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Old 02-27-2007, 01:33 AM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default Logitech G25 Racing Wheel

When it comes to racing wheels, the choices are slim. Today we take out Logitech's G25 for a test drive to see if it can live up to our expectations. With stainless steel and real leather, it's off to a fast start but can it deliver where it counts... in the games?

You can read the full review here and discuss it here!
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Old 03-02-2007, 11:26 AM   #2
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Hello,

You got a nice review there, I sure like it. Especcially because it's about a racing wheel.
I got a Thrustmaster 360 Modena Pro, it's a cheap one, but very nice. It aso doesn't have Force Feedback.
Some time ago I tried to race with my Thrustmaster games like NFS Most Wanted, but unfortunatly I didn't like it, because the game just doesn't feel that realistic while TOCA Race Driver 3 does feel good.
When buying my Thrustmaster some years ago, I didn't care about having no Force Feedback, but now with many realistic games coming up I begin to think of buying a good racing wheel with Force Feedback.

Actually, there was only one thing. My dad got a ForceRS from ACT-Labs. It was very expensive, and he got an Shifter with it. The shifter does also have the sequential choise of gears or just the 'normal-car' mode. Unfortunatly only the game profided with the wheel is working right with the shifter. Other games dont work with the 'normal-car' mode.

I want to know if you had any problems with other games then Carbon with the Shifter.
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Old 03-02-2007, 07:14 PM   #3
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(title of my previous post is abit wrong, I thought it was a title for under my name... lol)

Another thing about the G25 I really wanna know; My dad experienced problems sometimes that the steering wheel didnt go to the exact middle when he SHOULD have to do that. Instead of that, I was slightly to the left. And the wheel "thought" that to be the middle. So you might think; Recalibrate. But unfortunatly that didnt work, what only would work is restart the pc AND power off/on the steering wheel.

I really want to know if you (Techgage) experienced any troubles like this...
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Old 03-02-2007, 09:50 PM   #4
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Good review.

I will be getting one of these into my posesion very shortly, and will give my full oppinion of it. As a person who has been useing a Logitech Driving Force Pro with my PC for the last couple years, i have a pretty good idea what to expect going in with teh G25. Obviously im also a big Sim Racing fan, so i will be able to give plenty of good feedback on how well it works in games like GT Legends, GTR2, rFactor, and the late great Richard Burns Rally.

One thing i want to point out with the article is the comparison of rFactor to Gran Turismo. Thats like comparing...well, i would say it but i knwo Rob would edit it. Lets just say "pretending" to the "real thing" and leave it at that.

But Gran TUrismo is still at its heart a table bassed emulation system that is still built around an arcade style physics engine. Its very simple to get behind the wheel and drive fast. Most anyone that can make a clean lap with all driving aids turned off in Gran Turismo, couldent make two corners in rFactor. A sad truth. rFactor is a real is a real racing simulation. Gran Turismo is a driving game that does a decent job at emulationg driving.

So, now that thats all cleared up, hopfulyl somtime next week i can give my full impresion on thee wheel.
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Old 03-02-2007, 11:22 PM   #5
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Mr Oizo -

The issie with your pops wheel.

Its a common problem on Logotech wheels, the centering mechanism in the drivers is screwed up.
It happens with my friends old Logitech Momo Racing wheel, my Driving Force Pro, and ive heard issue witht he G25 as well.

First thing to do is go back into the window game controler control panel, and do a quick recalibration there. Not in the game, and not int eh logitech drivers. But in teh WIndows Control panel. Once youve done a full sweep through lock to lock twice, it should auto center it self properly.

If that doesnt work, disconnect teh wheel from teh PC, reconnect it, and then recalibrate it (even if it comes back to 0 after plugging it in).

Its annoying, but its just a bug in Logitechs drivers that has never really been fixed.
You shouldent have t reboot your computer to correct it though.
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Old 03-03-2007, 06:33 AM   #6
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@ Buck-O

My dad had that problem with his ACT Labs Force RS steering wheel, so this problem is common with also Logitech? But we tried many times to recalibrate but sometimes it just didnt went right, so we had to reboot the pc AND the wheel. Then it was right again. But very annoying.

I must have to say that since we got a new pc and so newer games like TOCA Race Driver 3 we dont have such problems much anymore. With our previous pc we had it almost everytime we were racing for some time.

But, this G25 is very nice, I will see if I buy one of those. Great review.
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Old 03-07-2007, 09:44 PM   #7
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Oizo, one of the issues with that problem was part of a DirectX issue with Dire3ct Input values being wrong. So make sure you have run all of the proper Windows Updates, and are running the latest versions of DirectX avliable.

The issue is mostly all resolved now. But can creap up from time to time.

Like i said, go into the WINDOWS calibration window, not through the Logitech profiler. THe profiler jsut reads inputs, and doesnt correct the values.
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Old 03-08-2007, 04:54 AM   #8
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So i had the oportunity to sit down for about 3 hours last night with the G25, and give it a good once over and see how it feels.

First thing, Instalation.
Instaling the wheel was no less painful then it was with the driving force pro in terms of software. So if your used to the DFP on the PC, then you will have no issues with the G25.
One thing that really impressed me was the cable managment under the wheel mount. In how it had the cable troughs for all of the wireing to fit though, and be nicely organized out of the wheel. One thing i did find annoying was no surface lables on the underside of the wheel structure to direct you to where the plugs where supposed to go. Its not difficult if your at the right angle to see them. But it still would have been east to see, on the bottom face, power goes here, pedal box here, and shifter here, in nice little universal icons. I just felt like the recievers where "hidden" from view a bit.

Actually attatching the wheel to the devices was pretty straight forward. Again, if youve used the DFP you are way ahead of the game in terms of useage. I cant help but think there is still some room for improvement in teh mounting design though. Especially on the wheel box. For the shifter, they employ the twist knob, and a bottom screw to help completely and tightly secure the shifting platform so that it doesnt wobble when tugged on. Yet the wheel doesnt have this feature. And i found that the wheel would rock up and down on the clamping axis as you where driving agressivly. ANd this was on a 1 inch think square edged table. Which is, in my oppinion, ideal conditions for mounting a wheel to. Given the dual motor design, and the full 900 degree rotation potential of the wheel, this was a bit disconserting to see the wheel flopping and flexing like that.

One of the other issues with the mounting was the twist knobs. WHy did they have to make them retractable? I get that for presenting a cleaner look, it helps. But they become a bit frustrating after a while. You pop them up, tighten the wheel down, push down on one, it clicks and locks in, then puch down on the other one, and it doesnt want to lock, so you spend the next two minutes fiddling with it trying to get the damn thing to click down. Then once it finally gets locked, trying to unlock it becomes equally as frustrating. Trying to turn the knob in the locked posision to get it to release on the catch. After fighting this on both the wheel and the shifter, i finally left them all in the up posision. They arent enough in my way in either case to warrent my locking them down. And i think they look just fine that way. At least now, the wheel can be easily moved if need be.

The pedal box was the nicest and most welcome change from the DFP's design. It has more front weigting, and the carpet strip is now wider, and deeper. Which helps to really stick the pedals down to a carpeted surface. If your DFP pedals move on you, i can assure you, these....will not. Good job logitech.

One thing that was frustrating after settign the whole wheel up was the sheer amount of wires coursing across the desktop from it. One for the power, one for the USB, one to the Pedals, and one to the shifter houseing. Nothing suprising there, but it was just a bit daunting to look at them all spread out. And could be an issue if you dont have the desktop realistate to house them all. Having to fight with wires to reach your keyboard.

On to the actual testing...

Being extremely familier with the DFP, i had a pretty good idea of what to expect, and set the wheel up in default in teh same way i had set the DFP to get a full idea of what i was expecting, and for direct comparison.
In the windows control panel (I bypass the Profiler software all together unless i absolutely have to), i set the wheel rotation to 360 degrees (the common standard that seems to be being adopted by the sim racing comunity), left all of the force values at default, and set the centering spring strength to 25%.

First on the line was rFactor from ISI. And the latest and arguably greatest comunity mod, GP76. Which is a mod designed around the 1976 Formula 1 season, with classic Formula 1 cars.
Imidately i felt right at home with the G25. The rotation was spot on with where i expected it to be, and the feedback was percise and accurate.
At first i was very suprised, i thought that the force of the feedback was very weak, and contemplated turning the force values up. But i decided to continue on with my hot laps, and see where it went. I was plesently suprised when i spun out, hit a wall, and the wheel jerked out of my hands. Literally.

It was only after that that i began to realize that is no so much that the force is weak, its theat the force is so incredibly accurate, and lifelike that it becomes almost transparent. Unlike most wheels that overcompensate for the effects of motion, the G25 is more natural, and feels more percise. And once you get used to that, it becomes a far more enjoyable experience, and you find that your reaction to a particular feed back is much more direct.

The brake pedal took some getting used to, actually having a solid feel to it. Im used to partially modulating the brakes input with nothing but a simple linier return spring on the DFP, not varying the force applied to the pedal. Once i got used to that change, and adjusted my style, i found that the brake pedal was actually alot more natural, and had better feedback to it. Just took a while to get used to is all.

One major reason i selected GP76 was to use the clutch and the gated shifter. Unfortunately, these, the shining pieces of the G25's design, where for me, also its biggest let downs.
First is the clutch. The clutch is a good idea. Its about time someone big like logitech stepped up with a proper clutch pedal. However, implimentation of that pedal, leaves much to be desired.
Saddly, the games dont suport it that well. And this of course is not Logitechs fault...but... ALmsot every race sim tested had the same issue. It treated the clutch as an on/off switch. Even tweaking with the linierarity of the values, and messing with dead zones, the same effect was to be had. It read the pedal just as smooth and as linier as teh gas and brake when calibrating, but the values in relation to its implimentation, in every game, was abismal. Hopfully developers work to fix how the clutch pedal works in their games.
The seconed issue with the clutch, was the pedal itself. More specificly the pedals shape. Its exactly the same shape and size as the brake pedal. And when your going through a serioes of corners where your going through the gears, and trying to rev match your downshifts, then try and left foot brake, its VERY easy for your left foot to confuse the two pedals, becuase they are so close, and have the exact same pedal face. So your expecting to brake, and instead coast the far right into the wall. Hopfully the pedal faces can be switched out with real world pedals, so the face can be changed to somthing smaller that is easily and directly recognizable as a clutch.

The Gated shifter, while a great concept, and well engineered design to allow for both sequential, and gated shifting on one device still leaves alot to be desired in terms of feel and use.
In gated mode the throws are way to far apart. You feel like your driving a truck, not a sports car. The other issue is that all of the gates are equally and mechanicly spaced with no lock out function. Im sure this is the way it had to be for placing the sifter on either side of the wheel. But, the gates dont flow. If your in seconed gear, and go to third, its only a matter of accidently rushing, and pushing it into 5th. And if your in 5th, and try to sift into 6th, theres nothing to stop you from going back down into 4th. Ot being in 5th and downshifting to 2nd instead of 4th. Basicly what im trying to say is that there is no flow through the gears as their is on a normal car. Sure you can mis shift on a standard transmission in a real vehicle, but for the most part, if your in seconed, and push the lever out of gear, and up, it will naturally track to 3rd, then pull back, naturally into 4th, and then push forward, naturally into 5th, etc. And some cars even have a mecnanism that locks out the gear from dropping down to many gears that could damage the engine or the transmission. I dont know how they would go abount making some sort of mechanism to make the shifter operate in this way, but if its at all possible, it need to be done. Sure, the shifter as it is, is better then nothing, but its so vague in telling you what gear your in, it becomes more frustrating then helpful.This was always one of my biggest gripes with the ActLabs RS Shifter, and while better in most everyway to the RS still leaves alot to be desired. And the problem only gets worse when driving a car that has less then 6 gears. At least that was correctable with the various shifter plates for the RS shifter from Act Labs, years ago. At any rate, it could still use some refinment in letting you know where your at, and providing some resistance and direction while shifting. I think the shifter would feel much better, and be way more tactle if they made it feel a bit "gummed up", as though you where pushing the shift linkage through a tub of greese. Just a little resistance to tell you where you are.
Another problem with teh shifter, and again this isnt Logitechs fault, but alot of games, as you go between gears, registeres being "out of gear" as Neutral. ANd when you put it into your next selected gear, it gives a "shift delay", as it transitions from one gear to the other (as though a "person" where taking a pause to shift). This made gear selection very notchy, and very unpredictable as to when teh power would come in. THis problem was compounded when useing the clutch, becuase some games considered clutch engagement to be "neutral status", which meant the gear engagment shift delay was in effect each time you let the clutch out. AGain, the developers need to get out there and make sure the games support the new features.

Next was putting the shifter into sequential mode. This solved the above issues with the shifting delay, and allowed for easier, no clutch rev matched downshifts and upshifts, without the shift delay issue croping up. But the problem i had with the sequential mode, which is just part of the engineered design of useing the same stick for both methods, is that it lacked tactile feel. It didnt really give a resonding click or notching sensation when shifting between gears. And the throw that was far to long on the gated selection, was now short and restrained, very unnatural. It did however work quite well as the hand brake lever in Richard Burns Rally.

The next area of issue was the paddle shifters. I like micro switches, i think microswitches are great little devices. I DONT think that micro switches should be implimented in the way they are on teh paddle shifters of the G25. WHen playing RIchard Burns Rally, GTR2, and other racing mods in rFactor, the paddles became very anoying. Especially in RBR, where i often cover one of the paddles before upshifting or downshifting, becuase the shifts are so short to keep the car in its torque range. Simply applying pressure on the padle was enough to cause it to switch a gear. Now, this would be fine, but, the actual "click" of the shifting action doesnt come untill the END of the pull, not at the begining. I would have rather prefered to have a physical button switch with feedback to it, then a microswitch that registers on pressure, before the "click" ever happens. I was constantly double shifting, and over reving on downshifts as a result of this.

No, despite these critisisms, the G25 is still the best wheels for the price out there. In order to get a wheel from another company with this set of features, you would have to spend close to $1000 on components to get the same level of functionality you get with the G25.
THe G25 is a very solid wheel, with some very excelent build quality, and fantastic force feed back with its double motor system, and excelent pedal box, with a fantastic brake pedal, and a clutch. Its just really let down by the issues with both the shift lever, and shift padels.
I hope that the modding comunity takes to heart with the G25 like they have with the DFP and maybe finds a solution to these issues.

And now for the $300 question...if you have a DFP, is it worth it to get the G25?
For myself...no. My DFP has been modified with alot of peripherals from FrexGP (A japanese company who modifys DFP's), including an authentic Momo steering wheel with real suede wrap on it. As well as a proper set of hinged shifter padles, and a modified sequential shifter stalk. . But the mods also cost me damn near as much as a G25 would have.At present i prefer the feel of the DFP with the Frex mods over the G25, in every way but the accuracy of the force feed back. My DFP feels "grainy" and loose in comparison. But the action of the components is accurate, and percise, unlike thsoe of the G25.

If you dont have a DFP, and the idea of the features intrigue you, then definately pick it up. IF you already have a DFP, and absolutely must have the gated shifter, and clutch pedal, then your choice is obvious. But if your undecided and own a DFP, go test a G25 somewhere and decide for yourself if its worth the money.



Pluses:
+ Fantastic Force Feedback, very realistic.
+ 900 degree total rotation.
+ Backwards compatability with the DFP in all PS2 games that support the DFP.
+ Leather wrapped wheel will last long, and looks nice.
+ Option for Gated and sequential Shifter operation.
+ Fantastic pedal box with a great feeling brake pedal, and a clutch!
+ Cable managment on wheel housing well thought out.
+ Top notch build quality.

Minuses:
- Gated shifter is frustrating to use, and vague. Throw to long. Not all games support it properly.
- Shift stalk in sequential mode lacks feel, and range of motion.
- Padle shifter microswitches far to sensitive.
- Clutch pedal operation not properly implimented in all games.
- Wheel mounting system could be more stable.
- Labling of jacks on underside of wheel housing would be helpful.
- Cost.



THis weekend, i will be hooking the G25 up to my PS2, and giving it a full test in GT4, and Enthusia Racing.
Stay tuned.

Last edited by Buck-O; 03-08-2007 at 05:23 AM.
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Old 06-01-2007, 12:51 PM   #9
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Thank you very much Buck-O for your excellent review on the G25. I am thinking of buying the G25 and yours was the most honest review I have read so far.

I am not happy that techgage in their review neglected to mention most of the issues you mentioned and only glossed over one of the problems you had with the wheel. It's not really good enough and your review has put theirs to shame.

Techgage, I hope you are able to take some constructive criticism and maybe improve things in the future.
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Old 07-20-2007, 11:48 PM   #10
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Default Same problem here

I dont image this to be a real problem. I just got my G25 as a gift, and experienced the same `off centre` calibration. Besides, its only a couple of degrees off, and are you really going to notice it when your taking a corner at 100 kph with your hair on fire...lol
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Old 12-11-2007, 01:14 AM   #11
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Question will this work ?

Will this possibly work with ps3 80gb ,or do you know of one with gated shifter that will ? I dont care much about force feed back as I do gated shifter. thanks , [email protected]
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Old 12-11-2007, 08:00 AM   #12
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Default Need Some Help with my Logitech G25 Racing Wheel

Hi

I've been having some problems with my G25 Racing Wheel. I've had it for about a month now and its started to play up on me.
While in the game the green LED lights on the gear shifter turn off and the
G25 Racing Wheel dies. i've made sure all the power cables are plug in.
But now its more of a problem then before... when the power to the wheel dies i unplug it from the USB plug it back in and it seem to work for a while and then dies again.
When i start windows and then try to play NFS SPro as soon as the game loads and u get the load game... at that point the Logitech G25 Racing Wheel turns it self off.
I've installed new driver and it still does the same thing...

Does anyone have a simillar problem or maybe knows how to fix it. please help
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Old 12-11-2007, 08:39 AM   #13
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Try it on another PC and see if it still happens. I would be willing to bet there is a problem with your motherboard and it's USB ports and not the wheel. But as I said, trying the wheel on another PC will answer that question quickly enough.
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Old 12-11-2007, 07:16 PM   #14
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Hi

Well i dont have another computer to test out if the G25 Racing Wheel has a problem or my motherboard. Is there a way to test the motherboard out to find out if it has a problem.
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Old 12-11-2007, 07:21 PM   #15
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Do you have any other USB devices? Maybe a USB external DVD or hard disk drive? Flash Card readers also push USB ports too if you have one of them. THe main reason I blame the board is that I had a motherboard with a bad USB controller do what your system does. BUT, that does not mean the wheel is the problem.
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