Reviewed: September 29, 2003
Next time you hear someone snidely remark, “they don’t make ‘em like they used to,” feel free to bludgeon them a bit with Logitech’s Extreme 3D Pro. Aside from being as solid as a rock, it offers everything a gamer needs at a price that even broke college students will appreciate. With eleven buttons; a hefty trigger; a sturdy hat switch and throttle control; a twistable handle; and a sexy, ergonomic design; the Extreme 3D Pro is exactly how every manufacturer should be “making ‘em”.
Installation - 10
As is the case with most Logitech products, installation of the Extreme 3D Pro was easy and took only a few minutes. After a painless installation of Logitech’s Profiler software, I plugged the Extreme 3D Pro into an open USB port, XP immediately recognized it, and I was off and running. Quick, clean, and hassle-free.
Aesthetics - 9
Guaranteed to make a Nun blush, the Extreme 3D Pro is easily one of the sexist controllers on the market. Matte silver and black, the Extreme 3D Pro comes off as both modern and understated. Extending from its silver base are four large, black feet, a throttle control that gently curves outwards from the base, and six sizeable black buttons. The stick itself is sleek and black with a half-halo of silver buttons around the hat switch.
However, people short on desk space may run into trouble; while the Extreme 3D Pro’s feet give it impeccably stability, they also take up considerable room. For someone with the desk space, this large footprint ensures slip-free gaming. However, those with little room to spare may want to ensure that they have somewhere to store the controller when it’s not in use.
Durability - 10
Of course, time will tell, but the Extreme 3D Pro seems to be a very sturdy product. The buttons are solid and the joystick, throttle, and hat switch are all properly taunt without any undue looseness or wobbling. In my week with the controller, I’ve not heard a single “click” or felt any movement irregularities that would suggest design flaws or weakness. Nevertheless, Logitech includes a one-year limited warranty should anything go wrong.
Performance - 10
Testing the controller with everything from Microsoft’s Flight Simulator 2004 to HomePlanet, Logitech’s Extreme 3D Pro proved to be extremely precise and allowed for very subtle movements. The stick and its twistable base gave just the right amount of resistance to allow for fluid movement without risk of over-steering and snapped back into their upright position when released.
The Joystick’s contour fit my hand perfectly with the hat switch and other buttons falling comfortably within the reach of my thumb. The buttons on the base are large and contrasting colors make it is easy to find the correct buttons without looking directly at the controller. The throttle has a large paddle, moves very smoothly, and is positioned nearly perfectly; my middle and fore fingers could reach the base button without me having to move my thumb off the throttle.
The configuration software included is very user-friendly and gives the owner enough control to create perfect profile for even the most stubborn of software. Better still, your games can be launched directly from Logitech’s software with the correct configuration automatically being loaded. My only complaint would be that the pre-configured profiles available from Logitech’s website are generally out-of-date.
Value - 10
Considering Logitech’s Extreme 3D Pro functionality, sleek design, and rock-solid feel, its $35 price tag is stunning. Unless you are looking for a Force Feedback or a wireless controller, you simply couldn’t get more bang for you buck than with the Extreme 3D Pro. For ten dollars than the next model down (the Attack 3 Joystick), you get near-perfection in terms of both comfort and functionality.
Overall – 10.0
Budget-minded or not, Logitech’s Extreme 3D Pro provides everything one could possibly want from a standard Joystick. If Force Feedback and wireless capabilities are not something that you’re looking for, the Extreme 3D Pro is as good as it gets. A well-rounded piece of a equipment and one that comes highly recommended.