Best controllers/setup for manual w/clutch

What do you use? What’s best?

Looking recommendations for controllers/setups for manual with clutch.
I’m on series S but still using my power A enhanced Xbox one wired controller as it has additional buttons that I’ve programmed shift up and down.

I’m about to start playing manual w/clutch and it got me wondering, for those of us who use controllers, which is best for forza horizon 4? Should I just setup my series s controller and have a b shift with lb clutch?

Suggestions welcome!

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Depends where your shift buttons are. If they’re on the back, and you’re used to that, I’d say A is probably the best choice, moving e-brake to B.

I’ve tried to do manual with clutch on a controller, but I can’t think of any way to do it. Without buttons on the back, any control I map clutch to takes fingers away from important tasks. I could two finger each side of the triggers at all times, but not having my trigger finger on the triggers reduces my brake and throttle accuracy, not to mention totally messes up my muscle memory. That’s all I got, sorry.

Edit: The right stick is also a possibility, and it would give you an analog input. It’ll make looking around impossible though.

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My shift buttons are on the back of the controller. I did switch e brake to A and I’m experimenting with clutch to LS stick.

think fastest is
A: Clutch B: Up X: Down

it allows you to “swipe” over a+b to shift up

with elite controller and buttons abx mapped to the paddles u can press both at “same” time each side
but i’m automatic driver 99.9% here


I used to be a pure automatic driver. Never had the opportunity to learn in real life (unfortunately) and always found it a little intimidating in game. I understood the concepts, I’m just very bad at accepting change and adjusting my muscle memory.

Then a little game called Art of Rally came out. I really enjoyed it, but controlling the cars without manual was a bit of a nightmare. The game is so small, niche, and simplistic in appearance that learning manual there felt almost natural. I went from automatic for life to a manual user in a matter of a few days. I wasn’t entirely convinced I’d switch over to manual in Forza, but then Dirt Rally 2.0 went on sale. I didn’t even bother trying Automatic in that game. When I came back to FH4, the muscle memory had already been deeply ingrained in me. I’m now manual for life, and it really has opened up some new aspects of the game for me. For example: Used to hate Hondas with their V-tec engines on automatic. Now I really like a V-tec powered car. Cross Country on unbeatable is also a bit more manageable now that I know how to use my gears to add more stability or more torque to a situation.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, if you’re interested in trying the leap, Art of Rally is a good game to learn in.

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Thank you for the suggestion, if I don’t have any luck with current setup I’ll try that! I do t have an elite controller, the one I use only has two buttons on the back which I have mapped to rb for shift up and lb for shift down, this has basically left me with two rb and lb buttons now.

The best and fastest way for manual w/ clutch would be clutch on A, shift up on B and shift down on X. There is really no need to have clutch or shift up/down on the back paddles. The only thing I have on the back paddle is look back. If an other way works better for you, then go for it tho.

It is a Forza only thing. Never driven automatic in rl

Yeah no need but if u played other games and used always the paddles to shift u have to remap xab then (it’s easier than fiddling around with ingame mappings)

I used normal default and it was great. No need to change anything.

What I used on back for Elite was look back and horn so I could horn all the start of a MP race :smiley:

Just use the default controller layout, but turn on the option to switch handbrake and clutch. Then to shift with clutch, you just press X+A or A+B together with your thumb halfway between the two buttons. Don’t try to use the clutch like you would in a real car, just press both buttons together.

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Just started playing FH4 (no prior Forza experience) and opted for ‘manual w/clutch’ from the outset; I’ve had a few wins (max difficulty) but not yet comfortable with the setup, and despite a good few hours’ practice still get my fingers in a twist at times (information overload).

Initially I tried the often suggested ‘clutch to A, shift to X/B’ setup, and while it does seem like the easiest way to go, I’m currently running ‘clutch to LB, shift to A/B’; reason being: it feels more realistic to have to engage an entirely separate button, rather than effectively treating clutch and shift as basically one entity. Additionally, aside from it being more life-like, I’m not a fan of mashing down on two buttons at once; especially the A + X combo, which despite working fine, feels somewhat imprecise.

As mentioned however, the LB + A/B setup can be a bit overwhelming; I’m not sure whether I just need more time to get used to it or it’s simply too many independent finger movements to deal with, and I’d be better off just going with the recommended A + X/B config.

Was wondering if any others are having good results using LB + A/B; is mastering it simply a case of more time, or is it all just a bit too much?

(FYI: I use an eSwapX Pro Controller; it has four buttons on the back, but they’re a bit fiddly for frequent use)

Edit: Having now spent a decent amount of time with the game I can confirm that LB (clutch) + A/B (shift) works just fine, even at maximum difficulty.