The Saitek X52 Pro Flight Control System

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Boy, this thing is cool. The Saitek X52 Pro Flight Control System is not for the faint of heart, but if you’re willing to deal with the learning curve, this is a fun joystick to use. The overall design makes the device incredibly fun to use when you get the hang of it, even if the build quality isn’t outstanding for a high end flight control system.

The X52 will set you back $179, so this probably shouldn’t be your first joystick purchase. I would advise something a bit cheaper if you’re new to flight simulators. If you’re just getting by with a basic joystick to this point, this will be a great improvement. The layout, which includes two pieces between the stick and the throttle, with the throttle supporting a small, customizable LED screen.

With a small metallic wheel on the right sight of the joystick, you can change between three different switch settings. So, if you find that one button configuration works better for one game but not another, you can save three entirely different settings.

The red safety switch has to be the highlight of the X52. Flicking the safety switch up reveals a glowing red button that will make you feel like Randy Quaid in Independence Day, “Eagle One, Fox Three!”

The Saitek X52 Pro Flight Control System
The Saitek X52 Pro Flight Control System

The joystick does seem to be built a bit more loose than I find is necessary. Much of that is based on personal preference, although I wish there would be a way to adjust the resistance. With the Saitek X52 Pro Flight Control System coming in two pieces, there is a surprisingly small amount of hassle of installation with the hardware, but figuring out how to customize your LED screen will take a bit longer than you’ll like.


  • Lots of customization
  • Not too many buttons, surprisingly
  • Relatively easy setup


  • Not a terribly solid build
  • Loose joystick
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