by Greg King on February 27, 2007 in Gaming Peripherals
When it comes to racing wheels, the choices are slim. Today we take out Logitech’s G25 for a test drive to see if it can live up to our expectations. With stainless steel and real leather, it’s off to a fast start but can it deliver where it counts… in the games?
Logitech has spared no expense in creating the G25. Offering 900 degrees of motion from lock to lock, the 11 inch wheel is rimmed with hand stitched leather with the spokes being made using stainless steel. Sitting just behind the wheel, there is a pair of paddle shifters that are also made out of the high quality stainless steel. This not only gives the wheel a very sturdy feel, but also adds a look of class, as if it came directly off of the track.
With 4 buttons on the wheel itself (including the pair of paddles), the G25 has a fast and furious feel to it when used with the Need for Speed franchise of games. There isnâ€™t anything like pulling alongside a car and hitting the red thumb button to activate your NOS, leaving your opponent smelling your fumes. Adding to the overall look of the wheel, there are 6 hex head bolts holding the center piece on the wheel, capped with a Logitech logo in the center.
Moving to the back, we see the plastic housing that covers the internals of the G25. Inside rest a pair of high-torque motors, to give the wheel a realistic resistance when racing.
On the top is a pair of knobs to tighten the wheel base to your desk. These can be pushed down and twisted slightly to lock them in place and with the deep grooves on the side of the knobs; they are easy to grip, ensuring a tight hold on the table or desk that you are mounting the G25 on.
To actually hold the wheel in place however, there is a pair of clamps on the bottom of the unit that can be tightened down, preventing the wheel from sliding around in the middle of tightly contested race. Interestingly enough, Logitech decided to use plastic on the clamps instead of rubber, but in the testing, we never ran into any issues with the plastic slipping.
Logitech made the shifter as well as they did the wheel. With the shifter post made out of metal and the ball covered with stitched leather, the overall feel is one of quality. On the face of the shifter there are 8 buttons as well as a 4 position directional pad, allowing for any number of in game macros to be programmed. Following the lead of the wheel, the shifter boot is made out of genuine leather and for appearance, is surrounded by 6 more hex head bolts.
The shifter itself can be used as a 6 speed gated pattern or with the flip of a switch, can be turned into a sequential shifter for those who prefer that approach. With the 6 speed, the experts can select their gears going into corners instead of cycling through the gears sequentially. This also can eliminate the guessing of an automatic transmission, allowing the driver to be in total control. At the end of the patter on the right, reverse can be found. To enable reverse gear, the shifter must be pressed down and then slid over and down into gear. This too adds a bit of realism to the overall experience that the G25 can provide.
One thing to note, and this comes from this editorâ€™s personal experience is that the knob must be pushed down in order to successfully turn the knob to switch between sequential and the 6 speed.
To secure the shifter to the desk, there are a pair of clamps, as well as one post to retard forward and backward rocking of the unit as a whole. All that is needed to install the shifter is to place it over the desk surface, tighten up the bracing post and then twist the clamps down tight.
Now that we have the wheel and shifter out of the way, let’s take a quick look at the pedals and then get on with installation!