If you’re in the market for a set of sim racing pedals, you’re truly spoiled for choice. There are lots of options out there for all budgets and all experience levels, but to ensure you make the right decision for your setup, you need to understand how much sim racing pedals cost.
Most sim racing pedal sets cost between $80 and $300. However, depending on the quality and features you want or could do without, you can find some sets below $50. Similarly, you can find premium build pedal sets for over $500, with some of the best being closer to $1,000 or more.
Below, we’ll take a deep dive into the three main price ranges for sim racing pedals: budget, mid-range, and premium. We’ll also discuss what you should look for in each price bracket, and provide our favorite options for each one.
How Much Do Budget Sim Racing Pedal Sets Cost?
Budget sim racing pedals can cost anywhere from $50 to $150, but many of the best budget sim racing pedals come as part of a bundle with a wheel. These pedals are generally plastic in construction and use a potentiometer for the brake pedal.
Plastic is the go-to material for budget items in sim racing, and in some parts of a rig, this is more acceptable than in others. It definitely takes away the immersion when you press your pedals flat to the floor with no resistance and can feel the plastic strain from the pressure!
Who These Pedals Are For
How important this is for you depends on how often you want to race. If you’re a casual sim racer who enjoys hopping on their rig on weekends to do a few laps with friends, budget items will be ideal for you. If you’re just getting started in sim racing or you’re more interested in having casual fun, buying cheaper pedals will net you the enjoyment without a crazy price tag.
If you can get past the fact that plastic doesn’t feel ‘real’ or weighty like actual sets of pedals in real cars, then you won’t have any problems with buying a budget set. But you do need to make sure you check the reviews for these cheaper sets to ensure they’re compatible with your setup and that you won’t get any nasty surprises.
Potentiometer vs Load Cell
Another aspect of keeping the price low is that you’ll be missing out on load cell technology that comes with mid-range and premium pedal sets. Most entry-level sim racing pedals rely on potentiometers, which measure how far the pedal travels. Load cells measure pressure, meaning the harder you press the more braking force is applied.
The latter is more realistic and immersive, but also more expensive. You’ll not usually find load cell pedals within the budget price range, but this isn’t too big of a loss for absolute beginners that don’t yet have a reference point in terms of quality. Potentiometer pedals are a fine place to start, and once you’re ready to upgrade, there are plenty of load cell pedals to choose from.
Brands To Consider
In terms of budget brands that are worth a look, Thrustmaster offers some nice bundles of steering wheels and pedal sets that will deliver enjoyment without costing a fortune. However, these cheaper bundles will feature low-quality wheels for the most part, and so they’re really only ideal for the most casual of sim racers.
Another aspect of most budget sim racing pedals is the fact that they often only come with a gas pedal and brake pedal. This isn’t the end of the world if you’re fine with shifting with your wheel’s paddles, but it’s not great if you want to use a stick shifter. Overall, the budget category of pedals is best for absolute beginners and casual sim racers.
The Best Budget Sim Racing Pedals
The best budget sim racing pedals are the Fanatec CSL pedals. Not only do these feature the staple high build quality that Fanatec products are known for, but they’re also easily upgradeable when the time comes to take your sim racing rig up a notch with either a clutch pedal or a load cell brake.
How Much Do Mid-Range Sim Racing Pedal Sets Cost?
Mid-range sim racing pedals cost anywhere from $150 to $500 or so, and these are sets that often feature load cell brakes and three pedals as standard. The build quality is usually much higher than that of budget pedals, and there’s a good selection of brands in this category too.
When you reach this middle area of price for pedal sets, the quality of materials used increases, and they feel far better in terms of overall build, and they also offer more immersion and realism. Pressing the pedals with your feet will feel more responsive and satisfying, something that beginner sim racers seeking more improvement in their driving skills will really value.
You’ll start to see pedals made out of metal at this price range. When compared to plastics, metal will last longer and look better for longer periods of time. They also offer a far better and more realistic feel compared to budget pedal sets.
These pedal sets are generally heavier than budget sets, offering more stability under the higher braking forces that load cell pedals demand. They’re usually easy to hard mount to your sim racing rig too, which is a must if you want the most immersion from your racing experience, without the risk of the pedals sliding around as you brake hard for a sharp corner.
The Most Common Category
Most people will actually stay within the realms of mid-range pedals because the products are competitive and reasonably priced, and there is a level of progression within the category itself too.
For pedal sets that fit into this category, the price range will be between $100 and $500. Most sim racing brands you search for will have products within these price points, so finding a compatible set of pedals for your rig shouldn’t be too difficult.
The Brands To Look At
Looking at brands for mid-range pedals, I’ll always suggest that you take a look at Fanatec and Thrustmaster for their tried and tested products that sim racers will always swear by. Both brands offer pedal sets for all price ranges, and they’re normally compatible with console too, which is ideal for PlayStation and Xbox racers.
Whether you’re looking to upgrade from a casual sim racing set-up or you’re seeking an extra competitive edge, mid-range products are a great investment that can be picked up without breaking the bank. The better grade of materials and extra features that come as standard make this the ideal price range for most sim racers.
The Best Mid-Range Sim Racing Pedals
The best mid-range sim racing pedals are the ClubSport V3 pedals from Fanatec. This 3-pedal set is made from high-quality materials and offers an excellent level of realism for a very reasonable price. They also feature immersion-boosting vibration motors that will let you feel through your feet when your traction control and ABS are kicking in!
How Much Do Premium Sim Racing Pedal Sets Cost?
Premium sim racing pedals can cost anywhere from $500 and up, with some of the best pedals on the market hovering around the $2,000 range. These pedals will be made of the best materials and offer the most immersive sim racing experience possible.
Those who look for this level of quality are definitely of a more serious racing breed, whether they make a living from sim racing or they’re constantly looking for the best innovations to improve their competitive edge. These pedal sets are not for beginners! These pedal sets also won’t usually be compatible with consoles.
Who These Pedals Are For
A lot of professional race drivers use rigs that include premium-level products to replicate real driving conditions as much as possible. However, for most consumers out there, the price points for these pedals simply aren’t viable to purchase. But that doesn’t mean that the products aren’t worth looking at!
It’s important to be aware of a full picture before making any decisions, and I’m sure there are readers out there who are looking for the absolute best of the best in sim racing. If you have the budget for it, these pedal sets are the ones to go for if you want pure immersion and quality.
You’ll typically find that manufacturers utilize strong yet lightweight cuts of steel for making premium pedal sets, allowing for durability and a high level of immersion. At the higher end, you’ll get hydraulic brakes instead of load cells, which offer even more realism and a lot of fine tuning. Some even feature hydraulic dampers on all three pedals.
Premium sim racing pedals also tend to be highly customizable, with options for tuning every aspect of every pedal, allowing you to create the optimal sim racing experience for your setup. You can usually tweak the pedal positions alongside things like dead zones too.
Brands To Consider
When you search for premium products in sim racing, you’ll often come across Heusinkveld, a company renowned for its innovations in the sim racing world. Other brands to consider are the likes of Simtag and Racewerk.
Premium pedal sets are the absolute pinnacle of sim racing excellence, so if that’s what you’re shooting for, these products are the ones for you.
The Best Premium Sim Racing Pedals
The best premium sim racing pedals are the Heusinkveld Ultimate pedals. These pedals are made from high-quality materials and they are designed to replicate as close to the real thing as possible. You’ll get hydraulic damping on every pedal, which not only allows for a high level of customization, but also an unbelievably immersive racing experience.
When choosing a set of sim racing pedals, you can usually find options in 3 rough price ranges. These are the budget, mid-range and premium pricing brackets, and which one is right for you will depend largely on how often you plan to race and how much you’re willing to invest in the hobby.
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