TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

BigRed
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:24 am

TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by BigRed » Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:17 pm

I thought I'd put this together for those viewers who like me found the forums before buying the product and are looking for that little nudge to pull out the credit card.

I went looking on YouTube for videos of ArmA2 as I'd bought it that day and it was running like a pig on my system. I was looking for some video bench results to find the best stand off between Quality/performance.

The first video I found was that of Dslyecxi's preview of the TrackIR5 system with Arma2 ( here in case you've not seen it). Up until that point I'd not heard of Natural Point and didn't know such a product existed..

I'm a COD4-Crysis-Grid sort of casual gamer that does a bit of folding.. I'd never really used flight sims and I missed out Arma after being frustrated with its Helicopter controls (was my own fault, I was running it on my MacBookPro via bootcamp and landing a chopper with the trackpad was no easy task).

So Arma2 is my first real attempt at a SIM esk experience and having watched Dslyecxi's video I was sold! it was just a case of finding one..

I'd been to the Natural Point website and after being unable to find the UK in the country list on there store (it was there...) I emailed for a direct quote. This must have been the early hours and I had a reply by the morning.. I had been trying to save money by taking advantage of Dslyecxi's discounts. Although after international shipping and the thought of import TAXES and the like I went in search of a UK supplier.

I found two companies in the UK that stocked the TrackIR5 one you'll see if you google and the other was R.C. Simulations.

Although basic there website had the product listed and appeared to be cheapest I'd seen it. I cant really explain just how excited I'd gotten over getting my hands on one of these. I didn't want to place my order to find out they were not in stock and then have to wait.. SO I gave them a call.

I spoke with a lady called Joan who took my order over the phone and put my TrackIR5 in the mail the same day.

I went with the TrackIR5 + Pro Clip as I really wanted to re-create what I'd seen on youtube and had no intention really of wearing a baseball cap indoors.

I actually didn't play Arma2 again until the product had arrived. Dslyecxi mentions how he couldn't ever go back to playing without one.. I'd not got one yet AND couldn't face playing without it.

It took 3 days to turn up and in that time period I'd watched the youtube video any number of times and read up on the previous TrackIR and looked into game support. The TrackIR5 gave me a viable reason to opt for one over the TrackIR 4 which a few UK suppliers were selling at under 100 pounds.

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When the product arrived it was like Christmas morning as a child. Now, I'm a 25 year old Database solutions developer who sings in an indi signed Metal band.. I live with a few fellow minded metal heads in a rough part of town. I can tell you that morning.. if I dog barked down the street I thought it was the postman! I was at that door like a shot!

When it came. . . I WAS GUTTED!

The postman handed it over and before he could turn to leave I'd almost put him on his ass. The item was shipped in a Jiffy bag, it had clearly been crushed and the envelope tab was not at all sealed.. in fact when he gave it me I was holding it upside down and the contents fell out.

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Somewhat angry at the thought it was damaged and having to return it I retired to my desk to investigate. removing the TrackIR I could see that the packaging showed crush damage and it appeared to be sealed with two peices of tape. Although I could see no actual product damage.

Both of which looked as if they had been removed and re-sealed..

By this point I was convinced that Post office had been through it completely.. concerned, I called Joan at R.C. Simulations.

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She was FANTASTIC, I explained, and without hesitation she'd offered me a replacement. She explained the magnets on the units had been fitted upside down and they had to correct the fault thus explaining the seals. as for the packaging, (as I'm somewhat of a keeper)even though the unit itself appeared to be fine.. she was happy to put another one to the side for me and have me send this one back.

There was no need. In the end she agreed to send me replacement packaging (that's going above and beyond, I really appreciated that) to stem my OCD (:-p).

Eager now that my concerns had swiftly been dealt with I hooked it up.

R.C. Simulations really impressed me with there after sales service. I got the product and it worked, Many etailers would have left it at that. Anyone reading this in the UK I cant recommend them highly enough.

I scrambled with excitement for a Driver CD and panicked when I couldnt find one.. being your usual bloke I'd removed the unit thrown the documentation to one side and went to plug it all in.

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A clear printed slip directed me to a URL for the driver/Software. I really liked how the Pro Clip was able to daisy chain its USB connection. I was able to connect the TrackIR5 and the Pro Clip using one connection on the back of my rig.

After finding the URL slip I decided to be sensible to follow the installation instructions. 3-5 mins later and the icon is on my desktop. I'm running Vista x64 SP1 and was worried about 64-bit driver support. NO problems.

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(I like how you can see I'm looking at the camera.)

I attached my TrackIR 5 to the left side of my screen as I was using the Pro-Clip and then attached the Pro Clip to my Razer Barracuda HP-1 (very nice fit).

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...

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(please excuse my ugly mug.)

I loaded up the software and job done.. I was expecting a some what complex calibration tool and instead was treated to seeing my movements tracked with AWESOME accuracy on the screen.

I spend 5 mins feeling smug at just how cool this was and looking forward to the edge I felt I would gain in game.. I didn't do anything.. no custom profiles.. no increase/decreasing the tracking.. nothing.. minimised it and just loaded up Arma2.

I loaded up the Bootcamp training hit pause went to controls where i saw the TrackIR listed and enabled it.

Came back out of the pause menu and WOW!

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Again, I was at least expecting a steep learning curve. it took 5-10mins tops..

I was blown away. I flew through the training and found the helicopter and jet training a walk in the park now I had this.. with the choppers I was able to keep my eyes level with the horizon as i pulled back the stick to reduce speed to a hover, it felt natural and soon the rest of my room seemed to melt away..

I didn't wanna play the actual game anymore.. I just wanted to run around exploring this new world. I headed for the Armoury and took a chopper for a flight. I must have flown for hours..

Since then I've tweaked it a little to perform further in-game movements with less actual movement and thats it.. I'm really really enjoying the campaign missions.. with the lights off and full 5.1 coming through my headphone.. I'm sat on edge for hours on end feeling like I can truly sense where everything is..

People have stated its a product you really have to try to understand.. I don't think it is.. stand up now and go to the loo as though your head is in a neck brace. Now go make a cup of coffee. Do it for just long enough for it to really bug you.. that's how I've been playing all my FPS games for years! The TrackIR simply puts your head on your shoulders. Your no longer a pointing gun.

Awesome.

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System Specs:

Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 @ 4.5Ghz 457x9.5 @ 1.45v (D-Tek FuZion� v2)
DFI LT-X48-T2R (MIPS MCH1033 + MIPS MCH1149)
OCZ DDR2 Reaper PC2-8500 (2x2GB) (Antec SpotCool Fan)
Nvidia BFG 9800GTX OC 512MB 830/1240
(Thermalright T-Rad� 2 x Noctua NF-B9 92mm)
Mac Pro Case ATX (3 x Noctua NF-S12 120mm)
ThermoChill PA120.3 ( 3 x Noctua NF-P12 120mm)
Corsair TX 850W ATX SLI PSU

J.

dslyecxi
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 10:58 pm

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by dslyecxi » Mon Jul 06, 2009 11:08 pm

Great review, BigRed. Glad to hear it's living up to your expectations. :)

BigRed
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:24 am

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by BigRed » Tue Jul 07, 2009 6:06 am

Cheers,

Thanks for your YouTube video.. I really wanted to do something similar to show just how out of the box usable the TrackIR5 is.

J.

Spellbot5000
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 6:43 am

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by Spellbot5000 » Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:56 am

Nice review! My TrackIR should be arriving today in the mail, so I too will be exploring in Arma II once it's set up.

Seth Steiling
Posts: 1366
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:29 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by Seth Steiling » Tue Jul 07, 2009 10:24 am

Great review! We love getting this kind of detailed feedback. I'm very happy to hear that Joan took such good care of you! :)
Marketing Manager
TrackIR | OptiTrack

BigRed
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:24 am

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by BigRed » Wed Jul 08, 2009 3:27 pm

I received my replacement packaging today a true pleasure from start to finish. thanks Joan.

J.

James Hallows
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri May 20, 2005 5:00 am
Location: Bristol / Bath - England
Contact:

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by James Hallows » Thu Jul 09, 2009 1:58 pm

[quote=BigRed]She was FANTASTIC, I explained, and without hesitation she'd offered me a replacement. She explained the magnets on the units had been fitted upside down and they had to correct the fault thus explaining the seals.
[/quote]

I always try and buy my hardware from RC Simulations as well. I know them all in there and the service is second to none.

Coming back to the magnets issue ... :mad:

I've taken delivery of my TIR5 from them today and I have the reversed magnets situation. I guess I'll be giving them a bell tomorrow :(

James Hallows

BigRed
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:24 am

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by BigRed » Fri Jul 10, 2009 7:30 am

I believe they did the fix in house.. I'm sure you could get instructions from them or on here to do the fix yourself??

J.

James Hallows
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri May 20, 2005 5:00 am
Location: Bristol / Bath - England
Contact:

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by James Hallows » Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:45 am

[quote=BigRed]I believe they did the fix in house.. I'm sure you could get instructions from them or on here to do the fix yourself??

J. [/quote]

Well there's a thread on this here but the recommendation from NP is not to do the fix yourself. I spoke with Joan today (she's great!) and they couldn't believe it after the last batch. She's sent me a replacement base and hopefully that will arrive tomorrow.

Cheers

James

Jim
NaturalPoint Employee
NaturalPoint Employee
Posts: 1395
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2002 5:00 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon
Contact:

Re: TrackIR 5 Pro, First time user review.

Post by Jim » Fri Jul 10, 2009 6:09 pm

The issue has been fixed here, every unit is tested, so this must be a unit that was already in transit or inventory.

Jim

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