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SB Pro PE Workstation


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Yskonyn, the mouse is the way to go. You're exactly right about needing to transition back to the mouse anyway. Sticks have miles of sloppy travel and lack precision compared to the mouse.

Fight the enemy, not the interface.

This is a "tastes great/less filling" argument.

I use a stick because i have far more buttons at my fingertips and can manipulate the interface much quicker than constantly moving my mouse hand BACK to the keyboard. I'd even agree that some of the fine precision is lost on a stick. However, on those occasions, my mouse is still right there for use. I have both benefits.

So while I use the mouse in the F5 view mostly, I also use it for things like operating ATGMs, which I find require that precision. I use my CH Stick in almost all vehicle views, and can completely operate all gunnery functions without moving my hand from either the driving/maneuver side of the keys or from the stick.

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Another consideration is if the stick you are thinking of buying is ambidextrous or not.

You maybe right handed in which case its a mute point but if you are a "lefty" be aware that 95% of the products out there are designed for "righties" and just don't work in your left hand (button position, mouldings, etc.).

Most mice don't have this issue. :)

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This is a "tastes great/less filling" argument.

I use a stick because i have far more buttons at my fingertips and can manipulate the interface much quicker than constantly moving my mouse hand BACK to the keyboard. I'd even agree that some of the fine precision is lost on a stick. However, on those occasions, my mouse is still right there for use. I have both benefits.

So while I use the mouse in the F5 view mostly, I also use it for things like operating ATGMs, which I find require that precision. I use my CH Stick in almost all vehicle views, and can completely operate all gunnery functions without moving my hand from either the driving/maneuver side of the keys or from the stick.

I prefer a joystick for similar reasons. Although in my case, the effects of RSI and arthritis make prolonged use of my left hand painful. By offloading most of the button-pressing to my joystick-hand, I can get by with a more comfortable gamepad for inputting the remaining commands instead of a keyboard.

I’d like to see an option to add some “smoothing” to the joystick input, averaging out the response to eliminate some of the jerkiness, (particularly near the center of the axis.) Many joysticks have configuration utilities, (I use a CH Fighterstick), but there are limits to the amount of control they provide. If you turn down the sensitivity enough to permit accurate tracking, then you can’t get the turret to traverse at full speed if needed. CH utilities also supports tuning the response curve of the axes, but it’s not precise enough to be useful.

I’d be happy to spend $1K on a more precise joystick as long as I could try it out for 30 days and could get 3 -5 years of support for it. (I got rid of my Courage when the POTS got “spiky”, so getting a FSSB R2 would be a lot more painful and risky, since I’d have to turn to ebay to find a replacement stick.)

I know the standard response is that SB is a training tool for tactics and not gunnery and mouse input is cheaper, (since it is obligatory in a class room environment), but it doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything that could be done technically to improve joystick input.

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There are limits to what you can actually do in this area. Most joysticks only provide an eight bit signal for each axis. That's 255 discrete steps, or 127 for each direction. With a dead zone of maybe four steps, that leaves 123 steps from minimal to maximal speed for turret rotation; the last three are needed for maximal turret rotation speed, so it's 120 steps that are actually available.

We already have a "somewhat" cubic response function, and we do smooth out the signal as a precaution against spikes. Smooth it too much and you don't get an adequate shape of the response function. We've fiddled quite a bit with this. Whyt you'd really want is a joystick signal better than eight bits - 12 bit are already a good compromise. But there are only few game controllers that deliver this precision.

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Yskonyn, I've been playing Steel Beasts with TM Warthog since 2.6 came out and it's great. I've got the stick attached to my chair (see picture). I'm also using a custom made panel under my display with toggle switches for fire control system etc. not unlike Froggy's. (Please implement the rest of the T-72 kb shortcuts too, eSim!)

I hope this was inspirational viewing for builder-types like myself. :biggrin:

(yes, the red thingie under the chair is a Buttkicker tactile feedback device - it's great with SB I can tell you.)

wart-mela_02.jpg.e2baed0bdb3983e42510b1e

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wart-mela_01.jpg.4b28c2409cd74c750f2d4e4

110927s.jpg.3bc94725445ecb10f76bea531ec2

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There are limits to what you can actually do in this area. Most joysticks only provide an eight bit signal for each axis. That's 255 discrete steps, or 127 for each direction. With a dead zone of maybe four steps, that leaves 123 steps from minimal to maximal speed for turret rotation; the last three are needed for maximal turret rotation speed, so it's 120 steps that are actually available.

We already have a "somewhat" cubic response function, and we do smooth out the signal as a precaution against spikes. Smooth it too much and you don't get an adequate shape of the response function. We've fiddled quite a bit with this. Whyt you'd really want is a joystick signal better than eight bits - 12 bit are already a good compromise. But there are only few game controllers that deliver this precision.

I’d think you'd probably need to do something more elaborate. Something like what is done for the mouse, where the physical input device controls a virtual cursor whose position controls the rate of turn.

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I’d think you'd probably need to do something more elaborate. Something like what is done for the mouse, where the physical input device controls a virtual cursor whose position controls the rate of turn.

IMO you're suggesting to combine the disadvantages of a joystick with the disadvantages of a mouse... :shocked:

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My Multipurpose 'ABS pit. It's a bit torn apart in this pic, but it gives a good view of the internals.I find I like the joystick and the trackball for SBPro, with the tablet useful for the map view.

On my left hand I have a Saitek Cyborg button board that I bind to keyboard commands with GlovePIE. I can run a second instance of SBPro on the bottom monitor for the map, or, more usually, print the map to file and just view it there.

simchair.JPG.858698c59723b7dd030315d21b9

simchair.JPG.858698c59723b7dd030315d21b9

Edited by Pakfront
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  • 1 month later...

Well here's a couple of pictures of my SB pit as it was, The handles were on loan and they went back a couple of weeks ago, so it's back to the trusty Microsoft sidewinger for now,

I've also added a smaller monitor on the window sill to the left of the main one .

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56e83cb6a84e8_SBpit2.jpg.39707ee2325766e

56e83cb6a4b5d_SBpit1.jpg.02ce6816a718d0f

56e83cb6a84e8_SBpit2.jpg.39707ee2325766e

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Let's see what else is in Crusty's workstation...

Ah Hah! Kodak LS6340 camera in a printer/dock, can you still get paper for it? serious question as I can't get the paper or thermal catridges for mine over here.

I gave up with the paper and cartridges years ago, there didn't seem much point when decent home printers came along, that's why I got rid of the

printer dock I had, if you look closely you're see it's just the recharging

docking station.

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