Today’s racing games have never delivered a more realistic racing experience. But to get the most fun out of them you need the right setup. The best is a simulator seat with a large screen and a gaming racing wheel.
No matter which racing game you’re playing, a good racing wheel can take your racing experience to a whole new level by providing realistic feedback that lets you literally feel the thrill of driving at high speed on a race track.
Overview Most Popular Gaming Racing Wheels
Good racing wheels don’t cost the world and the fun they provide is well worth the dollars. Here are the top 5 gaming racing wheels.
Thrustmaster is a racing wheel that is compatible to work with PS3 and PS4. It is one of the best racing wheels which you can get for under $300. The overall build quality of Thrustmaster T300RS is very good, the texture on the wheel makes it easy to handle and the metal base in the center of the wheel looks premium. The base of the unit features two Pedals which are very good in terms of quality and after testing the Thrustmaster T300RS for more than 5 hours there was no issue with the performance of the pedals. However, one thing we noticed is that the unit gets hot when you use it for long periods but it is bearable.
Thrustmaster T300RS comes with force feedback which is very strong and when you hit the car or side railing in the race you actually feel the impact which is just amazing. However, one downside to this powerful motor is that the fan ejects the hot air right at the top of the unit which can be uncomfortable if you use it for longer periods. The fan noise is not very loud and it is almost at the same level as PS3 fans so it will not annoy you.
The base also lacks the Clutch which may be a deal-breaker for hardcore gamers but the company deliberately ditched the clutch to save costs and according to our information, currently, there is no racing game on PS4 that really demands a clutch. The overall feel of the wheel is sound and solid, it spins up to 1080-degree rotation which can be stopped at 270 degrees using the software. So if you are looking for a good racing wheel with official PS4 support then Thrustmaster T300RS is for you.
- Good build quality
- Genuine and friction-free force feedback with a powerful motor.
- The Wheel is interchangeable
- Offers 1080-degree wheel rotation
- Adjustable pedal set
- Overheating issue
- No Clutch
Logitech is a well-known brand in the gaming industry and it is known for its awesome gaming products and Logitech G29 is no exception. Logitech G29 carries the look of real top-end classic wheels and has a leather finish which makes it extremely comfortable. Logitech has done an amazing job with the Logitech G29 and makes it look extremely real, no one can say that it isn’t a Real wheel. Logitech G29 is upgraded from the classic Logitech G27 which was also a very good racing wheel but the Logitech G29 offer comes with the awesomeness of Logitech G27 but with many improvements that offer the very good package under $300.
The quality of the Logitech G29 is very solid, the company designed in a way that it can handle rough handling very well.
The unit has an air exhaust on the side of the wheel which makes it easy for players to use the unit for a longer period. The base of the unit is mostly plastic which may be a deal-breaker but it does the job. The base also features the accelerator, brake, and clutch. There were some brake issues in G27 which have been addressed in Logitech G29.
Logitech G29 also features force feedback which is strong enough to cause arm ache after half-hour gameplay which shows how powerful the motor is. Overall, Logitech G29 is designed specifically for PlayStation consoles but you can also use it with Gaming PCs. For PC you can install the Logitech gaming software and for PlayStations, it is simple plug-and-play.
Overall, we liked the build quality and performance of the Logitech G29. We also liked the button layout on the wheel which is very intuitive and the buttons are totally accessible without removing your hands from the wheel which is awesome. The base is also made of plastic. Logitech G29 features the clutch which was missing in Thrustmaster T300RS. If you are a serious racing fan and looking for an affordable racing wheel with decent build quality then Logitech G29 is for you.
- Decent Build Quality
- Good Force Feedback
- Fully Compatible with PS3, PS4, and PC.
- Decent Pedals
- Stick Shift not included, unlike Logitech G27.
Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition
Ferrari is one of the most popular car manufacturers which is known for its racing cars and you will find the Ferraris in almost every racing game. Thrustmaster TX Racing wheel brings the awesomeness of the famous Ferrari 458 Italia Edition to you for a very nominal price. You can find more high-end replicas of Ferrari 458 Italia’s racing wheel but they are very expensive and don’t offer good value for the money.
The overall look of Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is almost pretty similar to the original Ferrari 458 Italia. The wheel is made up of plastic and rubber which is good to hold but it is not as comfortable as Logitech G29. However, Thrustmaster offers the $150 upgrade to the Alcantara and leather wheels which give the premium look to the wheel.
Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is fully compatible with PlayStation consoles however you can also use it with your PC. The wheel features the signature logo of Ferrari and it has buttons on either side of the wheel that can be used easily and you will not have to remove your hands from the wheel to use them.
Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition’s force feedback is one of the bests in the market and it is powerful enough to give your arms ache after 1 hour of play. The motor mechanism of Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is also far more superior than the likes of Logitech G29, as Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition uses the brushless, all-belt-driven system whereas Logitech G29 uses the sets of gears. The performance of the wheel is also much smoother than any other force feedback wheel. If you are looking for a wheel with the best force feedback and smoother feel then Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is best for you. Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is also perfect for games like project cars and dirt rallies as its force feedback is best suited for these types of games.
The base of Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is also good but the pedals aren’t better than Logitech G29. The base is mostly plastic it has a cheap look which is commonly found is racing wheels setup in this price category, but the build quality is decent and it will hold up well.
Overall, Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition is an amazing racing wheel that offers much better performance than many other racing wheels out there but there is also some compromise that you normally make in all racing wheels. If you are a Ferrari fan then you will love the Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition.
- The unit is made up of plastic but it is durable.
- The almost perfect replica of a Ferrari 458 Italia.
- The wheel has a good grip
- Metallic pedals have a good amount of resistance similar to real racing cars.
- Plastic base
- The wheel offers 270-degree rotation which may be a deal-breaker for some people.
If the price isn’t an issue for you and you want the premium gaming racing wheel then Thrustmaster T-GT is for you. It is one of the best racing wheels you can get in 2018 and it comes with top-end features and a premium build which will take your gaming experience to a whole new level. The overall build quality of Thrustmaster T-GT is top-notch. The wheel is crafted with genuine leather which makes it extremely comfortable to hold. The wheel diameter is about 70% of the regular wheel you get in your cars. In our opinion, the wheel diameter is manageable and you can get used to it once you start using it regularly.
Thrustmaster T-GT is specifically designed for the PS4 platform but you can also use it with your PC and there is no performance issue when you use it with your PC. The hardware performance of Thrustmaster T-GT is also on another level and it will definitely satisfy the racing game enthusiast. The wheel features the force feedback linearity that is 100% proportional to the force determined in the game, 40-watt linear brushless force feedback for dynamic torque, and four times great Stall force which makes your gaming experience more realistic. The unit also features a monophasic cooling mechanism which ensures that your unit stays cool during extended gaming sessions.
Overall, Thrustmaster T-GT is a good build unit, that offers a great gaming experience. The price is a little bit stiff but totally worth the money if you want a great racing experience.
- Excellent build quality
- Best force feedback
- Great PS4 Control mapping
- Good Pedal Set
- The wheel diameter is only 70% of the regular wheel.
Thrustmaster T150 Pro
Thrustmaster T150 Pro is another great racing gaming wheel that offers good value for money and great performance under $200. Thrustmaster T150 Pro is the successor to the Thrustmaster T150 which was also a very good gaming racing wheel but Thrustmaster T150 Pro comes with a Clutch pedal that was missing in Thrustmaster T150.
The quality of Thrustmaster T150 Pro is good, the wheel has a rubbery feel which is not as comfortable as Logitech G29’s leather wheel but it has a good grip. The unit is made up of hard plastic which is durable and if you use it with care, it can last for many years. The wheel rotates 1080 degrees, which is good but more than 900 is not really needed. The wheel also features buttons in the center that you can access without removing your hands from the wheel. The base of Thrustmaster T150 Pro is also made of plastic, but as it is hard plastic so it is durable. The base features three pedals, an accelerator, a brake, and a clutch. However, there is no gear shifter included with the Thrustmaster T150 Pro and you will be using the paddle shifters. The T3PA pedals are good in spite of their plastic build.
Thrustmaster T150 Pro also comes with force feedback which is strong enough to leave you with sour muscles after some time gaming. It is on the same level as T300 and Logitech G29. Overall, Thrustmaster T150 Pro is a good option for those who want a good gaming racing wheel at an affordable price.
- Well Build and Durable
- Strong Wheel Feedback
- Good performance
- Too much plastic
Gaming companies release a lot of gaming racing wheels every year so it is very difficult to pick the top 5 gaming wheels. But some wheels stay around. If you are looking for a good gaming racing wheel with a reasonable price to go with your gaming racing seat, then you can either go for Thrustmaster T300RS or Logitech G29. If you want the best premium racing gaming wheel then Thrustmaster T-GT is a good option for you. If you are a Ferrari fan then you will love the Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel Ferrari 458 Italia Edition. Thrustmaster T150 Pro is also a very good gaming racing wheel but you can get the Logitech G29 or Thrustmaster T300RS at the same price which offers much better value for money than the Thrustmaster T150 Pro.
You can find this and other great gaming steering wheels on Amazon.
Why get a Racing Wheel For Gaming?
If you are a racing game fan and favor an authentic and realistic driving experience then a good gaming racing wheel is an essential piece of equipment that you can not do without.
Good steering wheels for gaming can provide feedback and vibration that gives you the feeling to be in your car and be right in the middle of the race.
What Different Racing Wheels Are There?
In general, three types can be distinguished:
Steering Wheel without Feedback
The cheapest gaming steering wheels do not give any feedback. They work fine and you can use them in your favorite games, but feedback is the big fun factor using a gaming wheel.
Racing Wheel with Vibration
In a gaming steering wheel with built-in vibration, the wheel will vibrate when driving on poor surfaces or in collisions. More fun than a wheel without feedback as you get some sensation of driving.
Racing Wheel with Force Feedback
Top Gaming racing wheels have Force Feedback. This additional function, in addition to vibration, transmits very realistic sensations when cornering, when on uneven surfaces or in case of collisions. It responds depending on the driving situation in different strengths, making it easier or harder to turn in a certain direction. So if you’re cornering a bend at high speed, you’ll need to turn the wheel more or less in order to counter-steer, just like in reality.
The wheel rotation is an important factor that you should consider when buying a gamer steering wheel. It indicates how many turns the wheel can turn. 360 degrees is one full turn.
Cheap models have usually a small steering range, often only 180 degrees. Picturing this on a clock face this is only from 9 till 3 o’clock. Only half a turn, not much at all. But in the world of racing, this is enough. When racing you want to go fast and steering slows you down. Driving the racing line on race tracks usually requires no more than 90 degrees in either direction.
However, many gaming wheels have a much larger rotation range. The best is a rotation of 900 degrees. 900 degrees means the steering wheel can be rotated more than once completely in both directions – in each case 450 degrees. This is about 1-and-a-quarter each way, about as realistic as in a real car.
The box that makes up the main body is called “Wheelbase”. The Wheelbase contains mechanics and the technology that makes the racing wheel tick. The motors that “create” the force feedback and the vibration effect are usually low maintenance brushless servomotors. Those have the advantage that they are less prone to wear and tear than motors with carbon brushes. The mechanics, speak the pulleys, gears, and axle shafts should always be made of high-quality materials so that long-term use is easily possible. The wheelbase has brackets with which it can be mounted onto the receiving bracket of the racing seat or onto the gaming desk.
Pay attention also to the material. Cheaper steering wheels usually are made of too much plastic which might break when things get tough. More expensive steering wheels resort to stronger fiber plastics or aluminum or stainless steel.
The production process is important too. Even if the best raw materials are used, if they are quickly and poorly processed the outcome is not much better than when cheap material is used. Unfortunately, this is often difficult to see until is broken and the sloppy work comes to light. Here you have to rely on the manufacturer’s reputation.
The feel is important. Cheap stuff feels uncomfortable and just not right. Good steering wheels where material and processing are of quality, the wheel with grippy rubber covered, are synonymous equally different in the hand and give you the feeling that everything is right.
Pedals and Clutch
Almost all steering wheels come together with pedals in a set. The racing steering wheel got to go together with pedals to deliver the ultimate driving experience.
Most sets consist only of throttle and brake. Some more expensive models may have a third pedal for the operation of the clutch. But about all racing games do not need a clutch anyway. In the real world of racing the clutch is integrated into the steering wheel.
Platform and PC Operating System
Before you buy, check whether the racing steering wheel you considering is compatible with your existing console or operating system. Some models may only work with certain consoles or manufacturers because they are bound by licensing contracts. Be sure to check in advance which platforms are supported!
Sim racers have an unwritten rule: only a good gaming steering wheel should be used for racing games. It will “catapult” you right into the cockpit of a race car. Even if other advanced controllers will soon be on the market, it has to be seen how they compare to racing wheels. So far, no other equipment can give you such an authentic and realistic feeling. Together with a racing simulator seat or a good racing style gaming chair, large monitors or better even are VR glasses they are the real thing.
If you really want to have fun with a gaming steering wheel you should not save in the wrong place. Cheap models under 200 dollars are not really worth to be considered. They lack force feedback, which prevents you from getting a real feel for the vehicle’s movements. The mounting and adjustment options are not as desired. Racing is fun with the Thrustmaster or Logitech steering wheel we have discussed above.