Thrustmaster TH8A

Here are the key specs of the Thrustmaster TH8A:

  • 7+1 gate H-pattern shifter
  • Convertible to sequential mode
  • Metal internal mechanism and knob
  • Rubberized mounting clamp
  • Fully adjustable and rotatable mounting
  • Compatible with PC, PS3/PS4, Xbox One
  • Advanced customization via PC software

Thrustmaster TH8A Shifter Review: The Ultimate Shifter for Serious Sim Racers

If you’re a serious sim racer looking to add a standalone shifter to enhance the realism of your rig, the Thrustmaster TH8A deserves your consideration. With its sturdy metal construction, slick styling, and advanced customization options, it provides a premium shifting experience at a mid-range price point.

I’ve spent the past few months extensively testing the TH8A shifter paired with Thrustmaster’s T300RS wheel and T3PA pedals on both console and PC. Here is my detailed review of how it performs and stacks up against the competition.


The TH8A is Thrustmaster’s flagship aftermarket shifter designed to complement their ecosystem of wheels and pedals. It’s feature-packed for the $150 price tag, offering a choice of H-pattern or sequential shift modes, full metal internal parts, and a rotatable mounting system.

Compared to plastic budget shifters or wheels with integrated shifters, the TH8A provides a much more realistic and engaging manual transmission experience. The all-metal mechanism gives confident shifts, and the adjustable resistance dial allows you to customize the throw to your liking.

Detailed Review

Design and Build Quality

The TH8A impresses right out of the box with its stylish black exterior and bright silver shift gates. The materials used in construction consist of a plastic outer casing over an all-metal interior shifting mechanism. this provides durability while keeping the weight reasonable.

Compared to cheap plastic shifters, the sturdy metal parts inside the TH8A give a satisfying mechanical “thunk” between gates. The default shifter knob also has a leather cover and dense feel reminiscent of a real performance car.

One unique feature is the ability to quickly convert the shifter between H-pattern and sequential modes by swapping the shift plate. Both plates included have a quality carbon fiber aesthetic. Converting takes just a few minutes with the included hex key and some simple bolt removal.


  • Sturdy metal internal mechanism
  • Realistic style and materials
  • Easily swappable shift plates
  • Default leather knob


  • Exterior plastic cover feels average
  • Changing plates requires partial disassembly
  • Knob shape not ideal for sequential mode

Mounting Options

The TH8A ships with an industrial-strength clamp to attach the shifter to your rig. This worked flawlessly during my testing, even when vigorously slamming the shifter around.

The rubber grips on the top and bottom of the clamp keep it secure on any desktop or rig surface up to 4cm thick without marring the material. Best of all, the entire clamp assembly can rotate a full 360 degrees to achieve ideal shifter positioning.

For permanent installation, the TH8A provides 4 threaded bolt holes on the bottom. This allowed me to securely mount it to my rig’s integrated shifter plate. The rotatable shifter head means you can always orient the knob and gates correctly.

Between the sturdy clamp and flexible hard mount options, the TH8A can be installed securely on just about any rig. The full adjustability is much appreciated compared to shifters with fixed mounting positions.


  • Heavy duty mounting clamp with rubber grips
  • Clamp provides 360 degree rotation
  • Can be permanently bolted down
  • Fully adjustable and rotatable mounting


  • Clamp takes time to adjust and tighten

Performance and Feel

The TH8A performs admirably for a mid-priced shifter. The H-pattern plate provides a smooth throw with a nice mechanical “clunk” between gates. This adds physical feedback that you don’t get from paddle shifters when changing gears.

I preferred the H-pattern mode to sequential mode in terms of tactile sensation. The gear changes felt smooth but lacked the positive clicks you get in performance sequential boxes. For rally and drift driving it works fine, but gated mode excels for realistic road driving.

An adjustable resistance dial allows you to customize the amount of force needed to shift. I preferred adding a bit of resistance to better simulate heavier real-world transmissions. This level of tuning makes the TH8A stand out at this price point.

The default shift throw is a bit long, but third party shift plates with shorter throws are available. With the customization dial and ability to upgrade parts, you can really tailor the TH8A to your preferences.


  • Smooth, accurate shifts in H-pattern mode
  • Nice “clunk” changing gears provides feedback
  • Adjustable resistance enhances realism
  • Can customize throw with aftermarket parts


  • Sequential shifts lack ratcheting feel
  • Default throw could be shorter

Wide Compatibility

A major selling point of the TH8A is its wide cross-platform compatibility right out of the box. The shifter can plug directly into PC, PS3, PS4, and Xbox One when paired with a compatible Thrustmaster wheel.

On PC, it works flawlessly alongside pedals and wheels from any brand thanks to the included USB and DIN cables. Whether you’re playing racing sims like Assetto Corsa or trucking games like Euro Truck Simulator 2, the TH8A integrates easily into your existing setup.

For console compatibility, check whether your wheel supports the TH8A – on Playstation it must be a Thrustmaster model. But external shifter support is still relatively rare on consoles, so the TH8A provides welcome flexibility.


  • Works with all wheel/pedal brands on PC
  • Direct USB connections for simplicity
  • Console compatible with Thrustmaster wheels
  • One of few shifters supporting PS4


  • Console compatibility limitations
  • Requires open USB port on PC

Advanced Customization

The TH8A lets you take customization a step further by connecting to your PC and using Thrustmaster’s tuning software. This allows reprogramming the thresholds and gear positions to match your real-world vehicle or personal preference.

After tuning the shifter to your liking, the settings are saved directly to the internal memory. This means your tweaks will be retained and applied on any platform – console, PC, or different games.

The advanced programming combined with the ability to upgrade parts gives you an incredible amount of flexibility from a single shifter unit. Whether you want shorter throws, firmer resistance, or customized gearing, the TH8A delivers.


  • Reprogram shifter behavior via PC software
  • Change gear thresholds and positions
  • Settings saved directly in internal memory
  • Applies custom tuning on any platform


  • Requires Windows PC for programming
  • No Mac or mobile support

Comparison to Other Shifters

To provide some perspective, I compared the TH8A to shifters from leading brands Logitech and Fanatec. Here is how the TH8A stacks up:

vs. Logitech Driving Force Shifter

Logitech’s budget paddle shifter retails for around $50 less than the TH8A. The Logitech has a similar plastic and metal construction but lacks the premium styling and materials of the Thrustmaster.

In terms of performance, the Logitech provides slightly smoother throws. However, the TH8A counters with a wider 7+1 gate range, more customization, and rotatable mounting. At this price point either shifter is an excellent choice.

vs. Fanatec Clubsport Shifter SQ

The premium Fanatec Clubsport shifter provides an even more realistic mechanical feel than the TH8A. It also features an integrated sequential shifting mode. But for $50 more cost, the TH8A comes remarkably close in quality and customization.

Considering its lower price, the Thrustmaster holds up well compared to more expensive offerings. Unless you need an integrated sequential mode, the TH8A delivers an excellent balance of features, realism, and cost.


After extensively testing the TH8A shifter over hundreds of simulated miles, I can confidently recommend it for serious sim racers. The sturdy metal construction provides satisfying shifts, and the full customization takes realism and immersion to the next level.

The default shifts are slightly long, but the ability to upgrade parts gives you flexibility as your skills progress. Whether you’re looking to enhance paddle shifting or equip an entry-level set, the TH8A provides a premium manual transmission experience for the money.

For console users, compatibility limitations apply, so double check your wheel supports the TH8A. But on PC its plug-and-play simplicity and broad support make it easy to incorporate with your existing hardware.

If you’ve been searching for the ideal standalone shifter upgrade, put the Thrustmaster TH8A at the top of your list. Its premium materials and customization deliver an engaging manual transmission experience that will enhance any sim rig.

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the difference between the TH8A and TH8RS?

The TH8RS is an older Thrustmaster shifter replaced by the TH8A. The TH8RS lacks the new integrated sequential mode and other small refinements of the TH8A.

Does the TH8A work with Xbox One or Series X/S?

Yes, it is compatible when connected to Thrustmaster’s Xbox-licensed wheels.

Can I use the shifter with PS5 or Xbox Series X/S?

Full backward compatibility means the TH8A works on new consoles just like PS4 and Xbox One.

What’s the warranty period?

Thrustmaster provides a 2 year manufacturer’s warranty on the TH8A shifter.

Does the clamp damage desks or rigs?

No, the rubber grip surfaces prevent any marking or damage to furniture.

Can I hard mount it without the clamp?

Yes, removing the clamp exposes 4 threaded bolt holes to permanently install it.

Thrustmaster TH8A