Conspit H.AO Carbon Fiber Hub – Review

Conspit H.AO Carbon Fiber Hub – Review

With the H.AO, Conspit is expanding its portfolio and bringing its first steering wheel to the sim racing market in combination with various rims. The manufacturer combines a full carbon fibre housing with a 2.99-inch display, 9 RPM LEDs and illuminated buttons.

Ordering and shipping

To sell the Hub, Conspit relies on a network of distributors that currently consists of resellers in the following countries that already sell or will soon sell the Hub:

  • Australia
  • Thailand
  • Switzerland
  • Belgium
  • Germany (Sim-Motion, Stand Juni 2024 noch nicht verfügbar)
  • HongKong
  • Italy
  • Lithuania
  • Malaysia
  • SIMUFY
  • Australia/New Zealand
  • UK
  • Hungary
  • Brazil
  • France

The prices are within the following range and vary depending on the retailer and time of order:

  • Conspit H.AO Hub: 579€
  • Conspit H.AO Hub + Rim: 649€
  • Conspit CX295 Rim: 99€
  • Conspit RX320 Rim: 99€
  • Conspit DX320 Rim: 99€

The product tested here was provided by the manufacturer. No influence was exerted on this review at any time.

Scope of delivery

Conspit supplies the hub with paddles and hub not pre-assembled. Accordingly, the material required for assembly and the corresponding tools are a separate part of the scope of delivery. Conspit also includes four sticker sheets in the package, each containing stickers in two different colours (purple and black).

The scope of delivery includes the following components:

  • USB spring cable
  • Stickers
  • Hub
  • 3.0mm hex wrench
  • 2.0mm hex wrench
  • 1.5mm hex wrench
  • Multi-function tool
  • M6x0.75mm nuts (2 pieces)
  • M5x16mm (6 pieces)
  • M5 nuts (6 pieces)
  • M5x16mm (3 pieces)
  • M3x6mm (8 pieces)
  • M5x14mm (9 pieces)

Compatibility

The hub is equipped with a USB cable that is plugged into the rear centre. It is secured by a recess in the back of the hub, which also serves as a feed-through and strain relief for the spiral cable. The hub itself is equipped with the typical 70 mm bolt circle and is therefore compatible with most common QR systems.

Due to the use of a USB cable, the hub is of course only suitable for use on a PC.

Rims

Conspit

Conspit offers three of its own rims, which have corresponding recesses for the Funkys and the two toggle switches. This creates space in the centre of the steering wheel for the corresponding functions, which significantly enhances the functionality of the hub. The steering wheels are available in three versions, whereby the open-top version with a diameter of 295 millimetres (weight approx. 700 grams) and the round steering wheel (weight approx. 950 grams, diameter 320 millimetres) were the most convincing.

The three steering wheels are each made of aluminium and covered in microfibre leather with purple stitching. The build quality is good and even after a few hours of testing, we couldn’t detect any significant wear. Both with and without gloves. The two versions already mentioned (RX320, CX295) came out on top in terms of driving comfort, with the round RX320 being the most comfortable to drive, especially during longer sessions.

Third-party manufacturers

Conspit has come up with an interesting trick in terms of compatibility with third-party manufacturers.
The centre-mounted funkys and toggle switches can be easily removed from the hub thanks to the magnetic design, allowing the use of any steering wheels from other manufacturers with a 70mm bolt circle, as long as they are large enough not to cover any of the buttons.

Conversely, the 70mm bolt circle of the Conspit rims makes them compatible with hubs from other manufacturers (tested here with the Turn Button Plate).

Features

Der H.AO Hub von Conspit ist fast vollständig aus Carbon gefertigt.
Unlike most manufacturers, the manufacturer not only opted for a carbon front, but also for a full carbon housing, which is more than unusual in this price range:

Unlike fiber-reinforced injection solutions, the H.AO HUB features a true full carbon fiber shell. The rear shell is manufactured using a carbon fiber prepreg molding process, aiming for stiffness, durability and lightweight performance in line with real race car Steering Wheels .

All cams are hidden inside the housing, maintaining a sleek appearance while retaining depth and tactile feel. The unique texture and sheen of carbon fiber, along with its rigid yet lightweight characteristics, lend exceptional quality and feel to the entirety.

Conspit

This results in a very low weight of the hub of only approx. 885 g (the QR hub weighs an additional approx. 80 g), combined with exceptionally high stability and torsional rigidity.

Buttons

The features are divided as follows:

  • 10 Buttons: The total of 10 buttons are illuminated and five different colours can be set: Purple, white, gold, red and green. The very firm and tactile buttons acknowledge each press with a flashing light.
  • 2 Funky-Switches: The two funky switches with aluminium caps are positioned so that you can operate them without having to take your hands off the steering wheel (especially on the CX295 Rim). Due to their relatively tall design, they are very easy to operate, but do not provide overly precise feedback.
  • 4 Thumb-Encoders: Conspit has attached a total of four aluminium thumb encoders to each corner of the hub. These have a light to medium trigger force and are easy to operate thanks to the strong rasterisation. The encoder at the bottom right is reserved for setting the display mode.
  • 2 Rotary-Switches: There are two rotary switches in the lower section of the hub, each with 12 positions (so each position corresponds to a freely assignable button). Here too, the caps are made of aluminium and the force required is in the medium to high range.
  • 2 Toggle switches: A two-way toggle switch is located relatively centrally on each side. During the review, these were assigned to FFB +/- and MFD +/-, for example.
Button-Sounds

You can find a video with the sounds of the buttons here: https://www.instagram.com/p/C7wXR2VtwZ0/

LEDs snd Display

In addition to the buttons, there is a 2.99-inch display on the front of the H.AO Hub. It offers three different modes (as of June 2024), which can be switched between using one of the thumb encoders. Brightness and colours are at a good level, but the image quality does not quite match that of a VoCore display.

There are also 9 slightly recessed RPM LEDs in the upper area of the hub. Unfortunately, the colours cannot currently be adjusted individually.

Paddles

There are a total of six paddles on the back of the H.AO Hub:

  • Shifter Paddles:
  • The two magnetic shifters are made of carbon (paddles) and aluminium (housing). They are also large enough for bigger rims and can be adjusted slightly in their position using slotted holes. The special highlight here: The end stop and thus the actuation travel can be adjusted using two grub screws. The shifting feel is clearly defined and, compared to other shifters, is of medium firmness. The noise development is comparatively quiet, but still not suitable for a living room.
  • Dual Clutch: Like the shifter, the double clutch is equipped with carbon paddles that provide a pleasant resistance via a spring. The paddles are asymmetrical (one paddle is longer) and can be mounted according to preference.
  • Swift-Triggers: A special highlight of the H.AO Hub are definitely the two push/pull paddles, which Conspit calls swift triggers. They are perfectly positioned and have a crisp trigger feel. They offer clear added value compared to normal additional paddles (which are usually placed below or above the other paddles) and significantly enhance the hub!

Software

As a software solution, Conspit relies on its own software called Conspit Link (version at the time of the review: 2.0.9). This offers various configuration options in addition to the possibility of firmware updates:

  • RGB-Settings: The colours of the buttons (Default, White, Off) as well as the functions (Pit Limiter, Shift Point Flash) and the trigger times of the RPM LEDs can be set here.
  • Paddles Settings: The four paddles can be calibrated here and the release point of the clutch can be set.
  • Launch Control: An interesting feature can be found in the Launch Control tab. Similar to the CPP.Lite pedals, a launch control can also be used here, which automates the launch with predefined values. More details can be found here: CONSPIT CPP.Lite Pedals – Review

Unfortunately, it is currently not possible to configure your own dashboards for the display, nor do the buttons support dynamic lighting via Simhub, for example. It is up to Conspit to upgrade these and other functions with future software updates.

Driving impression

Conclusion

The H.AO Hub from Conspit definitely stands out from the competition. Whether it’s the all-carbon housing, which is unusual in this price range, the 2.99 display in widescreen format or the removable Funky switches for improved compatibility with third-party wheels.

Even if the included software still seems a little immature and lacks some features, the hub still impresses with its material quality and the number of features, whereby the push/pull shifters called Swift Triggers by Conspit were a particularly positive surprise during the review.

If Conspit succeeds in improving the software even further, the H.AO Hub can definitely be recommended without reservation, but even now it is one of the most versatile and high-quality hubs on the simracing market.

Pros

  • Price/performance ratio
  • Full carbon fibre housing
  • (Hardware) compatibility
  • Shifter and dual clutch
  • Swift-Triggers
  • Buttons
  • Display

Cons

  • No custom dashboards
  • Software

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