gtplanet.net/thrustmasters-new-gt-sport-wheel-to-include-direct-drive-motor/
    That's over a year old and we still don't know for a fact it's true. Thrustmaster has been awfully quiet about it.
  • Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
    Thomas already stated that Sony found the V2(.5) is too expensive. That's why we got a CSL E base in stead. So they need to be more convinced of a product to be sold to their standards.
    that's is not true  In a recent conversation with GTPlanet regarding the wheel, Kazunori sheds light on what was on everyone’s minds after first seeing the images of the wheel emanating from The Copper Box Arena in London. Namely, is it or is it not a direct drive wheel?  Kazunori states this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’, which means the wheel is directly attached to the steering shaft itself! Thrustmaster is doing away with the usual belts and gears and replacing them with a direct drive motor which will be employed by this new wheelbase.

    https://www.gtplanet.net/thrustmasters-new-gt-sport-wheel-to-include-direct-drive-motor/
    That's over a year old and we still don't know for a fact it's true. Thrustmaster has been awfully quiet about it.
    I am very skeptical about this Thrustmaster wheel, I don't believe it will be direct drive and if it is I doubt it will be what we expect. I have been let down by Thrustnaster too many times with plastic and inferior drive trains. I can't see them making anything mind blowing.
  • edited June 5
    Thrustmaster - they are certainly on a lower level compared to Fanatec. I wouldn't say that they are just producing toys but it's not the major league...
  • edited June 5


    Thrustmaster - they are certainly on a lower level compared to Fanatec. I wouldn't say that they are just producing toys but it's not the major league...
    that's why im wetting for fantec to make one for PC & PS4 what I'm saying is Sony doesn't sat a limit Price tag on wheelbase
  • edited June 5

    that's is not true  In a recent conversation with GTPlanet regarding the wheel, Kazunori sheds light on what was on everyone’s minds after first seeing the images of the wheel emanating from The Copper Box Arena in London. Namely, is it or is it not a direct drive wheel?  Kazunori states this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’, which means the wheel is directly attached to the steering shaft itself! Thrustmaster is doing away with the usual belts and gears and replacing them with a direct drive motor which will be employed by this new wheelbase.

    https://www.gtplanet.net/thrustmasters-new-gt-sport-wheel-to-include-direct-drive-motor/
    This https://www.gtplanet.net/forum/threads/fanatec-direct-drive-powered-wheel-to-arrive-this-year.353597/#post-11712950

  • edited June 5
    Are there any differences in steering FFB needed for a user with motion simulation and a user without? Having motion probably requires less FFB simulation sent to the steering as so many of the feedback can be felt in motion. So basically I have motion and would like to have an option for a steering system simulating only what a real driver feels.
  • I
    Basically great news. But Thomas you wrote: 'The first generation will not be compatible to PS4.' Again Sony who is making this restrictions? So the PS4 community has to wait again. Please just tell me that there will be a PS4 DD wheel later in the future as well.
    Thomas already stated that Sony found the V2(.5) is too expensive. That's why we got a CSL E base in stead. So they need to be more convinced of a product to be sold to their standards.
    that's is not true  In a recent conversation with GTPlanet regarding the wheel, Kazunori sheds light on what was on everyone’s minds after first seeing the images of the wheel emanating from The Copper Box Arena in London. Namely, is it or is it not a direct drive wheel?  Kazunori states this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’, which means the wheel is directly attached to the steering shaft itself! Thrustmaster is doing away with the usual belts and gears and replacing them with a direct drive motor which will be employed by this new wheelbase.

    https://www.gtplanet.net/thrustmasters-new-gt-sport-wheel-to-include-direct-drive-motor/
    Yes it IS true. Ploug through the PS4 compatibility topic on this blog and you'll find Thomas' comment somewhere.
  • I am relatively new to sim racing.  By way of background, I started with an xBox and after having plowed through a couple of thrustmaster units and navigating their warranty department, it became clear that I needed a different solution to my wheelbase needs.  I asked on forums for what was "bullet proof" as more frustrating to me than the relative cost of the unit is the cost of being "down" due to malfunctioning or broken wheel bases (not to mention dealing with shipping and prepping extensive warranty write-ups and posting videos about the problems....). At that time, I switched to PC and was considering migrating right from TM to a direct drive wheel, but they all seemed like engineering projects from the motors themselves to the multitude of wheel fixing options and relative costs of one-off wheels.  This was right about the time the rumors surfaced that Fanatec would be developing a DD wheel of their own that would be compatible with their varied and reasonably priced steering wheels.  I bought a V2 wheel base and a Formula and BMW wheel and have been very well pleased.  I do long for a little more torque (esp on the BMW wheel), but usually don't drive with all sliders (game and unit) turned up all the way. I will be happy to have my V2 wheelbase as a (likely-not-needed) back-up unit for the new DD unit when it's available. 

    Now, when it comes to how the wheel should work, I have read through the above comments and will look forward to reading the others as they are added.From my perspective -- non-engineer, new(er) to the hobby/sport, and maybe most importantly, with a limited amount of time to dedicate to tweaking gear -- I hope Fanatec does not overcomplicate this wheel.  In my opinion, it should be up to the designers of the various titles to provide the code and adjustability to to the DD wheelbase.  If I imagine a scenario where I have the current PCars FFB menu combined with a similar menu for the wheelbase itself, it will be way too time consuming to author proper profiles to make it just seem "right" (see Mr. Matter's comment above). I finally broke down and downloaded a PCars FFB profile that got me close to where I think it should be on my V2 wheel as the PCars default settings were not satisfactory to me.  I know a lot of sim racers deride AC, but in my opinion, their FFB seems "right".  Whatever code they are sending to the wheelbase it is translating it into immersive feedback.  To me, it's up to them though (Kunos and others) to code the right information to make my wheel behave as they intend.  Car set up is tough; and I think it should be.  Real race teams spend months trying to set the car's set-up dialed in correctly, and it shouldn't be any different in sim racing (Although I am not sure that game set-up changes necessarily correspond to what the real world value of such a change would be, but that's another topic altogether). I really would not want to see wheel tweaks being required to squeeze time out of a lap.

    I like Natalie's idea above about being able to set the LEDs to preference. 

    Fanatec already does a great job of providing for real time adjustments through the menu available on the steering wheel to adjust SEN, FFB, etc....maybe a couple of new parameters could be added here without overly complicating things.  

    I am sure this will come down to what can be sold and at what price it can be made.  I don't know what the industry data is on # units of specialty controllers sold in a year, but I imagine Sim Racing is a small subset of that and those that would purchase a $1,000+ wheel is and even smaller subset.  Fanatec's main selling point IMO is system compatibility. The fact that this base can easily be inserted into the existing universe of Fanatec products is exciting and for me would be the key selling point.  The good news is, it appears that is covered. 
  • Are there any differences in steering FFB needed for a user with motion simulation and a user without? Having motion probably requires less FFB simulation sent to the steering as so many of the feedback can be felt in motion. So basically I have motion and would like to have an option for a steering system simulating only what a real driver feels.
    This is down to personal preference, but I find myself running very similar settings either with or without motion. I actually find myself running higher force on my wheel, especially if I am running a rig with really strong motion forces. I find that a nice strong wheel is less likely to be accidentally moved during really intense motion forces, like when the rig is shaking you around and your hanging on to the rim. I love the feeling of tearing up a bumpy track in something like a Porsche tin-top, when the motion is throwing me around and I'm hanging on to the steering wheel while also trying to fight strong forces coming from the wheel it is just so much fun and so immersive. You would swear your are experienceing real g-force lol. So while motion does help me to feel some ques that are normally felt through the wheel, that doesn't mean that I rely on the wheels FFB any less, both in terms of controlling the car and immersion. This is just my personal opinion, other people find themselves running much less steering force when running motion.
  • I'm all in for simple solutions, but I feel the power unit should be kept seperate from the motor. That would be much easier to fit my rig. The size of my actual V2 base prevents me from moving my triple screen setup further down (like it should be).
    Great to hear that my two wheels will fit, but I have my thoughts about the QR in combination with the more powerful torque of the DD base.
    The connections on my Porsche 918 RSR are starting to show issues from time to time and I need to use the locking screw, which is not so good when switching to the Formula rim and back... 
    A coiled USB cable connection would put less strain on the system.

    While I'm at it: a DTM/GT3 style wheel with bigger dimension than the Formula would be great too... ;-)
  • edited June 5

    Agree with many of the suggestions so far. Here are a couple of additional requests for now until I think of any not mentioned. 


    Mounting: What are the mounting options ? Based on having various models they should all be compatible to current Race seats and stands?

    Phone dock would be great for using the many UDP Apps out now.


    Tuning Menu: Allow features that enable preset modes to be saved. Eg; If you have friends over you can save a “Guest Preset”  also if driving games that range from Arcade to Sim it would be good to have those modes set as well. All this aside from the regular tuning options.


    Inputs: Is it possible to have a Headphone input? 


    Kill switch to prevent damaging the wheel when some games cause rapid oscillating.


    Power supply should definitely external.


    Software:  Please allow both Mac and PC Software updating. Also enable control of presets as above. Maybe even a mobile app to do so.


    As Natalie said Allow the ability to control what the LED shows and how.


  • Personally I think anything Playstation related (for now) should stay on the PlayStation compatibility blog. As we now know that PS4 will not work with the forthcoming gen 1 DD wheels. And try to keep this blog what it is intended for, just my two pence :)
  • This sounds awesome. Hope my next level wheel stand is up to this. Hopefully with a more standardized setup, more casual users can get by with basic settings. I race a few hours over a weekend and enjoy racing over tweaking ffb settings, pcars as an example, this seems a substantial problem with existing DD wheels imo. Bringing along our current rims is a major plus, thanks.
  • I think that there should be a basic tune for the entry level DD. Each step up could offer more in tuning functions and variables within those functions. I also think that at that time Fanatec will have a thread for DD users to share info. That'd be very handy.
  • edited June 6
    Im not a user of a DD steering wheel. I did consider buying it at one point, but after having a CSL Elite in hands, i put away the DD tought for some time, but now with this post....Oh boy, my eyes light up again hehe.

    In the tuning part, im gonna highlight a couple that were already mentioned, as that will give a bigger picture of what everyone wants:

    Possible addons like displays, be it 4" screens or digital type, with or without revlights ( i think you get the picture)

    or

    USB Data Output on the base so its possible to connect aftermarket displays (if you dont offer the above option).

    Ability to download community steering wheels setups and upload them to the steering wheel...so we can change between them in the steering wheel menu on the fly (less hassle to go to windows etc) - this is something that would eventually be usable by the other bases.

    Fine tune the FFB for things like bumps and kerbs as i feel sometimes these are exagerated.

    OFC maintaining most of the original settings as they are very good.

    Cant go much deeper as i dont know how a DD haddles neither have tried any of it.
    Hopefully i can get into the beta for this.

    Question: I was envolved in the CSL Elite beta test. Do i need to submit the beta tester form again?
  • I also own an OSW system with SimuCube and Small Mige. 

    I think most important thing is to make sure a very detailed, yet simple interface. 
    And a good education video that explane what does what. 

    Making people understand the inner working principles (with an everyday language) of a direct drive motor will have a positive effect. 

    But as my main suggestion, I think a configuration file system would be a good idea. 
    So that people could share their settings with a file. 
    You can also get support from top Sim drivers like members of Team Redline to share their configuration files for each sim.
    These could be downloadable from Fanatec web page.  
    This would be also good answer for the people who thinks like "Maybe I am faster but I just can't set my hardware right" 
    Or "I can never use such an advanced device, I would not know how to set it correctly"

    I totaly agree with many comments above regarding all adjustments should be realtime. 
    And Voice command sounds good but unfortunately it could be an issue when the language is not native. 
    Yet again we don't have much choise when it comes to VR. 

    I use my OSW system for over a year now and I think DD is the only way to go. 
    So I hope both pricing and user interface will be accesible for as much people as possible. 





     
  • Question... We all Hear Talk that DD is Better but we Never Hear it Explauned why its better other than ---> The FFB is Direct from the FFB motor or How Much more Powerful DD wheels are....Thomas can you give a Break Down on the whats and why DD is Better so all can understand---> I think a Good Break down of what Makes DD better would be Good info for many tthat are on the fence about the DD experience.
  • Question... We all Hear Talk that DD is Better but we Never Hear it Explauned why its better other than ---> The FFB is Direct from the FFB motor or How Much more Powerful DD wheels are....Thomas can you give a Break Down on the whats and why DD is Better so all can understand---> I think a Good Break down of what Makes DD better would be Good info for many tthat are on the fence about the DD experience.
    I agree. Some of the best sim racers don't use DD.
  • edited June 6
    Question... We all Hear Talk that DD is Better but we Never Hear it Explauned why its better other than ---> The FFB is Direct from the FFB motor or How Much more Powerful DD wheels are....Thomas can you give a Break Down on the whats and why DD is Better so all can understand---> I think a Good Break down of what Makes DD better would be Good info for many tthat are on the fence about the DD experience.
    I agree. Some of the best sim racers don't use DD.
    Some of the best sim racers use no force feedback at all!

    Having arrived at a Bondnar SS2 53 servo from a CSW V2 there is a distinct difference between non-DD and DD. It's probably been mentioned so often but one of the major differences is that DD wheels offer immediacy in their FFB while also eradicating any loss of FFB. This is something experienced with belt-driven wheels, as the belt acts as an intermediary between FFB and delivery. while you'd expect a DD wheel to offer superior FFB at higher values, due to the vast torque at hand it also offers supreme fidelity at lower forces, tho the point that you'll notice a change in the road texture at any given track!

    Hopefully the fact that a mass-producing company such as Fanatec is divulging into the DD stratosphere will persuade developers to cater their physics more in the direction of DD wheels, so we can truly take advantage of these devices. For me iRacing's current FFB doesn't get the best out of my Bondnar, while in Automobilista the subtlety on offer when driving any of the open wheelers is amazing. Same can be said for rFactor2, the Formula Renault 3.5 is A LOT of work. 

    It's also important to remember that a DD wheel won't make you any faster, as previously mentioned a lot of aliens use extremely minimal FFB, to the point that some will use none at all. For me, my reasoning to go DD was for further immersion, the detail that a DD wheel can give, be it the curbs, road texture, the flat spotting of a tyre is utterly amazing. 


  • The current DD wheels are superior mostly because of its torque and speed. This actually makes a really big difference on how easy you can catch an oversteering car for example.

    The subtle forces will be improved as well but up to a point where it is actually no longer realistic as you have some slack or loss in the steering system of a real car as well.

    If you use a belt drive like on the CSW V2.5 you are already pretty close to DD but with a more powerful motor and a single drive V-belt system I am sure that you could reach better results than on a bad DD system with a notchy motor. 

    DD is great but it has to be done properly and it is not true that a belt system is by default inferior.

     
  • The current DD wheels are superior mostly because of its torque and speed. This actually makes a really big difference on how easy you can catch an oversteering car for example.

    The subtle forces will be improved as well but up to a point where it is actually no longer realistic as you have some slack or loss in the steering system of a real car as well.

    If you use a belt drive like on the CSW V2.5 you are already pretty close to DD but with a more powerful motor and a single drive V-belt system I am sure that you could reach better results than on a bad DD system with a notchy motor. 

    DD is great but it has to be done properly and it is not true that a belt system is by default inferior.

     
    I agree. I think some DD are less like real steering than the CSWv2 and 2.5.
  • After reading the above suggestions, I think most of my wants and wishes have been covered, very well, by the way. There are some very informed people here who have great ideas and suggestions.
    The one thing that stuck in my mind was the ability to change settings, on the fly, in game, while driving.  This could be done on the steering wheel itself or by mapping to knobs on a button box.  It was make those of us who race in VR very happy!!!!!
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