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T300RS vs Fanatec CSR Elite?

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Hi gurus of this forum.

Didn't seem to find a T300RS vs Fanatec CSR Elite comparison. But does anyone here had experience with both and can share their experience?

The T300RS is over a year since it launched (vs the CSR Elite which is at least 3 years ago since it first debut). I would assume the electronics/drive of the Thrustmaster are better since it should be built on newer technologies?

However the CSR Elite does look more robust in design, vs the plasticky TS300RS. Durability wise?

Would appreciate the inputs of you kind gurus here.

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I am a current owner of a Thrustmaster T300RS and previously owned a Fanatec CSR Elite.  Both are excellent wheels, but I personally prefer the T300RS.  

First, the CSR Elite was very unreliable.  I had to RMA mine three times due to burnt up motors.  The fourth one I received worked fine when I sold it, but I never knew for sure whether Fanatec had taken steps to rectify the overheating problem that caused the motors to fail.  My T300RS has been rock solid, no problems whatsoever.

Second, both wheels have strong, smooth force feedback when working correctly.  When the CSR Elite's motors failed, then the FFB would get notchy and rough but when working correctly, it was strong and buttery smooth.

Third, I personally prefer the stock rim on the T300RS to the somewhat plasticky rim on the CSR Elite.  The T300RS has a metal rim covered in high quality rubber, which feels very sturdy and solid.

And finally, the T300RS has newer technology due to its brushless motor design.  That seems to be the new thing, whereas the CSR Elite has older brushed motor technology.

Overall, if I were to have to choose as of today, I would go with the T300RS.

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I personally do not have experience with The CSR wheels. I would like to think that the V2 base "should" be a better base because of the price difference from a 300rs or TX. The TX and T300rs bases are virtually identical and just differ in the stock rim included and pedals. I currently own a TX with 599x evo rim, TH8a shifter and T3pa pro pedals. I have had a total of 3 TX bases in the last few years and i can tell you there are definitely some things about it that are seriously making me consider shelling out the extra cash for a Fanatec V2. The first thing is while I absolutely loved the nice and smooth feel of the TX/T300rs when it was brand new right out of the box, with all three bases I have had, right on cue at about 2-3 months they start making a lot of noise and start to feel notchy/coggy and it just gets worse. I don't even use the full ffb potential because i'm afraid it will lessen its life span even further so I keep it turned down. The fact that the base is plastic doesn't bother me at all. I really could care less about that. But what does bother me is the overall shape of it. Even with larger 30mm Alcantara Evo Rim there is not enough viewing area between the rim itself and the top of the wheel base. At first I know this sounds picky but if you are truly going for that realistic driving feel and putting your wheel where it would be in a real car then your on screen gauges/ motec should be seen through the the area between the rim and the base. Take a look at the two and compare the difference. V2 base has plenty of room to see through. The only way to get a little viewing area in there on TX/T300 is to tilt the wheel way up in an unnatural driving angle. Like a school bus or Big rig, not a car. Thrustmaster replaced my first base due to it sounding like it was going to fall apart, I sold the second on out of the same frustration, and then like an idiot I bought another one. I am currently waiting on Thrustmaster tech support to reply to my email and for whatever reason it is taking them a lot longer to reply then the first time. So for me i think its about time for me to move away from thrustmaster products. And trust me I have been more then loyal to them. Spending a lot of $$$$ on add ons.

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In short - T300RS is wheel from present days! CSR Elite is great looking and build wheel, but it is discountinued and old already. And most important out of any warranty. 

 

To be honest Thrustmaster support is the best support ever + the guys from Logitech,too. I agree sometimes the reply is longer, but if I was you - just will pick the phone and call.

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28 minutes ago, Krassi said:

In short - T300RS is wheel from present days! CSR Elite is great looking and build wheel, but it is discountinued and old already. And most important out of any warranty. 

 

To be honest Thrustmaster support is the best support ever + the guys from Logitech,too. I agree sometimes the reply is longer, but if I was you - just will pick the phone and call.

Oh yeah i'm definitely not dogging on TM customer support. The first time I had an issue they were on point. I have raved about their excellent assistance with my previous problems. That is what has me a little worried this go around. But my main frustration is that I wish that the build quality was a little more reliable. But I know there are horror stories about all the brands. I'm going to give it another day or so and then I will call them. I just know that customer service is much easier for the manufacturer and the end user over email (most of the time).

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Thanks guys for the very detailed explanation of the comparison points. 

Looks like it's kinda no brainer for TS300RS. 

- Built on today's technology

- Reliable product (albeit the plasticky base, maybe I'm just being anal about it)

- overall Good post-sales support 

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The CSR Elite is awesome, personally, if not for the kinda janky rim that comes standard on it, I might even prefer it to my T500RS. 

That said, I'd have issues with paying what a CSRE goes for used in "like new" shape + a decent set of pedals vs a brand new T300RS, especially with some of the bundles they have now. 

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I have been using the fanatec CSR in my rig for a few months, but I just switched to a TX and I'm VERY happy! The fanatec drivers always annoyed me, the number of settings on the rim that seemed to be poorly documented (DRI "makes it easier to drift" but most likely only effects consoles maybe?!) etc.  I am throughly enjoying the TX, The TX feels a LOT more smooth on the force feedback, I'm picking up a lot more detail from the road. Even things like rumble strips feel better on the TX. The TX drivers are very nice for a minimalist like me. 

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If you don't mind me chiming in, I have some questions about the T300 as well.  I currently have the Fanatec 911 GT3 RS.  I love the wheel but they are not available new, and I want to upgrade to something a bit more detailed.  Specifically, detailed center dead zone.  I cannot pay the price of the Fanatec V2, which I understand has fantastic detail in the center dead zone.  My 911 GT3, even with wheel setting adjustments has some slop in the center dead zone which I do not want.

So, my question is how well does the T300 address center dead zone slop?  Can this be eliminated or, if needed induced?

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10 minutes ago, Krassi said:

T300RS have better resolution and rotation is captured by hall sensor. GT3 RS have optical sensor, thats why you have small dead zone.

OK that explains it.  So, it is not just the belt drive that makes the dead zone, its the sensor type?

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1 minute ago, Gpruitt54 said:

OK that explains it.  So, it is not just the belt drive that makes the dead zone, its the sensor type?

Yes,because the optical sensor have a plastic wheel with holes on it. To register movement at least one hole must go in one of the two directions.

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T300RS have 65 000 steps in its 1080 degrees, so this make it very sensitive. And the hall sensor register any movement. Ofcourse we speak here for good working wheel, not one with woble in the shaft or lose belts etc..

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2 minutes ago, Krassi said:

T300RS have 65 000 steps in its 1080 degrees, so this make it very sensitive. And the hall sensor register any movement. Ofcourse we speak here for good working wheel, not one with woble in the shaft or lose belts etc..

Good point.  So, generally, how is the build quality of the TM wheel base and attachments points to the wheel?

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I used to like the TX/T300RS over the T500RS but now with more experience I miss the faster (top speed) and more powerful (torque) motor of the T500RS.  However, if going back to a T500RS, would I then miss the improved smoothness and slightly more detailed feeling of the TX/T300RS?  It's difficult to say, but I honestly think Id prefer the T500RS now.  Or maybe I just miss it.  All I know is that going from a T500RS to a TX/T300RS is not an upgrade but rather a side-step with compromises between the two.

I tried a CSR-E/V1.  Disappointed.  It was smooth and more "refined" and higher quality feeling in-terms of force feedback, but it didn't have the power of the T500RS and didn't have anywhere near the top speed of the T500RS.  The TX/T300RS was right up their with the CSR-E/V1 in-terms of FFB detail although the CSR-E/V1 seemed to have a more refined feel to that detail - not really more detail but a more refined feel.

The CSR-E/V1 also has massive issues where it looses tons of power when it overheats which is easy to do according to many people.  I'm talking like 30% of power or something like that.  The V2, just for example's sake, doesn't loose more than a single digit % of power (hardly, if at all, noticeable) when being run hard and overheating.

I wouldn't go with the CSR-E/V1 unless you upgrade it with the Buhler mod to get 10-ish Nm of torque, than that's a totally different story :)

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2 minutes ago, Gpruitt54 said:

Good point.  So, generally, how is the build quality of the TM wheel base and attachments points to the wheel?

I have both from the new line - TX and T300RS. And T500RS ,too. The material is plastic, but everything is build sturdy and with good quality IMO. For example I use T300RS for public use for around 1 year, maybe 1000 people drove it and everything is like new.Even the rim, only two scratches. So the quality is good for me.

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7 minutes ago, Krassi said:

As Spinelli said T500RS is more powerfull, T300RS is smoother. Everything is by personal choice. I have both - count this like a choice:) lol

I'd also like to add faster (higher top-speed) for the T500RS but probably more minute FFB detail and "liveliness" for the TX/T300RS

 

When I would try the TX at my friends house, I thought it was quite a bit better than the T500RS.  The lowered power wasn't really a big deal or too noticeable and neither was the top speed.  I think I, as-well as many others, tended/tend to overstate how generally superior the TX/T300RS apparently is to the T500RS.  I say that because after having owned the T300RS myself for 2 weeks (rather than just casually having some fun at my friend's house) I definitely do miss the power, and to a lesser extent the top speed, of the T500RS.  I can definitely now say that the TX/T300RS is not overall superior to the T500RS, but rather that they are a side-step from eachother with different relative strengths and weakness

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No mean to hijack the thread, but I have a relevant question. I own the CSR (non-elite) for a while now and I do like it. The only prior experience I had was the Logitech G25 then the G27. Moving from those to CSR was an amazing upgrade. I now feel that my CSR is aging and would like to get a newer wheel. I struggle to justify 800+ for the V2 with base. My question is, Is going from CSR to TX/T300 would be a notable improvement or should I bite the bullet and have Fanatec steal my money again? 

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2 hours ago, marrawi said:

No mean to hijack the thread, but I have a relevant question. I own the CSR (non-elite) for a while now and I do like it. The only prior experience I had was the Logitech G25 then the G27. Moving from those to CSR was an amazing upgrade. I now feel that my CSR is aging and would like to get a newer wheel. I struggle to justify 800+ for the V2 with base. My question is, Is going from CSR to TX/T300 would be a notable improvement or should I bite the bullet and have Fanatec steal my money again? 

I am in the same position as you.  I currently use a Fanatec GT3 RS which I bought used a few years ago.  Before that I used a G25.  Now I want to get into something with updated tech.  I am leaning toward the T300.  That decision is based in large part to this forum.  If only Fanatec had other options besides the crazy expensive CS Wheel base.

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Guys to be honest - the difference is visible. I have all of Fanatec middle range wheels - CSR, Porsches all models... From G25/G27 they are huge step ahead...I like those wheels....But when you try T500RS,T300RS or TX - you feel just better wheel. Things are smoother and stronger. If you buy T300RS you will be satisfied .

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I realise than OP didn't ask about T500 :D, but I've been playing with TX and T500rs for a while now, and I can agree with Spinelli, T500 has a lot more torque, probably double (60w brushed dc motor vs 25w brushless dc motor).

However TX/300 feel a lot smoother.

It ultimately depends what kind of wheel you are looking for. T300/TX is probably great for on-line racer who likes their FF at 25-30% and worries a lot about lap times.

If you prefer realism, T500 can probably qualify as a upper body workout so I can understand why not everyone want (or can) fight the machine :)

And because it has more torque, you can crank up FF and still avoid dreaded FF 'wobble' or oscillation you usually get with small motor FF wheels.

Bdw, this is an interesting thread about real car steering torque http://www.f1technical.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=20074

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On 1/19/2016 at 11:04 PM, marrawi said:

I have the csr elite pedals, they should work with the t300 as they're usb connected (pc speaking) correct? 

Yes, most games will have no issues with that. Or you can get a CPX adaptor if you want to run them thru the wheelbase, to save devices or run on consoles.

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