Simracing bundles are becoming increasingly popular. While they were often limited to entry-level sets in the past, they are now even available in direct-drive variants. The La Prima bundle from Asetek with a wheelbase (12 NM) including Formula steering wheel and Loadcell pedals is consequently not only aimed at beginners.
Ordering and shipping
The bundle can be ordered in different combinations directly through Asetek’s store based in Denmark. Here, additional shipping costs are incurred depending on the selection. For Germany, for example, these are between 15€ and 50€ depending on the shipping method and the scope of the shopping cart. The bundle tested here, consisting of La Prima Base, steering wheel and pedals, is delivered in three individual packages, which are shipped together in one large package. Overall, the delivery was made within two business days.
- La Prima Bundle (La Prima Base, Steering Wheel and Pedals): 1349.99€
- La Prima Wheel & Wheelbase Bundle (La Prima Base und Steering Wheel): 1049.99€
- La Prima Pedals (Throttle and Brake): 399€
- La Prima Clutch System (Clutch): 149.99€
The product tested here was provided by the manufacturer. No influence was exerted on this review at any time.
Scope of delivery
The bundle reviewed consists of the following components:
- La Prima Sim Racing Pedals Brake and Throttle
- La Prima Direct Drive Wheelbase 12Nm
- La Prima Formula Steering Wheel
The pedal accessories undoubtedly make up the largest part of the scope of delivery. Besides the mounting material, an alternative elastomer and two USB cables (USB-C to USB-C and USB-C to USB-A) are included:
- USB cable (USB-C to USB-C and USB-C to USB-A)
- Slot nuts (x4)
- Nuts (x4)
- Screws (x4)
- Allen wrench
- Cable tie
- Additional elastomer
Two more USB cables are included for the Wheelbase, as well as the external on/off switch shown above. Additionally, stickers from Asetek are included in each of the three packages.
La Prima Direct Drive Wheelbase
- Anodized extruded aluminum housing
- Direct Drive Force Feedback
- Peak Torque of 12Nm
- Encoder resolution: 22bit / 0,000085 degrees / 4.000.000 steps
- Asetek Simsports® Quick Release
- 180w power supply
- Slipring designed and tested to +200.000.000 rotation
- Dimensions: Height: 133mm, Width: 132mm, Length (Incl. Quick Release): 293mm, Weight: 8.5kg.
La Prima™ Formula Steering Wheel
- 15 aRGB RevLEDs
- 12 Push buttons, 2 seven-way Kinky switches, 3 twelve position Rotary encoders, 2 Thumb encoders
- 2 Contactless Magnetic shifter Paddles
- Injection molded Carbon fiber reinforced composite chassis with laser etched forged carbon structure
- 2 mm woven carbon fiber front face
- Easy-to-use, no-play quick-release. Ensuring stable data and power transmission without the use of cables, batteries, or wireless signals.
- Possibility to change to XL handles at a later time
- 290mm diameter with normal handles, 294mm diameter with XL handles
- Can be upgraded to Forte specs at a later point
La Prima Brake & Throttle
- Adjustable pedal stops
- Adjustable travel settings
- All-black anodized aluminum pedal base and pedal arms
- All-black anodized aluminum smooth and sock-friendly pedal plates allowing hours and hours of comfortable use. The pedal plates can be adjusted vertically
- Pedal base with integrated heel rest
- Calibrations made in RaceHub will automatically be saved in our EPROM (Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory). This results in calibration (pressures, deadzones, and more) that will remain saved for every simulator/game (You do need to set 0 and 100% values in the game)
- Only one USB connection to the PC from the pedal base regardless of 2 or 3 pedal utilization
- All adjustable mechanical features are by default colored orange
- Inhouse-developed electronics with 16-bit resolution
- Easy to add clutch pedal to the La Prima™ Throttle & Brake combo
- Designed and tested to +1,000,000 activations, which far exceeds any race car specification
The design of the set is clearly aimed at rig owners. The base is screwed via freely movable T-nuts on the bottom, which are designed at a distance of 87 mm from each other. Since Asetek is relatively new to the market, in many cases you have to drill additional holes yourself for mounting. Alternatively, Asetek offers various ready-made mounting solutions:
- Asetek SimSports Bottom Mount with Tilt: 79,99€ (Asetek-Shop*)
- Asetek SimSports Side Mount with Tilt: 89,99€ (Asetek-Shop*)
- Asetek SimSports Bottom Mount: 69,99€ (Asetek-Shop*)
- Asetek SimSports Front Mount: 149,99 (Asetek-Shop*)
The pedals also feature a relatively exotic hole pattern and may require additional drilling depending on the rig. For both the pedals and the wheelbase, Asetek offers corresponding templates on its website: Base, Pedals
After that, you only need to connect the pedals and the Wheelbase to the PC with the supplied cables and supply the Wheelbase with power. The pictures show the pedals and the Wheelbase mounted on a TR 80 Lite Rig from Trak Racer.
The La Prima Base also has the same compatibility as the already tested Forte Wheelbase (link to review) due to the use of the same software (RaceHub).
Asetek promises a general compatibility with every game that supports direct input devices. The following titles are explicitly listed:
- Assetto Corsa
- Assetto Corsa Competizione
- DiRT Rally
- DiRT Rally 2.0
- F1 Series
- Project Cars 2
- rFactor 2
- And many more (all games that accept direct input devices)
The software additionally lists well-known titles like Automobilista and Raceroom. Assetto Corsa, ACC, iRacing and Automobilista 2 worked without problems during the review. Even though Fanatec is probably still the industry leader in this field, Asetek should actually cover all currently popular simulations.
Hardware / Invicta QR
Currently, Asetek offers only one type of steering wheel, the Formula Wheel (included in the bundle as the La Prima version). However, more models are planned for the future. These include a round steering wheel as well as the Invicta version of the Formula Wheel with display. For these, though, there are no availability dates yet (as of August 2023).
Asetek’s excellent QR system, however, almost completely compensates for this. It combines the technology of the Simucube QR with an integrated power supply and data transmission via pogo pins.
Additionally, with the Invicta Quick Release Adapter, Asetek offers the possibility to connect almost any USB-powered steering wheel directly via the QR. During testing, for example, the XF1 Pro from Leoxz, the 720s Steering Wheel from Simline or the BP2 Button Plate from Turn Racing could be operated directly via the base. Annoying cables are no longer necessary and steering wheels can be changed in seconds. The only downside is the relatively high price of the QR of 149.99€, which comes with three extensions (80mm, 150mm, 200mm). Overall, however, the Invicta QR is currently the best solution on the market.
- Invicta Quick Release Adapter: 149.99€ (Asetek-Shop*)
Various other manufacturers will also soon be launching steering wheels that are directly compatible with Asetek wheelbases, including:
The heart of the bundle is the 12 Newtonmeter strong La Prima Wheelbase. With compact dimensions of 133mm (height) x 132mm (width) x 293mm (length incl. QR), it can be easily positioned under the monitor and slid into place using the two slots on the bottom. The base’s housing is made of black anodized aluminum, while the front cover around the QR is made of plastic. The latter can be removed when using a front mount, for example. The base side QR is already pre-installed and allows USB connection to steering wheels with Asetek QR via 6 pogo pins in conjunction with the mount.
Die Rückseite der Wheelbase La Prima beherbergt die Anschlüsse für das Netzteil, die Verbindung zum PC sowie den Ein-/Ausschalter. Letzterer ist eine willkommene Ergänzung und kann frei positioniert werden (ca. 30 Zentimeter Kabellänge). Er übernimmt damit gewissermaßen die Funktion eines externen Notausschalters, muss aber zum Ein- und Ausschalten längere Zeit betätigt werden.
More important than the external qualities is of course the force feedback. The 12 Newton meters of the base in combination with a slew rate of 4 Nm/ms (comparison: Simucube 2 Sport: 4.8 Nm/ms) offer sufficient power in almost all situations, which is also reached correspondingly quickly. In a direct comparison in Assetto Corsa Competizione (La prima Base + Wheel vs. Forte Base + Wheel), the lap times were practically equalized from the first lap. The details are reproduced very well and the extensive software settings allow you to further adapt the FFB to your needs. The slightly lower slew rate, on the other hand, was not noticeably negative. The profiles provided by Asetek for various games are also a big plus, and can be found on the manufacturer’s website. Thus, a long trial and error period is unnecessary in many cases.
Overall, the base with 12 Newton meters is definitely not only aimed at beginners. The base (for most users) might only reach the clipping limit with large and heavy steering wheels.
The bundle includes the La Prima Steering Wheel, a steering wheel with a diameter of 290 millimeters, which is equipped with a variety of functions:
- 12 push buttons – These are equipped with plastic button caps and quit the activation with a slight click. Qualitatively and haptically, they rank in the midfield.
- 2 seven-way Kinky switches – Known for years by Fanatec as Funky switches, the comparable Kinky switches from Asetek also offer seven functions per switch and can be used very precisely. Placing them closer to the grips could have eliminated the need to reach around when operating them.
- 3 twelve position Rotary encoders – The encoders can optionally be configured as 12 individual buttons each and offer a pleasant triggering feel.
- 2 Thumb encoders – The encoders can be used very comfortably without having to reach around and are predestined for frequently changing parameters, such as brake balance or traction control.
In addition, there are two magnetic shift paddles on the back of the steering wheel, which are very comfortable to use due to the chosen shape and positioning.
Note: The clutch pedals are not compatible without upgrade so far and were only test mounted for the photos.
The rubberized steering wheel grips are available in two variants, with only the normal version (optional: XXL) currently available. They are very comfortable to hold and, in combination with the almost torsion-free steering wheel, provide a pleasant driving experience. The steering wheel is rounded off by the 15 Rev RGB LEDs on the front, which help to find the optimal shifting point. All in all, the La Prima Wheel is a successful compromise between cost savings compared to the Forte Wheel while using high-quality materials and providing plenty of functions.
The last part of the bundle are the pedals. The La Prima pedals are externally very similar to the Forte pedals already tested, although as an entry-level variant they do without LEDs and decorative strips. For the pedal arms, however, Asetek relies on the same high-quality materials as for the baseplate, so black anodized aluminum was used here for the most part.
For the throttle, the pedals rely on a 16-bit Hall sensor that converts pedal movement into a signal without wear. Unlike the Forte pedals, Asetek does not use a second, additional spring here, unfortunately. As a result, the resistance is not adjustable and rather low in comparison. Fans of a very hard throttle pedals might therefore have some problems.
For the brake pedal, on the other hand, Asetek uses the identical system as for the Forte pedals, where the braking effect is realized via a comparatively small load cell in conjunction with a spring. By making the appropriate settings in the software, it is possible to create a braking feel similar to that of conventional loadcell pedals. A detailed explanation of this and the adjustment options can be found in the test review of the Forte pedals (Link zum Testbericht).
These pedals are especially interesting because they can be upgraded to the Invicta pedals later on. However, it remains to be seen how expensive the conversion to the hydraulic brake will ultimately be.
Asetek’s hardware is managed with the in-house software RaceHub. The following settings can be made here:
- Steering Wheel: Here settings can be made for the Rev LEDs, both in terms of color and the RPM at which each LED is activated.
- Pedals: This is where the La Prima pedals can be calibrated. To do this, simply press the pedals to the desired end point after pressing the Calibrate button. In addition, pedal curves can be defined in a second tab via five sliders.
- Wheelbase: Probably the most important part of the software. Here FFB profiles can be loaded and saved as well as the corresponding settings can be made. As already mentioned, Asetek lists various profiles that can then be further customized. In general, it is a good idea to leave the Slew Rate at 4.0 Nm/ms and to keep the values for Damping and Torque Behavior Prediction as small as possible to avoid losing details. In addition, the Hand-off Detection and the Automatic Centering Strength can be set here.
Furthermore, the firmware of the individual hardware components can be updated here with a few clicks. Overall, the software makes a good impression, but still needs some fine-tuning in some aspects. Through feedback, e.g. via Asetek’s Discord server, the developers are in contact with the community and have already implemented some of the users’ wishes. Basically, the software is very easy to use, has a clear layout, and already offers the most important functions and implements them well.
Asetek focuses on the upgradeability of individual components in almost the entire lineup. The range consists of three categories
- La Prima
La Prima represents the entry-level class, but relies on high-quality materials just like the two higher categories. This is to ensure that upgrades are still possible within the ecosystem even after the purchase. For example, it should also be possible to upgrade the brake cylinder of the Invicta pedals or the La Prima Wheelbase to a Forte Wheelbase in the future. Even though the prices for the individual upgrades are not yet known, the scope of possible upgrades is so far unique in the simracing world.
Some of the soon to be available kits are already listed on the website, but cannot be ordered yet:
- La Prima B&T to Forte B&T LED & Throttle upgrade kit
- La Prima B&T/ Forte B&T to Invicta B&T T.H.O.R.P. cylinder upgrade kit
- La Prima Wheelbase to Forte Wheelbase upgrade kit
- La Prima Clutch to Invicta Clutch upgrade kit
Some DIY projects have already been created during the past reviews. The Steering Wheel Color Kit made of TPU replaces the installed orange accents, the display holder for the DDu 800 from Leoxz can be mounted directly on the base and the Throttle End-Stop dampens the noise of the throttle.
The La Prima Bundle from Asetek is definitely a recommendation – not only for beginners. High-quality components and materials, in the form of a Direct Drive Wheelbase with 12 Newton meters and a very good 29 centimeter Formula-style steering wheel, ensure driving fun through an extremely well-done force feedback from the first lap.
The currently rather limited selection of available steering wheels directly from Asetek is more than compensated for by the excellent (Invicta) QR system and the soon to be available third party steering wheels. The minor weaknesses of the set are overall negligible and can be fixed by later upgrades. This aspect is also one of, if not the biggest strength of the Asetek bundle. Nowhere else do you have so many upgrade options later on without a complete new purchase.
- Force Feedback
- Very good steering wheel
- High quality materials
- Possible upgrades
- Price/performance ratio
- Steering wheels from various third-party suppliers (coming soon)
- So far only the Formula steering wheel is available directly from Asetek
- Upgrade availability
- No standard mounting patterns