If your favorite flight simulators involve cruising through the skies as a commercial pilot, you’ll need a yoke. The CH Products Flight Sim Yoke presents is a budget-friendly high-quality peripheral for flight sim beginners, and in this guide, we’ll review it.
What to Consider Before Buying a Yoke
The ideal customer for a flight sim yoke is one who wants to increase the realism, fidelity, and accuracy of their civil flight simulators. We say civil because yokes are not the ideal purchase for military sims. Those simulators will, more often than not, benefit from joysticks more than they will from yokes. If, however, you’re interested in fixed-wing aircrafts that function in times of peace, then yokes are for you.
Unlike purchasing steering wheels for racing games, when considering the best yokes on the market, the choice is slightly more subjective. Nevertheless, we have identified three key features that are of the utmost importance when making these purchases. The first is realism. This is not only whether the yoke looks authentic, but how it feels, whether there are any dead-zones, and how reliably it translates what the user does into the game. The second feature to look at is customization. As a rule of thumb, customization in simulator peripherals is very important. Not only does it allow you to find your preferred set-up, but if you’re using a yoke to train, then you will be able to map the controls to exactly mirror those you would find in your plane. Finally, price. This is not as central as the first two considerations but is nothing to be scoffed at. Purchasing peripherals can get expensive, and finding good value to money is important.
The CH Products Flight Sim Yoke
The CH Products Flight Sim Yoke is an entry-level yoke that promises solid performance and fantastic realism
The CH Products Flight Sim Yoke is a solid and affordable yoke. It’s not a high-level piece of equipment, but it performs its job admirably and will have most flight sim aficionados not only satisfied but happy to have purchased it. Importantly, it’s very precise and not too expensive, which are two of the most important factors for beginner sim pilots.
Features & Benefits
When looking to purchase any product, we often look at the most glaring boons and banes of what we’re reviewing in this section. Without further ado, here are the features and benefits of the CH Products Flight Sim Yoke.
Though it does require you to download the proprietary CH software, the CH Products Flight Sim Yoke is surprisingly customizable. All in all, it allows you to mess around with 144 programmable functions to give you the power to best tailor this yoke to your needs and likes. A surprisingly high number of customization options are a very welcome addition to this peripheral.
Very Good Realism
We were surprised at how well this budget option handled realism. The five analog 10-bit axes give you control over aileron, throttle, propeller pitch, elevator, fuel mixture, and rudder movement. Moreover, this yoke has very high sensitivity and no dead-zone. All in all, it flies incredibly precisely. Chapeau!
Price and Compatibility
This is another point in favor of the CH Products Yoke. The price is not at all as high as some of the more expensive products. Though not free, this allows those on a slightly tighter budget to still consider purchasing this great product. Not only that, but it works just as well on Mac as it does on a PC.
This is perhaps the main drawback of this Yoke. It’s not awful by any stretch of the imagination, but it feels flimsier than the other products we have reviewed. This drawback is likely the explanation for the lower price point, which could be said to be a fair trade-off. If you’re used to products like the Honeycomb you might not enjoy the feeling of the CH Products Flight Sim Yoke. Whether this is a significant drawback is wholly up to the user.
Coupled with the build quality this is another shortfall. It’s not ugly, but it’s also not the pretties yoke on the market. Simply put, the CH Products Flight Sim Yoke trades how it looks and feels for precision and realism.
If you’re interested in the CH Products Flight Sim Yoke, but also want to know which other products you should look at, here’s a list. They can range from straight one-to-one alternatives to cheaper or more expensive models.
CH Products Eclipse Yoke
Also from CH Products, this yoke is a big upgrade in precision, customizability, and build quality
The slightly more expensive CH Products Eclipse Yoke is a straight improvement from the Flight Sim version. It’s more precise, has close to 100 more customizable options, feels a lot nicer, and is often discounted. If you’re looking for something a bit better than the Flight Sim, consider the Eclipse.
Honeycomb Alpha Flight Sim Yoke
No longer a beginner yoke, this excellent peripheral is one of the best choices for those with a budget in the mid-range
Admittedly the Honeycomb Alpha Flight Sim Yoke is a significantly more expensive pick than the Flight Sim Yoke. That being said it is still relatively affordable within the yoke ecosystem. In that same ecosystem, it has no rivals regarding precision. This yoke was designed by real pilots and engineers, which is reflected in both feel and accuracy. If you’re looking for a slightly larger step-up then the Honeycomb is yours.
This is a luxury pick. If you’ve flown a lot on flight simulators, or are a real-life pilot or training to become a pilot as a vocation, then consider this product. It’s expensive but has something that a lot of yokes lack: force feedback. This is coupled with a myriad of other incredible features worth checking out if you are ready for this to become more than a simple hobby.
Flying with a keyboard and mouse simply does not do pilots justice. Not in terms of difficulty, nor in terms of realism. Controllers simply can’t fill that gap either. The CH Products Flight Sim Yoke, however, presents itself as a good solution to this problem. It’s inexpensive, precise, customizable, and realistic. Build quality leaves a bit to be desired, but all in all, we can safely say that the CH Products have done a great job.