Joysticks are pissing me off with the realness. My old Cyborg Graphite mostly gets the job done, but the stick slop is getting to me and with NMS imminent and S42 hopefully soon-ish I need to do something about it. Too bad there's nothing on the market that addresses my needs. Saitek's been going downhill since about 2007, and even their good products tended to have slop issues due to that spring-retainer thing they do. I had high hopes for the X-56 but early reviews say it's a big dud. CH Products gets full marks for durability, but dual-barrel gimbal design is antiquated and they're a bit too big and clunky for my little gerbil paws (one reason I've always like Saitek's skeletal design aesthetic). They also don't have a lot of distinct buttons on the stick itself, which is a problem for space sims. Thrustmaster's Warthog comes close, but it's too big for my desk and they cheaped out on the gimbal anyway--underneath all that glorious metal is plastic in the area most likely to break. Why Thrustmaster, why?!?!
VKB's Black Mamba would be the stick of my dreams if it had more buttons, but it doesn't because it was made by Russian IL-2 enthusiasts for Russian IL-2 enthusiasts, and their new Gladiator even more so. "Pro" sticks in general just don't have a gaming-friendly feature set, because they weren't designed for games.
Well, I guess that settles it--time to learn how to roll my own. Or at least make a custom stick for a VKB base cause damn, that is one sexy gimbal