Recommended Cars? FFB?

Rex Racer 65

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I'm an avid sim racer. I mostly race AC & R3E. I have PC2, but I'm not crazy about how that one feels. A lot of the YouTube sim racers tout RF2 as have the greatest physics & FFB. I purchased RF2 a while ago, but so far, I've been kinda disappointed with the FFB when compared to AC or R3E. I can't really feel what the front end is doing. Are there specific cars I should be trying? There doesn't seem to be a lot of FFB settings to tweak, what am I missing? I hear the newest GT3 packs & Endurance packs are really great, but I'm reluctant to shell out the cash without having a better experience with the cars I already have.
I race with a Thustmaster TS-PC Racer wheel w/ Fanatec CS V3i pedals.
 

RasmusP

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I really liked the enduracers lmp3 car! Not too powerful but lots of downforce. A blast around road Atlanta :)
About ffb: I tested a ts-pc for a week last month and I liked to have the minimum torque at 1%, smoothing at 5 and the multiplier to your liking. Had the control panel at 100% and mostly lowered the multiplier to around 0.6 with most cars (didn't test the lmp3 with it, only endurance pack..).
 

Case_

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I would say that the cars from both GT3 packs and from the Endurance pack probably have the best FFB of all rF2 cars I've tried. They can sometimes clip a bit too much with default multiplier IMO, but that's somewhat subjective (as everyone has different opinions on what is the adequate amount of clipping) and also easily remedied.

On the other hand, some of the mods, including very popular ones, leave a lot to be desired when it comes to FFB IMO.
 

gluon

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Like said above, the official GT3 packs have great FFB, but since you don't want to commit to paid content without being sure whether you like it or not, here's my advice:
  • Lower the FFB multiplier to something between 0.4 and 0.7 as per your liking, because I honestly feel that 1.0 might clip or just overwhelm your feel.
  • Increase the FFB minimum torque until you feel comfortable with it (no dead zone and also no shaking). As a reference I'm using 8%.
  • Play with FFB smoothing until you get rid of excessive spikes.
  • Try the free mod Apex Modding FIA GT3 2012 1.05, which you can subscribe from the workshop. This mod is absolutely fantastic physics and FFB wise, definitely among the best, must have, free content you'll ever find.
 

Case_

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I wouldn't recommend just blindly lowering the multiplier, it depends way too much on car and also on track, and it tends to vary greatly between various mods. Monitor your FFB levels if you want to play with the multiplier, and then decide for yourself.

Also, with TS-PC (or any other Thrustmaster wheel for that matter), there really should be very little need for FFB minimum torque, there's no deadzone to speak of, so unless you prefer artificially amplified low forces, you're OK with say 2 percent or so. Also, the higher you set the minimum torque, the worse the risk of getting oscillation is.
 

Rex Racer 65

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Thank you RamusP, gluon and Martin Fiala, I downloaded the recommend Apex Modding cars and tried some of the recommended settings. I do feel an improvement, but I'm not getting an "Oh Wow!" moment. The FFB in AC & R3E aren't identical, but a similar enough that I can go between them without feeling I'm missing anything. I guess if I race in rF2 more often, it may start feeling more "normal" to me. But, the graphic qualities are not in the same league, so I don't enjoy the environment as much.
Thanks again for your responses and recommendations. I'll probably get the Sebring track & Endurance Pack + one of the GT packs in a few weeks when the real 12-hr Sebring race is happening.
 
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gluon

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@Rex Racer 65,

Reading what you wrote again on the original post I've noticed you talked specifically about the front end. I also play AC and know it has a FFB setting called "enhanced understeer effect" which you can tick. Do you have this setting enabled there?

From what I've read, that effect is a canned effect, meaning it's not really a force coming from the front axle into the steering column in a real car. It surely helps feeling the loss of grip but it's artificial in nature, generated by the game to augment the FFB. rF2 on the other hand has no canned effects at all and the FFB you feel is always directly derived from the physics model, meaning that you'll only feel a force that is actually acting upon the steering rack as per the sim's physics engine.

That being said, try the Renault Clio. It's a FWD car and perhaps the only one in rF2 that gave me a huge sensation of light/heavy front end, probably because the engine is also at the front.
 
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RasmusP

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To go further with this : what's your understeer setting at in raceroom?
 

Rex Racer 65

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I do have the "enhanced understeer effect" in AC checked. And, my understeer setting in R3E is 90% (which I believe I got from Gamer Muscle's youtube video of FFB settings).

gluon - Your response reminding me of a podcast discussion I heard a while back about how rF2 tries to replicate actual steering column forces only. Whereas AC and others (R3E) blend into the steering column other forces of the car to help the sim-driver better interpret what the car/tires are doing.

I guess the two approaches are philosophically different. True, as sim racers, we strive for authenticity. We want the simulation to be a true to life as possible. But, most simmers don't have full-motion rigs. So, we rely on having those other forces blended (albeit "artificial") into the FFB steering wheels, which is our primary means of feeling what the car is doing. I have a buttkicker under my seat driven by SimCommander, which is awesome for immersion, but doesn't really help with interpreting the weight of the car, tire slip or gyroscopic effects. So, I'm in the camp of wanting those other forces "artificially" blended into the FFB wheel. Some sims do it better than others.

So, I guess then, I may never really appreciate rF2 as much if those forces are deliberately left out. That's a shame. But, thank you so much for helping me understand why I was struggling to feel what I was expecting.
 
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gluon

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Actually I couldn't agree more with you. I do prefer rF2 over AC when it comes to physics, but I have nothing against canned FFB effects, because like you said, we, average simmers, miss the most important of forces, the lateral G forces.

At some point I've ended up enabling these canned effects in AC, especially the "slip effects" trying to have some feedback about a loose rear end. It's hard to spot a slide early on a sim relying only on visuals and sound, whereas in a real car, you easily feel the rotation of the car in your body.

That said, the canned "slide effect" in AC is a bit of an annoying vibration on my G29 wheel, so what I really ended up relying on and which helped me a lot was reducing my FOV to match the real proportions of the road. This alone improved my lap times by 1s and allowed me to catch slides way earlier and more naturally on both sims.
 

Case_

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I guess the two approaches are philosophically different. True, as sim racers, we strive for authenticity. We want the simulation to be a true to life as possible. But, most simmers don't have full-motion rigs. So, we rely on having those other forces blended (albeit "artificial") into the FFB steering wheels, which is our primary means of feeling what the car is doing. I have a buttkicker under my seat driven by SimCommander, which is awesome for immersion, but doesn't really help with interpreting the weight of the car, tire slip or gyroscopic effects. So, I'm in the camp of wanting those other forces "artificially" blended into the FFB wheel. Some sims do it better than others.

So, I guess then, I may never really appreciate rF2 as much if those forces are deliberately left out. That's a shame. But, thank you so much for helping me understand why I was struggling to feel what I was expecting.
You seem to be confusing two different things. There's the thing about whether we should feel exactly the same forces as would be felt through the wheel IRL or whether we should have more information available through the wheel that we would otherwise perceive by different means in a real car. Different people will have differing opinions on this for sure, but I'd still say a majority of simracers would tell you they want the additional information to be able to feel the car better.

There's however a second thing somewhat related to this, and I think that's where your confusion seems to be coming from. And that is the means of how the additional information is modeled. The forces might be accurately simulated via the physics engine of the game (because even if the forces might not be felt through the wheel IRL, they're still present in the physics engine and are part of the simulation of the car's handling), or whether they are simply artificial/canned/added effects that have nothing to do with the car's physics apart from being triggered by some condition, say something like "whenever the car understeers, vibrate the wheel with the frequency of 30 Hz". It's like a difference between actually writing a word on a piece of paper using a pen, and simply using a stamp. In both instances, you'll end up with a word on a paper, but while one of those will retain a personal touch of the person who wrote the letter and their specific handwriting, the other one will simply be artificial and lifeless with no real connection to the person that stamped the paper.

AC enhanced understeer effect is the stamp here - it is a simple means of enhancing the understeer FFB with an artificial effect that is not really connected to the car you're driving. RFactor 2 does convey the information about your car understeering, but the effect is based on the actual physics of the car, and so what you end up feeling through the wheel might depend on many things, the actual setup of the car driven being one of them. So it's not that rF2 deliberately leaves something out. It doesn't. It's just that it works differently, and therefore the end result is different.
 
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Rex Racer 65

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gluon, thank for your response!
Martin, thanks for the thoughtful reply. I haven't given up on rF2. As mentioned above, I'll probably get Sebring and the recent car packs. With the knowledge I've gained from this exchange, it may help me setup things more to my liking.

For me, the added "canned" or "artificial" information to help interpret the cars behavior is a good thing. It's all about the execution of those effects and whether they feel realistic or fake. And there's an endless amount of opinions on that! The fact is, it's all fake! The sims are trying to replicate serious kinetic forces that occur over an entire vehicle and convey them to a small hoop that rotates in your hands. It's amazing how well it's being done if you think about it. I guess it's like arguing over which pre-amp or speakers sound better, or analog tubes vs. solid state. It's all very subjective. But, when done successfully, it's often down to some intangible voodoo deep in the coding. I'm just hoping to see more parity from one sim to another like I'm seeing with AC & R3E. ACC is still in early release. It's okay, but the FFB is not entirely baked yet IMHO.
 
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Ace King

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I do have the "enhanced understeer effect" in AC checked. And, my understeer setting in R3E is 90% (which I believe I got from Gamer Muscle's youtube video of FFB settings).
I use the Thrustmaster TS-XW Racer and following the advice from this article has transformed the FFB feel in AC and some of the universal settings i found useful to also improve my experience in rF2.

Full Article with settings advice geared mainly for AC but was universally helpful:
https://boxthislap.org/thrustmaster-ts-pc-ts-xw-assetto-corsa-settings/

{A few comments i chose from this article}
I’m lucky to be also a driving instructor on racing/drifting cars in real life, collecting much feedback from real cars and then try to get the closest experience on AC.

The minimum force is just not needed on the TS-PC because its belt-driven system is so good that there’s no trace of the infamous dead zone near the center position of the wheel.

About Kerb, Road, Slip and ABS effects: I like to “amplify” the Kerb Effects coming from the physics to compensate the lack of forces on your whole body that you would experience in real life… anyway, set those values according to your personal tastes. Note: Uses the "Enhanced Understeer Effect".
 
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RasmusP

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Additionally to this:
I went from a g27 to a fanatec 2.5 and the biggest differences are:
- each sim feels completely different now and the sliders and settings really change the feel
- I feel understeer in all of them perfectly clear

I don't use the enhanced understeer effect as I understand it as just a drop in the overall ffb when the slip angle/ratio goes above a certain amount.
In rf2 and in ac without the effect, this drop happens naturally while coming from the physics. It's clearly there with the fanatec wheel. With the g27 it was a bit difficult to spot but also there!
In raceroom however... With the fanatec now I can really feel each 5% of the understeer slider. At 0% the ffb stays at the same level even when completely overturning the wheel. Very strange at first. At higher percentages the drop in the ffb is clearly happening.
This was kinda strange for me as it means that raceroom is not "canned effect" but instead separated that physics channel somehow into that slider.
Anyway, I have it at 35% now which feels similar to ac and rF2.

And further on the topic: rF2 was strange for me for the first 20 hours or something. Then I started to feel the tyres instead of "just a spongy feeling". And it's true. You feel this tyre flexing and adapting under load a little more pronounced in rf2 compared to all other sims. You have to get your hands to actually understand it though!

Give it a chance and maybe try to feel the understeer in R3E with the slider at only 35% and in ac without the enhanced understeer.

My old real life Mercedes c class has a very spongy behavior and is understeery as heck. Did some driver safety training with it a while ago and I can tell you: you don't really feel understeer!
The wheel becomes a little "dead" but not really much lighter. But you see how the car goes "more straight" although you are turning further.
For me with that specific car it was more a visual thing to spot (and a bit of seat of pants ofc) rather than a thing to actually feel in the wheel.
In the sims (if you disable look to apex options (real head motion for AC, look ahead in rf2 iirc) you'll be able to see understeer happening while at the same time your wheel will become a bit "dead", losing its springiness and progressively increasing resistance versus turning.
Just try to feel it that way and give it a chance. If not just ignore rF2 :p
 

Ace King

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This article is from March 21, 2018 and i did notice his firmware version is different from mine and so there might have been improvements made in my more recent firmware update.

The article recommends ticking the "Enhanced Understeer Effects" and noticed in AC that when i lose grip it does appear to be a little too much "Understeer Effects" so i'll untick this setting to feel the differences!
 
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Case_

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I would generally say that the rF2 FFB is an acquired taste, but certainly a taste worth acquiring.

Also, as mentioned, it tends to vary wildly between different cars/mods. Some can be really bad in properly conveying the needed information and instead emphasizing things that should IMO be absolutely secondary.
 
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thepharcyde

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I have a TS-PC and out of the lot, with the right settings RF2 comes out top and AC a close second.
RRE for me is just a load of canned effects and IMO just does not feel right.
 

Rex Racer 65

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I have a TS-PC and out of the lot, with the right settings RF2 comes out top and AC a close second.
RRE for me is just a load of canned effects and IMO just does not feel right.
Can you relay your settings and recommend a car + track combo to try with them?