Best DiRT 4 Settings for Thrustmaster TMX / T150

DiRT 4 plays very well with a wheel, but the default settings are terrible for the Thrustmaster TMX and T150. In a game where you need to turn the wheel quickly, the default settings make the wheel incredibly heavy and hard to turn. These lower end wheels are already fairly sluggish and the in-game default settings only amplify the problem.

I spent a lot of time trying each different setting trying to find the right balance. Unfortunately, the force feedback in this game always has a fairly vague, sluggish feeling, no matter what you do. With that said, these settings are still wildly better than the default and make the game much more fun to play.

Thrustmaster Control Panel Settings

DiRT 4 has a Soft Lock feature in-game to control the wheel's steering angle, letting us leave the rotation set to the maximum in the Thrustmaster Control Panel.

Setting Value
Rotation 900° (TMX) 1080° (T150)
Overall Strength of all forces 100%
Constant 100%
Periodic 100%
Spring 100%
Damper 100%
Auto-Center by the game

Spring is not used by DiRT 4, so the value actually doesn't matter. Some games require Spring to be on for their force feedback to work, so I keep it at 100% as a general rule.

Damper is used in DiRT 4 for the Wheel Friction and Tire Friction effects.

BOOST should always be turned off. For an in-depth look as to why, see my BOOST Force Feedback Analysis.

DiRT 4 Settings

In Options & Extras > Input > Device Management:

Make sure to run the Calibration Wizard in game. This is required to have the proper steering angles and for Soft Lock to work. It's possible to cancel out of the Calibration Wizard by hitting the wrong button on the wheel. There are four steps you have to go through for the calibration, if you don't do them all, Soft Lock won't work. If you find you aren't getting through the full process, try pressing a different button on your wheel.

In Options & Extras > Input > Device Management > Thrustmaster TMX / T150 > Advanced Input Settings:

Setting Value
Steering Linearity 0
Steering Deadzone 0
Steering Saturation 100
Soft Lock On

With the wheel calibrated, you can let the game choose the proper steering angle for each car by using the Soft Lock, instead of manually changing the Steering Saturation every time you get in a new car.

In Options & Extras > Input > Device Management > Thrustmaster TMX / T150 > Vibration & Feedback:

Setting Value
Vibration & Feedback On
Self Aligning Torque 40
Wheel Friction 0
Tire Friction 60
Suspension 50
Tire Slip 0
Collision 50
Soft Lock 150
Steering Centre Force 100
Steering Centre Force Enabled On

Self Aligning Torque is the main force you feel while driving. Setting this too high makes the wheel too heavy.

Wheel Friction is a damper force to add weight to the wheel. The Self Aligning Torque provides plenty of weight, so I turn this off.

Tire Friction is a damper force that adds a little bit of resistance based on the tires. This is mostly felt when the car is stopped.

Suspension vibrates the wheel based on the bumps in the road.

Tire Slip vibrates the wheel when the rear wheels lose traction. I find this more distracting than anything, so I turn it off.

Collision vibrates the wheel when you hit something.

Soft Lock stops the wheel from turning past the car's steering angle.

Steering Centre Force centers the wheel when you start a stage or recover the car. It has no effect while you are driving.


It seems like every game I've tried that supports force feedback comes with terrible default settings, and this game is no exception. The first race I played was terrible because the forces were wildly pulling the wheel, making it very difficult to control. Once I sat down and tuned the settings, I realized how far off the default settings were from a natural feel. Now I can actually drive the car and have it feel pretty good. It's not my favorite of the Dirt series, but it's still a lot of fun. If you have a VR headset, you may be interested to know that DiRT 4 works surprisingly well in VR using VorpX.

Let me know if you have any comments or questions.

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