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Guest allistah

Why is Project Magenta so expensive?

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I don't understand why Project Magenta is so expensive. $400 for a whole setup seems -way- overpriced. How is that affordable to the home sim guy thats trying to have a fun hobby?I could see if I was using the software to make money or something but its just an addon to Flight Sim.Anyone have any comments?

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I agree that it's expensive, though you are getting a lot for your money on the airliner suites. I was more bothered by $50 for the GA panel - that I thought was way over the top, which was why I wrote and released my own as freeware.What also concersn me about the PM software is their "If it doesn't work for you then thanks for your money anyway" no-refund policy.But, it's a business, and they have the right to charge what they like. If you think it's too much, don't buy it. There are freeware alternatives.Richard

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If you want "affordable" then why don't you purchase an inexpensive shareware C compiler and write your own program that can be "just an add on" to Flight Sim?How can you make such a statement??? Do you have any idea of the amount of time and effort programming something as "simple" as PM takes Enrico et. al? Obviously not or you would not have made such an inane pronouncement.Forgive my ranting but I'm just about sick to death of people complaining that other people's hard work ought to be cheap or free simply because it is related to flight simulation! The world does *NOT* owe you a favor. Who are you to criticize the price someone sets on their own work?! If you don't like the price then don't buy it! Simple as that.Project Magenta is clearly the fruit of zillions of (ongoing) hours of effort and clever programming and is well worth the asking price. Try programming what it does yourself for awhile and I suspect you'll quickly arrive at that conclusion as well.Scott L. Fausel, VMD

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Well said Scott.There is an unbelievable amount of hours that goes into projects like this. Interpreting actual aircraft manuals and then putting it into code. If the gentlemen wants cheap software then perhaps a simple addon may be his best best. Project Magenta is extremely affordable when you consider the magnitude the software brings to a homebuilt system. A decent, and let me say it again. A decent homebuilt cockpit is going to start off around 10 grand easily. So a program like Magenta, with precise graphics (OpenGL), which interfaces the MCP, PFD, ND, Eicas, CDU, EGPWS, and overhead systems, is under priced in my opinion. Agree its my opinion but its one based on nearly 10 years of home cockpit construction.There are several airlines that are actively looking at adopting various segments of Magenta to incorporate into their curriculums. I happen to know this is fact. If I had not already bought the software and knew this information, I for one would act now rather than later when the price rises and meets industry standards in terms of pricing.Michael Lehkamp

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Allistah If building a cockpit mean anything to you in this world... You wouldn't mind about the price ;)

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Look guys, I wasn't trying to offend anyone. I simply wanted to know why it was so expensive. I don't own it, I have never used it, and don't know much at all about it. $400 for a complete kit seemed to be pretty high to me. Sorry I asked.

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Sorry guys but I would have to agree with Allistah. His comments are what these forums are all about. Nobody should take offence as its only a view of some.I do believe that its very expensive for what it is. PMDG's 737NG available for US$39.95 and includes the features to about 95% of PM's software. All MFD's are undockable, available for simulator use. Same with the CDU's and the software is improving everyday. I'm sure there was alot of late nights with these guys too developing this software.Regards,

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C'MON GUYS!!!! No need for emotional outbursts on this topic. The question was a genuine request for some input as to the reason for the apparent 'high cost' for PM software. When compared to entire operating systems (win xp) with 20x the code and functionality that sell for less than $299...it's a reasonable question. Now for some answers:1. PM used to be free. Over time, as the functionality improved and demand rose, a price was added. Functionality grew as MSFS changed, homebuilt cockpits became more sophisticated, and commercial users began using the software in their applications. The price increased as well.2. The volume for PM is quite low. If you are the author(s), and you put thousands of hours into the project, you expect some base compensation. So, with low volume, the unit price is higher. The authors also need to decide if it is better to drop price and hope for volume, or keep price high, and serve a specific niche crowd.A good example of these dynamics is from the X-Plane team. Their product used to be 3x MSFS...and they sold a few copies. Seeing that there was demand for their type of software from the general public, they then dropped price to match MSFS, and the usage is now substantially greater. Only Austin meyer can tell you if that worked. From his many smiles, I think it did!3. Application of this software is widespread. Commercial firms think nothing of $350 for software when they charge 100x that for a full simulator! Major homebuilt projects...like Deltaflight, etc, where the reality quotient is very high and a lot of time, money and sweat has been invested, consider this price to be a small part of their costs.Simple cockpits (e.g. Simple pedal, yoke and throttles) where the total investment is :)

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Allistah,I want you to know, I have nothing to offend you...:-halo I understood about your concerns because I used to be in your shoes once. About few years ago, when I though PM was too expensive.. I tried other freeware such as OpenGC and FreeFD. Unfortunately, this has not come in good conclusion for me and my bird. So for my bird's sake I decided to stop complain or being cheap and just go ahead and purchase PM software. After I purchased it, I realize it made my money worth ... PM software sure makes my bird really happy, and had a good night sleep after flying. ;) You don't really have to buy whole set of software at once, you can just buy it one at a time. So hope everything clears up for you.

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Allistah,I want you to know, I have nothing to offend you...:-halo I understood about your concerns because I used to be in your shoes once. About few years ago, when I though PM was too expensive.. I tried other freeware such as OpenGC and FreeFD. Unfortunately, this has not come in good conclusion for me and my bird. So for my bird's sake I decided to stop complain or being cheap and just go ahead and purchase PM software. After I purchased it, I realize it made my money worth ... PM software sure makes my bird really happy, and had a good night sleep after flying. ;) You don't really have to buy whole set of software at once, you can just buy it one at a time. So hope everything clears up for you.

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Brad,I agree the tone may have been a little direct towards Allistah and that was improper. I certainly hope I didnt offend him but if I did I appologize wholeheartedly.On another note. PMDG 737 and PIC 767 are great software packages and fill a huge void. But in all fairness, you simply cannot compare the two. I have PIC, and it in know way compares even close to Magenta in terms of cockpit building. I do not have the PMDG 737, but its my understanding its about equal or perhaps a notch ahead of PIC. I honestly dont believe its fair to folks on this forum to inaccurately advise them the two products are the same or 95% equal. Those comments generally come from folks who have no idea of the power or potential of Magenta. You mention that PMDG's MFD's are undockable. Thats truly is a great feature. However, blow all those MFD's up to lifesize and drag them to 3 or 5 different screens like Magenta. Now watch your one PC system come crawling to its knees while it attempts to operate all those "out of proportionate" displays not to mention FS2004's CPU hungry graphics engine. You need to sometime compare a graphics program written for DirectX next to one written in OpenGL. The extreme precision and smoothness of Magenta alone blows the others away for home cockpit building. I could go on and on with diffences but I believe most of the serious builders here already know them. There are many other little things about Magenta that are rarely mentioned. For example. You can take Magenta displays and with a few key strokes change the size of the display without losing any quality. Try that with other programs and watch the display quality suffer. Another rarely mentioned benefit is the ability to flip the entire display horizontal or vertical allowing you to mount a monitor upright or on its side. Very important when trying squeeze monitors togather in order to accomodate an entire front panel in such a small area.Dont get me wrong. I'm sure PMDG and PIC could be used in homebuilt sims. But I have found that their more geared for desktop systems oppose to homebuilt systems where the user is attempting to recreate as realisticly as possible a real aircraft. Magenta was developed primarily for this reason.Mike

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"A decent, and let me say it again. A decent homebuilt cockpit is going to start off around 10 grand easily."Ok eum, 10 grand .. that is 10 000 ?So either you are saying that my home cockpit is not decent .. or I'm just a very VERY handy and clever guy ............Curent price spent on my sim is 1.886 Euro (which is even less in USD) and that is even the price WITH a 500 Euro computer which I should count only half for the cockpit since I'm also using it for other things and WITH a jigsaw that I will be using in the future for other works as well. So 1.255 Euro is the price at the moment without those.I'm curious .. could you have a look at my cockpit pls ? And tell me if:1) you reconcider your statement2) you think my cockpit is not decent3) i am just a handy and clever guy:(

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Hi!I know that Enrico was the first in this homecockpitbuilder scene who created external Displays for the FS and has a status like a pioneer therefore. But sometimes I think his SW is treated as it would be the ultimate solution. I don't have any experience with the Boeing products since we are building an A320, so only with the Airbus package. Considering the price and the (working) functionality that the SW offer, it's too expensive. We aren't using his software anymore because there was no flight without any problem. Problems were essential problems that made flying unable. Especially Autoflight didn't behave as it should, sometimes it was russian roulette what mode the a/c will enter. Enrico released updates, but we observed that updates had often sideeffects to other parts of the SW. Ok, we saw that there were a lot of defects in the SW and try to make the best with it. Last November we were invited to a special Airbus PM workshop in Italy for a weekend. Enrico wanted to bring the Airbus part forward with his customers. Before that event we tested about 3 weeks his SW with the real A320 FCOMs to find out what works like it should and what doesn't. At the end we had a test report of about 100 pages. We hoped that this will give the PM Airbus line a great push forward. Our reports had items how something behaved in PM and how it should, so it was structered very good and gave a good overview what had to be implemented differently to have it working like in the real A320. Since then no great updates that implemented any of the non working items were released. I know, that nobody told us to do a report, but it's really sad and we are still disappointed that Enrico didn't take our tipps to heart. It seemed that he didn't care about our hints to improve the SW. I can't understand that many users still accept the defects in the software with no critics. I think Enrico should concentrate more on existing things and improve them rather than building new things. Then the price would be justified.As conclusion we decided to make our own SW. So, we would be independent and could reach all the requirements we have in a good Airbus SW. We are working very busy since January on the displays, the MCDU, the FCU and all other important systems of the aircraft. For sure, not everyone has the ability to start programming his own display. Finally it's up to everyone of us whether the software reaches the own requirements for simulating a specific aircraft or not.regards,Steve---------------------------------------------------------------------Do you know the A320 Flightdeck Project? Visit www.a320flightdeck.com

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>Look guys, I wasn't trying to offend anyone. I simply wanted>to know why it was so expensive. I don't own it, I have never>used it, and don't know much at all about it. $400 for a>complete kit seemed to be pretty high to me. Sorry I asked.No, I think you asked a reasonable question. I own the PM GA cockpit panel, and it was a hard $49 to part with (and I'm kinda regretting getting it since it doesn't work on my PC's 2nd (PCI card-driven) monitor). I also believe that the PM products are more expensive than they need to be.I DO understand the effort that goes into replicating real-world cockpit gauges to this degree, and I DO intend to build some sort of cockpit setup someday, but I still chafe at how costly the PM products are. I would've probably've already bought the Regional Jet product were it not $100.I believe that Reality XP has a better pricing model, but then they're not targeting the cockpit builder, and also they're not doing standalone OpenGL instrument programs. And, as someone else said, there are decent freeware doppelgangers out there. I've played around with a couple of them, although not recently.Dave Blevins

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Dave:>>No, I think you asked a reasonable question. I own the PM GA cockpit panel, and it was a hard $49 to part with (and I'm kinda regretting getting it since it doesn't work on my PC's 2nd (PCI card-driven) monitor). I also believe that the PM products are more expensive than they need to be.Dave, have you tried my freeware GA panel? I'm currently working on a v2.0, and am trying to find any of the people who downloaded the v1.0 to see what extra features they'd like to see.Richard

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>Overall, PM software is VERY functional and support is very>good. They don't offer refunds for 1 simple reason...they>can't stop you from continuing to use it after you receive>your money back. They also can't stop you from sharing it>either!I agree for the support. The support is not "Very Good" but _Excellent_. The mailing list is quick and active. The answers are very fast. Sometimes got answers there from Enrico in less than 2 hours. Even if you're not a PM customer (let's say you ask something regarding the Demos versions).If you request a new feature, they sometimes hardcode it within next 24/48 hours, which is a state-of-the-art response time.

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Do you have a url for your freeware stuff? Do you have anything for the 737?

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Richard,No, I haven't - since I already have the PM one 8^) . But, FWIW I would be wanting an OpenGL client, that has very high-quality gauge faces with anti-aliasing and very smooth operation. It would have the ability to switch between HSI and VOR nav gauges.Also - and this is admittedly a niche thing - I'd like to have a helicopter panel option, with the dual engine/rotor RPM gauge and either a torque or manifold pressure gauge.Maybe my requirements are why I coughed up the bucks for the PM panel, although it does not yet have the helicopter capability.cheers,Dave Blevinshttp://www.flightfactory-simulations.com/h...ster_banner.jpg

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Don't think mine would suit you then, Dave - I deliberately avoided OpenGL so as to enable it to be run on less potent hardware. I have an old Pentium 133 laptop.I considered doing a chopper panel as a next project, but even after asking on the Hovercontrol forum there was very little interest expressed so I dropped that idea.Richard

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Sorry, nothing for the 737 - wasn't going to try to compete with the Open cocpits guys :-)All I've done is my GA panel and a turboprop Eicas. They're both in the library here - fspanel and fseicas.I actually just noticed that the library has the current one as Version 2, it's really not, it's a v1.1 - just a bugfix of v1.0Richard

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