Logitech G29 Driving Force Racing Wheel and Shifter
Peripherals and gaming go hand-in-hand. They enhance gameplay for various genres and offer a bit of realism away from button mashing the controller on your couch. And if you’re a driving sim fan, the Logitech G29 is probably what you’ve been lusting after since E3last year.
The G29 is the successor to the G27, which was launched way back in 2009. On first looks, it’s quite legit, with a myriad of buttons on the wheel face. Every DualShock 4 button is replicated and labeled clearly, although it might feel awkward at first to navigate using only a digital thumbpad sans the absense of analog sticks.
The wheel itself is 27cm in diameter, with leather grips over a metal frame. It’s sturdy and solidly built. The leather grip is similar in design the G27, and very comfortable to hold onto for long periods of gaming, even if you tend to have sweaty palms after while.
Setup is incredibly easy, you just have to plug in the pedals to the base of the wheel, then the optional Driving Force Shifter (if you have it) and the adapter plug. The wheel doesn’t run on USB power, thus you will be required to have a power outlet nearby.
While the wheel itself is sturdy, the two levers used to secure the wheel can be a bit finicky to use.
The G29 is an upgraded version of the G27, now for the PS4. If all you need is a driving wheel for the PS3, you can probably pick up the former at a discount instead.
The G29 has leds on its wheel that lets you know when it’s time to shift gears, though it’s largely useless since your attention will be focused on your display instead.
AT A GLANCE
Manufacturer Logitech, Features Force feedback, helical gearing, 900-degrees rotation, Compatible with PS4, PS3, PC, Price $599 (wheel) $99 (shifter).
Our unit had a lever that required quite a bit of effort to lock into place, which sometimes got unlocked while the wheel was in use. Make sure you give yours a thorough check when buying and before you play.
The G29 has two metal paddles to handle gear shifts, which is great if you’re into F1 racing sims, but since you’re already splurging for the wheel, might as well go all the way and grab the Driving Force Shifter as well. It’s a great companion to the wheel and emulates a stick shift admirably. Shifting using it is a dream, as the tactile sensation adds a whole level of immersion to the experience. Like the wheel, it too secures to a surface via levers, though the ones on the shifter worked perfectly.
The other part of the G29 setup is the pedal board, which like the wheel, is a sturdy piece of equipment. The three pedals (accelerator, brake and clutch) on the board have different tension each, which feels like you’re in a real car, though the brake pedal felt a bit too stiff.
The G29 wheel performs rather well. It was tested on both Project Cars and Drive Club on the PS4 and required no extra calibration to get it to work. The force feedback on the wheel worked exceptionally well, which is tied to its dual motor system the wheel uses for its turning action and force feedback. The gear system used in the G29 is unlike other rival racing wheels which use belts. The gears are what gives the wheel a ‘notched’ or ‘stepped’ feel, which detracts from the realism a bit. The force feedback function is also a bit noisy, though you’ll never notice it if you’re playing with the TV at a decent volume. It also gets a bit warm after continued use, as the gears and machinery in the wheel’s base work as you play.
There aren’t a lot of options for a great driving wheel on the PS4 if you’re a hardcore racing fan. While there are other cheaper options out there that work for the console, the G29 Driving Force Racing Wheel is certainly one of the best options money can buy. The fact that it also works on a PC, as well as a PS3 is just icing on the cake. As befits its premium cost, it’s is an impressive and solid piece of machinery that not only works well but feels great as well.
Also, while the Driving Force Shifter is an optional part of the package, it’s a heavily recommended one as manually shifting gears using the Shifter is a totally different experience than just using the metal pedals on the G29. It’s a shame that the Shifter costs so much and doesn’t come standard with the G29 wheel.
Great construction and performance make it worth the price for optimum driving experience, especially with the optional shifter.