Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter Review | $150

Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter Review | $150

The Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter Add On was released in September of 2014 and is by far one of the best components of any racing setup.

The shifter was made as an add-on to the Thrustmaster TX (Xbox One) eco-system, by have been enabled to work naively with all T-Series Thrustmaster wheels which include the T150, T300, and T500 wheels for the PlayStation.

What You Need To Know About this H-Pattern Shifter

The 7 speed shifter is made of 90% metal and uses advanced technology that prevent it’s internal components from wearing down. It comes with 2 shifter plates: 7 speed H-pattern plate with reverse and a sequential shifter plate. You can change the shifter knob out for any universal fit automotive shifter knob. If you are running a pedal set with a clutch like the T3PA pro set, this shifter is a MUST own!

Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter Video Review

CHECK OUT THE TH8A SHIFTER AT AMAZON

TH8A Shifter Specs

5 inches tall gear stick with changeable shifter knob, authentic gear-shifting feel, 2 shift-plates included: H pattern (7+1) and Sequential (+/-), 100% metal internal mechanics, metal clamping system and metal gear stick, contactless magnetic sensor – No tact switch and no potentiometer (for unlimited product lifespan), Upgradable firmware, internal memory with adjustable gear-shift travel to suit your driving style, adjustable resistance, shift-plate rotation adjustable by 360 degrees.

100% Metal Construction and Quality Design

Thrustmaster Th8A shifterThe shifter is heavy and feels like it belongs in a real car. I have raced over 500 hours with it and haven’t seen it buckle under pressure. The casing is made extremely well and the design to change the shifter plates is really easy. The table clamp is really strong and works well on both tables and wheel stands.

I love that they used contactless sensors on the build, because that means there is not metal on metal friction going on inside, because of that…

“…the TH8A’s quality will make it out live all your other racing components”
Another great aspect of the design is that they made the shifter plates rotate 360 degrees. this allows you to be able to adjust your shifter for a more comfortable arm angle.

Pros vs Cons

Pros

  • Precision shifting
  • Adds a shifter to go with your clutch pedal
  • Built with 100% metal parts
  • 2 shifter plate options – H Pattern and Sequential
  • Lots of adjustability
  • Mounts very easy to wheel stands and cockpits
  • Customize it with a universal stick shifter knob

Cons

  • The throw path is a bit long
  • Need to be tech savy to adjust throw and resistance
  • Does not click into gear like a real car
  • Takes some getting used to getting it into the upper gears

Shifting Gears Adds Game Immersion

One of the coolest part about adding a shifter to your sim racing setup is that driving games become more immersive. The feeling of reaching over to your stick shifter and physically changing gears adds more realism to the feel of virtual car driving. The TH8A Thrustmaster shifter gives the feel of the car locking into the gearbox.

Another aspect the shifter adds is its ability to reduce your lap times by power shifting, using neutral, and down shifting to slow the car down. These techniques while possible with paddle shifters are much easy when you use the TH8A.

Setting Up the Thrustmaster Shifter For Your Preferences

While I have never adjusted the throw or resistance on my shifter it is possible to do. For me I just changed out my stick shifter knob and I titled my H pattern shifter plate inward about 20 degrees to make my arm angle more comfortable. You can see my TH8A below mounted to a PlaySeat Evoltuion. Even if you don’t have the intentions of hard mounting it, there is a table clamp included which works out perfect for desks, tables, and wheel stands that have gear box mounts.

Th8a shifter plate

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If you find the travel of the stick to be a bit long, you can also get a mod kit from Ricmotech, that will shorten the fore-aft throw of the stick by 35% and 20% side to side. For more info on the short shift mod, click here.

Who Should Buy The TH8A Stick Shift

If you currently are running a 3 pedal set (T3PA Wide or Pro Pedals)with a Thrustmaster T-series wheel, this shifter is for you. The paddle shifters that come on the wheels are nice, but they are just not realistic for most cars. This shifter is designed to take your immersion factor to the next level, by giving you the feeling down shifting into the turns and up shifting for fast turn exits.

If you are putting together a Thrustmaster racing setup starting with either the T300 or TX servo wheelbases, then this shifter is also great if you have a 3 pedal set and looking to add the shifter.

If you are a casual racer you can probably pass on this accessory, but for any serious racing gamer this is a must own for a Thrustmaster setup…

“This is by far my favorite component of my racing setup and the one I would miss the most if you took it away”

Compatibility

Platforms:

PS4, PS3, PC, Xbox One

NOTE: The shifter plugs into your wheelbase (the plug is included), and not directly into your console or PC

Thrustmaster T Series Racing Wheels:

T300, TX, TMX, T150, T500

Accessories

Thrustmaster T3PA pedals and all Thrustmaster add-on rims.

Warranty

1 year warranty US and 2 years in some European countries.

TH8A Review Conclusion

Adding the shifter to your Thrustmaster setup brings an unparalleled sense of realism to racing games. While you could live without it, once you play a few races with it and drive a few muscle cars and power shift down the straights you will be hooked. It took me about an hour to get the feel for racing with it particularly shifting into higher gears or dropping the car into reverse instead of 6th…oops! Once you get your shifting technique down and in sync with your clutch pedal…

“…the TH8A will make you feel like you are in total control of a high performance sports car”
While I appreciate Thrustmaster included 2 shifter plates, for me personally other than to test it out I have never used the sequential pattern shifter plate for racing.

The shifter is fantastic from a quality build and an immersive racing experience stand point. I think it has a fair asking price and it is well reviewed at Amazon with over 120 customer reviews and a 4.5 star rating. I highly recommend this shifter and easily give it a 5 star rating.

PSRP 5.0
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Have your tried the Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter? Let me know in the comments below.

Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter

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