How to Configure the Joystick ST290 Pro
By Larry Simmons
The Saitek ST290 Pro is an adjustable USB flight stick that allows you to configure its buttons as needed for each game you play. The flight stick’s five fire buttons and a eight-way POV hat switch gives you precise control over your gaming, but only if you use Saitek’s SST programming software. Once you’ve programmed a game profile, you can save the profile for later use. Multiple profiles are allowed, each loadable before gaming to allow you to use your customized configuration profile as needed.
Connect to the Saitek website listed in the resources section and download the latest version of the ST290 Pro driver for your version of the Windows OS as well as the Smart Technology programming software from the downloads section. Save the drivers and software to an easily accessible location on your systems hard drive.
Install the ST290 Pro driver by double-clicking on the downloaded EXE file where you saved the file. Run the Smart Technology installation software by double clicking on the filename where you saved the software.
Plug the USB plug of the ST290 Pro into a free USB port on your PC. Wait for the PC to recognize the joystick and apply the drivers. A box will appear in your task manager, acknowledging the successful installation.
Press the Start button, and then select “Devices and Printers” from the Start Menu. In the Devices and Printers window, right-click the ST 290 Pro joystick icon listed under the “Devices” section. Select “Game Controller Settings.”
Click on the “Settings” tab and press the “Calibrate” button. Follow the instructions in the Game Device Calibration window that opens to calibrate the ST290 Pro for general use. Press the “Finish” button to save your calibration, and then press the “OK” button in the joystick properties window to exit.
Right-click on the icon for your joystick in the task manager on your Windows toolbar; it resembles the ST290 pro joystick. Select “Profile Editor” from the pop-up window that appears.
Click the space in the editor for the button you wish to program. When the cursor begins to flash, type in the keystroke you wish to configure the button to reproduce when pressed. Press the green check mark next to the space to save the keystroke and open a naming window. Type in the name of your programmed button and press the “Enter” button to finish programming the button. Right-click the keystroke listed in the space if you wish to erase it and program a different keystroke to the button. Rename the programmed button by clicking the name, which highlights it. Type in the new name and press “Enter.” Use the same process for multi-keyed commands. The program records you inputs in real time, so if you wait between pressing keys, the program will use the same wait period between keystrokes when the joystick button you programmed is pressed.
Program all of the buttons you wish to, using the same programming process. Save the profile by clicking the “Save” icon located at the top of the window. Name the profile and then save it in the suggested location by clicking the “Save” button.
Activate the profile before playing a game by right-clicking the joystick icon in the task manager and selecting the profile from the pop-up window. Load the game and begin playing with the custom profile selected.
Larry Simmons is a freelance writer and expert in the fusion of computer technology and business. He has a B.S. in economics, an M.S. in information systems, an M.S. in communications technology, as well as significant work towards an M.B.A. in finance. He's published several hundred articles with Demand Studios.