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Bernard_IV

VKB Gladiator Mk.II quick review.

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Posted (edited)

I got a VKB Gladiator Mk.II and am pleasantly surprised by it so I thought I'd post up.  I ordered it from x-plane.org for $100 shipped and it came in about 9 days.  It came nicely packaged and looks great featuring a German style grip.  The stick is all plastic except for the base but it feels sturdy.  The gimbal action of the stick is smooth with fairly light resistance.  It has minimal dead zone and the hall sensors are accurate in game.  It has really improved my aim.  The stick twist is firm so you don't apply rudder when you don't want it.  The buttons are good.  The trigger feels pretty good with a long throw and a firm click at the end.  I heard that the older model trigger can break but it feels sturdy in this model.  The throttle lever is smooth with nice resistance and is accurate, no bouncing around throttle settings.  The hat switch is probably my biggest gripe.  It is a bit small and could be easier to use.  I wouldn't want to use it as my main head tracking but it is fine for trims and other binds.  The stick has a shift at the pinkie button so you can double bind the buttons and hat on the stick.  The stick buttons have two modes so you can bind a navigation mode and combat.  I really like this and was able to bind a ton of functions to it so I don't have to use my keyboard very often.  The base buttons can not be double bound.  The designated start, flaps, and eject buttons are nice to have also (no double bind for those).  There are no drivers to download, everything was plug and play and easy to use.  I plugged it into an auxiliary USB and found that the rudder twist didn't work.  Once I plugged it into a direct motherboard USB it worked fine.  It seems to need the extra power.  I'm really happy with it and it seems like a great deal, I would have paid much more for this.  We'll see how it holds up over time.

IMG_20200416_135005.jpg

Edited by Bernard_IV
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Thanks for the review.  I got a gunfighter with the kg 12 grip at first.  You should see if you can still grab the conversion kit and mount a mcg or other grip if you want more functions on the stick itself.  I went with the mcg pro and it's a great grip.  You get lots of stick there as is.  I look forward to reading more as you spend more time with it.  S!

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Mine arrived last week, I'm very happy with it.

 

3 hours ago, Bernard_IV said:

I plugged it into an auxiliary USB and found that the rudder twist didn't work.  Once I plugged it into a direct motherboard USB it worked fine.  It seems to need the extra power.

It's actually in the little manual that comes with it that you should use the USB ports of your motherboard and not use a hub or so.

 

Have a nice day.

 

:salute:

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15 hours ago, Bernard_IV said:

 The trigger feels pretty good with a long throw and a firm click at the end.  I heard that the older model trigger can break but it feels sturdy in this model.  

 

Yes, trigger in Mk.II is made in semi-flexible material, so no risk of broken.

In any case an replacement metal version is available, but is not needed.

 

The stick buttons have two modes so you can bind a navigation mode and combat.  I really like this and was able to bind a ton of functions to it so I don't have to use my keyboard very often.  The base buttons can not be double bound.

 

Look at VKB forum, the user Fallout9 are developing profile who apply "mode" to base buttons.

 

 

 

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Also the stick is designed for VR because you can easily find all its buttons blindly (speaking from personal experience).

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Nice review! I use rudder pedals so I have bind tailwheel lock to rudder twist ...it's handy and quick when taxiing 

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Posted (edited)

I bought the Gladiator Mk.II back in July and loved it so much, I bought the T-Rudders Mk.IV to go with them two months later. No regrets buying either.

 

Then I added a cheap Flashfire Cobra Accelerator throttle which does the job.

 

I drew up some cheesy diagrams for the games I use this HOTAS for and which buttons do what.

Edited by WallysWorld
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On 4/19/2020 at 1:11 PM, Sokol1 said:

 

Yes, trigger in Mk.II is made in semi-flexible material, so no risk of broken.

In any case an replacement metal version is available, but is not needed.

 

 

 

 

Look at VKB forum, the user Fallout9 are developing profile who apply "mode" to base buttons.

 

 

 

Mode to base buttons would be incredible.

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Good, useful review👍. I’ve looked at these carefully as a replacement but my MSFFB2 seems indestructible.

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It`s a great stick for it´s price. I`ve used it for a year and a half now, no bigger complains. I had to replace the plastic trigger with the metal one though.

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Got mine too last week, love it so far. The lightness in the middle is very nice compared to the t16000 I had before. Had to recalibrate mine in the windows settings because the x/y centers were off, it's good now. Would definitly recommend the metal trigger too, feels amazing.

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Posted (edited)

An alternative profile for Gladiator Mk.II (firmware 1.80.8 or above).

- 39 buttons

- No mode selector

- Mode button became buttons #38 (no shift) and #39 (shift).

- Shift on all buttons (grip and base) and HAT (N-E-S-W).

- Shift button is too DX button (#5) - may can be used for external use, like TS PTT, or not used at all.

 

The included VKB DevCft v0.90.13 is Ok for load this profile (use Load button on DevCfg).;

Make backup of original (use Save button on DevCfg).

 

Warning - Experimental profile, don't remember who made, use at your risk😁

 

 

Profiles_39buttons_Shift_all_no_Mode.zip

Edited by Sokol1

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Its not only good, its an amazing stick, i have mine for more than 3 years and still is a rock solid, it doesnt lose calibration and still perform like a brand new, I love it

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Posted (edited)

I have got mine very recently but already love it. A cool feature is a built-in calibration mode so no software required. It's not only convenient but also, in combination with no drivers, important for Linux users like me.

 

Does anybody know how to configure a hat-switch to move continuously and not incrementally in IL-2? If you have X-Plane you know what I mean.

Edited by 159BAG_elegz

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Select the HAT mode pressing F9 - are four, one is incremental.

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Posted (edited)
On 4/23/2020 at 3:34 AM, Sokol1 said:

Select the HAT mode pressing F9 - are four, one is incremental.

All of them seem to be not what I need. I want to press HAT and move a pilot's head until I release HAT. More like mouse emulation. I tried to assign HAT to the same as mouse X/Y assigned to but it didn't work. It works in X-Plane by default. Now I am going to look into VKB software settings and wether I can make it work with the device under Linux.

 

UPD:

@Sokol1Yes, you were right. I confused it with other settings somehow. Thanks!

Edited by 159BAG_elegz

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, 159BAG_elegz said:

I want to press HAT and move a pilot's head until I release HAT. More like mouse emulation

 

The third (F9) mode is like you say, you press HAT camera move, let say for left until, e.g look behind wing, you release HAT, camera stay in last position.

Then you need move HAT for right for return camera, or press a button for recenter view. With Gladiator I use pinky "shift" + HAT right for recenter.

 

You can adjust camera speed, inertia... in Camera options.

 

Anyway you can easy test mouse emulation with HAT using joyToKey, but I don't see advantage over the above method.

Edited by Sokol1
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I love the stick.  I would prefer if Mk. III gets rid of the HAT in favor of a button. Or at least add a push function to the HAT. Perhaps I will mod the stick sometime in the future with a push button instead of the HAT switch.

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A while ago I upgraded from Gladiator MK1 to Gladiator MK1 PRO. Pri si the one with metal gymbal mechanism and progressive resistance and its absolute joy to use and precise, durable. Its the best ON DESK solution of all times and its pitty VLB stopped with production so now the simmer is left to invest more in Gunfighter and separate throttle to have full functionality because Im using all the buttons on the base. Separate pedals are must, ofcourse.

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1 hour ago, =VARP=Tvrdi said:

A while ago I upgraded from Gladiator MK1 to Gladiator MK1 PRO. Pri si the one with metal gymbal mechanism and progressive resistance and its absolute joy to use and precise, durable. Its the best ON DESK solution of all times and its pitty VLB stopped with production so now the simmer is left to invest more in Gunfighter and separate throttle to have full functionality because Im using all the buttons on the base. Separate pedals are must, ofcourse.

The pro version has no twist rudder, correct?  Do you find that the all metal gimbal is a significant step up?

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The Pro version is a superior class. There are 4 sets of cams available for it (Avia Soft and Hard detent and Space Soft and Hard detent), 4 sets of springs (they could be installed 2 per cam, giving a large variety of resistance adjustment). A higher class is the GunFighter base, which comes with all the options from above plus the dry clutch system, where you could adjust the pressure 2 nylon pads put on a metal barrel to reduce stick oscillations. 

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Posted (edited)
On 4/27/2020 at 12:08 PM, Bernard_IV said:

The pro version has no twist rudder, correct?  

 

No, Gladiator PRO (for what worth discontinued*) originally don't have twist rudder, but can be upgraded with SGC grip (Lite or Premium) that have embed twist (improved mechanism).

 

*VKB say that this model sell little.

Edited by Sokol1
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1 hour ago, III./ZG1_Radick said:

where i can buy a Gladiator stick?

Where do you live?

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Posted (edited)

 

On 5/12/2020 at 8:39 AM, III./ZG1_Radick said:

where i can buy a Gladiator stick?

If you live in

USA or Canada (only): https://vkbcontrollers.com/

X-plane store (USA, but send worldwide): https://store.x-plane.org/VKB-Controllers_c_295.html

Europe (but send worldwide): https://flightsimcontrols.com/

VKB Sim store in Aliexpress (send worldwide, with exceptions):  https://www.aliexpress.com/store/3023007?spm=a2g0o.store_home.pcShopHead_864772585.0


BTW - In most places VKB Gladiator Mk.II is sold out for now, probable because VKB announce that will release Gladiator-K (Kosmosima, with SCG grip Lite) soon.*

 

* VKB "soon™' can means weeks, months and even years. 😜

Edited by Sokol1

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Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, Sokol1 said:

BTW - In most places VKB Gladiator Mk.II is sold out for now, probable because VKB announce that will release Gladiator Kosmosima (with SCG gripe Lite) soon.*

.

Yes, VKB say in il2sturmovik.ru that Gladiator MK.II "is history", await Gladiator-K.

 

"By the way, we stop the production of Gladiators. Now Gladiators-K will go on sale."

Edited by Sokol1

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Posted (edited)

Has anybody tried the upgrade kit for Gladiator? How is it different precision-wise due to bearings?

Edited by 159BAG_elegz

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The upgrade kit consists in an adapter that allows user to swap grips on the Gladiator. It's not an upgrade to metal gimbal/cams system as in the Gladiator Pro or GunFighter series.

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Posted (edited)

I noticed that the joystick is very precise and has high resolution according to Wizzo, VKB Joytester. However, in both IL-2 1946 and IL-2 BoX, I feel like it has a dead-zone or a luft in the centre, i.e. it takes a bigger move from the centre in the game than it takes in VKB tools. I can think only of the game having a lower resolution for input devices. Is it true?

 

UPD: X-Plane seems OK. What's wrong with IL-2?

Edited by 159BAG_elegz

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On 5/12/2020 at 3:47 PM, Sokol1 said:

X-plane store (USA, but send worldwide): https://store.x-plane.org/VKB-Controllers_c_295.html

 

BTW - In most places VKB Gladiator Mk.II is sold out for now, probable because VKB announce that will release Gladiator-K (Kosmosima, with SCG grip Lite) soon.*

 

* VKB "soon™' can means weeks, months and even years. 😜

 

Back in stock at X-plane looks like.

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Het guys how to lock twist rudder ( to allow to use pedals for rudder control) in  this joystick?

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4 minutes ago, ITAF_Rani said:

Het guys how to lock twist rudder ( to allow to use pedals for rudder control) in  this joystick?

 

I dont' think it's lockable, but I have pedals and with proper mapping there is no conflict.

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, ITAF_Rani said:

Het guys how to lock twist rudder ( to allow to use pedals for rudder control) in  this joystick?

 

12 hours ago, cardboard_killer said:

 

I dont' think it's lockable, but I have pedals and with proper mapping there is no conflict.

 

Remove the palm rest - two screws on left side, will have access to a hole on right side, then use a short screw -  2mm-1/16" (OD) x 15mm (lenght), for lock twist rudder.

 

VKB-Screw.jpg

 

Don't use screw with more length, or may smash wires inside grip "neck".

 

But, as cardboard_killer say, you don't need lock twist for use rudder pedal, just lave the twist axis unassigned, or use for another function, e.g. I use twist left torsion for wheel brakes.

 

How set this 'twist brakes" in VKB dev CFG:

But can be set without change Gladiator profiles, but using DView calibration, see the first post in the linked topic.

 

 

Edited by Sokol1
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Posted (edited)

Just an FYI that the new VKB Gladiator-K is available for ordering on June 4th.

 

VKB Gladiator-K

 

 

Edited by WallysWorld

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EU store is out of stock. Is it always like that?

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