What are the best flight simulator yokes and rudder pedals?
Since being reintroduced in 2020, Microsoft Flight Simulator has reinvented the flight simulator world. With stunning graphics, live weather, and incredibly life-like cockpits, the latest generation of this storied franchise is winning thousands of new fans every week. To make it more than a game, though, you’ll need the right hardware. Here are our top picks for yokes and rudder pedals, any of which can transform MSFS into a valuable training tool. All of these work with X-Plane as well as Microsoft, and they can be mixed and matched to create the perfect system.
Top Flight Sim Yokes
Best overall: Honeycomb Alpha
This model has quickly become the top-selling yoke on the market. It features a solid metal yoke shaft and a full 180 degrees of rotation, so it offers the most realistic feel of all the yokes. There is no dead zone in the middle, or misleading spring pressure. The Honeycomb Alpha includes a switch panel for magnetos, master, etc., but note that there is no throttle. You can mix and match to add another throttle, including the impressive Honeycomb Bravo.
Best value: Logitech G
A popular option for years, this flexible model includes a stainless steel yoke shaft and a detachable throttle quadrant for more precise power management. It strikes a good balance between performance and price, but is also easily expanded. Logitech offers add-on panels for switches/gear, avionics, autopilot, and additional throttle quadrants. This means you can build your own system one piece at a time.
Best Xbox yoke: Turtle Beach VelocityOne
For an all-in-one solution that works with both computers and Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox, the VelocityOne is hard to beat. Includes yoke, throttle/prop/mixture controls plus interchangeable quadrant heads to move from GA piston to airline jet configuration. Also features an integrated screen on the yoke.
Professional grade: Redbird Alloy
This premium yoke is made of solid metal, so it will stand up to abuse. A good option for flight schools and serious sim pilots, the Redbird Alloy has a realistic feel that rivals the Honeycomb Alpha, with a full 180 degrees of rotation and an authentic Cessna-style yoke. Remember to add a throttle quadrant, because it’s not built in. Redbird yokes are made in America and backed by excellent support.
Sometimes a yoke is more than you need. If you’re looking for something more realistic than a mouse but less expensive than a full yoke, a simple flight stick is a good option. Here are our two favorites.
Best value: Logitech Flight Sim Joystick
This is the basic option, but it’s well made and easy to use. Includes a throttle lever and the stick can even be twisted for rudder control, making it a fairly complete system. For under $50, it’s a great way to get started with simulator flying.
All-in-one kit: Thrustmaster HOTAS One
If you want to feel like a fighter pilot, this two-in-one system is the best option. Includes five axes, fourteen action buttons, a rapid-fire trigger and a multidirectional hat swtich. The throttle gives you the fighter jet feel, and is detachable. It also works with Flight Simulator on Xbox.
Authentic military feel: Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog
This deluxe systems weighs in at nearly 15 pounds, which gives a clue to its rugged construction and realistic feel. It looks like it was just removed from an actual A-10 Warthog, complete with 42 programmable buttons and a tension dial for the throttle for the thottle levers.
For Cirrus pilots
If you fly a Cirrus SR20 or SR22, neither a yoke nor a stick is quite right. What you really want is a side yoke, and fortunately there’s a great option. The Redbird Cirrus Yoke feels just like the real thing, with a centering spring, push to talk button, and smooth travel. All-metal construction is built to last.
A yoke is the essential first step to building a home simulator—but don’t stop there! A set of rudder pedals is a critical piece of the puzzle, adding the realism of rudder control and toe brakes. It makes a big difference when flying steep turns or practicing landings, and should be considered essential for any kind of serious training.
Best value: Thrustmaster
This simple set is a good companion for any of the yokes above. It’s basic but reliable and easy to set up. It’s also compatible with Flight Simulator on Xbox.
Good balance of price and performance: Logitech
These rudders offer a realistic feel, with adjustable spring tension and adjustable size pedals. These are our most popular pedals.
Best overall: Thrustmaster TPR
These all-metal rudder pedals are the most realistic we’ve ever flown with. The unique suspended mechanism is right out of a Boeing flight deck, providing lifelike feel and five positions for a custom setup.