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Base Fanatec CSL DD : Test & Review

Sim Racer

E-sport driver & Sim Racing enthusiast, I decided to share my passion on this website.

Fanatec CSL DD


  • Incredible Sensations
  • Smooth and precise force feedback
  • Very good quality materials
  • Wide compatibility
  • Excellent value for money


  • Plastic finishes a bit cheap

Steering wheels have quickly replaced the joysticks of all racing simulation enthusiasts. But for some years, the main market leaders such as Logitech and Thrustmaster have not really evolved the technology of their products, preferring to stick with what they’ve got.

This is why the German brand Fanatec has become very important in the last few years in the the world of Sim-racing. It has challenged its competitors by developing high-end products with state-of-the-art technologybut at affordable prices and immediately became a hit.

We took a look at one of the brand’s models that we recently tested: the Fanatec CSL Direct Drive steering wheel base. In this article we will talk about main characteristics of this model of this model, we will tell you which type of player we recommend it to we recommend it for, what are its advantages and its disadvantages, how much it costs and where you can buy it.

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The characteristics of the Fanatec CSL DD base

The Fanatec Clubsport Light Direct Drive basemore commonly known as CSL DDis a high-end model that revolutionized the sim-racing market with its technology and unbeatable price.

We have listed its main characteristics:

  • Release date: 2021
  • The Fanatec CSL Direct Drive is a flywheel base in the form of a CNC-machined fanless aluminum housing with plastic front and rear panels.
  • A single button button on the CSL DD base, which lets you select your support platform (Xbox or PC).
  • The Fanatec CSL DD is equipped with a 100% customized engine developed in Germany specifically for simulation racing, with patented and exclusive FluxBarrier technology technology, which optimizes motor efficiency and smoothness.
  • This model also includes the first industrial engine with a carbon fiber composite motor shaftcomposite motor shaft, a high resolution non-contact hall position sensor and an all-aluminum automotive-grade quick release. The steering range of the CSL DD is therefore infinite.
  • The CSL DD delivers 8 Nm of maximum torque (5 Nm with the standard 90 W power supply), delivering linear, consistent performance.
  • Fanatec CSL Direct Drive is compatible with the following platforms Xbox and the PC.
  • The base is equipped with the Quick Release system system, and is of course compatible with the entire Fanatec ecosystem.
  • In terms of connectors, the rear of the Fanatec CSL DD baseplate features the following ports: 1 USB port, 1 pedal connection, 2 shifter connections, 1 handbrake connection.
  • Dimensions: 38 x 29 x 25 cm (L x W x H)
  • Weight : 6,85 kg

For what type of person?

The Fanatec CSL DD base is suitable for beginners as well as for regular players.. In our opinion, this is a model that is, for once, not exclusively reserved for the big pros thanks to its price accessible to a wider public.

This model is is suitable for toany type of race, as all wheels fit on the base.

On the other hand, the Fanatec CSL DD has been designed for adult playersthe brand itself does not recommend this product for children.

fanatec csl dd image3

Its advantages

We already knew that Direct Drive was going to be a real positive change for us, but testing the Fanatec CSL DD allowed us to find out for ourselves what the advantages advantages of this basic steering wheel model.

fanatec csl dd limp fanatec csl dd content fanatec csl dd

First of all, we must say that the Direct Drive is truly the best of the best. The Fanatec CSL DD base offers us here truly incredible sensations. The power and returns are really impressive. The induction motor and the absence of a fan offer a very good reliability. The force feedback of this model, which is also quiet and does not heat up even during long gaming sessions, gives us a pure, smooth and precise feel that is truly worthy of a high-end Direct Drive.

It must be said that the German manufacturer has relied on materials of very good quality for the design of the Fanatec CSL DD base. From the packaging, to the materials used to make the product itself such as aluminum or carbon fiber, everything about this model exudes quality. The Direct Drive itself is a durable and robust component, which will give this base a much longer life than other competing models.

fanatec csl dd quick release fanatec csl dd arriere

Another of the advantages of the CSL DD base is its full compatibility with all Fanatec Xbox One, Fanatec Series X/S and Fanatec PC steering wheels as well as its Quick Release system which allows the wheel to evolve according to new releases or your desires. Moreover, the base is compatible with PC and Xbox as well as with all racing games on the market. You won’t run out of choices!

Finally, the big advantage of the Fanatec CSL Direct Drive base is its price. The brand finally allows us to offer a Direct Drive at the price of a competing single belt model. It’s still a great luxury! In total, for a budget of less than 700 €, you can build a complete set up with only quality Fanatec accessories. It’s hard to beat that in today’s market!

Its disadvantages

What our test revealed about Fanatec CSL Direct Driveis that it has very fewdisadvantagesbut it does have them.

First of all, we were surprised and a little disappointed by the choice of the brand Fanatec concerning the plastic finishes of the front and back sides of the CSL DD base. This gives a somewhat cheap look that is in contradiction with the rest of the materials chosen. We would have preferred a slightly more consistent choice, but given the price of this base, we understand that it is necessary to make some concessions.

This is certainly the reason why the power of the CSL DD is limited to 5 Nm. To reach 8 Nm, it is necessary to invest in a Booster kit, which represents an additional budget (149,95 €). The power is a matter of taste, if it can suit beginners, it may be that the most regular of you feel a little limited.

Where to get it and for how much?

The Fanatec CSL Direct Drive base is sold alone at 349,95 €.

If you’d like to treat yourself to a Fanatec kit, including the CSL DD base (5 Nm), the Boost Kit 180 (8 Nm) and the CSL DD clampclamp, the whole package will cost you €529.85.

The model CSL DDD 8 Nm is also available on the Fanatec website, at a price of €499.95.

If you’re looking for a complete package, you’ll need to budget between €150 and €400 for a Fanatec wheel, €79.95 for the CSL crankset crankset (the most basic) and €59.95 for a shifter. ClubSport Static Shifter Paddles (the lowest in the range).

For an average budget of 700 €, you will be able to build a complete Sim-Racing equipment of very good quality.

fanatec csl dd 8nm


After testing the Fanatec CSL Direct Drivebase, we can only conclude that this model is a veritable a real revolution in the sim-racing market..

Just do the math, this basis has far more advantages than disadvantages!

The CSL DD has really bluffed us and promises to remain one of the market leaders for a long time, far ahead of the models of its big competitors Logitech or Thrustmaster. Here, Fanatec finally offers us the possibility to access this the best in terms of power and quality and all at a very reasonable price.

If you’re looking for the best power feedback for the price of a single-belt motor, look no further than Fanatec’s CSL Direct Drive from Fanatec is for you!


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