A ddw noob's perspective on the SC2 Sport

Hiro Abe

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Jul 29, 2017
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It seems that most who discuss/purchase a Simucube 2 ddw - at least within the RD community - go for either the Pro or Ultimate models. Therefore, I thought I would provide my experience - barely a week's worth - with the Sport model from the perspective of a ddw noob.

First, my decision process to go with the SC2 sport.
I narrowed my ddw choices between the SC2 and Fanatec's offerings. Initially, I focussed on SC2's Pro but I took a step back and realized that I am perfectly happy with the strength of my CSW v2.5 which, I believe, is rated at 7.5nm. Why should I pay for a stronger wheelbase than I would ever use? I can understand the larger than needed nm numbers as providing overhead for transient spikes and the like but 20+? Seemed overkill to me so I decided that I would go with either the Sport or the DD1.

The first deciding factor for the SC2 is that I've become pretty particular with wheels. Since I primarily drive GT3, I don't swap wheels. I do own both the McLaren GT3 wheel w/qr and Formula v2 wheel with Podium shifters. I really like the aesthetics of the Formula wheel and love the Podium shifters but I find the diameter too small. My hands tire with that wheel so I hardly used it. I love the McLaren wheel because I find it comfortable and just the right size. However, I figured it would not stand up to the rigors of a ddw. Therefore, Fanatec did not offer a wheel I felt to be a personal ideal.

My other deciding factor was that Granite Devices have been at this for a bit now and have established a pretty good track record. I'm looking at this purchase as my last wheelbase purchase in my sim racing "career" so I wanted to be sure - best I could - that I'm purchasing a quality unit. Fanatec is in 1st gen mode which I tend to shy away from.

Initial impressions.
I feel I need to give a shout out to SimRacingBay. I went with them because they offer a deal when purchasing an SC2 and an AR wheel. I ordered them Tuesday afternoon and received everything the following Monday. Not bad for a Slovenia to New York shipment! They have a good reputation within the community and I experienced why first hand. Great communication too.

I first unboxed my wheel. Boy, what you see and hear in reviews regarding Martin's wheels are all true. This thing is simply a beaut and feels absolutely rock solid. I went with their SC2 wireless wheel. Coming from a Fanatec setup, I didn't want to get into USB wheels if I didn't have to. I don't need tons of buttons and switches on my wheels. I built myself a button box and between the two, I have always had more than enough options for me. The one compromise I did have to make was losing the use of clutch paddles. My Heusinkveld set up is only brake and throttle so I can keep them separated enough so my legs are straight. The current version of SC2s wireless solution only allows up to 28 inputs and no analog axis (confirmed by Martin). Perhaps, if it comes to fruition, when the SC2 can offer more inputs, I may replace my wheel with one that has clutch paddles and is still wireless. If Martin makes one, I'll buy it right away. Can't imagine going to a different wheel now but I'm still in gaga stage.

Sorry, bit of a wheel digression there. Opening up the box and seeing the Sport was an absolute delight. My initial impression upon seeing the wheelbase? It's a sweet looking unit that speaks to my minimalist bent. I Absolutely love the low profile of the unit. The size, however, belies it's weight. Sucker has got some heft! (Again, ddw noob here!) Sometime ago, I built myself an 8020 rig so I was set with rigidity but decided to shore up, laterally, my cross piece which I mounted the base to. Everything went on pretty painlessly. A cool side effect of the small profile was that I was able to pull my 49" super ultra-wide 4 inches closer which gained me about 6 degrees of added fov! Sweet!

I won't go into details regarding setting stuff up but dive into my first reaction/impression when taking my first drive.
I started with ACC. After a couple of initial misfires I got going and initially noticed how solid everything felt. You know how when you touch and use a quality bit of kit you can just feel it? That's what my very first impression was. Everything just felt... solid. Simply just a wheel rotating on an axis offering immediate feedback. Also, the action is so smooth. Zero grain, notchiness or looseness. Don't get me wrong. I'm not dissing my CSW. I really enjoyed using it and feel it to be a quality wheelbase but the SC2 - and DDWs in general from what I gather - are an obvious step up.

As I continued to drive I started to notice the amount of detail I was feeling. Nice! It was quickly apparent that I had to do some tweaking to my current setting (I started with GD's ACC default setting in the TrueDrive software) but I was smiling. I then started building up speed and going thru a fast corner (I was at Spa) and the "weight" of the wheel kicked in and I realized that I needed to adjust down which also made me smile. It told me that my choice of going with a 17nm wheel was going to suit me just fine.

After my initial futzing about with various settings I started to take a more methodical approach and kept the SC2 manual handy that explains all the different settings and I also reviewed Boosted Media's vid where he explains the different settings. I focused on what setting feels like when I made changes and in the process, developed configs for both ACC and 3RE (my two goto sims these days). I'm already happy with what I have but curious in playing some more. I like to tinker!

Intermediate conclusion (I may add more as I get more laps under my belt).
The short version: I'm falling in love. [ahem]

The longer version: I'm getting what all the fuss is about. I believe that anyone who is vested in this crazy hobby would love driving with a ddw. Are all of them created equal? Of course not. Obviously, I can't offer any comparisons. I can say this - coming from a CSW v2.5, the SC2 is nice step up in refinement. I'm a bit of an audiophile (not the crazy paying $300 for cable snob but one who appreciates a quality listening experience) and equate the Sport's performance to listening to a highly resolving pair of headphones via an amp that has absolute blackground. Meaning, at no matter the volume level if there is a pause in the music or a very quiet passage you hear either absolute silence or just the music. That's what the Sport is like. All you feel is what is coming from the sim. The unit itself is not adding "noise". It's a rather pure experience especially when you get it dialed in to your liking.

Yes, I am one happy camper!
 
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AccAkut

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Mar 21, 2015
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thanks for the input. I'm constantly debating getting a SC2 Sport too, as its still a steep number of €, even tho I'm building myself into that corner already as I got a rig now and even the rim I'd use on the DD :whistling: I've used a DFGT for all these years and even ran that on only like 50% gain ingame, so going for a Pro or Ultimate would really be pointless (I swing heavy weights during my work day, no need to do that in my free time :D)

The fidelity is what I'm after, I heard Chris Haye talk about how you change from driving by knowledge, anticipating what the car does, to driving by feel, as the DD is fast enough to simply show it to the driver. Would you say the same?
 

aKy0001

25RPM
Jun 23, 2017
25
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I can second that. Coming from a TS-PC Racer, I ordered a SC2 Pro and the F28-SC wheel from Martin a few days ago. Such a huge step up and a beauty of hardware, both the base and the wheel. Decided to go for the Pro mainly because of the higher slew rate of 8nm, but I think the Sport will also do just fine.

@AccAkut : Yes Chris Haye is absolutely right, thats exactly what I feel, coming from the TS-PC after the switch to the Simucube
 
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Hiro Abe

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Jul 29, 2017
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I think I agree with @aKy0001 ... and Chris Haye. Let me explain.

Even with my CSW, I've become pretty adept at catching slides and I'm pretty sure it wasn't necessarily from feel but more from the visual queues. With the Sport, I've caught slides - I believe - by feel because it felt more immediate. I say "I think" because it is a somewhat unconscious action. I remember just this morning I was at Mid Ohio in 3RE and before I knew it I caught a slide. I then thought, "well now... that was cool." I'm pretty sure it was by feel because it was so immediate.

I'm with you @AccAkut. I'm not after additional strength in the feedback but the fidelity. I've been tuning my settings to allow as much possible feedback. I am, however, having to trade off a bit to counteract the oscillations that will happen. I've got ACC pretty well dialed in but still working on 3RE. I've got the feedback where I want but the wheel will oscillate on the straights. Enough so that I need to work on it.

I finally did more racing than tweaking yesterday and I was simply loving it.
 

Hiro Abe

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I forgot to pose a question earlier. For you SC2 owners, do you give the wheel a cool down period before turning it off? It seems that if you disengage the high tourque the fan turns off (or at least what I assume is the fan). Didn't see anything in the instructions about recommended cool down procedure.
 

EsxPaul

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Feb 17, 2016
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Ah. I guess the cutout on the back is for venting. Easy 'nuff. Thanks!
Any heat generated will be dissipated through the case which acts as a heat sink.

Mine has never become even remotely warm, no matter how long I've run it.
 

alfye20

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May 22, 2011
31
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I forgot to pose a question earlier. For you SC2 owners, do you give the wheel a cool down period before turning it off? It seems that if you disengage the high tourque the fan turns off (or at least what I assume is the fan). Didn't see anything in the instructions about recommended cool down procedure.
How did you reach the conclussion about an internal fan???
Did you hear any buzzing noise when Hi Torque mode is active?
 

Hiro Abe

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As long as the e-stop button is disengaged, I can hear a slight noise that sounds like a quiet computer fan. Kind of a low pitched white noise. Engage the e-stop, it goes away. Umm... apparently I made up the existence of any kind of holes in the back since I just took a look and... well... there are none. I would respectfully like to retract my fan theory altogether. :rolleyes::roflmao:

I swear, the older I get the less I really need to rely on my memory!! Ugh!
 

Eifion Evans

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Oct 18, 2010
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I'l looking to buy a whole new setup soon and for budgetary reasons I had settled on buying a TS-PC 488 edition . . . but posts like this keep making me think of biting the bullet and going Direct Drive . .. though I know very little about them.

Bases with insane amounts of torque dont interest me, my arms get tired using my ancient G27 :roflmao: but something more sensible like a Simucube2 Sport might. Is there really much difference between them in terms of actual detail and feedback? The cost would be tough to take but I keep hearing the "buy once cry once" mantra since looking at sim hardware which makes sense. Could a GT1 Evo take the punishment of a SC2 Sport?
 
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Hiro Abe

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The GT1 Evo is not too far off from how I built my rig and it has been feeling absolutely solid.

@Eifion Evans You would have to hold on for a bit longer but you might want to consider Simagic's upcoming unit - the M10. It is supposed to be a budget friendly ddw. I considered it myself for a bit. I love the qr they use and a fan of their GT4 wheel. Barry/SRG said he'll be getting one so you'll have his insights and the couple other reviews that are already out to help you decide.
 
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Eifion Evans

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Hiro Abe

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@konjiki7 Nope. The whole experience was as painless as ordering within the States. It was stuck in NYC for a day to clear customs but that was about the extent of it being a foreign shipping source.
 

konjiki7

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Sep 2, 2017
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@konjiki7 Nope. The whole experience was as painless as ordering within the States. It was stuck in NYC for a day to clear customs but that was about the extent of it being a foreign shipping source.
Thanks I was hoping to order from simracebays but they seems to be out of stock so I decided to give simtechracing a shot. Hopefully my UK to DC experience goes smoothly as yours. Tried to go AF2 but that didn't work out maybe it was to my benefit.
 
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Hiro Abe

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Jul 29, 2017
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Hmm... I wonder if I got the last Sport from SRB. Glad I jumped on it. It was actually the AR wheel I was waiting for them to get back in stock. Guess I lucked out.