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BionicFraud’s FightStick Buyer’s Guide

So you’ve finally decided that playing on stick is the way to go. The only problem is, with so many out there you don’t know which to choose! This guide details Fightsticks I’ve used and details the pros and cons for each. I didn’t include any sticks below $60, I’ve had too many bad experiences with those, especially off brand or generic brand sticks. Don’t get them.

MadCatz:

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MadCatz TE (any variant)

The tournament standard stick which set the benchmark for all sticks that followed. This is a great all round stick. It has the standard quality Sanwa Denshi parts and is relatively compact.

Pros: Compact, Durable, Easy to Mod, Will fit most stick bags

Cons: Acoustics feel hallow (personal preference), Discontinued

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MadCatz Fightstick Pro

Currently Madcatz flagship stick. Unlike the TE this stick is slightly thinner resulting in a rectangular shape. Uses the standard Sanwa parts and has good moddability. It’s slightly cheaper than the average tournament stick and usually on sale during majors. A great beginner stick. On the Mad Catz store for $129.99 USD

Pros: Compact, Cheap, Moddability

Cons: Light, Distance of stick and buttons is closer than usual.

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MadCatz Pro V.S Edition

Madcatz crown jewel. This premium stick sports a $200 price tag but is worth every penny. It’s heavy and feels nice and sturdy on the lap. Solid acoustics and has plenty of room allowing for more extravagant mods. This stick is quality, I’d highly recommend this tournament regulars and enthusiasts. Snag this if there’s a Madcatz promo which bring the price down to around $169.

Pros: Solid construction, Durable, Extra long cable

Cons: Can be cumbersome to carry. Extensive work needed to gut.

Hori:

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Hori RAP3

This stick is interesting as it’s build quality isn’t quite as high as a TE or Qanba but is definitely above the generic no names and below $100 sticks. The stick and buttons are Hori’s own brand and their stiffness feel somewhere between Sanwa and Seismetsu parts. Plenty of space to mod. This is the stick I’d recommend for first timers who want general all round stick, only problem it’s discontinued and prices vary wildly. The range I’ve seen is $70 – $200. Grab it if you find it around $100 or less.

Pros: Not too expensive, versatile

Cons: Hard to find and prices vary, not as long lasting as some of the other sticks

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Hori RAP3 SA

Improved version of the RAP3. Uses Sanwa parts and feels sturdier.

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Hori RAP3 Pro V3 SA and VX SA

One of the cheaper tournament level sticks (Around $130). It has the standard Sanwa parts and a rectangular body vs the RAPs oval. I’ve found this stick to be extremely light which can be good or bad depending on preference.

Pros: Compact, Cheap

Cons: Light

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Hori Mini 3

This stick is amazing for what it is. The buttons are springy and smooth. A easy to carry stick, though its’ small body means it’s has extremely limited moddability. Easily the best $50 stick and the only $50 worth buying.

Pros: Easy to carry, Cheap, Surprisingly good build quality

Cons: Little moddability, no Xbox model

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Hori Fighting Edge

Hori’s Ferrari. It’s big, flashy and pricey, what you get for $200 is a stick with good acoustics, light up touch buttons and programmable control schemes. It’s the most technologically advanced stick on the market. It’s tournament prevents accidental pauses and the underlining keeps the stick in place. Get this for the ultimate Hori experience.

Pros: Remappable buttons, Super smooth stick

Cons: Buttons are a bit hard

Qanba:

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Qanba Q2

This is the stick made for left handers. It’s symmetrical layout allows the player to play south paw simply by turning it around and flicking a switch. Uses Sanwa parts and has a nice solid feel. The pleather base is unique and prevents slipping.

Pros: Left hand usability, Large surface area, Carrying handle,

Con: PS3 model only, Limited quantities

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Qanba Q4 (any variant):

Qanba’s flagship stick and also my favorite stick. The weight and acoustics of it is super solid, it doesn’t feel hollow at all. The best feature of this stick is that it comes dual modded out of the box. It works on Xbox and PS3 without adapters or converters. Standard Sanwa parts and a $160 price tag makes this stick the best valve out there.

Pros: Dual modded, Carrying handle, Super sturdy feel, Easy to mod

Cons: Cloth base wears out easily, back panel can be hard to place securely.

Taito

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Taito VLX

The Godzilla of all arcade fightsticks. It’s heavy, long, big and costs $299 before shipping fees! Why would anyone want to buy this monster? Well, it will be the only stick you’ll ever need! It provides a feel that no other stick comes close. It comes with quality Sanwa parts and is easy to mod. The feel is hard to put in words, you just have to try one.

Pros: Sturdy, Even weight distribution, Plenty of space for mods, Can sit on it

Cons: Numbs legs with prolonged use, Hard to carry around, Expensive to ship, Hard to order

Posted by: BionicFraud on Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

Eightarc Fusion Synthesis Professional Arcade Stick Unboxing Video

Eightarc Fusion Synthesis Professional Joystick

Maybe you have an Xbox 360, but your buddy has a PS3 and you guys want to play Street Fighter together. Normally, you’d have to have separate FightSticks from Hori, Mad Catz or whoever else for the two different consoles, but that’s not the case with Qanba and Eightarc products. One excellent example is the Eightarc Fusion Synthesis, which works across the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.

I put together a quick unboxing video that I’ve embedded below and then the full review is going to be posted on MEGATechNews at some point in the near future. Early impressions? This is a superbly built arcade stick with great weight, authentic Sanwa Denshi parts, and a definite premium feel. That see-through ABS plastic housing is pretty freakin’ hot too.

Posted by: Akuma on Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

HORI Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Arcade Stick

HORI Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Arcade Stick

Are you in the market for a new fight stick? Are you a fan of the Tournament of the Iron Fist? Are you looking forward to Tekken Tag Tournament 2? Well, all of those things can come together with this new stick.

We’ve known for a little while that Hori was going to make a new arcade stick for Tekken Tag Tournament 2 and now Hori has released some new high-resolution images of the product. It’s based on the Soul Calibur V stick with the same full Sanwa parts and NOIR layout. I think it looks hot and I particularly like the sliding cover for what I think is the start button.

You can expect to see the HORI TTT2 Arcade Stick launching on September 13 for 14,800 JPY, which works out to about US $190. It’ll be available in Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 flavors, as usual.

HORI Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Arcade Stick

Posted by: Akuma on Friday, July 20th, 2012