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When it Works, it WORKS. 03/03/2014
This review is from: Saitek X52 Pro Flight System Controller
-As far as range of motion goes, this is one of the most accurate and precise sticks on the market.
-Many buttons means you won't have to multitask between a basic stick and a keyboard.
-Software-friendly (I've bound this stick to games as old as X-wing Alliance and as new as War Thunder)
-WORKS with Windows 8.1.
-Can work in USB 3.0 with proper, up-to-date Windows 8 drivers and Saitek Smart Programming Software.
Unlike its downgraded, stock cousin, the Pro suffers from some sort of quirk outside of the box. The first was improperly-installed (or aligned) microswitches in the dual trigger, which resulted in frequent misfires or the stick not firing at all. I had to RMA that stick because of it. The second, replacement unit suffers from an overly sensitive x-channel in the virtual mouse thumbstick on the throttle. Fortunately, this can be disabled in software or by disabling its HID-compliant mouse driver. Shame, though, because it is useful for panning your view in the cockpit of an airplane or ship in sims.
Saitek is starting to slip in product quality. Ever since they were acquired in 2007 by Mad Catz, their entire line of sticks suffers from some kind of failure out of the box. I bought both myself and my ex each a Saitek X-52 in late 2004, shortly after the original release. Until I purchased my Pro, the original 52 was still working.
I sought the Pro because of its alleged more-precise range of motion, which is no fluke. Its curves are more stable, allowing for better aim in games like War Thunder (which is currently dominated by mouse-aimers). The overall range of motion is better, and the LED customization is a nice touch. Plus: IT'S Freaking Black. I'm just bummed that I didn't buy one before Mad Catz bought Saitek. Since 2007, Saitek's quality just hasn't been the same.
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