CSL vs V3’s

I would like to buy pedals with load cell brakes. Should I buy the V3’s now or buy the CSL’S now and use them without load cell option until that becomes available? I’m a casual iRacing sim user , but looking for a better experience. Mostly drive oval NASCAR truck series. Thanks!


  • It's a tough call. Depends on how patient you are, and what your budget is.

    I'm assuming you've never used a load cell brake before? If that's the case, it may actually be a blessing in a way, since you won't know what you're missing by going with the standard CSL pedals for now. Once I had experienced load cell pedals, I won't even consider going back to a set that doesn't have it. That being said, the CSL pedals do seem to be very good quality at that price point, even when compared to options from other manufacturers. It's just a question of when that load cell option will become available. Which, given the state of the global supply chain crisis, I probably wouldn't count on being very soon.

    The v3's *are* considerably more expensive, but I believe you get what you pay for in this case, as they do seem to be quite good. I personally own an old set of the CSP v1 pedals, and they've served me very well for over 10 years now. I can only imagine how much better the v3's must feel.

  • Thank you for your comment. And you are correct - never used load cell brakes before. I’m leaning towards going with the CSL’s and waiting for the load cell kit to come out.

  • David ChiengDavid Chieng Member
    edited October 2021

    I am not using a clutch at all. So only left foot on brakes.

    It is all muscle memory isn't it? I have always thought that a smooth brake pedal gets you to be more precise in your braking and getting better lap times. Does it need to feel exactly like in a car?

    But the V3s come with a vibration motor which simulates ABS which is priceless I think. Tells you when you are losing traction in a corner. That is what I read anyway as I am only using the CSL.

  • Keep in mind Fanatec pedals hold their value well on the aftermarket. So there's no need to worry about getting stuck with one if you eventually buy both.

    I was in your situation a few months ago. Wanted load cell but had never used one. Coming from a G29 I needed to buy all the pieces in stages (budget allowing) so I bought the CSL Pedals first. Also picked up the F1 2.5X wheel. While I was waiting for the Playstation version of the CSL DD to drop, a little money unexpectedly fell from the heavens. It was just enough to get a proper rig. I ordered the Podium F1 DD, V3 Pedals, and a cockpit. Just now nabbed a PS5.

    So that's why I have both kinds of pedals, but the CSL are still unopened. I think they're good pedals, but the difference in weight and quality is very apparent. I think if there was a load cell available for them it would be a tough choice between the two, but let's compare. The CSL w/ load cell will probably come out somewhere around $200 combined. The V3s are $360. Is it worth the extra $160 for the SOLID build quality? For the rumble motors? The deluxe clutch? The optional damper system, the performance kit, all the freakin' anodized aluminum with red accents?

    Of course that's with all things being equal and both having a load cell brake. Right now they're not that equal.

    I'll admit to a little buyers remorse at first because I did not realize how much all the settings of EVERYTHING has to be tweaked before it starts to feel good. My lap times were absolute trash for about the first week. Then I started playing with the settings and life got better quick. I've been sim racing a long long time (I'm 54) from controllers to Logitech, and I didn't know it could be this much fun.

    There's a feeling of pure joy the first time you go over the hill and down the backside of Mt Panorama with a load cell brake. If it doesn't make you smile every single time, you're doing it wrong. I don't know if my best lap time improved but I can definitely say it's easier to feel when you're doing something wrong.

    My opinion is the V3 are worth the extra $160. The way they're built, the way they perform, and the way they look are head and shoulders above the CSL pedals.

  • The vibration motors don't provide direct feedback like that. At least not with the games I play on PlayStation 5. There's a value setting you apply for when the rumble activates.

    My Brake pressure max is set to 40, and my Rumble is set to 35. My brake pedal barely moves. It's stiff as a board, but it measures weight. Approx. 20 lbs of weight on the pedal = 100% brake. Approx. 18 lbs of weight triggers the rumblers so I can feel when I'm applying close to full brake.

    I might be way off on the amount of weight required. I'm a fairly stout guy so I wouldn't be surprised if my 40 value really equals 50 lbs of weight. I'm racing with my socks on most of the time so all I can say is it's good.

  • Wow 20lb of brake is barely anything for me. I built a floorstanding rig for my pedals and weighted them with lead plus non-slip grip tape to use 80+lb of brake force.

    Anyways I used both the CSL-E w/ loadcell brake and now have the V3. The V3 are nicer for sure, but I don't think you're actually missing much by waiting for the CSL-L w/ loadcell. Hall-effect pedals and a loadcell brake for $200(ish) is good enough IMHO. For me the only real difference between the CSL-E and V3 was how the clutch feels a lot better in the V3 - it's got a natural "give" point like most real cars - and like in most real cars when you're slamming the clutch for fast gear changes you don't really feel it at all. Sounds crazy but it's actually very realistic, and helps with takeoffs/low speed driving like say in Assetto Corsa with "cruising" maps.

    The V3 throttle rumble motor for wheel spin I don't even use (can ell when I'm yawing out/slipping the rear without needing rumble), the brake ABS rumble I do like a lot, depends on game and telemetry. Sometimes a game will send rumble signal when the car is using ABS - some games only use the set brake % point no matter what.

    Anyways! Too long, didn't read??

    If you're happy with the new CSL-L, yeah save your money and wait for the load cell brake. A load cell brake really did make me faster like youtube reviews say. It's about consistency and that force on your leg is way more reliable than a non-loadcell.

  • Ah, I just read your post again. The Fanatec brake settings are a percent of the maximum loadcell capacity.

    If you have a 90KG loadcell and set it to "40", your 100% brake force is equal to 90*.4 = 36KG, or 79 pounds.

  • That makes sense. Yesterday, I paid a little more attention to how much brake force is required. Under normal braking I'm not applying 100% so I think your math makes sense. I'd guess 50 lbs is what it takes to properly whoa the car up most of the time.

    Like you said, I believe the LC makes me faster overall. Combined with the DD wheel where you can feel the edge of lockup, it's amazing. If you blow the corner there's no question of why you blew it. That allows you to make the adjustment and not blow it next time around.

    Really I just wish they'd release the LC for the CSL Pedals. And it would be nice if they'd release the performance kit in the US as well. I have seen Europeans get it and review it already. Why not release it to the US?

Sign In or Register to comment.