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Review: GT-X2 Sim Racing Wheel by Cube Controls

Cube Controls GT-X2 sim racing wheel review

Featured Image: GT-X2 by Cube Controls

Cube Controls have been supplying my wheels for years. My first “serious” wheel was a Cube Controls Sport Pro (the SC Wireless version). I’ve owned a GT OMP Pro for a long time and I’ve always loved my F-Pro. It’s wheel review time and today, I’m looking closely at the GT-X2, the newest addition to the Cube Controls family.

In the GT-X2, Cube Controls have come away from their typical design methodology and in doing so, have created a design that stands out. It’s a shift in design thinking that legacy Cube Controls customers might find surprising, like me.

Those who read my review of the Stealth wheel from VPG will probably know that I appreciate something “different” in a design. As a sim racer, I have my thoughts and feelings towards what I like in a wheel and, as a reviewer, I try to convey a sense of what will appeal most to other drivers.

Cube Controls GT-X2
Cube Controls GT-X2

So, if you’re quite open-minded about innovation and convention-challenging concepts, read on. This is a wheel for sim rig owners to stand out.

The GT-X2 is a Carbon fibre-reinforced polymer (PA66 and CF30) based design (I learned more about the materials in play from Will’s video). This isn’t the first time we’ve seen an approach like this, with the very high-end VPG VPGT-Carbon being the first example of a higjh-end, non-aluminium chassis design I can think of.

GT-X2 - rear

If I’m right about Cube Controls’ design thinking, they’re developing ways to improve the FFB detail received by the driver via the wheel from the wheelbase.

The materials between your hands, and the direct drive motor have a significant impact on the “detail” you sense.

As I said in the article that began talking about this concept for the first time:

“Carbon fibre composite materials can be created to have characteristics that contribute transferrence of more detailed forces, especially when used in items like bicycle frames, (and, in our case a steering wheel chassis).”

VPGT Carbon Review
GT-X2 - button and rotary detail

The interesting thing about developing a composite manufacturing approach is that you can design (or select) the compounds that best suit the purpose.

Composites offer high strength and a high elastic modulus and are particularly suitable for sim racing wheels because they can be stiffer than Aluminium.

Aluminium is highly malleable, whereas composites are developed to have material characteristics that can be selected by the engineer working with it.

Aluminum-Composites show high stiffness, strength and wear resistance. The elastic modulus could reach values up to 220 GPa Conventional Aluminum alloys have an elastic modulus of 70-80 GPa.

Aluminum-Composites – AMT

The higher Young’s Modulus, the stiffer the material. we know that composite is stiffer by some margin, and in sim racing, “stiffness” means reduced (if any) flex, and a significantly more detailed force feedback experience.

GT-X2 rear with details including paddles and clutches visible

In testing, this was the defining feature of the wheel. The communicativeness of the wheel body, and how it dutifully reproduced very high frequency oscillations coming from my Simucube. I’m not a stranger to this phenomenon, but, I suspect, not all sim racers believe this might be possible. It is!

Before we move on to a broader view of the wheel I’ll say this: I think the objective of the GT-X2 design is to give Cube Controls a design avenue that gives their wheels better, more detailed FFB communication. “FFB throughput” is a good turn of phrase.

FFB throughput is a defining feature of the wheel that seems to have gone slightly unnoticed. Another big feature of this wheel is the design.

I admit, I didn’t love the design when I opened the box. The slightly green (metallic flaked painted) shrouding isn’t for me, and I think I might have picked black or a different colour. When you fit and power the wheel, however, the product tells a different story.

LED and screen detail GT-X2

Firstly, the LEDs are bright and have a beautiful default setup. Combined with this colour choice, it occurred to me that this is the type of wheel you can build a unique, custom setup.

Dare I say it may appeal to more creatively inclined sim racers? While I was using it, I realised that the design has huge scope for the sticker mod community to get going on their own designs for the wheel too.

Customise the LED profile or use the (excellent) default setup
Customise the LED profile or use the (excellent) default setup

The GT-X2 was initially designed for J.A.S Racing’s Honda Civic FL5 TCR cars, which compete in the TCR World Championship.

You can see those wheels in action today, here:

GT-X2 development: The steering wheel used on the Civic Type-R in the TCR World Championship

The GT-X2 is fundamentally the same wheel, with a 5″ display screen. I love it when Sim Racing meets Motorsport in real life.

Honda Civic Type-R TCR version
Honda Civic Type-R TCR version

The 5″ touchscreen is a nice feature. It has great contrast and colour reproduction. I found it very easy to read and, the touchscreen aspect makes interacting with it a lot of fun. Cube Controls have their own dashboard layout or it’s compatible with any SimHub-compatible dashboard (I mostly use Lovely Dashboard).

Import the cube controls dashboard by downloading it from the GT-X2 product page and opening it in Windows with SimHub running
Import the cube controls dashboard by downloading it from the GT-X2 product page and opening it in Windows with SimHub running

SimHub compatibility is ubiquitous these days. This is another example of a SimHub compatible device, you need to use the “Add Device” section in SimHub and you’re running in moments.

Select the GT-X2 in Simhub
Select the GT-X2 in Simhub

While the GT-X2 ships as a 320mm diameter sim racing wheel, you can order different grips to convert it to a 300mm steering wheel.

I’m a 320mm user myself, however I did go through the steps to swap out the grips. It’s 3 Tx screws, for which a tool is provided in the box.

Removing Torx screws to fit the 300mm diameter grips
Removing Torx screws to fit the 300mm diameter grips

The screws can be slightly difficult to align, I found myself applying some force to get the grip’s lugs seated correctly, but that isn’t a significant barrier to configuring the wheel the way you want it to be.

Grip removed and ready to replace
Grip removed and ready to replace

Cube Controls have a formula for their grip compound which feels silky smooth, but it’s grippy at the same time. They work very well with my F33L sim racing gloves!

Ergonomically, the wheel is excellent, with well-formed grips and accessible buttons and rotaries. I found that the 320mm grip size worked better for me. I’m a size 8 racing glove size, if that helps you to know.

On the rear, you have the clutch and shifter paddles. The specification of these units is the same as the F-Pro, contactless hall effect sensors on the paddles and analogue clutch paddles. Each features 5mm thick carbon paddles that are adjustable for position.

Shifter paddle body

I did notice that the paddle action was louder than I expected. Initially, I thought it might be the composite body resonating at the right frequency. But after checking my F-Pro, it’s slightly quieter!

For those inclined to try something innovative, Motorsport linked and different to so many other wheels out there, the GT-X2 is an excellent wheel that will help you get more from your wheelbase and driving experience. I like it!

Buy the GT-X2 here.

Review: GT-X2 Sim Racing Wheel by Cube Controls