Sunday, July 21, 2024

Playseat Trophy Sensible, Lightweight Sim Cockpit

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picture: Logitech

As fun as sim racing can be, it’s also a hobby that forces you to make some rather annoying sacrifices, especially when you start out. Those sofferings to your walletnaturally – Deluxe new direct drive wheels and load cell pedals don’t come cheap – but they also sacrifice for your living space. Mounting your equipment to a desk or fold-out tray table works if you’re looking for the absolute cheapest setup, but it’s far from ideal, especially for today’s high-torque gear. On the flip side, the right rig requires space, not to mention a larger financial investment.

If you’re ready to make the leap, the Playseat Trophy is something you should consider. Playseat has been active in this space since 1995, making custom racing simulator seats mounted on a steel tube frame that’s built to take a beating. The company partnered with Logitech for a branded version of the Trophy cockpit, which it was designed to support Logitech’s new direct-drive G Pro racing wheel and load-cell-equipped racing pedals. It retails for $599 Logitech website It will be released today, February 21.

Close-up of the side rail and pedals attached to the Playseat Trophy Logitech G Edition.

Logitech and Playseat conveniently provide enough M6 hex screws to mount the racing wheel and pedals to their respective flaps, and even the countersunk holes used in Logitech hardware.
picture: Adam Ismail/Jalopnik

Logitech shipped me a Trophy kit a few weeks ago and I’ve been using it, along with Logitech’s latest wheel and pedals, to play Gran Turismo 7 since. Right off the bat, I’ll dispel some potential for confusion here and say that there is nothing in the Logitech flavor in the cup that is fundamentally different from the Standard Playseat modelThey, with the exception of Logitech, have the appropriate branding and come in unique colors of gray and sky blue. This is really it. Other than that, the $599 price point isn’t the same as Playseat charges for the Cup they’ll ship directly to you, and the design and function are exactly the same.

However, I’ve never used a Playseat Cup before, having turned all previous sim racing courses on Wheel Stand Pro, and before on a dreaded tray table, as we all do when we enter this niche. The Trophy might sound like a lot if you come from similarly humble beginnings, but it’s actually very easy to build. Assembly only requires the included Allen keys—and maybe a little elbow grease to stretch the seat fabric over the metal frame.

View of the Playseat Trophy Logitech G Edition from behind the seat.

picture: Adam Ismail/Jalopnik

Here’s the most interesting thing about the Cup: What looks like a fully formed racing seat is actually just Playseat’s super-strong, breathable Activite fabric, slid over the metal and clamped to the frame with numerous, a lot velcro flaps. Yes – I was skeptical too. I wasn’t confident that just the Velcro could hold 160 pounds, let alone keep it rigid enough for me to fully focus on my virtual driving and ignore all distractions.

This thing is basically a racing sim seesaw, but it works beautifully. Again, getting all the flaps to come together and the seat fabric taut and sitting where it should be is a bit of a pain, but an extra set of hands helps. The benefit of the shell-less design is that it keeps the cup light—only 37 lbs. not counting any hardware attached to it. This makes it very easy to move around when you have to.

Front view of the seat in the Playseat Trophy Logitech G Edition.

It doesn’t sound like much, but the ActiFit seat is actually very comfortable, especially since it’s not actually padded.
picture: Adam Ismail/Jalopnik

The assembly is not so terrible. Getting the seat exactly the way you want it and conforming to your body’s ideal driving position will probably take up more of your time. To that end, just about everything about the cup is adjustable. The seat back can move forward or recline; The base of the pedal can be moved closer or farther away from you, left flat or angled up. The base of the steering wheel can also be tilted or turned to adjust its distance from the seat.

At first I didn’t think the seat height was adjustable, until I realized that was the point of lengthening the midsection of the frame. I wish there was a way to raise the seat relative to the wheel without extending the entire chassis by a few inches, but that’s a small gripe for someone particularly concerned about space.

Adjustments, such as assembly, are made by tightening and loosening the bolts with an Allen wrench. Trial and error is monotonous and annoying, but you should only play around with these things once. And once you figure out what works for you, the Cup is a dream to drive in.

Close-up view of the Playseat Trophy Logitech G Edition's pedalboard adjustments.

Since the pedal board has long grooves that both sets of pins pass through on either side, you only need to loosen it slightly to adjust height, distance and trajectory. It’s a real smart design.
picture: Adam Ismail/Jalopnik

Don’t swing, yell, or give in. To get the most out of a load cell pedal assembly or a high-torque wheel, you really need a solid, solid base to fix everything on, and that’s what you get with the Playseat Trophy. Just like the non-Logitech version, this one has universal boards that can support devices from Fanatec and Thrustmaster, allowing it to evolve as your setup does.

It’s hard to make a blanket recommendation for something like a cup, it costs a lot and takes up space. Personally, being very familiar with portable and foldable options like Professional wheel stand And Track Racer FS3 Standing, I’ve always found they’re a little unsatisfying and can’t quite disappear into the closet like I’d hope. If you’re on the fence about a more “permanent” solution and can accommodate it, I think you’ll be very happy with the cup. Fair warning: Once you settle down, a tray table will never suffice again.

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