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Fanatec GT DD Extreme : Test & Review

Sim Racer

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

Fanatec Gran Turismo DD Extreme

Benefits

  • Constant torque of 15 nm
  • Compatible with PS5, PC and potentially Xbox
  • Immersive force feedback and feel
  • A much better finish than its predecessor (GT DD Pro)

Disadvantages

  • A steering wheel with average or, in some cases, mediocre ergonomics
  • QR2 Lite delivered from stock, but still performs well

Fanatec has decided to get back on the horse and conquer other brands on their own turf. The German giant gives us an MCU-style scene, where Thanos decides to take The Infinity Gauntlet and do the job himself.

Fanatec has been present in the sim-racing peripherals game for some time now, with a range covering both the lower and upper end of the segment. Except that for some time now, the competition has noticed this gap at Fanatec and has taken the initiative to fill it. So we end up with Simagic and Moza Racing bases that make more than 15 nm of torque, and in this field Fanatec had nothing to offer its customers except a CSL DD 8 nm or Podium DD1 with 20 nm. This is both a little and a lot for riders looking for the sweet spot of 15 – 17 nm of torque.

With the release of the ClubSport DD and DD+, developing 13 and 15 nm of constant torque respectively, Fanatec had hit the nail on the head. Some have said that these bases are less powerful than the competition, but there’s no denying that the German brand’s special sauce is present in their recipe. Today, Fanatec releases Gran Turismo DD Extreme, a new bundle developed in collaboration with Polyphony Digital for fans of the legendary Playstation racing video game saga: Gran Turismo. In what follows, I’m going to introduce you to this bundle, discuss its strengths and weaknesses, and give you my opinion on it.

Main and technical features of the bundle

  • Base developing 15 nm of constant torque
  • Special 30 cm diameter Gran Turismo steering wheel
  • Compatible with PS5, PS4, PC and potentially Xbox (with a few changes)
  • 4 rear paddles
  • Full-round steering wheel in vegan leather (leatherette)
  • Large display on steering wheel faceplate (2.7″)
  • Compatible with the entire Fanatec ecosystem
  • Some controls are backlit

Design

The design of the GT DD Extreme is, at least on the base, identical to that of the ClubSport DD+, as this bundle uses the same peripheral. And the ClubSport DD+ looks a lot like the CSL DD Pro. As a result, we have a very specific shape for the base, a bit like an X, with only differences in dimensions.

The DD+ is larger – well, longer – than the DD Pro, including the QR. The black dress looks great on this base, as does the steering wheel. The design of the wheel is similar to that of the GT DD Pro, but qualitatively better. Unfortunately, it’s still plastic, but this time it’s better quality plastic.

All in all, this GT DD Extreme is sober, handsome and will go perfectly with any setup, except perhaps a white PS5.

GT DD PRO

Customized assembly

The base can be mounted from the bottom or from the sides, using the “nuts” included in the packaging. The ClubSport DD+ is a mid-range base model, so it had to be given several ways of attaching to chassis. Also, forget about mounting this base on furniture, even if there’s a clamp for almost €100 at Fanatec. 15 nm is a lot for an office.

Although there are fixing points on the face of the base, these are not intended for attaching this device from the front, but serve as anchor points for future Fanatec accessories.

Mounting the base to a cockpit is very easy, as usual with Fanatec, and all screws and bolts are included with the bundle. As far as the steering wheel is concerned, we have the QR2 Lite Wheel Side in standard configuration, which is surprising I must say, especially at the price at which the bundle is sold. Nevertheless, I can assure you that this composite QR can handle the 15 nm of torque from the motor, so there’s no problem from the side.

Manufacturing and finishing

For the ClubSport DD+, it’s die-cast aluminum, CNC-machined. In terms of finish, it’s top notch in every respect, as we’re used to seeing on Fanatec bases. The base from every angle is just perfect, with no blemishes or burrs. All the parts, especially the covers, are perfectly in place.

The steering wheel is still made of composite plastic, but the finish is better than on the GT DD Pro. You can feel the upmarket feel of this new steering wheel, even if Fanatec most certainly wanted to use more premium materials, but his collaborator must have objected.

The wheel is made up of several parts that fit together very well. At the rear, you’ll see some gaps, but they’re not too bad. Overall, this bundle is well made.

Getting started with the bundle

This new Gran Turismo-specific steering wheel is 30 cm in diameter, compared with 28 cm for the GT DD Pro. Entirely round, the steering wheel is larger, making it easier to grip, just like a real car steering wheel. The imitation leather is well-made, providing a better grip than the rubber used before.

Controls include 11 buttons, 4 paddles (2 magnetic and 2 analog), funky switches and directional sticks. Ergonomics take a hit here. Close to your fingers, you only have part of the controls, mainly the funky switches, and these are really blurred and not very useful when racing. Buttons that are easy to use and useful are far from your fingers.

On the other hand, the 4 rear paddles are easy to handle, which is a good thing. What’s more, they’re made of anodized aluminum, which is much more premium than plastic. All in all, this new steering wheel has a better grip than the old one, but the positioning of the buttons really leaves something to be desired.

GT DD PRO

Sensations during play

The DD Extreme is a powerful base, offering a constant torque of 15 nm, something that can’t be said of the competition from Moza Racing or Simagic. The motor’s force feedback is ultra-precise, which is hardly surprising given Fanatec’s extensive experience in the industry.

Details, once the base is correctly set, are realistic, without blurring, disturbance or anything else. This is insane, especially on titles like Assetto Corsa or Gran Turismo on PS5, even if the DD Extreme will clearly be more at home on PC.

Speaking of this platform, the ClubSport DD+ base gives everything it has on rFactor or iRacing, giving you the maximum possible driving pleasure, clearly better than a Moza R16, a Simagic Alpha, and really, but really close to a DD1 podium which develops 5 nm more in max.

Compatibility

On paper, the GT DD Extreme bundle is compatible with PC and Playstation (4 and 5), which is only to be expected given that it has Gran Turismo in its name. However, you can potentially use the base on Xbox, provided you have a steering wheel compatible with Microsoft’s console, and also the new QR2. But I must inform you that this compatibility can sometimes be capricious, depending on the sim-racing titles. But in the big ones, it should work with diluted feedback due to the software controlling the interfacing.

GT DD PRO

Value for money

This bundle is priced at €1,300 on the Fanatec website, with availability on February 29, 2024. Well, the price is a bit high, and the German brand has clearly targeted a very specific audience of runners. What’s more, you’ll need a pedalboard to enjoy it. But at the same time, in terms of feel, the competition is no match for the GT DD Extreme, which makes it very good value for money in my opinion.

My verdict

What more can we say about the new GT DD Extreme? Go ahead and buy it! Here you go. This bundle is among the best in its segment, and potentially the best according to certain criteria.

Fanatec has really struck hard with its new ClubSport DD+ base, and this shows its determination to regain its throne. If you’re a Playstation and PC runner, I recommend this bundle, as you won’t find anything better on console. What’s more, you can use it on Xbox, with a compatible steering wheel of course, but with the feedback slightly diluted compared with the PS5, and especially the PC.

gt dd extreme

Fanatec Gran Turism DD Extreme

An excellent, complete, high-performance steering wheel

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