Thrustmaster T150 Rs Racing Wheel Review
What is the Thrustmaster T150?
The Thrustmaster T150 is an incredibly affordable PS4 force feedback racing wheel. For those who want to try out a legitimate gaming wheel but who also do not want to spend a lot of money on the Thrustmaster T300RS wheel and some pedals, you’ve come to the right place.
For those who have owned force feedback wheels in the past, you’ll notice the wheels are a bit cheap-feeling and don’t have the full power of the force feedback. But the fact that the Thrustmaster T150 is 50% cheaper than its older brother, it’s a great choice for those who are casual racing wheel users looking for a more affordable product.
Thrustmaster T150: Design and Features
If you’re a new user of force feedback wheels, they’re a gaming product that gives you simulated car feedback while playing a car game. Nearly any bargain wheel lets you turn, brake, and accelerate with higher fidelity than your typical keyboard or gamepad, and the simulation of actual car driving and impact makes it stand out as well.
Racing wheels with force feedback simulate the feelings you’ll have as you slide a car across a road and crash into a barrier, letting you know this isn’t Mario Kart you’re playing! The best wheels combine strong feedback fidelity with a high-quality build and presentation.
The Thrustmaster T150 has 2 main types on sale: the normal edition and also the Ferrari edition. Both of these are compatible with the PC, PS3, and PS4.
Thrustmaster gave us a review copy of the Ferrari version, and to be honest the design kind of makes you groan at first. Put red trimming on the plastic-ish yellow Ferrari logo, and its cheap wheel looks like a toy you might buy at a toy store.
The ‘normal’ version of the wheel does come across a little better, by way of ditching the Ferrari logo and o0pting for blue instead of red. Neither of these versions look as professional or quality as the T300RS.
Nevertheless, when you purchase a racing wheel, you’re basically admitting you’re committed enough to the hobby to be able to endure ridicule for it. Just embrace it!
Put your hands on the Thrustmaster and it really feels great! There’s less of the metal or flashy components of the Thrustmaster T300RS or the Logitech G29.
The base and wheel are both a high-quality plastic, luckily this plastic is not super cheap looking and are good quality.
The grips largely use rubber too – these are the colored bits. These make for great grip, though the wheel texturing makes it a perfect feel as well. For the fans of specs, this wheel is a full 1080-degree rotation wheel, which is the same for all the high-end models.
The rubber on top of the hard plastic makes for a lower price!
The Thrustmaster T150 has all the basics of the priciest wheels, without anything flashy tacked on.
This really shows in the pedals: the two-pedal build looks like a toy, just like the previous bits.
There’s no clutch nor progressive braking action in the Logitech G29. The brake does have more tension than its accelerator, so you can easily floor the pedal or push down as much as you like with no resistance.
Thrustmaster is fully aware this is a weak point, and also that it’s a weak point in their pricier Thrustmaster T300RS product package. They sent us the extra T3PA Pro, for this very reason, to try. This is a high-quality three-pedal set that totally blows the included 2-pedal set of the Thrustmaster racing wheels out of the water.
Overall, you get a sturdier feel, less resistance, and more realism using the T3PA Pro. They are pricier than the entire wheel, though, so I highly doubt the typical consumer will spend more just to replace the two pedals that are included (no matter how cheap they feel).
The included plastic pedals are more flimsy and cheap than the R300RS wheels.
I’ve been a casual racing wheel user for going on 15 years – I used them about 10% of the time, but I still had a lot of fun when I used them. These pedals are good enough for most – it’s just that for the hardcore seasoned racing sim user, they might cause an issue (which would be very understandable).
The wheel has just about every button you’d expect to see on a PS4 controller (excluding the touchpad and sticks), so it should cover almost all your needs in that department.
There isn’t a separate gear stick included with the T150 either. It instead uses racing style shifters behind your wheel. The metal paddles are very high quality and do not manifest any price cut trickery you’d see with the cheap plastic wheels.
Thrustmaster T150: Force Feedback and Performance
How good is this product’s force feedback? It’s overall very good. It’s just as powerful and fast as the Logitech G29 and the T300RS. When you make a sharp turn playing Project Cars or DriveClub, you’ll feel the full fidelity of the motors pushing against you the whole time.
The fidelity is great too -I thought there would be a big hit in the ‘fidelity’ or strength of the unit feedback in comparison to the top force feedback wheels, but there is not.
Overall, this means that despite the average design and the low-quality pedals, the Thrustmaster T150 remains one of my favorite force feedback wheels. The likely reason one may become dissatisfied with it is because you may use a slightly better wheel.
Which begs the question: why is this one cheaper to purchase than the R300RS? The pricier model uses more expensive material: metals as well as a fully rubber-coated wheel instead of a plastic-y wheel with rubber bits on top. But the internal workings are what’s most important.
Most of these wheels use gears or belts to transfer the force from motor all the way to the wheel. The belts give a smoother feel while the gears have stronger fidelity and you can feel them a whole lot more.
The Thrustmaster T150 is a bit of an oddity because it utilizes both belt and gear. The gears use very wide teeth, so there’s less fidelity than Logitech G29. You’ll feel the notches as you turn it, despite not being plugged in. In combination with the belt, it makes for a very smooth and great-feeling ride.
For those not used to force feedback wheels, this will sound silly to debate these two things, but it makes a big difference. In summary, the Logitech G29 has a fine granularity to it, and the belts of the Thrustmaster T300RS give it smooth turns. The Thrustmaster T150’s notches, on the other hand, are much wider and ultimately smoother.
The best thing is that you’re able to get something remarkably similar to the T300RS for a very affordable price point.
The Thrustmaster T150 features a fan, just like its pricier counterpart, which kicks in once you’ve used it for 20 minutes or so, if you’re playing on low volume you’ll definitely hear it. However, because of the belt system the fans are absolutely necessary within the system for optimal cooling and operation.
Should you buy the Thrustmaster T150?
The Thrustmaster T150 is the thing you get when you take the T300RS, remove the fancy parts and regress its force feedback system back. The Logitech G29’s discount online has dropped the T150’s price even further – so much so, it’s hard not to recommend it.
The Thrustmaster T300RS definitely is the smoother of the two, and the Logitech G29 build and pedals are much nicer. But the competitor is a bit more expensive, so it isn’t worth the price increase for many users.
This isn’t a good wheel if you’re going to spend upwards of twenty hours a week using it. In that case, you’ll want to pick up the T300RS and also the T3PA pedals. However, for casual users the price point makes it very hard to resist.
If you’re on a budget and looking for an affordable force feedback wheel, look no further than the Thrustmaster T150 RS Racing Wheel!