Anyone have experience with Bass Shakers / Butt Kickers

As the title suggests I’m needing advice from anyone using these for VR. I’m considering buying one for my sim chair but not sure if it’s worth the investment

I would primarily use it for Elite Dangerous and driving sims but also want it for music listening with a good pair of headphones. Really want to know if the bass has much detail or if it’s just a monotone rumble? Any advice would be apreciated

@tomohm @Yata_PL Do you have one on your chair?


Ive got two bass shakers, a lot smaller (and cheaper, 20 bucks each) than the one shown and without a special amp/driver for it, i just run em off the amp for my subwoofer.

The two i have ive stuck into the car seat i use for sim games, one in the seat and the other in the back.

They have detail since they follow the bass output of the whatever is playing, ive used em mostly for elite and its nice to get a bit of feel for the engines, weapon fire and when taking hits in dogfights, also a little for assetto corsa where feeling the engine and bumps is nice.

For music it gets annoying IMO, lots of music has a heavy bass beat and having that pulsing all the time doesnt add anything after the novelty of it has worn off.


Sorry but I’m not using buttkicker. I choosed vibration pad instead ( gametrix jet seat) But I read that both solutions have pros and cons. It’s best to have both plus montion platform. If you cant have both than choose realteus or gametrix - 8 tactical vibartion zones is imho better than 1 or 2 noisy buttkickers…

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Now that looks interesting. Would it help for music in any way? Is the software good? Thanks!

Thanks Ziddan. I think the Dayton ones are voice coil driven rather than a piston. Wonder how they compare

This device is operating in 2 modes - stereo sound mode ( works great with Elite and dub step music) and tactical mode with additional telemetry software from Andre which you need to buy separetly ( I’m using tactical mode for IL 2, DCS, AC , PC2, Dirt1 & 2)

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I run quadraphonic buttkickers placed with one at each corner of a hardwood base that my cockpit is built on. Using telemetry software feeding the suspension data from each wheel to each buttkicker for racing. It’s absolutely amazing. Very detailed, very powerful, mind blowing stuff. The best upgrade on my cockpit.
I’ve used stupid seat liners with pathetic buzzers in them and they are literally universes apart, there is no comparison at all. They would also be useless for music.
Seriously go for buttkickers and if you like racing sims go for 4 in a quadraphonic setup. I use 2 identical stereo bass amps and a Creative sound card setup in quadraphonic. Having amazingly detailed and powerful independent suspension feedback is a whole new level of sim racing. It’s also great in flight sims but the good race sims make better use of it. AC is awesome.

I use a racing simrig with multiple bass shakers/amplifiers and software using SimHub to control the various effects coming from the sim’s telemetry.

Agree with the suggestions that Flinnt already gave you, vibration motors and seat mats can’t give you a realistic feel to the same level that the best bass shakers do, and if you’re going to use it for music listening you should definitely avoid these.

There are several choices among the various shakers available on the market, from the cheap but good Reckorn BS-200i, or SinusLive BS-250 (almost the same but cheaper), but the Buttkickers are one level over most brands, because of their wider frequency response range that go up to 160Hz and can render some of the mid frequencies , but not so much, and offer the best watt power limit.

But if your aim is to listen music too, you should probably aim for the ones by Clark Synthesis , that are probably the only ones capable of cover high frequency sounds with very high quality and clear output, but these are very expensive as they were developed as military grade simulation equipment.

The best way for a mixed sim/music listening type of setup is probably using one or two Clark shakers for the main sounds, and a powerful Buttkicker to be placed under the seat or close to it for the bass frequancies and kicks :slight_smile: But if you’re not going to use some type of gaming rig with integrated seat, and just one gaming chair, you should probably aim for one Clark fixed to the back, coupling it with a good live music type amplifier, just don’t use one of the buttkicker amp or bass shaker amp with the Clark shaker, as these have a limited frequency response and generally dont cover middle to high frequencies.


Thanks for all the info Lillo. The Clark transducers look incredible. With those power ratings do you think they would run perfectly off a car audio amplifier with a PC power supply? I’m seriously interested in this one

It will run but…car audio amplifiers (and HQ power music amplifiers in general) need a strong continuous current and very high amp , and most generic electric equipment and Pc’s use switching type power supplies which are not suitable for these uses except if built for the specific application in music amplifiers.

Some of the best music amplifiers use a toroidal type power supply, that is partly the reason of their high price tag.

If you’re going to use a car amplifier, it would be better to power it through a car type battery at least 30 amps, but you also need to connect the battery to a recharge unit, and in the end this could be very unpractical.

In any case you can find many good music power amplifiers at around 100 USD price, but if you’re aiming for the cheap you can even find some simple chinese digital amplifiers 100+100W at very cheap prices on amazon.


Oh and, don’t forget to check that the amp you’re going to use supports 4 Ohm speakers, as most BS run on that impedance.

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Sorry forgot to mention that. Yes I was thinking to run it with a dry cell car battery/powersupply. My company Studioform used to design and custim build car audio camparator displays for Sony/Panasonic with all the switching gear so that’s where I was coming from. Your totally right though. For the price of all those components you could just buy a home amplifier :slight_smile:

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I run 2 of these. One on the back of my seat and the other under the seat.

They’re 50 watts each. I drive them with this Sony 100 watt amp, y-split of the sub/center of my 5:1 SoundBlaster x-fi. Ironically the y-splitter I use is from a gen1 Buttkicker I burnt out.
I had the chance to show a virgin VR for the first time in his life, last Friday. I put him in the M18 in DCS Nevada. I let him look around and soak in the cockpit and his crew. I didn’t tell him about the seat and that it was cranked up to what I thought simulated the experience sufficiently well.
I hit the auto startup . :grinning:

Took an hour to wipe the smile off his face.


Thanks dogbite. Can you post The model of the sony amp? Thanks

This is the amp I use

Any 100 watt per channel stereo amp will do.

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Aura bass shaker have almost the same internals and specs of the Reckorn , with the addition of just better heat dissipation fins but cost twice :slight_smile:

That Sony amp is not well suited (Hi-Fi and Home Theater amps rarely are) 'cause it supports only 8->16 Ohm speakers, so be careful because you’re probably going to burn the the Aura shakers, as connecting 4 Ohms shakers will make these get more than triple the watt power they are made to sustain (50W), plus you’re risking to overheat and burn the amplifier, this is why you probably burned out the BK :smiley:

Here is an example of a good quality and well suited amp for driving two bass shakers of medium-high watt power like the buttkickers and Clark:

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They actually run quite cool and have so for near 4 years. The one attached to the back of the chair is even sitting under the leatherette backing although the backing is not fastened at the bottom of the chair for ventilation sake. Even after playing for a few hours it is cool enough to touch so I am not concerned about burnout.

That price is much higher than I paid 4 years ago and is CA dollars. Agree, they are not the cheapest though, but you get what you pay for.
The Buttkicker had it’s own amp and it’s death is not related to any equipment I run now.
The Sony amp is 100watts per channel and only one channel is running 2x50watt transducers wired in series, so it is not in danger of dying. The transducers are rated 50 watts but don’t actually really make that. More like 2x45 watts peak.

Oh and totally agree with your amp example. I just went with what works, was being used at the time and the ‘immediately’ available to me at that time.

if it should be used for audio (real feeling of BASS frequencies more than just a rumble triggered by bass) consider the Buttkicker LFE.
It‘s impressive but comes with a price tag.
you‘ll need an powerful amp as well. (400 watts min)
All other I tried simply ruined music, but if it‘s „just“ for gaming a „rumbley“ unit may be fun as well and cheaper.