Flight Simulator hardware for Beginning Flightsimmers
As a new - or beginning - flight simulation pilot, browsing through our catalog may be overwhelming; software, joysticks, yokes, rudder pedals, throttle quadrants, and even more.
Where to start? What do you need? Let's take a quick tour of the different flight simulator controls.
It all starts with downloading Flight Simulator
Starting out in the world of flight simulation is exciting! Whether you're a casual gamer or an aspiring pilot, the first step is to download and install Flight Simulator software.
Microsoft Flight Simulator is a great choice. It is a highly realistic flight simulator developed by Microsoft for PC and Xbox Series X|S. Microsoft Flightsimulator offers a wide range of aircraft to fly, from small single-engine planes to large airliners. Thanks to Bing Maps combined with advanced algorithms, Microsoft was able to recreate the world in one game. Flight Simulator provides an immersive flying experience for pilots of all skill levels. Microsofts Flight Simulator comes with tutorial flights and is very accessible. This is the reason MSFS is currently the most popular simulator used.
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Take control of your airplane
The most essential piece of hardware to control your airplane is a joystick or a yoke (also referred to as the 'steering wheel').
Generally, a joystick is used in some General Aviation aircraft, in some Airliners (i.e., Airbus), Fighter Planes, and Helicopters. A yoke is typically used in most GA Aircraft and most Airliners (i.e., Boeing or Bombardier). If you prefer to fly in an airplane controlled by a stick, we suggest choosing a joystick; if you prefer to fly an aircraft controlled by a yoke, you want to choose a yoke. If you don't have a preference (yet), we suggest a joystick to start with.
A joystick is intuitive, and changes are that you have used a stick before (i.e., on a PlayStation- or Xbox controller).
Learning how to use a joystick as a flight stick is easy for most people and doesn't require much effort. A flight stick also allows you to control the aircraft's pitch, roll, and yaw, as well as - at least at the devices we've selected - a throttle. This means you have full control in the air and on the ground (when taxi-ing).
If you want to fly with a yoke, you have to consider rudder pedals as well.
Most yokes don't have the additional axis for rudder control a joystick has. This means that you won't be able to control the aircraft on the ground, and to control your tail-rudder in the air (for that perfect cross-wind landing).
If you already know that Flight Simulator is here to stay, check out the flight sticks listed on our Flight Simulator hardware for Advanced Flightsimmers page. The hardware on that page is of higher quality and has more functionality, but it is also more expensive (compared to beginner flightsim hardware).
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Are you flying on Xbox Series X|S?
All Flight Simulator hardware listed on this page is fully compatible with Flight Simulator on Windows PC.
Are you a virtual pilot flying on Xbox Series X|S? Please make sure to check out our dedicated Flight Simulator Hardware for Console page, as not all hardware is compatible with Xbox.