Barry Rowland of the Sim Racing Garage presents his detailed review of the new Fanatec entree level Universal Hub for the CSL Elite, Clubsport wheelbase and Podium Wheel Base DD2 / DD1.
As usual, Barry takes the new product through the famed SRG review process, taking a closer look at the design and the internals, mounting some large and small wheels, and testing the Hub while driving.
About two weeks ago, Fanatec introduced the first product release of 2021 in the form of a new entry-level hub that offers many of the advanced features of the ClubSport Universal Hub at the much lower price.
The Fanatec CSL Universal Hub is packed with features and inputs, including eight standard buttons with snap-dome activation, a 2-way rocker switch, two 2-way toggle switches, and a 7-way FunkySwitch™ with rotary encoder functionality.
Furthermore, the CSL Universal Hub features shifter paddles which are reinforced with a honeycomb structure, and are shaped to fit most wheel rims.
The CSL Universal Hub features both 3 x 50 mm and 6 x 70 mm mounting holes, while the width of the paddle positions can be adjusted together with the button islands as part of the slider mechanism. This feature ensures that the hub will fit on a big selection of Fanatec and third party wheel rims. The unit connects to the wheelbase via the improved Fanatec Simplified Quick Release Adapter.
The Fanatec CSL Universal Hub is available via the official Fanatec web-store for €149,95 / $149,95 incl. VAT + Shipping.
Official Webpage – www.fanatec.com
Performance and Value.
The CSL Universal Hub supports a wide variety of wheel rims, combining many of the advanced features of the ClubSport Universal Hub at a lower price.
Easy Width Adjustment.
An innovative slider mechanism allows effortless positioning of the button islands and shifter paddles to suit different wheel sizes. Stepless slider for precise adjustment.
Attach any Rim you want.
Threaded holes for wheel rims with a 3 x 50 mm or 6 x 70 mm pattern means that all current Fanatec wheel rims can be attached to the CSL Universal Hub. It is also compatible with many wheel rims from brands such as MOMO, Sparco, or OMP.
Packed with Features.
The design of the integrated button islands, display, and shifters provides a very neat appearance with several wheel rim combinations. The button layout is optimised for training muscle memory, with different sizes, shapes, and heights that will become familiar by feel alone.
Plenty of Imputs.
Alongside eight standard buttons with snap-dome activation, the integrated button islands also feature a 2-way rocker switch, two 2-way toggle switches, and a 7-way FunkySwitch™ with rotary encoder functionality.
Snap-dome Shifter Paddles.
Reinforced with a honeycomb structure, the paddles are shaped to fit most wheel rims. The width of the paddle positions is adjusted together with the button islands as part of the slider mechanism. Snap-dome activation gives a reassuring click with every shift.
Tuning Menu Access.
You can access the FANATEC® Tuning Menu with just the press of a button. Adjust your wheel base force feedback and other hardware settings while you drive.
Tuning with the Funkyswitch™.
The 7-way FunkySwitch™ is a multi-purpose input device, with d-pad, push-button, and rotary encoder. Press the Tuning Button to bring up the Tuning Menu on the integrated display, and adjust settings with the FunkySwitch™.
Tool-Free Simplified Quick-Release.
No clamping bolt required! The improved Simplified Quick Release Adapter clamps easily to the steering shaft by hand, without the need for tools. The adapter is also removable, and can be replaced with the ClubSport Quick Release Adapter, unlocking High Torque Mode on Podium wheel bases.
- The innovative expanding design allows the hub to adjust to many sizes of wheel rims
- Lightweight, stepless slider mechanism expands by 60 mm
- Shifter paddle width adjustable from 214 mm to 274 mm (at widest point)
- Shifter paddles with snap-dome activation
- Integrated button islands (non-removable)
- Eight standard buttons with snap-dome activation
- 2-way rocker switch
- Two 2-way toggle switches
- Tuning Menu button for instant access to force feedback and other Fanatec hardware adjustments
- Three-digit LED display for Tuning Menu functions and telemetry data from compatible games or third-party software
- 7-way FunkySwitch™: left, right, up, and down directional inputs, push button, and rotary encoder functionality
- New tool-free Simplified Quick Release Adapter design:
- Improved ease of use (no clamping bolt required) and durability
- Exchangeable, supports ClubSport Quick Release Adapter, unlocking High Torque Mode on Podium wheelbases
- Avoids any play in the QR system
- Low weight of 870 g (with Simplified Quick Release Adapter, not including wheel rim) for fast acceleration and fidelity
- DataPort-C connector ready for future upgrades
- Can be used with all Fanatec wheel rims and all third-party rims using the 6 x 70 mm or 3 x 50 mm bolt pattern (e.g. Sparco, MOMO, OMP)
- Allows the use of third-party steering wheels with USB cables on all compatible Fanatec bases
- ClubSport Wheel Base V2
- ClubSport Wheel Base V2.5
- CSL Elite Wheel Base
- CSL Elite Wheel Base V1.1
- CSL Elite Wheel Base + officially licensed for PlayStation™
- Podium Wheel Base DD1
- Podium Wheel Base DD2
- Podium Racing Wheel F1®
This product is not compatible with the Podium Button Module Endurance.
- PC: this product is compatible with Windows PC.
- Xbox: this product is not compatible with Xbox systems.
- PlayStation: The functionality of this product on PS4 can be limited by the capabilities of the console (subject to firmware/OS changes and developer support). The full functionality can only be guaranteed on PC; this is also game-dependent. PlayStation 5: Check our platform compatibility page for more details.
- In order to operate this product, a compatible Fanatec Wheel Base (not included) is mandatory!
- Buttons and paddle shifters are not easily reached with larger, dished wheel rims.
- DataPort-C connector is not compatible with USB devices.
- High Torque Mode on Podium wheelbases is only available when using the ClubSport Quick Release Adapter with this Hub.
- CSL Universal Hub
- Simplified Quick Release Adapter (preinstalled)
- Quick Guide