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blave

Hmmmm...costly endeavor--an editiorial

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Just thinking about cash spent on flight simming...software: I bought MSFS2000 Pro when it came out, then quite a few addons, now 2k2 is out...I bought the Pro version of that as well, but of course most of the adds from 2000 don't work....but does it even matter as the newer ones are so much better, especially in the eye candy department.BUT...now I have software that I spent more than $500 on that sits on my shelf collecting dust...I put the stuff up for sale here on the Classified section...and now in the swap shop, but why buy the stuff that is now a bit older...of course someone new to the hobby could take advantage of some cost savings, I guess...or maybe someone still using 2000.Already everyone is talking about 2004---so why invest all kinds of money in stuff for 2002 when the new version is, once again, right around the corner ? Knowing there will be a new version, and not too far down the road, makes me think real hard about buying very much for the current sim. Money is much tighter than it was a few years ago...cost of living always going up, and the salary not keeping pace....and actually fortunate to even be working with all the layoffs and stuff.The other alternative is to not buy the next version and really utlize the current product to its max and beyond. Why do we need to "upgrade" continuously ??? It seems we are just getting to a nice level of add on products, finally getting everything tweaked to work correctly, and BANG---the new one is on the shelf and we all start over. I'm to the point now of just sticking with , in this example, MSFS2002...There are plenty of free add ons for the current products, as well....maybe just use the free stuff...at least the cash outlay would be minimal.Now, what happens if we happen to take the frugal path ? Do all the great developers of add on products go out of business? Then where are we at? What a dilemna we have put ourselves in.

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Man you took the words right out of my mouth!! I agree that two years is a bit too short for me. I have yet to upgrade my current system to run fs2002 and its add-ons decently I won't be upgrading just to dump it all again. Who says we can't skip a version anyway?

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There are still quite a number of folks out there running FS98, especially in the cockpit builders guild. I myself usually got the new version after it got sold 'cheap', i.e. running one version behind all the time. 'Working' for AVSIM of course made an end to that. :-outta Francois :-wave[table border=0 cellpadding=10 cellspacing=0][tr][td valign=bottom" align="center]"At home in the wild"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][link:avsim.com/alaska/alaska_052.htm|Don's Alaskan Bush Charters]"Beavers Lead the Way"[/td][td valign=bottom" align="center][link:www.avsim.com/vfr_center/mainpages/vfr_flights_main_page.htm]VFR Flight Center]"Looking Good Outside"[/td][/tr][tr][td valign=top" align="center]http://avsim.com/hangar/air/bfu/logo70.gif[/td][td valign="top" align="left" colspan=2]http://www.fssupport.com/images/moose2.gif[/td][tr][/table]________________________Francois A. "Navman" DumasAssociate Editor &Forums AdministratorAVSIM Online![/bemail: fdumas@avsim.com________________________

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Well I have got some money and a lot of simming hours in this hobby, but not near as much as when I was fishing-(boat-10,000, gear 8-12 hundred), and every time I went it cost 50 to a hundred bucks. Years ago I was a bowling nut (equipment 300 to 500 a year) + league play (20-30 dollars) weekly. Come to think about it this is the cheapest hobby I have ever had. Farmer

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It still does not come close to the price of a few hours "real air"And what i do is buy the new version (can not resist really)then download all the best freeware and when the new version is released then the freeware gets the update and Voila it is a continueous roundabout of buy and building :)Flying Flight Simulator would be fun as well I expect lolAnniette xxxxxxxx

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Freeware...yes, I think that's where I need to stay, although I just bought Emma Field....and sure would like to buy that other Lago NW US scenery...Also bought a plane from FlightOne...so I'm on my way again :)As a hobby, overall, its probably not all that expensive considering some of the alternatives. Maybe one of my problems, and it is the same for hardware, and maybe more so....it seems we always move beyond the current stuff, when we haven't really even begun to tap the potential of it. I had an Atari 800 computer---there were some graphics stuff that came out for that after some time that just blew me away...if we were to wait and do the same for what is available now, it would be the same I think.Maybe I'm just getting frugal as I age :) I'm also starting to realize that it is more important to utilize what you have to its ultimate, and that maybe its not all that necessary to keep buying more stuff...and that goes for all products. I'm turning into a bad consumer...or maybe a smarter one...depends on which end of the cash flow you're on :)

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Well there are some pretty tantilizing releases in the pipe are you sure you have the self control? I dontBobG

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I guess it comes down to choices, if you truly love aviation.Spend several hundred dollars on software / add-ons, and perhaps a thousand or so on a computer upgrade every couple of years (more if you buy a brand new machine), or do it for real. Say you buy a new machine ($2000) and spend an additional $500 for softare and add-ons over a 2 year product run of MSFS, that works out to $1250 a year. Even less if you just upgrade your older machine (if possible).In the New York area, if you fly just 50 hours per year in a real, late model 172XP, it will cost you around $6000 a year. Step up to a 182S, and make that around $7500. Step up to a Baron (if you can even find one to rent) and the cost soars to over $15,000 per year. Let's not even talk about jets when it comes to this! ;-)Now, how many hours per year do you fly in FS? Only 50? If you fly 100 in FS, then you can double those figures I stated above. If you live in Europe and fly for real for 100 hours per year, you could probably triple them! Hmmmmm... 100 hours a year in a newer 172XP, in Europe, about $18,000? That might be low! ;-)It all comes down to choices, and, if FS is an expensive hobby, how would we describe the real thing? Regards,http://www.dreamfleet2000.com/gfx/images/F...R_FORUM_LOU.jpg

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I have no control...self or any other :)Maybe that's why I'm writing this...to convince myself that I have some...or try to convince myself....>Well there are some pretty tantilizing releases in the pipe >are you sure you have the self control? I dont >>BobG

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Maybe that's why I'm flying a desk instead of the real deal :)Actually, believe it or not, I'm scared ########## of flying, so I stay out of a plane as much as possible...I actually have a lot of hours...I was an aircraft mech in the Air Force, but for some reason, I am petrified of flying...blood pressure goes off the map, and I don't sleep for a week prior to flying and 3 days when I get back on the ground...So I don't need to worry about spending my cash on real flying.But I love planes and really enjoy watching them...as long as I don't need to get in one---at least one that moves off the ground.I'm afraid of heights bigtime as well, but I love roller coasters and go as much as possible...the ride up scares the crap out of me, but once I get rolling, its a blast. Even when I do have to fly for work, I sit in the window seat..get a bit queasy, but I really love the view.Pretty weird :)>I guess it comes down to choices, if you truly love >aviation. >>It all comes down to choices, and, if FS is an expensive >hobby, how would we describe the real thing? >>Regards,

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I agree with Lou here, as I can't think of any hobby or activity that can be experienced for any less money or investment than flight simming! Using Dreamfleet's 737 as an example, you can buy it for roughly $30US and its going to be about as close to the real-thing as anyone could hope for, but what would it cost to rent the real thing? United Airlines will sell you simulator time (about $500 for 4 hours I believe is the current cost) at their flight training center in Denver and I do know that Southwest will rent you time in one of their 737s (a friend of mine got his type rating renting a Southwest 737 for a flight from Seattle to Salt Lake City last year and his cost of that flight was about $15,000, if my memory serves).I've also found that most aircraft and such that worked in FS2000 can also be upgraded to work in FS2002, though it is my understanding that this may not be the case with FS2004, but what ever costs I've incurred buying and upgrading files or aircraft for FS, those costs have been quite incidental as compared to some other activities I've been involved with (like golfing for example). Even considering the cost of a new computer, you're looking at about the same as the cost for a good set of golf clubs, but the green fees will equal the cost of FS2002Pro every time you go to your local course!I simply don't think there is any other hobby or activity out there that can compare to the very low entry cost versus the many hours of enjoyment you can have with Flight Simulator.Bear!

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I hate to have to straddle the fence on this topic, but I must. This is a fairly inexpensive hobby. And, dollar-for-dollar, I think we get a pretty nice bang for our hard-earned bucks. However, the original post seemed to have been taken directly from my own thoughts. If I can manage to resist the temptation, I may just wait to upgrade to FS2004 once it hits the shelves. Imagine actually allowing the hardware to catch up with the current software offerings. Imagine having FS2002 fully loaded with the best add-ons (payware and freeware), having all sliders maxed, and having total fluidity within FS. I'm almost completely happy with my current setup, but I'll probably end up upgrading my system within about a year or so...then I'll be able to truly see FS2002 shine!Maybe I'll stay one step behind the software advances from here on...maybe.Just my $0.02."Learn from your parents' mistake...use birth control."(I M A UCLA) BruinAddict *:-*DemetriousAsus A7V266 MBAthlon XP 1600+ (@ 1.53)512MB PC2100 DDRVisionTek Xtasy GeForce4 Ti 4400 (Detonator 29.42 WHQL)NEC MultiSync E1100+ 21"SoundBlaster Live! Platinum 5.1Cambridge DTT2500 Desk Top TheaterWestern Digital 7200RPM ATA/100 40G HD (Primary)Western Digital 7200RPM ATA/100 40G HD (Secondary)300W PSUWindows XP Professional (Both drives - Multiboot)DirectX 8.1("I am humorous and well versed in the subtleties of everything pertaining to nothing." - BA)

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I have a feeling I will take all my pay ware upgrades and new payware I I buy for the life of FS2002 and stick with it. I hear a lot of talk of the all VC concept for 2004 and I am not thrilled with that. (I like the VC but I feel I fly better on the 2d panel). So I may upgrade to a new computer and keep on using FS2002 since I have really enjoyed it so much more than FS2000. I think over the next year some great products will come out to make FS2002 enjoyable for a long time.

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Consider this: a typical night out on the town, with dinner, maybe drinks, maybe some entertainment, is gonna cost (where I live) $20 - $100 or more. A typical add-on to FS costs in the neighborhood of $20.I think I lot of people expect add-ons to FS to be some small percentage of the purchase cost of FS itself, but IMO paying $70 (FS Pro version) for such a comprehensive *system* (not a sim, but a system) is one of the best deals in software out there today. Further, many of these add-ons (e.g.: Flight1 C421C, FSD 115TC, FsMeteo, Coyote Avionics products, FSFlightMax, the Reality XP stuff) are the result of many many man (person?) hours of people working at least part-time to create them - in many cases these being the result of pure love for the hobby (as I have) combined with actual talent 8^) .So, when someone wants $15 or $20 for a highly developed aircraft or avionics product that adds to the FS2002 experience, I am (depending on my cash flow of course) inclined to pony up for the added experience - I want to encourage those developers to Do It Again or even better, enhance their initial offering... A good example of this is that I am praying that the Reality XP folks will add an instrument approach capability to their UPS GPS emulation.While I'm on my soapbox here, the one exception to my approach is anything made by Abacus. After the "Sky Ranch" P.O.S. add-on that they got my good money for, I remain very skeptical of their newer products, and it rankles me to see "official" mention of their products on the AvSim news page. "Sky Ranch" was a very disappointing Xmas 2001 present, but I don't have the heart to tell my wife (the gift-giver) that...Dave BlevinsKRHV

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