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Best Simulator Set Up - Hardware and Software

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Old 02-28-2015, 11:01 PM
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Joe T
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Default Best Simulator Set Up - Hardware and Software

At the risk of being told to use "search" (which I did), what do people think is the best set-up for a racing simulator to use to hone one's skills. With all the reporting on how video simulators/gaming helps develop skills (Nissan GT Academy, recent SCCA cover story, iracercoaching, etc), thought I would take a harder look at this. What do people recommend for hardware? How about software/simulation? I had a brief membership to iracing but was frustrated by an inability to pick the car I wanted and simply run laps. Maybe that has changed? It would be great to cut through all the noise and get some solid info and give it a real try. Thanks!
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Old 02-28-2015, 11:03 PM
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Frank 993 C4S
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This is what I got:

Sim Seats
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Old 02-28-2015, 11:10 PM
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Thanks. Assume that is a recommendation? Also, I forgot to mention I need something that is pretty much plug and play once it is set up. I know that if there is a lot of messing around to get it to work properly I will lose interest.
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Old 03-01-2015, 02:54 AM
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logitech wheel is good but the fanatec and frex stuff is better. there's also 40k rigs so depends on how much you want to spend.

http://www.cxcsimulations.com/

Ive never had a problem with running solo laps on any track in iracing.
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Old 03-01-2015, 05:53 AM
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Frank 993 C4S
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Originally Posted by Joe T View Post
Thanks. Assume that is a recommendation? Also, I forgot to mention I need something that is pretty much plug and play once it is set up. I know that if there is a lot of messing around to get it to work properly I will lose interest.
Correct - it works very well for me. Couple of hours set-up and plug and play.
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Old 03-01-2015, 08:26 AM
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I have:

triple monitor setup (a must IMO for racing, at least you can see what happens next to you)
Fanatec Clubsport wheel + pedals
a decent computer with graphics card that can drive those 3 monitors
a rig where the steering wheel isn't mounted on a post with a support in the middle, as this is really annoying when you want to heel and toe.

Hardest thing to choose was the rig to mount everything on. There are many different ones and all have pros and cons. I went for the GT Omega Pro one.
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Old 03-01-2015, 09:08 AM
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I find the challenge is not finding decent equipment and frames for this stuff, the problem is a unified, plug and play setup with the really good stuff (Fanatec V2 Wheel, for instance) that doesn't require some support.

Those issues are far fewer when you pony up for an integrated setup like Virtual GT or CXC.

It gets worse if you run multiple simulations to get the best combination of cars/tracks, etc.

That said, a majority of clients I work with remotely either set up their own or use the top SimSeats setup. We use iRacing because the US tracks are terrific and I can set up private online sessions lasting two or three hours to fully dissect a track. It is possible to just pound around (which is all I do on my own) in the "Test" mode with any car on any track you own.

Remote virtual coaching, specifically VERY detailed track study, is a very big part of my business and had been for many years.
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Old 03-01-2015, 09:24 AM
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Another thing, Joe. If you have not had experience in these, TEST before you do triple screen and especially any motion platform.

Depends on your physiology, but about 35% of the people I put on my static triple screen at VIR (and it is one of the best) experience some sort of motion sickness. Yes, I know the platform is static, but for some, not knowing to focus straight ahead and the inability for the brain to reconcile what they see and what they DON'T feel is a pretty common issue. This is well cited in the military and even in F1.

Motion is a whole 'nother ball of wax...
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:44 PM
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Are there any known fixes for this Motion sickness?
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Old 03-02-2015, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ProCoach View Post
Motion is a whole 'nother ball of wax...
I wasn't really thinking about a motion platform when reading the question That's an entirely different budget.
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Old 03-02-2015, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by ProCoach View Post
I find the challenge is not finding decent equipment and frames for this stuff, the problem is a unified, plug and play setup with the really good stuff (Fanatec V2 Wheel, for instance) that doesn't require some support.

Those issues are far fewer when you pony up for an integrated setup like Virtual GT or CXC.
I really wonder what support you talk about?

I just got a decent Windows 8 gaming pc, Fanatec hardware, keyboard, mouse, 3 screens and I got a subscription to iRacing. Everything just worked out of the box.
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Old 03-02-2015, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by 333pg333 View Post
Are there any known fixes for this Motion sickness?
Most folks don't have any issues with a single screen or projector. It's the three screens without bezel correction or set up very well that are the issue. Latency or lag in the rendering aggravate the problem, so a better computer (video card) can help, too.

Originally Posted by ir_fuel View Post
I wasn't really thinking about a motion platform when reading the question That's an entirely different budget.
I understand. But there are more than a few I know in the Rennlist community that have or have the budget for motion platforms. The D-Box system on a VisionRacer platform is a good compromise between complexity, function and value, IMO.

Originally Posted by ir_fuel View Post
I really wonder what support you talk about?

I just got a decent Windows 8 gaming pc, Fanatec hardware, keyboard, mouse, 3 screens and I got a subscription to iRacing. Everything just worked out of the box.
I'm glad for you! If one only uses iRacing, that's the least maintenance intensive solution, but I know you had to use AMD's Eyefinity or nVidias similar solution to set up the triple screens, unless you bought it as a package.

For you (who writes your own code for your commercial offering) and I, geeks that we are, of course its not too bad. We can tweak and troubleshoot to our hearts delight, especially the setup on the Fanatec wheel, but for most looking for a truly plug and play, get-in-sit-down-and-drive solution, this technology is still a pain if you want it really right.

Believe me, I have been building my own gaming computers since the days of 3dfx cards (?!?!) and the advent of the Pentium chip, and while the rendering is incredible now, the integration of all the required components done right (and keeping that combination humming) is a challenge. That's why it's worthwhile to talk to people who supply commercial systems like CXC or someone who supplies packages for this specific purpose, assembled and tested beforehand and sent to customers that way.
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Old 03-02-2015, 05:23 PM
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i just ordered a thrustmaster and these pedals

http://ecci6000.com/images/6000_11_m.jpg

i run the obutto cockpit with three screens, its a simple setup and doesnt break the bank.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by ProCoach View Post
Believe me, I have been building my own gaming computers since the days of 3dfx cards (?!?!) and the advent of the Pentium chip, and while the rendering is incredible now, the integration of all the required components done right (and keeping that combination humming) is a challenge.
No need to tell me.

I used to write 3D rendering engines before 3dfx cards even existed, followed by a 7 year "career" in (console) game development.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:36 PM
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And indeed I forgot about running the nVidia tool to enable triple screen as one huge monitor with bezel correction.
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