Replacement for ageing Saitek X52


I’ve decided to replace my 15 year old Saitek X52 with something contemporary. Not so sure what that is right now, contemporary replacement.

I do some flying in DCS with the warbirds, the F-86, F-18 and lately the A-4. In arma 3 I go with helicopters.

I’ve seen that the Thrustmaster Warthog is no longer available, which probably would be the next goto option. I’ve read about Virpil and VKB, but I’m not familiar with how consumer friendly those offerings are. Any advice on how to proceed?


If you mean inexpensive, yeah, not so much. I have a Virpil CM2 and though I paid a lot for it, it’s a Tank. Should last at least as long as the CH Throttle it replaced (15-20 years) - if the world doesn’t drop USB devices anytime soon. In that regard it’s a good value. Only ones I’m familiar with.

I am into my forth year of hard use with my Logitech X-56. It is the only HOTAS that has been problem-free from the first minute to the millionth. And I have owned a bunch. There is not a stick made at any price that I would trade for it.


things have gotten incredibly expensive over the years. Even decade old designs such as the Warthog are selling for exorbitant prices. The X56 being in short supply certainly didn’t help in that regard.

Now the Warthog is no longer a mid to high end option, and is competing with thouse boutique brands, that, in my opinion, are making better quality products (The Virpil throttle, especially, blows the Thrustmaster out of the water).

VKB recently started selling it’s Gladiator NXT, with good acclaim and reasonable price. It would be my choice for the stick if I was buying today. I think it can be a great pair with a CH Pro Throttle for a while, and if one day you go for a left hand upgrade, I think it will remain relevant, even when coupled with a premium piece such as the Virpil.


I don’t think this is true. It is sold out on Logi’s website but nothing states that it is discontinued.

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You are right… Although they have gotten hard to find there is no official evidence of that. I’ll edit the post.

I’ll second your opinion that, currently, for the price, the X-56 is the most appropriate replacement.

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No, with consumer friendly I’d rather referred to ease of assembly and use of a software to program it. Price is luckily for me not that big of a problem.

I checked for the X-56 on some German web-shops, but it was nowhere available. I then went to virpil control and happily clicked away on a combination of their offerings (base, stick, throttle, control) and ended up just short of 1k Euro. It’s on back-order too, hmm.

Thanks for your recommendations!


If you want to shell out for the virpils, from what I hear, you can’t go wrong with them.

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Looking at Amazon out of curiosity, I saw that the CH Fighterstick and Throttles still seem to
be available.

I have the Saitek X-52 Pro now. While it’s a perfectly acceptable system, I have to admit that I miss my CH setup. Maybe not as sexy looking but sturdy and with more buttons and 4ways (but fewer rheostats) than Saitek.

I’ve had my 3 (FighterStick, Throttle, and pedals) for 20 years. The throttle was ‘twitching’ for the last few years (new pots, ports, etc wouldn’t fix it) and the mini-stick on it wasn’t as precise (used for TDC on most). Thus the Virpil replacing it.

The pedals are, to me, the weakest part: they just aren’t ‘steady’ and precise. My next purchase there.

The stick however is going strong. Very smooth and precise, just no resistance[1]. Admittedly I’m used to it and might find newer ones even better but, one thing at a time :slight_smile:

[1] An “elasto-metric, dual-axis, feedback” modification takes care of that (some call them rubber bands: looks horrid but I can’t see them in VR :slight_smile: )


I would suggest the Virpil WarBRD. It’s gimbal is a whole ‘nother world of precision and realism. I also own the T-50CM2, and both are entirely worth what they cost. They exude quality, and I can now just about relax while aerial refueling!

If I had the money I would probably not regret a Virpil or VKP. Anything that with a realistic feel and some built-in dampening are nice. I am not a fan of a flight stick that oscillates / wobbles back and forth like a bobblehead. One “Positive” Note on the X56 that I currently own is that you can do a simple spring mod that will get rid of the centring “SLOPPY” feeling. I even saw some MODS that use RC Shock Dampers that claim to make a great helicopter cyclic. With all the new helicopters coming to DCS it may be a nice enhancement to have a cyclic with shock dampers. If you like to tinker and mod things the X56 can be a fun challenge.

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Thanks again for all the comments! I’ve now placed an order with Virpil.
Seems my credit card first didn’t like their web-shop, but in a second attempt and after allowing the order on the credit card app it worked.
When it first declined the card I sent a message on alternative payment options to their support email. Answer was right here in the wee hours of the European morning, with some recommendations if credit card declines the payment.

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You might want to spend the time until delivery planning how to mount the stick base. Did you go for the WarBRD or T-50 base?

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I went with the WarBRD base. My plan is to mount it on a wooden plate I previously used to mount my old Fanatec wheel on. The wooden plate is temporarily attached to the desk with some screw clamp (hope that’s the correct English term). I hope this gives sufficient stability to the base.
Otherwise I’m open for suggestions.

I have the WarBRD myself. My initial solution was similiar to your idea. Should work ok. I switched to the Virpil desk mount later on. This allows the removal of the base plate and is a little bit more low profile.

Handy thread for me, as my aging X52 is on the way out. I placed an order for an X56. Should arrive this week. Playing BMS, MSFA2020, DCS, IL2 - should be ideal.

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