The CH Products Pro Throttle Usb is an upgrade to the long lineage of CH Products aimed at flight simmers and hardcore gamers alike. It is a separate throttle unit. If you need a joystick than you will need to buy it separately. Together with a joystick it allows you to have a HOTAS setup in hand. There are few companies that offer a separate throttle unit, most of the times you will buy the HOTAS bundled as a joystick and throttle unit. The CH Products Pro Throttle Usb is modeled very loosely of the throttle unit on the F16. As such the throttle unit functions best in a HOTAS setup, for those that want throttle controls found in civilian aircraft a separate throttle quadrant would fit the bill better.
For those that happen to own the older and much antiquated gamport version of the pro throttle, you will notice immediately that not much has changed. The shape and button placement has stayed the same and CH have stuck with the bland black controller look. However, as previous owners will attest to, you buy any CH products for its performance over looks. Who looks at the throttle or joystick during play anyway? most of us are too busy concentrating on the screen.
The biggest change from the older gameport version is the addition of a mini joystick. It has half the range of a normal joystick and if you were brave enough you could assign it to flight elevator and aileron controls… however the intention was to allow the additional axis for radar control in F15 sims or for control of free moving targeting reticules where its available.
CH Products Pro Throttle USB Features
- 3 axis
- Z slider axis for throttle
- X and X axis on the mini joystick
- 24 buttons
- 3 push buttons horizontally aligned on the throttle hand rest
- 3 x 4 way HAT switches
- 1 x 8 way POV HAT switch
- 1 mode switch (located and accessed by pushing down on the mini joystick)
- 3 color mode status LED. Using the mode switch allows 3 profiles per button.
- 176 programmable functions all up can be stored, using mode and switch buttons
- Left hand molded HOTAS design
- Sliding throttle design
- CH build and material design
- Buy CH Products Pro Throttle USB at Amazon
- Works on all versions of Windows (32/64 bit)
- Limited MAC support
- 7ft long USB Connection
- 2 year warranty
CH Products Pro Throttle USB Review
The CH Products Pro Throttle Usb is best for people that own a good joystick or flight controller already but are the market specifically for a separate hands on throttle unit. For the price of a CH pro throttle, beginners and casual gamers should consider an all in one HOTAS setup such as the saitek x52 pro.
People who play DCS A10C or any other fighter simulator will see the immediate advantage of adding a separate throttle unit to their setup. For those who want a real replica HOTAS setup a TM Warthog is the perfect fit. However even going with a CH pro throttle, most of the functions can be assigned directly to the 24 buttons, you may need to assign some ancillary functions on to shift keys. As opposed to a boat and china hat switch, you will also have to get use to the functions going onto the 4 way hat switches instead. Nonetheless there are more than enough buttons to fit all the commands you realistically need on the throttle unit without having to fall back onto too many shifted key functions.
The throttle unit is a slider, it does not use a radial or arcing movement to set throttle. There are some advantages and disadvantages of this. It is slightly less realistic but at the same time avoids problems with needing a friction adjustment system of some sort. If you lay the throttle unit flat, the throttle will stay in what ever position you leave it at. Gravity will not pull your throttle forward or backward.
The throttle moves in a single smooth movement, there are no detente at either end of the slider. Which is unfortunate since it makes it harder push the throttle in without having to worry about hitting afterburners unnecessarily. The more enterprising of you could always stick some sort of rubber stop to function as a ghetto detente.
Like all CH products, you can plug and play the throttle unit. However access to shifted keys and mode functions require you to use the CH control manager software. Which is so far the best utility of its kind. It is both intuitive enough for newbies but leaves enough hidden power available via its scripting functions that more complex tinkerers will be able to program the throttle unit to do what they always wanted. The CH control manager is actually a really solid piece of software and you should never have any problems with it in any game.
The throttle unit base is quite large, almost the same size as the CH fighter stick. The sliding action is smooth with a little bit of resistance. I found no problems with the unit lifting of or moving around unnecessary during use, even though it was not stuck down or mounted in place. The large size may make a small cramped keyboard tray even smaller though, especially when you are trying to cram in another joystick and keyboard!
The addition of a mini joystick is a god send, you can use it as an impromptu rudder axis however it functions best as a mini mouse control. It works out of the box as advertised.
The mode switch with LED color status is a good addition, however you need to install additional software to make proper use of it. Otherwise the mode button can be assignable in game to any other function as its is detected as any normal button press in game. To get the most out of the throttle unit you really need to learn how to use the CH control manager, as the CH hanger forums offer game profiles that you can download and load up onto the throttle unit to get you up and flying without any need to do any laborious key assignments.
It looks bland and boring next to its competitors, but it is a solid performer. It has just enough buttons to cover you for any flight simulator and is the perfect unit for those that already own a capable joystick but need a HOTAS setup. The sliding action is just right and all the buttons click and react convincingly. Although some of you will bemoan the lack of trim wheels, you will have to make do with digital ones instead. Overall, No complaints about this throttle unit, although if you are set on any replica control or want a dual throttle HOTAS than the venerable CH Pro Throttle will not be the best for you.
The quick plug and play nature means you will rarely run into compatibility problems and CH has an active forum where you can get quick answers if you do run into anything. On top of everything you get the CH name, known for building products of extremely high quality and durability. It may not look fancy, but it will most likely outlast anything prettier you can ever find.
- Slider throttle, accurate and smooth motion
- Lots of buttons, hats and even mini joystick. You will have trouble assigning them all
- CH control manager allows detailed configuration and tweaking
- Casual gamers may find the pricey $100+ for just a throttle unit hard to swallow
- Lack of any real printed documentation. Head to the CH website and forum quick.
- Requires a separate USB port (can not daisy chain into units like some TM controls can)
- No detente at extremes
Check out what other users had to say…
First of all, I believe this product should be complemented with a good joystick, CH Fighterstick being the first choice. Of course, it can function alone, but I really can’t think of any situation where one would need a throttle without a joystick. The device is extremely light compared to similar units. The resistance, however, is slightly stronger, making some kind of fixing it to the table almost mandatory. Either that or you’ll have to push it down every time you move it, so the friction does the stabilizing.The motion is linear rather than arcing, which requires some time getting used to. I’m still not sure if this was a good decision.There is a number of hat switches and buttons on the throttle and you’ll probably never run out of them. Their placing, however, is not as good as with Cougar’s throttle, for example. In my opinion, an ergonomic rework of the unit would[...] Read the rest of the review >
This is an amazing product, it truly transforms your flight sim experience. I had been used to the simple [$$] joysticks with the throttle as a little nob on the side of the thing. This, as part of a HOTAS system (like another CH products jostick), is just worlds apart — they give you about a bazillion 4-way hat switches, which I use to increment prop pitch, fuel mixtures, supercharger stages, flaps, &c, and three buttons on the front. They also have an interesting mini-joystick, which theoretically one could use as a mouse, although I haven’t gotten that to work — but it is useful for other sorts of analog-action motions, such as the rudder control. [...] Read the rest of the review >
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