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Customised joystick configs

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Do you have a customised joystick configuration?

No, I the regular configurations in FGDATA work fine for me
5
12%
Yes, I edited an existing config by hand
32
74%
I used the (new) configuration dialog to create a custom config for my joystick
6
14%
 
Total votes : 43

Customised joystick configs

Postby zakalawe » Fri Dec 14, 2012 4:11 pm

I'm considering some changes to how joystick support works after the next release. Trying to get an idea how many people have customised config files!
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Philosopher » Fri Dec 14, 2012 5:49 pm

Uh, you're missing the option "I go all out to do what I want with my joystick files" (note the plurality :D). Just sayin', but I personally have a lot of extension functions, double-click and hold-down for two buttons, and an aircraft-specific initialization for throttle modes and brake settings WITH the possibility of a domain-specific language to do the last part. You don't know what craziness is like.... ;)

But what changes? I'd be glad to give some feedback.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Hooray » Fri Dec 14, 2012 6:23 pm

Just a couple of weeks ago we talked about extending the JS dialog such that custom Nasal bindings could be easily supported, and this is what Stuart said:

Subject: Writing Joystick Code - wiki article

stuart wrote:[...]
Adding the ability to write Nasal for a given button was something I considered, but didn't implement. Partly this was due to time constraints, but it was also because I didn't think there was a use-case for it. The joystick configuration dialog is really targeted at new users who don't have any XML or Nasal experience. IMO anyone who knows enough to write Nasal joystick bindings will have enough knowledge to edit the joystick XML files directly and use the Nasal Console.

On a different note, I'm interested to see what bindings people are using on joysticks, to check that the set of button bindings that are supported in the configuration dialog are sufficient.

At present the dialog supports trim settings, but sets the button to be repeatable. Is there are a particular reason for not using the repeatable flag, or is it purely for people who have mode-switches and might have another (non-repeatable) function assigned to the button?

(I'll also check that I've got the prop/mixture/throttle adjustments available as button bindings)

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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Sigmoid » Sat Mar 30, 2013 9:23 pm

The vote needs a new item: I wrote a new configuration from scratch by hand. :)
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Algernon » Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:13 am

Would it also be possible to look at supporting an easy way to attach certain joystick .xml files to certain aircraft? For instance, I have a custom fast jet joystick config, a different one for prop warbirds, another for shooting video with the UFO etc.

I know it's been mentioned a few times, and I've got a way of doing it which is 90% successful, except it confuses the (great) new JS dialog and can't be reloaded using "Reload Input" in the debug menu.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Philosopher » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:12 pm

That would be beyond the scope of the joystick dialog, which is intended to get people started with a quick/easy configuration, but they still have to become a joystick-config hacker to learn more. If you can PM me with your particulars then I can probably help -- I did it for my own joystick, but that was using a Nasal approach which might not work too well for you :D. But using Nasal I can do anything! (I was thinking that you might like the ability to load XML files on top of the current one? Those are called overlays and supported by one joystick already, whose name slips my mind at the moment.)
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby shawn » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:17 pm

Anything you say? How about a unified way to toggle a reverser? Or a unified way to toggle the speedbrakes? ;-)
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Philosopher » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:33 pm

I do all of those things every day! One big problem though: I only got through the 'B' section of the launcher... And I did the f16, harrier, helis, and V-22, but it really takes a while to fill in information for all the aircraft (I think I have >90% of the 2.6 release, and I haven't gotten a chance to update to 2.10 :(). I also give the user my own sense about what things are spoilers and what are speedbrakes (tip appendages like on the A-10 and things that dump lift are spoilers, everything else is a speedbrake, especially if pointing down).

P.S. my real opinion is that the controls.*() wrappers should be overwritten for special uses, but I end up reaching around those wrappers and using setprops/getprops and manually coding support for different aircraft.... I wish we could come to an agreement on a standard way to do things, but my only idea is to have a toggle(Control) and step(Control) for every control to provide flexibility and overload those per-aircraft. Oh, and agree on what is speedbrake and what is spoiler :P.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby shawn » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:39 pm

Philosopher wrote in Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:33 pm: Oh, and agree on what is speedbrake and what is spoiler :P.

Well surely that is beyond the scope of this topic.haha
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby shawn » Tue Apr 23, 2013 12:45 pm

Peesonally though, I wish that there would be a standard location for the values.

For example, spoilers are occasionally labelled spoiler, spoilers, speedbrake, speedbrakes and can be found in multiple locations. Then sometimes, the keys are there but do nothing.

The reversers, usually have a little nasal script written by the developer. But then when I want to check the state, I get the same issue as above. I just don't know what to check. I mean, obviously I do, but it would be nice if I could check just one property.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby rusell_pedrick » Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:23 am

Nice thread. Thanks for sharing that information.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby AGamingLeprechaun » Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:43 am

I am going to invest in a JoyStick myself in the next few weeks. I am becoming dangerously addicted to FlightGear! ;)
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby AGamingLeprechaun » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:25 am

What JoyStick would you guys recommend me to purchase?
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby hvengel » Mon Apr 21, 2014 4:51 pm

Joystick recommendation? It depends on a number of factors. It also depends on what type of aircraft you want to fly since some aircraft should use a yoke rather than a stick (most GA aircraft and Airliners). I don't generally fly those type of aircraft so I prefer a stick. Then it depends on your price range. In general you should stay away from the really cheap stuff (under $50) because it will not last and in many cases these cheap sticks just don't work that well even when new. Others may be able to add some other options for good sticks to the ones I will mention here.

I personally know someone who is using a Thrustmaster T.16000M with FlightGear. He is very happy with it although he is not a very experienced flight simmer. I have not tried this stick myself. It is inexpensive at a little over $50 and uses Hall Affect sensors (magnetic - no contacts - no pots to wear) with 16 bit resolution (typically in this price range you will get 8 bit resolution). Nothing else close to this price has Hall Affect sensors. There have been a few threads about this stick on this forum and all of the comments from those who have this stick have been very positive. This appears to be a very good entry level stick.

Until recently (for about the last 10 years) I have been using a CH products Combat Stick. I was very happy with it over all but the gimbals were starting to have some play and the pots were starting to get jittery (IE it was wearing out). Considering how long it lasted and how well it worked over all it was worth the $85 I payed for it a decade ago. In general you can't go wrong with anything from CH Products but they do not have any really high end products. Build and parts (switches and pots) quality are good and these are made in the USA. But the gimbals and most of the rest of the stick are plastic and will wear with use and because they use pots age and use will take its toll. I have had two CH sticks in the last 20 years and I was happy with both.

Just last week I upgraded to a Thrustmaster Warthog stick (just the stick since the throttle of the HOTAS setup is not correct for what I fly). This is an expensive stick at around $300 but the build quality is extremely high. Most parts are metal with very good fit and finish. The stick and the base are very heavy at about 6 times the weight my old CH stick so it stays where you put it. I am not sure what the actual weight is but the shipping weight, which includes packaging, was 11.5 pounds more than half of the shipping weight was the stick. This is a 16 bit Hall Affect stick with 19 buttons. This stick is in a completely different class from my old CH stick and this was a huge upgrade. The way this feels when flying is hard to describe but it definitely has a very real feel with much higher control forces than the CH stick. It also allows for very precise control inputs and aerial gunnery with this stick is amazing since it allows you to hold a very steady sight picture. So far I am very happy with it but it is very new and I will need more time with it before I can make a definitive pronouncement. Worth having a look for more experienced simmers looking for a high end stick but probably too much stick for someone who is getting their first stick. Also FlightGear did not recognize the stick out of the box since the name it was seeing was different than what was in the Joystick XML file. Once that was corrected FG worked nicely with it although I needed to make some significant changes to the joystick XML to adapt it to my aircraft (to get back to the subject of this thread).

The Saitek HOTAS type sticks, X45, X52 and X65, also appear to be well regarded but like the Thrustmaster Warthog HOTAS have a throttle setup that may not be suited to some types of aircraft (good for jet fighters but not very good for piston or multi-engine aircraft). These will be priced in between the CH sticks and the Thrustmaster Warthog stick.
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Re: Customised joystick configs

Postby Neilson » Mon Apr 21, 2014 5:20 pm

I edit my joystick xml by hand, i have never got the in game joystick set up to work.

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